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Help to boost your grades

Short answer questions

Short answer questions may vary in format but all require a brief and usually fact-based or descriptive answer. The key is to read the question very carefully and to provide exactly what it has asked for without any extra, unnecessary information. 

It may ask you to draw up a simple list of certain items or facts, in which case you should write the list without any additional explanations. 

Example Question: List the main causes of corrosion in solid materials 


1. Effects of air 
2. Effects of water 
3. Effects of acids, alkalis & chemicals 
4. Electrolytic action 


Two part questions

You may sometimes be given a 2-part question which will require 2 different approaches, in which case you must state each answer clearly and separately: 
a) Define what is meant by the term ‘grey water’ 
b) Explain the advantages of grey water recycling 
a) Grey water is waste water generated by activities in the home such as bathing, laundry & dishwashing 
b) The advantages of grey water recycling are: 
1. It is easy to install and is maintenance free. 
2. It removes the need for complex water treatment 
3. It can lower sewage costs 
4. It can reduce groundwater usage for irrigation purposes 
5. Less water will enter city’s sewage systems and so saves on rebuilding old sewage treatment plants 
To summarise: 
  • Always start by writing out the question first and reading it very carefully 
  • Aim to keep your answers short and to the point 
  • Clearly label your answers