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NSW Syllabuses

The Composition Process – Year 12 Extension 2

The following diagram provides an overview of the structure of the process of developing the Major Work and the Reflection Statement.

Composition process diagram showing an overview of the structure of the process of developing the Major Work and the Reflection Statement. The diagram consists of four steps: Composition Process, Major Work Journal, Major Work and Reflection Statement. The Composition Process is shown as an arrowed rectangle at the top and each step is stacked below in ever shorter rectangles indicating that they are sub-parts of the Composition Process.

The creative process is dynamic, fluid and iterative. The following stages are not necessarily sequential because the craft of composing requires students to revise, reinterpret and reimagine throughout the composition process. 

The investigating stage

Students will:

  • investigate literature that stems from an area of personal interest and passion to develop a research base for the Major Work. The investigation will extend the skills, knowledge and understanding being developed in the Stage 6 courses
  • develop an inquiry question to refine the scope of the investigation. This question will evolve as the work develops focus and intent
  • use a range of strategies to generate ideas for concept development, for example concept mapping
  • research the craft of their chosen form, representations of their concept and content in a range of texts, for example academic databases, peer-reviewed journals, interviews, print and digital sources
  • write a proposal for their Major Work demonstrating the scope and purpose of the initial investigation and developing understanding of the relationship between audience, purpose and context for their chosen form
  • create an action plan with milestones for each stage of the composition process. 

The drafting stage

Students will:

  • further investigate a wide range of texts that are examples of how their chosen form and concept have been represented in different contexts
  • experiment with language conventions of their chosen form to draft and re-draft their composition in response to ongoing research and critical feedback
  • research and evaluate critical readings to develop theoretical understandings and explore ways of reading texts to inform the composition’s concept and process
  • establish a learning community by collaborating with peers and teachers to reflect on their own and others’ work. This may be through video conferencing, social media or networking
  • reinterpret and reimagine the emerging composition during this critical drafting process.

The revising stage

Students will:

  • evaluate the effectiveness of their composition through the processes of peer and teacher conferencing and critical feedback that may include questions or comments about style, cohesion, clarity and originality 
  • refine knowledge, understanding and skills of concept, language and form through increasingly focused research of relevant literature and texts 
  • develop a reference list for the works cited and examined in the Reflection Statement.

Editing for publication

Students will:

  • develop skills in editing language and structure to ensure conceptual and stylistic coherence. This includes proofreading for appropriate use of grammar, spelling, syntax and vocabulary
  • edit the Major Work with a focus on audience, purpose and context of publication.

Major Work Journal

The Major Work Journal documents all stages of the composition process. The recording of research and analysis, as well as critical, imaginative and speculative reflections, will assist students in achieving course objectives and outcomes and in preparing for internal and external assessment requirements. 

It is expected that students will use the journal to record the recursive and iterative creative process and to demonstrate learning. The journal establishes the authenticity of the Major Work and the following evidence, as a minimum requirement, must be sighted and authenticated by the supervising teacher at each stage of the composition process. 

The journal may be digital or print and must include:

  • concept mapping or alternative strategies for generating ideas for the extended composition, including the genesis of concept, form, genre or style extending from the Stage 6 courses
  • an original inquiry question and statement of intent for the scope of investigation
  • evidence of investigation of a variety of composers in the chosen form
  • action plan with milestones for each stage of the composition process
  • annotated extracts from various texts with notes about language forms and features appropriate to the chosen form and evaluative reflection
  • examples of experimentation with style and structure with evaluation of these drafts or versions in the light of audience, purpose and context
  • summaries and notes about the exploration of the concept, for example academic journals, digital texts and reference material
  • extracts of student’s drafts, sequences, or recordings with reasons for changes and critical questions from peers and/or teachers
  • extracts of revisions of the Major Work and the Reflection Statement with reasons for the changes
  • a developing reference list to inform the Reflection Statement
  • examples of student’s final edits, including proofreading for grammar and control of language, multimedia elements, transitions or sound effects as appropriate to the form
  • reflection on how the editing process has contributed to the quality of the published Major Work. 

Note: a draft or extract may be print, a recording, a sequence of shots, a scene or a storyboard/diagram as appropriate to the form. 

Major Work

The Major Work is a sustained, cohesive extended composition that demonstrates mastery of the composition process. The Reflection Statement reflects on and evaluates the creative process of completing an original composition. Students engage in extensive investigation of a subject of their own choosing to demonstrate the skills and knowledge developed throughout their Stage 6 English courses. 

A Major Work must communicate an idea that is conceptually profound, insightful or thought-provoking with a clear sense of audience and purpose appropriate to the chosen form and style. The form of the Major Work must be chosen deliberately to contribute to the authenticity, originality and overall conceptual purpose of the work. Students skilfully manipulate and control the language features and conventions of their chosen form to create an engaging composition. The work must demonstrate a conscious and purposeful style that has been refined to ensure artistry and textual integrity. 

Throughout the Major Work process students will be required to demonstrate their evaluation and reflection on their research and composition in various ways. 

The processes of composition are recorded in the student’s Major Work Journal and monitored by the teacher. The journal is an ongoing record, evaluation and reflection on the creative, investigative and drafting process and the realisation of an extended composition. 

Reflection Statement

The Reflection Statement evaluates the process of composition and the product is submitted with the Major Work.

This includes:

  • an analysis and evaluation of the relationship between the Major Work and extensive independent research
  • an explanation of the intended audience and purposes for which it was composed
  • an analysis of the relationships between concept, structure, technical and language features
  • an explanation of how the Major Work is an extension of the skills, knowledge and understanding developed in the Stage 6 English courses. This relationship may have developed throughout the Year 11 and 12 English Advanced and English Extension 1 courses
  • an evaluation of the writing process and the realisation of the concept in the composition
  • a reference list for the texts used in the Major Work and cited in the Reflection Statement.