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GP Past Year Exam Questions

Dear students, we have compiled GP Past year exam questions on this page for your reference. We hope this archive can help you save time and assist you in your study of GP. D o follow us on Instagram and Facebook for any future updates. We will also be updating more useful content on our website, so be sure to visit regularly!

A-Level GP Paper 1 Exam Format: Total mark: 50  ( Content: 30, Use of English: 20)       Duration: 1 hour 30 minutes Weighting: 50% 

Note:   These exam questions can be found on various blogs and websites. We do not, in any way, own the copyright to these questions, and we are aware that there are publishers who produce and print these questions for commercial sale.  We have compiled these questions for the convenience of:  – Students and educators who want a quick point-of-reference either in their revision or teaching  – Parents who are curious and want to find out more about the General Paper (GP) examination  – Ourselves… because we really don’t want to flip, flip, flip, flip, and flip, just to find something As a matter of professional courtesy, we will not upload the most recent A-level GP questions until September of the following year – we know many educators tend to embargo the paper for use as a last major practice before the big examination. If there is any infringement of copyrights, please drop us a note and we will remove this page immediately.

Will be uploaded in September 2021 🙂

  • How far should countries have relations with others whose human rights record is poor?
  • To what extent should income equality be a goal in your society?
  • ‘Science is the only answer to global hunger’. Discuss.
  • Consider the view that social media has more influence than politicians.
  • To what extent is artificial intelligence replacing the role of humans?
  • ‘A leader’s responsibility should always be to his or her own country, not other nations.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Religion is an important part of the lives of young people today.’ Consider whether this is true in your society.
  • Does violence in the visual media portray reality or encourage the unacceptable?
  • Is globalisation to be welcomed or feared today?
  • Should both parents take equal responsibility for raising their children?
  • Assess the importance of food within Singaporean culture.
  • Can fiction teach us anything meaningful about the real world?
  • How far is failure an essential part of success?
  • To what extent is the pursuit of continuous economic growth a desirable goal?
  • In an age of rapid technological advancement, is a single career for life realistic?
  • ‘In the global age we inhabit, there is no justification for national boundaries.’ How far do you agree?
  • To what extent is sporting achievement given adequate recognition in your society?
  • Do handicrafts still have value when machine-produced goods are so readily available?
  • ‘People today do not work as hard as they did in the past.’ How true is this of your society?
  • Discuss the view that all countries have an equal responsibility to counter terrorism.
  • Is pressure a motivating force or a cause for unhappiness?
  • ‘Works of art which have been removed from their country of origin should be returned.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Foreign aid does not solve long-term problems.’ To what extent is this a fair viewpoint?
  • Consider the view that we do not take enough responsibility for our own well-being.
  • ‘The past is not dead. It is not even past.’ Discuss.
  • Can the use of animals for scientific research ever be justified?
  • In your society, to what extent is it acceptable for public money to be used for the acquisition of works of art?
  • ‘Rehabilitation, not punishment, should be the purpose of the justice system.’ Discuss.
  • Is regulation of the press desirable?
  • Do events, rather than politicians, shape the future?
  • How far is science fiction becoming fact?
  • Examine the role of music in establishing a national identity in your society.
  • To what extent are people judged more by their physical appearances than by their abilities?
  • ‘Practical ability is just as important as intellectual skills.’ How far is this true in your society?
  • Assess the view that attempts to control climate change can never be truly effective.
  • ‘The quality of written language is being destroyed by social media.’ What is your view?
  • ‘Any adaptation of a novel for a film, television or the theatre is never as effective as the original.’ Discuss.
  • Assess the view that traditional buildings have no future in your society.
  • ‘Longer life expectancy creates more problems than benefits.’ Discuss.
  • Considering the money involved, should developing countries be allowed to host major sporting events?
  • ‘Human need, rather than profit, should always be the main concern of scientific research.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Countries experiencing conflict should be left to sort out their own problems.’ How far do you agree?
  • How far has modern technology made it unnecessary for individuals to possess mathematical skills?
  • ‘People who do the most worthwhile jobs rarely receive the best financial rewards.’ To what extent is this true of your society?
  • Evaluate the claim that equality of opportunity for females is a desirable, but unrealistic, goal.
  • Assess the view that most natural disasters are the result of human activity.
  • Is competition always desirable?
  • ‘Everyone has an opinion, but not everyone’s opinion is of equal value.’ What is your view?
  • ‘There is no such thing as bad publicity.’ To what extent is this true?
  • How far is it possible for one country to forgive another for its past actions?
  • How effectively is public health promoted and managed in your country?
  • ‘No cause is ever worth dying for’. Discuss.
