Edexcel Paper 2 Text 2: Breaking Codes

I’m presenting my research at the NATE Conference, Saturday 24th June 2017, 09.15 Research slot.

This analysis of Text 2 from the sample assessment material (SAM) for the Edexcel English language GCSE specification builds on my analysis of the SAM for Edexcel Paper 2 Text 1, AQA Source A and Source B.

Tier Two words

73 Tier Two words

 

     
armed assume babble background basis
break breaking brief cheer combinations
complex concealing confidence confirmed converted
convinced crumpled currency describes dictionaries
discovered during elementary embarking enemy
enough extract frequency hardly increasingly
individual information ink innocent intelligence
interest invisible judgement lack letters
marginally message millions pairs patience
permutation phrase plain proceeded repetition
responsible resting secure self-esteem set
showed slightest slogging solved stake
stammer step substitution success suitable
supervisor task tedious text tricky
unbreakable uncover uphill    

 

There were 229 Tier Two words overall in the two Edexcel texts compared to 136 in the two AQA extracts.

There is very little overlap of Tier Two words across the four texts so far: only one word (‘increasingly’) appears in three (out of four) extracts; eleven appear in two of the extracts (assignment, attention, conceal[ing], crumpled, information, intelligence, interview, received, text, typical, whether).

Low frequency words (in the corpus)

The contexts for the least frequently occurring words in the British National Corpus (BNC) for this extract follow a similar pattern to the AQA texts.  There are 23 words that had less than 1000 frequency, very similar numbers to the two AQA extracts (25 and 22 words), but fewer than the other Edexcel text (46).  Fiction and academic texts were, again, the most frequent sources for these unusual words (8/23 and 7/23 respectively).

Contexts

Over the four extracts analysed so far academic texts feature as an important context for Tier Two words.  They are very dominant in this text (24/73 – of which 14 are nouns).  Fiction was next in line (15/73 – of which 7 are adjectives).  The important question here is just how much access students have to academic writing at secondary school.  I’m assuming text books would be the most likely source – the question is how much reading from text books secondary school students actually do.

Other useful knowledge

The Tier Three words are linguistic (consonants, indicators, linguist), related to coding (code(s), enciphered – which is in the glossary, Playfair) and to do with World War 2 (government-in-exile, Dutch, German, Netherlands).  Knowledge of places has come up as useful before: Lisbon, Czech, Africa, the Middle East in the first Edexcel text and the distance between Yorkshire and Islington in the second AQA text.

Onwards …

Next stop the WJEC/Educas SAMS.  It will be interesting to see if these texts fit into the average number of Tier 2 words appearing (around 70), if academic texts remain an important context and if knowledge of places is useful again …

 

Tier 2 Words – Alphabetical Order

Tier 2 Word Type of word – in context British National Corpus Frequency Largest context
armed Verb 4526 Non-academic
assume Verb 4004 Academic
babble Noun 103 Fiction
background Noun 5997 Academic
basis Noun 14228 Academic
break Verb 8976 Newspaper
breaking Verb 3131 Newspaper
brief Adjective 5416 Fiction
cheer Noun 724 Fiction
combinations Noun 940 Academic
complex Adjective 9294 Academic
concealing Verb 230 Fiction
confidence Noun 6766 Newspaper
confirmed Verb 4758 Newspaper
converted Verb 2258 Newspaper/non-academic
convinced Verb 3128 Newspaper
crumpled Verb 379 Fiction
currency Noun 3329 Non-academic
describes Verb 2599 Academic
dictionaries Noun 394 Academic
discovered Verb 6124 newspaper
during preposition 42784 Non-academic
elementary Adjective 699 Non-academic
embarking Verb 302 Misc
enemy Noun 3127 Non-academic
enough Adjective 30765 Fiction
extract Noun 1421 Academic
frequency Noun 2775 Academic
hardly Adverb 8323 Fiction
increasingly Adverb 6494 Academic
individual Adjective 18797 Academic
information Noun 37833 Misc
ink Noun 786 Magazine
innocent Adjectives 2440 Fiction
Intelligence Proper noun 3344 Non-academic
interest Verb 26772 Misc
invisible Adjective 1188 Fiction
judgement Noun 2421 Academic
lack Noun 9751 Academic
letters Noun 7606 Magazine
marginally Adverb 431 Academic
message Noun 6557 Misc/newspaper
millions Noun 2578 Newspaper
pairs Noun 2075 Academic
patience Noun 1144 Fiction
permutation Noun 29 Academic
phrase Noun 2995 Academic
plain Adjective 4002 Magazine
proceeded Verb 1020 Non-academic
repetition Noun 882 Academic
responsible Adjective 9177 Non-academic/academic
resting Verb 1166 Fiction
Secure Adjective 4501 Non-academic/academic
self-esteem Noun 432 Non-academic/academic
set Verb 43431 Magazine, newspaper, misc
showed Verb 10294 Academic
slightest Adjective 844 Fiction
slogging Verb 30 Magazine/newspaper
solved Verb 1125 Academic
stake Noun 2072 Newspaper
stammer Verb 67 Fiction
step Noun 8412 Magazine/fiction
substitution Adjective 677 Academic
success Noun 13067 Newspaper/misc
suitable Adjective 5953 Misc/magazine
supervisor Noun 707 Misc
task Noun 8917 Academic
tedious Adjective 499 Fiction/magazine
text Noun 6865 Academic
tricky Adjective 627 Magazine
unbreakable Adjective 57 Fiction
uncover Verb 240 Academic
uphill adjective 351 Magazine

