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May 23, 2024, 04:54:45 pm

Author Topic: Language vs. Mainstream  (Read 3828 times)  Share 

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gcfkn.j

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Language vs. Mainstream
« on: July 02, 2021, 06:21:45 pm »
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This is probably a question thousands of people have asked already but English Language or Mainstream? I'm not a huge fan of Literature so I'm just stuck between these two. May I know how past Language and Mainstream students have found these subjects? Out of all my subjects, I've never really liked English as it's not really my forte :/

schoolstudent115

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Re: Language vs. Mainstream
« Reply #1 on: July 03, 2021, 10:58:34 pm »
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This is probably a question thousands of people have asked already but English Language or Mainstream? I'm not a huge fan of Literature so I'm just stuck between these two. May I know how past Language and Mainstream students have found these subjects? Out of all my subjects, I've never really liked English as it's not really my forte :/
I'm currently doing English Language, but we've pretty much covered just about everything already (the vast majority of content is actually in unit 3).  Much like you, I wasn't a fan of English back in year 10. I did get better at it over time, my teacher actually strongly suggested that I do literature as well as mainstream. But I still chose Language. I'm doing significantly better now than I think would have been the case had I done mainstream, as I found mainstream in year 10 to be a bit too 'fluffy' and imprecise, and as such, did not feel very confident doing really really well (like high A+ level).

English Language I find is a a lot easier on the workload than mainstream would be. Any homework for english language is either free revision of 'metalanguage' (which are terms to describe language itself, for example "ran" can be described by the metalanguage 'verb', and metalanguage the main thing to grasp in english language) OR practice questions.
The answers/explanations you give are a more concrete and there is usually a distinctly correct/incorrect response, but there is some wiggle room, in that if you explain something well enough and link it to theory correctly, you can still get marks.
There are 3 types of assessments we do (in order):
1. Short answer questions: These are pretty nice, not really much long response. An example would by "Explain the use of passive voice (which is essentially just a particular ordering in a sentence) between lines x-y, and how it aids the authors function (3 marks)".
Then a response would be:  "[Author]'s use of agentless passive voice in "the case was investigated" allows prominence to be placed on the patient, "case", to highlight what was being investigated, and the omission of the agent indicates a redundancy in explaining the agent due to it being obvious to [audience]". I bolded the metalanguage.
2. Analytical commentary (AC): This is an essay-like piece of writing, where each paragraph is like a long short answer question response with 3 or 4 examples, and deep explanations of the relevance to the contextual factors surrounding the text (function, etc.). If you are comfortable with short answer questions, the AC should be fine.
3. Essay: Yeah this is really the one I hate. You take contemporary (i.e. 2021) examples of language use in Australia and respond to some prompt like "What role does informal language have in contemporary AUS society?", and you - much like in mainstream - generate ideas (in this case, 3), and explain them with reference to the quotes/examples. This type of assessment I feel is a lot more detached from the SAQ and AC ones, and I haven't had a SAC on this type of thing yet, but I have done some practice ones and it is somewhat reminiscent of mainstream english type essays (but it is a bit more concrete and less open to interpretation than mainstream english essay).

Overall, I think if you are very analytical (and maybe mathematically/scientifically minded), English Language is (in my opinion) probably more suited to you (not always, but I think it is more often than not true).

I would, however, also be interested in hearing from those who did mainstream english (there's likely something I'm not accounting for).
« Last Edit: July 03, 2021, 11:01:23 pm by schoolstudent115 »
2021: ATAR: 99.95
2022-2024: University of Melbourne, BSci (Major in Mathematics and Statistics)