  • Consider the argument that the main purpose of television should be to educate rather than simply to entertain.
  • In your society, how well are the demands of the economy and the environment balanced?
  • ‘Parents have no right to impose their own values and beliefs on their children.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Books serve little purpose in education as technological developments become more sophisticated’. How far do you agree?
  • To what extent should the arts in your society focus on local rather than foreign talent?
  • Should there be any controls over the production of energy when the need for it is so great?
  • When a government’s finances for social welfare are limited, should they be directed towards the young or the old?
  • ‘Human actions should be based on scientific fact, not religious faith’. How far do you agree with this statement?
  • ‘Traditional marriage is an outdated concept.’ To what extent is this true of your society?
  • How far should firms be allowed to limit their workers’ rights when profits are at stake?
  • ‘Gambling on sport undermines its spirit and should be banned.’ How realistic is this position?
  • Discuss the view that, with an increasing global need for energy, every possible source should be exploited to the full.
  • ‘For the majority of people, the Arts are irrelevant to their daily lives.’ How true is this of your society?
  • How far is it important for people to be aware of current events in countries other than their own?
  • In times of economic hardship, should a country still be expected to provide financial or material aid to others?
  • Do films offer anything more than an escape from reality?
  • To what extent can the regulation of scientific or technological developments be justified?
  • ‘Getting what one wants in life is what matters.’ Discuss.
  • Examine the extent to which expenditure on arms and the armed forces is justifiable in the modern world.
  • Consider the view that some careers are better suited to one gender than the other.
  • ‘The world would be a better place if more political leaders were women.’ What is your view?
  • ‘Unlike the Arts, such as writing or music, Mathematics lacks the capacity for creativity.’ How far do you agree with this statement?
  • Is there any point in trying to predict future trends?
  • To what extent is it possible to make the punishment fit the crime?
  • Discuss the claim that in the modern world people should care more about international than national issues.
  • How important is it to save plant and animal species which are in danger of extinction?
  • ‘Scientific research into health and diet is unreliable as it so often contradicts itself.’ Is this a fair comment?
  • How far is increased prosperity for all a realistic goal in your society?
  • Consider the view that spoken language is more important than the written form.
  • Why should we be concerned with current affairs when most of them will soon be forgotten?
  • ‘Education should only be concerned with what is useful in life.’ Discuss.
  • How far, in your society, should unpopular views be open to discussion?
  • Is there any value in preserving minority languages in the world?
  • ‘People in the Arts, living or dead, receive far more recognition than those in the sciences, even though it is less deserved.’ Consider this claim.
  • Should people be allowed to have children by artificial means?
  • To what extent are the rights of animals protected in your society?
  • ‘The most influential individuals in history are those who have caused the most harm.’ How far would you accept this view?
  • Is violence ever justified?
  • Consider the view that mathematics possesses not only truth, but supreme beauty.
  • In your society, how far is equality for all a reality?
  • Should everyone be expected to donate suitable organs after death?
  • Can humour ever be serious?
  • ‘The key criterion for good government is how well the economy is managed.’ Is this a fair assessment?
  • How far is it acceptable for technology to be used only for financial benefit?
  • Can prejudice ever be eliminated?
  • ‘Taking risks is an essential part of life and should be encouraged.’ Discuss.
  • Consider the view that efficient government is more important than democracy.
  • To what extent is it acceptable for private companies to be involved in financing scientific research?
  • ‘Environmental concerns and economic growth cannot co-exist.’ Do you agree?
  • In the digital age, do newspapers still have a role in your society?
  • Do awards and prizes serve any useful purpose?
  • How far should medical resources be used to extend life expectancy?
  • Can space research be justified nowadays?
  • ‘Only modern architecture and modern art have a place in today’s world.’ How true is this of your society?
  • How far should countries aim to be self-sufficient?
  • ‘Science is unreliable, being based as much on theory as on fact.’ Is this a fair comment?
  • Consider the view that most work these days could, and should, be done from home.
  • How far can an individual be held responsible for crimes against humanity?
  • Would it matter if all the performing arts venues in your society, such as concert halls and theatres, were closed down?
  • ‘The person who dies rich dies disgraced.’ Discuss.
  • ‘The book has no place in modern society.’ Discuss.
  • To what extent has technology had a negative impact on the skill levels of people?
  • Does sport merit the vast sums of money that are spent on it?
  • How effective are international efforts to ease the problem of global hunger?
  • ‘No politician’s reputation can survive the judgement of time.’ How true is this?
  • How important is it for people in your society to retain a sense of tradition?
  • ‘The key to good health is lifestyle rather than medicine.’ How far do you agree?
  • Can mathematics be seen as anything more than a useful tool in everyday life?
