2017 A-Level General Paper (GP) Exam Questions

Here are the General Paper (GP) Essay Questions for the Nov 2017 GCE A-Levels exams. Some expected questions and some interesting ones! =)

  1. ‘The past is not dead. It is not even past.’ Discuss.
  2. Can the use of animals for scientific research ever be justified?
  3. In your society, to what extent is it acceptable for public money to be used for the acquisition of works of art?
  4. ‘Rehabilitation, not punishment, should be the purpose of the justice system.’  Discuss.
  5. Is regulation of the press desirable?
  6. Do events, rather than politicians, shape the future?
  7. How far is science fiction becoming fact?
  8. Examine the role of music in establishing a national identity in your society.
  9. To what extent are people judged more by their physical appearances than by their abilities?
  10. ‘Practical ability is just as important as intellectual skills.’ How far is this true in your society?
  11. Assess the view that attempts to control climate change can never be truly effective.
  12. ‘The quality of written language is being destroyed by social media.’ What is your view?
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Guest Speaker at KL Bookfest 2017! =)

Delighted and humbled to be invited as a guest speaker and education expert at KL Bookfest 2017. It was a rewarding experience sharing with the audience about the beauty of a subject like General Paper and teaching the students in the audience some skills and tips that will help them improve not just in GP but also in English in general. =)

Hope to be back next year!

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Article on TODAY newspaper about our GP classes! =)

We are thankful for this article that was published on TODAY on 25 April 2017 on our General Paper (GP) tuition classes. =)

Here’s the full article:

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At Irwin’s Study, students get tuition and mentorship from an Oxford University graduate.

Mr Irwin See, 37, has been giving General Paper (GP) tuition for the past eight years. His students say that his passion and optimism are infectious, as is the way he dishes out nifty examination tips with a big smile.

His track record helps set him apart as a positive role model and a different kind of tuition teacher. He took up the teaching track after obtaining a master’s degree with distinction from Oxford University and a first class honours degree from the London School of Economics on a Public Service Commission Overseas Scholarship.

His teaching methods include using visual elements such as infographics and mind maps, and help give his students an edge in the subject.


Mr See started the private-tuition centre — Irwin’s Study — in 2009 after teaching GP and History at a junior college as a Ministry of Education teacher for a few years.

“I decided to focus on teaching GP because I believe that when taught well, it is a subject that holds the magic to open minds, touch hearts, and engage 17- and 18-year-olds to think deeper about issues such as identity, meaning and purpose of life,” he added.

Despite running Irwin’s Study at two locations (Tampines and Bukit Timah), Mr See still teaches every GP lesson personally.

Over the years, his students’ results and positive attitudes have been great sources of motivation for him. More than 80 per cent of them have managed to score an A or B in their A-Level GP exams, he said.

“Most importantly, students tell me they look forward to coming for my GP lesson every week and that they never leave my lesson without having learnt something new about the world and about themselves,” he said. “That is quite amazing because I never thought that students would look forward to attending tuition classes!”

One of his students, Ms Janice Chan, said: “Mr See teaches us to see issues from multiple perspectives, and his passion for teaching is evident in the way he teaches beyond the needs of the examinations.”


And the advice Mr See gives isn’t confined only to academic work either.

Said Mr See: “Some students also stay back after class to chat with me or ask me for my thoughts and advice on various issues. I realise that these are precious moments when I can share with students my life experiences, and impart bits and pieces of wisdom as a mentor to these young lives.”

Full article here: http://www.todayonline.com/singapore/learning-minds-special/focused-approach-general-paper

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86.3% =)

We are delighted and encouraged that 86.3% of our JC2 students last year scored an ‘A’ or ‘B’ grade for the 2016 A-Level General Paper (GP) Exam!

Ever thankful that Irwin’s Study holds space for our students not only to explore the deep issues of life and society, but also to be equipped to score very well for the exams. =)

Sharing a few of our appreciative students’s whatsapp messages after they got their results:


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2016 A-Level General Paper (GP) Exam Questions

Hot off the Press! Here are the GP Paper 1 Exam Questions for the GCE A-Level Exams this year. I will also be providing some of own thoughts, and insights in the following days. Stay tuned! =)

1. ‘Any adaptation of a novel for a film, television or the theatre is never as effective as the original.’ Discuss.

2. Assess the view that traditional buildings have no future in your society.

3. ‘Longer life expectancy creates more problems than benefits.’ Discuss.

4. Considering the money involved, should developing countries be allowed to host major sporting events?

5. ‘Human need, rather than profit, should always be the main concern of scientific research.’ Discuss.

6. ‘Countries experiencing conflict should be left to sort out their own problems.’ How far do you agree?

7. How far has modern technology made it unnecessary for individuals to possess mathematical skills?

8. ‘People who do the most worthwhile jobs rarely receive the best financial rewards.’ To what extent is this true of your society?

9. Evaluate the claim that equality of opportunity for females is a desirable, but unrealistic, goal.

10. Assess the view that most natural disasters are the result of human activity.

11. Is competition always desirable?

12. ‘Everyone has an opinion, but not everyone’s opinion is of equal value.’ What is your view?



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5 Ways I Become a Better Teacher

Just the other day, I was reflecting on my career as a teacher and what I am thankful for. And one of the things the Lord laid upon my heart was to write down and share these 5 things that I know has made me a better teacher and will, I hope, continue to do so. Here are my 5 ‘E’s! =)

1. MENTAL Expansion

Not surprisingly, the broadening of horizons, widening of perspectives and constant exploration of new knowledge have been an essential part of why I always enjoy teaching a subject like General Paper (GP). Because GP covers such a wide swathe of topics, issues, and themes, I am ‘forced’ to read voraciously and serendipitously — something I thoroughly enjoy. The wisdom found in books and articles is amazing; to share it with my students – priceless.

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2. PHYSICAL Energy

I didn’t use to think that teaching is a physical activity as one would classify sports or athletics training. Yet, I’ve come to discover that teaching does demand physical energy and stamina at a level that is exhilarating and at times, breath-taking (literally!). And I find that on those days that I go to the gym for my workout, while I’m usually beat at the end of the session, I have a renewed vigour to teach my classes thereafter.

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3. EMOTIONAL Environment

This aspect is crucial in ways that I didn’t immediately realise. I’m constantly grateful to my wife and family who give me the unconditional love and support to do the things that God has given me to do. And cradled in this emotional sanctuary, I know that I can teach better, because I teach and minister out of the emotional capacity that has been filled up in my life – time and time again.

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4. SPIRITUAL Enablement

This brings me to the next aspect, which is also surprising to me when I first became aware of it. As I listen to sermons, read Christian books and am mentored by my church leaders and elders, unknowingly I find my teaching improving in terms of worldview, concepts, content, and lesson delivery. It’s quite inexplicable but I know it’s because of the Holy Spirit’s empowerment, for which I am always in awe and always humbled.

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5. SOCIAL Encouragement

When I first left the teaching service, one of the things that I really missed the most was having colleagues to interact with, have lunch with, and bounce ideas off. In the early years when I set up Irwin’s Study, I discovered that business can indeed be a lonely enterprise. But from last year, God has been so good to bless me with like-minded (and I must say, like-hearted) fellow tutors who have been so fun, inspiring and crazy to journey with!

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