I’ve been hearing this theme in various guises a lot from students recently and I absolutely understand…
In my experience, this is the same for a lot of students.
Once they have the template, or a model answer, or a structure to ‘hang’ their own knowledge on, suddenly all that fog and fuzziness clears and they can move forward with writing their assignment, essay or extended exam response…
It is so much easier to use the efforts and the experience of others, to help us get where we want to go. As a result , we can often get further and do so faster than we might’ve done by making our own way or trying to figure it all out for ourselves.
I’ve seen many students drop one (or more!) grades in an extended response because they’ve done great in one section/part, but in the second part they’ve given little to no response.
This can have a huge (and what feel a little unfair) impact when it comes to the mark scheme and gaining credit. But it’s how many mark schemes are structured and therefore better to accept it and have the awareness to combat this nuance!
Allocating time or space in the exam to each part of a response within a question as equally as possible will mean the hard work in one part is not wasted in terms of hitting the mark scheme criteria.