In the recent few years, the number of questions to choose from for the English Cambridge Secondary GCE ‘O’ [Syllabus 1128] and ‘N(A)’ [Syllabus 1190] Continuous Writing sections (Paper 1) have seen a reduction from 5 to 4. Concurrently, narrative type essays seem less likely to appear. Consequently, argumentative type essays or exposition type essays increased in frequency. Both these require a fair deal of general knowledge or being up to date with current events/issues. But that may be where the similarities end. There is disagreement over interpretation of both categories. Expositions, according to some schools do not require a stand. It serves only to list and explain the benefits and costs of say electronic books (e-books) for instance. But in other situations, an expository essay may similarly be written as an argumentative essay. Taking the example of the e-books, the answer should include a stand in the introduction and conclusion of the essay. The stand/thesis would inform the reader whether or not e-books be accepted or rejected (be it in the majority or minority). [For the argumentative essay, there are also different schools of thought pertaining to the structure of the essay.]
Perhaps in response, certain schools have begun preparing their students through the ‘hybrid’ essay.
By: CWL, Jan 2017