CAE writing Part 2 – Letter / email

CAE writing Part 2 - Letter / email

Everest Teacher: Derick Smith

by Derick Smith

The CAE written test takes 90 minutes and is divided into two parts. CAE writing Part 2 is situationally based writing task requiring you to write 220-260 words. Unlike Part 1, you will be given a choice of four questions and you must answer only one using the appropriate format, listed below.

 

  1. A letter / email
  2. A proposal
  3. A report
  4. A review

 

To be successful at this task you must be familiar with these formats and be able to confidently use them to talk about any potential subject.

 

In this post we will look at  a sample letter / email question taken from the Cambridge website.

 

You have read an article in your college magazine about the effects of the internet on studying.  The article focuses on the negative effects, in particular the influence of social-networking sites and email.  You feel the article has too negative a view of the way students use the internet, and decide to write a letter to the editor explaining your opinion. Write your letter.

 

Before you begin

CAE Writing letter or email - Read the question

The most important task is to identify ALL parts of the question. Take a few minutes to read and underline the important and relevant parts.
You have read an article in your college magazine about the effects of the internet on studying. The article focuses on the negative effects, in particular the influence of social-networking sites and email. You feel the article has too negative a view of the way students use the internet, and decide to write a letter to the editor explaining your opinion. Write your letter.

 

Create a plan

CAE Writing planning Cambridge LetterNext, create a plan of everything you wish to include and how you will arrange it. Remember, good writing is arranged logically and uses clear formatting such as paragraphs. This is only possible with planning.(8 - 10 minutes)

“If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail!” - Benjamin Franklin

 

Assessment criteria

CAE writing assessment criteriaYour writing will be assessed on the following criteria which is important to understand before you begin.

 

  • Content - Have you answered all of the question?
  • Communicative Achievement - Have you used the right style of writing?
  • Organisation - Have you structured your writing logically?
  • Language - Have you used a good range of grammar and vocabulary?

 

Check your work

 

Remember to allow 8-10 minutes to check your work before the time ends. Common mistakes occur in words with silent letters (i.e. government) and prefixes and suffixes (careful / carefully) The recommended word count is 220-260 but do not waste time counting words or trying to remove them afterwards. As a general rule, 200 is not enough and 300 is too much.
For more detailed information and practice tests you can visit this free website (www.flo-joe.co.uk) and you can find a practice exercise here (www.examenglish.com). If you want to prepare for the CAE in Dublin, check out our CAE (Cambridge Advanced) and FCE (Cambridge First) courses.

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