Technical Terms English Gcse Assignment

One of the most common trends in high school English classes, as well as some college writing courses is the SQUIDS assignment.  Like many learning styles and strategies in academia, SQUIDS is an acronym commonly used to describe a particular writing assignment.  It’s goals are listed below:

SQUIDS [Select a Quotation, Understand, Identify. Describe the Significance]

1.Select a Quotation.Choose a quote that stands out in the text for its effect; find quotes that are significant to the theme of the work; select quotes that affect you as a reader.  Copy the quotation; include page number. NOTE:A quotation can be from the narrative—it does NOT have to be from the dialogue of a character.
2.Understand.Prove your understanding by taking some time to consider the quotation’s relevance to the section of the work in which it is found and the work as a whole. Think about the sentence structure and its effect. Look for rhetorical effect.
3.Identify.Identify the context in which the quote appears—what happened before and after the words you chose. Where/when does it appear in the text? Categorize its status as a rhetorical or literary device
4.Describing the Significance.Be sure to connect the passage to overall themes of the book.  What makes this quote important? Why does it stand out? How does it make you, the reader, take notice?

Many students fall into the trap of explaining the plot surrounding the scene from which the quote is selected without ever truly explaining the quote’s significance and relationship to literary themes or motifs, as well as character development.

In addition, students often find it difficult to elaborate and expand on the understanding and significance behind a quote to compose a substantial essay.

Writing S.Q.U.I.D.S. style papers helps students develop critical thinking and persuasive writing skills on paper, key criteria for the essay portion of the SAT and ACT exams, as well as for term papers and theses.

Below are some helpful resources for writing these kind of essays:

  1. How to Use Quotes in an Essay: a quick guide to formatting and citing quotations within a paper
  2. Common Errors in Student Research Papers
  3. Explication Papers: A short guide to devising a thesis and supporting it.

Your exam board, the WJEC, has already decided in advance which five topics you can choose from for the subject of your presentation. It is important that you think carefully before deciding which topic to discuss. The more interested you are in your chosen topic, the more likely you are to enjoy the actual presentation and the less nervous you will be. Your choice of topics are:

  • Wales
  • leisure
  • the world of work
  • the world of science/technology
  • citizenship

As each presentation is expected to be between five and seven minutes long (including time to respond to questions from members of the audience) it is important that you pick a topic about which you have plenty to say.

Below are some suggestions for ideas you may wish to include in your presentation.


  • The history of Wales.
  • The geography of Wales.
  • Literary heritage (for example, Dylan Thomas).
  • Famous bands and musicians.
  • Sporting legends.
  • Artists of Wales.
  • The Welsh coast.


  • The importance of leisure time on mental and physical health.
  • Discussing your own hobby.
  • The leisure industry in Wales.

The world of work

  • Your own particular choice of future career.
  • Important jobs in the world of work, such as doctors or lawyers.

The world of science/technology

  • The benefits and dangers of the internet.
  • The advantages of new technology.
  • Stem cell experimentation.


  • Global health.
  • The obstacles girls in some countries have to overcome in order to get an education.
  • The role of a local MP.

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