Literacy skills are most evident in written work.

Accuracy of Writing

Pupils will be marked on the accuracy of their writing in most of their GCSE exams (not just English).  Accuracy is assessed in terms of:

  • spelling
  • grammar
  • punctuation
  • use of specialist terminology

However literacy skills in writing go further than just accuracy.  Pupils will do lots of different types of writing in lessons but will also bring some home for homework.  The other ways in which writing is assessed are as follows.

Meaning, Purpose and Readers

What is the main purpose of the writing?  e.g. instructions, a diary, selling something, creative story telling

Who is the intended target audience?  Is the style of writing appropriate?  For example, a formal business letter should use more formal language.

Is the meaning of the writing clear?  Sometimes less is more!

If using ICT tools to present the writing, has the right tool been used for the job?  Different pages / slides can be hyperlinked to show connected information.  Animated graphics for explanations.

Structure and Organisation

The writing should be structured properly using paragraphs and different sections.  An essay should have an introduction and a conclusion.  Often headings and subheadings should be used (such as on this page).  Information can be presented in different ways other than paragraphs such as bullet points and tables.  This applies when handwriting or using a computer.


This is related to the purpose and target audience.  Language is especially important when writing impartially.  Younger children tend to write in the first person (“I”) a lot and whilst this is appropriate for a diary, it is not appropriate for other forms of writing, e.g. a newspaper article.  Specialist terminology appropriate to the subject should also be used.

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