Folio: Standard Grade

Folio: Standard Grade

What is a Folio?
For Standard Grade English you will need to select five pieces of work which you have written yourself during your course.  This will be your Folio.  The pieces which you choose to include will be those you and your teacher consider to be your best from the two years of your course, but you must also make sure that they meet the Folio requirements.

These are detailed in a Folio checklist which your teacher will show you.  You must have:

  • two pieces of Writing, each with a distinct and different purpose


  • three pieces of work based on Reading, covering at least two genres.

The Folio will be sent to the Scottish Qualifications Authority to be assessed and will count for one third of your overall award in Standard Grade English.  In the notes which follow, you are given some further guidance about the Folio.

When should my Folio be produced?
Throughout your English course, you will have many opportunities to carry out tasks which may lead to the production of appropriate ‘Folio pieces’.  Some of your best pieces may be produced early in S4 or even in S3.  The most important point to remember is that you should have a wide selection of pieces from which you and your teacher can make the final choice.  Your teacher will help you to set deadlines to check the progress of your Folio.  A final deadline will be set in school so that your Folio can be organised in good time to be sent to the Scottish Qualifications Authority in March of your fourth year.

How should my Folio be produced?
You will do most of your Folio pieces as part of your class work.  Your teacher will:

  • help you to pay attention to the purpose of a piece as well as its content
  • remind you about the audience for your work
  • offer some broad guidance on how to organise your work
  • advise you on editing and redrafting.

Of course, what you write and the ideas in it must be your own work.  Although your teacher can help by discussing with you how your writing might be improved, you are responsible for making sure that spelling, punctuation and paragraphing are correct.

Should I redraft my pieces?
Redrafting may make your pieces better.  Obviously you want to present your work in the best possible way.  However, if you redraft or rewrite your work too often it may lose its freshness.

What else should I remember?

Length of pieces
Your pieces of writing should normally be no more than 800 words long.  What really matters is that the length is ‘appropriate to the purpose of the task’.  This means that what you write should fit the task you were given.  For example, in Writing, you might be asked to produce either a short poem or a drama script; in Reading, you should be able to make a good critical or imaginative response to a text well within the word-limit.  Do not, therefore, include pieces that are too long.  However, you should explore in adequate detail the topics or texts you are writing about.

Presentation of pieces
Presentation of pieces is important.  However, using a wordprocessor or a typewriter will not get you a better grade for your Folio.  Clear handwriting is just as acceptable.

Labelling Folio pieces
Labelling your pieces as you do them will help when you come to choose the five pieces for your Folio.  Each of the pieces you include must have a label which tells the examiner what task you were set.  The label should give a clear indication of the task.  In addition, Writing labels should show topic and purpose, and Reading labels should show title and author of text.  Make sure the label is clear and accurate as it is the only way the examiners know what your piece should be about.

You must sign a Declaration saying that the work is your own.  You must realise that your teacher has the final say in whether or not any piece of work should be included in your Folio to be sent to the Scottish Qualifications Authority.

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