 

Tier 2 Words – in order of BNC frequency

Tier 2 Word Type of word – in context British National Corpus Frequency Largest context
set Verb 43431 Magazine, newspaper, misc
during preposition 42784 Non-academic
information Noun 37833 Misc
enough Adjective 30765 Fiction
interest Verb 26772 Misc
individual Adjective 18797 Academic
basis Noun 14228 Academic
success Noun 13067 Newspaper/misc
showed Verb 10294 Academic
lack Noun 9751 Academic
complex Adjective 9294 Academic
responsible Adjective 9177 Non-academic/academic
break Verb 8976 newspaper
task Noun 8917 Academic
step Noun 8412 Magazine/fiction
hardly Adverb 8323 Fiction
letters Noun 7606 Magazine
text Noun 6865 Academic
confidence Noun 6766 Newspaper
message Noun 6557 Misc/newspaper
increasingly Adverb 6494 Academic
discovered Verb 6124 newspaper
background Noun 5997 Academic
suitable Adjective 5953 Misc/magazine
brief Adjective 5416 Fiction
confirmed Verb 4758 Newspaper
armed Verb 4526 Non-academic
Secure Adjective 4501 Non-academic/academic
assume Verb 4004 Academic
plain Adjective 4002 Magazine
Intelligence Proper noun 3344 Non-academic
currency Noun 3329 Non-academic
breaking Verb 3131 Newspaper
convinced Verb 3128 Newspaper
enemy Noun 3127 Non-academic
phrase Noun 2995 Academic
frequency Noun 2775 Academic
describes Verb 2599 Academic
millions Noun 2578 Newspaper
innocent Adjectives 2440 Fiction
judgement Noun 2421 Academic
converted Verb 2258 Newspaper/non-academic
pairs Noun 2075 Academic
stake Noun 2072 Newspaper
extract Noun 1421 Academic
invisible Adjective 1188 Fiction
resting Verb 1166 Fiction
patience Noun 1144 Fiction
solved Verb 1125 Academic
proceeded Verb 1020 Non-academic
combinations Noun 940 Academic
repetition Noun 882 Academic
slightest Adjective 844 Fiction
ink Noun 786 Magazine
cheer Noun 724 Fiction
supervisor Noun 707 Misc
elementary Adjective 699 Non-academic
substitution Adjective 677 Academic
tricky Adjective 627 Magazine
tedious Adjective 499 Fiction/magazine
self-esteem Noun 432 Non-academic/academic
marginally Adverb 431 Academic
dictionaries Noun 394 Academic
crumpled Verb 379 Fiction
uphill adjective 351 Magazine
embarking Verb 302 Misc
uncover Verb 240 Academic
concealing Verb 230 Fiction
babble Noun 103 Fiction
stammer Verb 67 Fiction
unbreakable Adjective 57 Fiction
slogging Verb 30 Magazine/newspaper
permutation Noun 29 Academic

Notes:

  • 23 words under 1000 frequency: 9/23 nouns; 7/23 adjectives; 6/23 verbs; 1 adverb
  • 7/23 Academic (4 nouns); 8/23 Fiction (3 verbs, 3 adjectives, 2 nouns); 4/23 Magazine; 2/23 Misc; 2/23 non-academic
  • Edexcel Text 1: 46 words under 1000 frequency
  • AQA Text 1: 25 words under 1000 frequency
  • AQA Text 2: 22 words under 1000 frequency

