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Language papers?


Sorry if this is breaking the rules, but I'm one of the first IB students at my college and my Italian class are panicking about our exams. We've got a new teacher and everything, but we're still screwed because we don't know the structure of the IB language exams. We had mocks in July with the A-level students, but we were given a GCSE paper because we're the ab initio group.

I just want to know what the language exams are like- I know we have to be prepared for speaking, listening, reading and writing- and I need to know what to expect.

Thank you!


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You're not breaking the rules at all, don't worry :console:.

Here's an excerpt from a Group 2 IB site.

If a student has no previous background in a given language, then that student may study that language as an ab initio SL subject. Such a course focuses on giving the student basic knowledge of both the language in everyday use and the culture of the places where it is spoken. The standard reached by the student after two years is considerably lower than that reached in language B.


For students to achieve communicative competence in a variety of situations, the following core topics are explored in the Language ab initio course: the individual, education and work, town and services, food and drink, leisure and travel, the environment, health and emergencies. The language skills that are taught and assessed are: listening, reading, writing, speaking and cultural awareness.[9]


Internal Assessment — (30% of total grade) for a Language ab initio consists of the average of two oral presentations, one of which is to be given to the teacher, recorded and sent out for moderation. The other is an interactive oral activity and can be individual or group.[10]

External Assessment — (70% of total grade) for Language ab initio includes paper 1, consisting of 3–4 reading comprehension texts and paper 2, consisting of one short writing task and one extended-response writing task.[11]

For the oral and written components of the assessments, students receive marks based on their level of competency in use of language, presentation and communication skills.[12]

For reading comprehension, students receive a grade based on a markscheme (answer key) for questions that are multiple-choice, short-answer, true/false/justify, matching and extended response.[13]

Just ask if you have any more questions on the paper structure.

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