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Exam Verbs

Key words for exam questions

Analyse Examine in detail and/or break down into components.
Assess Describe the positives and negatives, identify the importance of...
Calculate Find out by way of mathematical formula or numerical data.
Compare Show the similarities and differences between.
Contrast Show the differences between.
Criticise Point out weaknesses as well as strengths.
Define Give the precise meaning of.
Derive Work out from basic principles.
Describe Examine or describe in detail. Make arguments for and against.
Distinguish Point out the differences.
Draw Make a picture or diagram.
Evaluate Discuss and make a judgement on.
Examine Take apart and describe a concept in great detail.
Explain Make clear in a detailed manner.
Identify Show you recognise.
Illustrate Give examples including figures or diagrams.
Interpret Explain, comment on and pass judgement.
Justify Give reasons to support the statement.
List Provide parts, reasons or qualities in itemised point form.
Prove (or disprove) Give evidence.
Relate Show the links, connections and associations.
Review Comment on the main aspects of a subject.
Show Explain with example, diagram or chart.
State Write briefly without further comment.
Suggest Give possible reasons and ideas.
Summarise (outline) Give the key points without details.
Trace Show the steps or stages to be followed.
Created by: pdsteconomics
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