Tier 2 words – in order of largest context

Tier 2 Word Type of word – in context British National Corpus Frequency Largest context
Complex Adjective 9294 Academic
Individual Adjective 18797 Academic
Substitution Adjective 677 Academic
Increasingly Adverb 6494 Academic
Marginally Adverb 431 Academic
Background Noun 5997 Academic
Basis Noun 14228 Academic
Combinations Noun 940 Academic
Dictionaries Noun 394 Academic
Extract Noun 1421 Academic
Frequency Noun 2775 Academic
Judgement Noun 2421 Academic
Lack Noun 9751 Academic
Pairs Noun 2075 Academic
Permutation Noun 29 Academic
Phrase Noun 2995 Academic
Repetition Noun 882 Academic
Task Noun 8917 Academic
Text Noun 6865 Academic
Assume Verb 4004 Academic
Describes Verb 2599 Academic
Showed Verb 10294 Academic
Solved Verb 1125 Academic
Uncover Verb 240 Academic
Brief Adjective 5416 Fiction
Enough Adjective 30765 Fiction
Invisible Adjective 1188 Fiction
Slightest Adjective 844 Fiction
Unbreakable Adjective 57 Fiction
Innocent Adjective 2440 Fiction
Hardly Adverb 8323 Fiction
Babble Noun 103 Fiction
Cheer Noun 724 Fiction
Patience Noun 1144 Fiction
Concealing Verb 230 Fiction
Crumpled Verb 379 Fiction
Resting Verb 1166 Fiction
Stammer Verb 67 Fiction
Tedious Adjective 499 Fiction/magazine
plain Adjective 4002 Magazine
tricky Adjective 627 Magazine
uphill adjective 351 Magazine
ink Noun 786 Magazine
letters Noun 7606 Magazine
set Verb 43431 Magazine, newspaper, misc
step Noun 8412 Magazine/fiction
slogging Verb 30 Magazine/newspaper
information Noun 37833 Misc
supervisor Noun 707 Misc
embarking Verb 302 Misc
interest Verb 26772 Misc
suitable Adjective 5953 Misc/magazine
message Noun 6557 Misc/newspaper
confidence Noun 6766 Newspaper
millions Noun 2578 Newspaper
stake Noun 2072 Newspaper
break Verb 8976 Newspaper
breaking Verb 3131 Newspaper
confirmed Verb 4758 Newspaper
convinced Verb 3128 Newspaper
discovered Verb 6124 Newspaper
success Noun 13067 Newspaper/misc
converted Verb 2258 Newspaper/non-academic
elementary Adjective 699 Non-academic
currency Noun 3329 Non-academic
enemy Noun 3127 Non-academic
during preposition 42784 Non-academic
Intelligence Proper noun 3344 Non-academic
armed Verb 4526 Non-academic
proceeded Verb 1020 Non-academic
responsible Adjective 9177 Non-academic/academic
Secure Adjective 4501 Non-academic/academic
self-esteem Noun 432 Non-academic/academic

Notes: 24 Academic (14 nouns); 15 Fiction (7 adjectives); 10 newspaper; 10 non-academic; 8 magazine; 6 miscellaneous

Tier 2 Words – in order or type of word

Tier 2 Word Type of word – in context British National Corpus Frequency Largest context
brief Adjective 5416 Fiction
complex Adjective 9294 Academic
elementary Adjective 699 Non-academic
enough Adjective 30765 Fiction
individual Adjective 18797 Academic
invisible Adjective 1188 Fiction
plain Adjective 4002 Magazine
responsible Adjective 9177 Non-academic/academic
Secure Adjective 4501 Non-academic/academic
slightest Adjective 844 Fiction
substitution Adjective 677 Academic
suitable Adjective 5953 Misc/magazine
tedious Adjective 499 Fiction/magazine
tricky Adjective 627 Magazine
unbreakable Adjective 57 Fiction
uphill adjective 351 Magazine
innocent Adjectives 2440 Fiction
hardly Adverb 8323 Fiction
increasingly Adverb 6494 Academic
marginally Adverb 431 Academic
babble Noun 103 Fiction
background Noun 5997 Academic
basis Noun 14228 Academic
cheer Noun 724 Fiction
combinations Noun 940 Academic
confidence Noun 6766 Newspaper
currency Noun 3329 Non-academic
dictionaries Noun 394 Academic
enemy Noun 3127 Non-academic
extract Noun 1421 Academic
frequency Noun 2775 Academic
information Noun 37833 Misc
Ink Noun 786 Magazine
judgement Noun 2421 Academic
Lack Noun 9751 Academic
Letters Noun 7606 Magazine
message Noun 6557 Misc/newspaper
millions Noun 2578 Newspaper
Pairs Noun 2075 Academic
patience Noun 1144 Fiction
permutation Noun 29 Academic
phrase Noun 2995 Academic
repetition Noun 882 Academic
self-esteem Noun 432 Non-academic/academic
Stake Noun 2072 Newspaper
Step Noun 8412 Magazine/fiction
success Noun 13067 Newspaper/misc
supervisor Noun 707 Misc
Task Noun 8917 Academic
Text Noun 6865 Academic
During preposition 42784 Non-academic
Intelligence Proper noun 3344 Non-academic
Armed Verb 4526 Non-academic
assume Verb 4004 Academic
Break Verb 8976 newspaper
breaking Verb 3131 Newspaper
concealing Verb 230 Fiction
confirmed Verb 4758 Newspaper
converted Verb 2258 Newspaper/non-academic
convinced Verb 3128 Newspaper
crumpled Verb 379 Fiction
describes Verb 2599 Academic
discovered Verb 6124 newspaper
embarking Verb 302 Misc
interest Verb 26772 Misc
proceeded Verb 1020 Non-academic
Resting Verb 1166 Fiction
Set Verb 43431 Magazine, newspaper, misc
showed Verb 10294 Academic
slogging Verb 30 Magazine/newspaper
Solved Verb 1125 Academic
stammer Verb 67 Fiction
uncover Verb 240 Academic

Notes: 30 nouns; 21 Verbs; 17 adjectives; 3 adverbs

Tier Three Words

code 3    
codes 3    
consonants 3    
enciphered 3    
government-in-exile 3    
guilders 3    
indicators 3    
linguist 3    
Playfair 3    
Dutch 3    
German 3    
Netherlands 3    

 

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