N7 Question & Mark Scheme Creation Guide

A guide for teachers and content developers


Elements

Code Blocks

Code blocks are suitable for the following content:

  • Code / pseudo-code
  • ASCII TABLES
  • ASCII or other character based graphics

For example

+---------------------------------------+
|                Results                |
+-------------+-------------------------+
|             |        Contestant       |
| Competition +-------+--------+--------+
|             |  John | Andrea | Robert |
+-------------+-------+--------+--------+
| Swimming    |  1:30 |   2:05 |   1:15 |
+-------------+-------+--------+--------+
| Running     | 15:30 |  14:10 |  15:45 |
+-------------+-------+--------+--------+

Pseudocode

Before sharing your pseudocode question markschemes:

  • Check your logic by writing and running pseudocode solutions in a programming language of your choice
  • If any errors are discovered, fix your code and amend your pseudocode accordingly

For example, the following pseudocode copies all distinct city names from a collection called CITIES and into an array called LIST

COUNT = 0
loop while CITIES.hasNext()
    CITY = CITIES.getNext()
    FOUND = false
    loop INDEX from 0 to COUNT - 1
        if DATA = LIST[INDEX] then
            FOUND = true
        end if
    end loop
    if FOUND = false then
        LIST[COUNT] = DATA
        COUNT = COUNT + 1
    end if
end loop

Functions, methods & procedures

Functions

Use the pseudocode function key word only when, by definition, values / objects are explicitly returned. For example:

function largestValue(a, b)
    largest = b
    if a > b
        largest = a
    end if
    return largest
end function

Methods

Use the pseudocode method key word only when functions belong to Classes. For example:

class number
    number = a  // an instance variable
    method largestValue(b)
        if this.number > b
            largest = this.number
        else
            largest = b
        return largest
    end method

Procedures

Use the pseudocode procedure key word only when a "function" does not return any values / objects (though may affect items in a global scope). For example:

largest = 0
procedure largestValue(a, b)
    largest = b
    if a > b
        largest = a
    end if
end procedure

Meaningful variable names

To model good coding practices, even in pseudocode use appropriately meaningful varible names

Atomic Terms

| Command Term | Appropriate Response | | ------------ | ------------------------------------------------------------------------------- | | Calculate | determine a numerical result from facts, figures or information (show workings) | | Comment | provide an informed judgement / opinion / review | | Construct | make a diagrammatic or logical / coded representation | | Define | give an accurate and complete definition | | Demonstrate | show how and / or provide an example | | Develop | elaborate on / build upon / advance | | Identify | name / select / recognise | | Sketch | make a simple freehand drawing showing key / essential elements |

Composite Terms

| Command Term | Appropriate Response | | ------------------ | ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- | | Analyse / Examine | DESCRIBE and DISCUSS | | Assess / Evaluate | DESCRIBE, DISCUSS and COMMENT (focus discussion and comments on criteria as per context) | | Compare | DESCRIBE, DISCUSS and COMMENT on similarities | | Contrast | DESCRIBE, DISCUSS and COMMENT on differences | | Describe / Outline | IDENTIFY and DEVELOP key concept characteristics | | Discuss | IDENTIFY and DEVELOP how key concepts relate to both each other and their context | | Explain | DESCRIBE why and/or how (support your explanation with evidence / reason) | | Justify | DESCRIBE, DISCUSS and COMMENT to justify a position (support your arguments with evidence / reason) | | Predict | DESCRIBE, DISCUSS and COMMENT to predict an outcome (support your prediction with evidence / reason) | | State | DESCRIBE in clear terms | | Suggest | DESCRIBE, DISCUSS and COMMENT to make a suggestion (support your proposal with evidence / reason) | | Summarise | IDENTIFY and DEVELOP essential elements / main points (omit detail) |

A note on Copare vs. Contrast

Be sure to use the correct term

Languague & Grammar

American or British English

N7 Education have opted to use Brish English / spelling

Metric (rather than imperial) units

Full stops

Full stops at the end of setances, except where mark scheme example lines correspond to one mark - these should end in a semi colon

Identify FALSITY bias

For multple choice questions, strongly preference a falsy bias. That is, have students identify the false statement rather than the true one in order to expose students to more truthful statements to support learning