  • Is the elimination of global poverty a realistic aim?
  • ‘Only educated people should have the right to vote in elections.’ What is your view?
  • Are certain types of writing superior to others?
  • Should a love of one’s country still be encouraged?
  • To what extent has technology had an impact on both privacy and security in your country?
  • ‘History records male acts, written by males, and holds little interest for females as a result.’ Is this a fair comment?
  • How far should religion influence political decisions?
  • Should every country have the right to carry out unlimited scientific research?
  • Assess the impact of foreign films or foreign TV programmes on the culture of your society.
  • Can transport of food over vast distances be justified?
  • ‘Fashion is as much a good thing as a bad thing.” To what extent do you agree?
  • As long as people in the public eye do their job well, does it matter what they do in private?
  • Does the presence of a foreign power ever help a country with problems?
  • How important are dreams?
  • ‘The more science advances, the more religion will decline.’ To what extent do you agree?
  • How far do physical features, such as size and location, determine a country’s progress?
  • ‘Nowadays, the pleasures of reading can never compete with the pleasures of visual entertainment.’ To what extent do you agree?
  • To what extent does the migration of people have a positive effect?
  • ‘Air travel should be discouraged, not promoted.’ To what extent do you agree?
  • Many developed countries are paying increasing attention to the needs of the disadvantaged. How far is this true in Singapore?
  • Discuss the view that too much faith is placed in statistics.
  • ‘Contemporary music has no artistic value.’ Is this a fair comment?
  • How far is it possible to ensure that all producers of food and goods are fairly rewarded?
  • To what extent is design important in your society?
  • ‘The view of the majority is always right.’ Do you agree?
  • Can a belief in the supernatural be sustained in our modern world?
  • ‘The arts cannot change the world but they make it more beautiful.’ Discuss this view with reference to one of the following: painting, sculpture or music.
  • How far should a state have a right to monitor the actions of people within its borders?
  • ‘Mass production inevitably means a loss of craftsmanship and quality.’ Is this true in your society?
  • How important is a sense of history in shaping the future of Singapore’s society?
  • Should poorer countries develop their tourist industry when the basic needs of their own people are not being met?
  • ‘The pen is mightier than the sword.’ Can written language really be so powerful?
  • ‘Advertisements are often entertaining, but they rarely affect consumer choice.’ Is this your experience?
  • Is it possible to protect the environment when many countries require increasing amounts of energy to progress?
  • Should research into expensive medical treatments be allowed when only a few can afford them?
  • ‘The word failure should never be used in education.’ Discuss.
  • Is there still a place for charity in today’s world? 
  • ‘A picture is always more powerful than mere words.’ What is your view? 
  • Does modern technology always improve the quality of people’s lives? 
  • ‘National boundaries make little geographical or economic sense nowadays.’ Discuss. 
  • Should crimes that were committed many years ago simply be forgotten? 
  • How far is your country prepared for future crises? 
  • ‘The world would be a better place if everyone spoke the same language.’ Discuss. 
  • To what extent do young people in your society take an interest in politics? 
  • ‘Entrepreneurship is just another name for personal greed.’ How far do you agree with this statement? 
  • Do myths and legends still have a role to play in Singapore? 
  • ‘Women will never enjoy the same rights as men.’ Do you agree? 
  • To what extent do the newspapers and magazines that you read deal with what is trivial, rather than what is important?
  • Is effective farming possible without science?
  • ‘There is no such thing as luck. People determine their own lives.’ Do you agree?
  • To what extent should the State involve itself in the world of business?
  • Do the arts, such as music and literature, really play a significant role in Singaporean society?
  • ‘Medical science has been so successful that people now expect too much of it.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Hosting major sporting events creates more problems than benefits.’ Do you agree?
  • Examine the claim that the world is too dependent on oil.
  • ‘The tourist does not see the country the inhabitants know.’ How far is this true of Singapore?
  • ‘Instead of speeding up the pace of life, we should be slowing it down.’ What do you think?
  • Consider the view that the study of mathematics is intellectually satisfying, but of little practical use.
  • ‘Too much attention is given to criminals; not enough to their victims.’ Is this true?
  • How far do magazines or television programmes aimed at young people in Singapore have a positive effect?

1. To what extent are the young in Singapore favoured at the expense of the elderly? 2. Are the poor an inevitable feature of any society? 3. Do the past and present offer any guidance for the future? 4. ‘How inventions and discoveries are used is not the concern of the scientist.’ Do you agree? 5. ‘People, not the government, should decide how to organise their lives.’ Is this a fair comment? 6. How far is recycling the answer to the problem of waste? 7. Can small countries have a significant voice in world affairs? 8. Advertising encourages a desire for products which people do not actually need. Discuss. 9. Have multi-national businesses had a positive or negative impact on your society? 10. Discuss the appeal and value of fantasy stories and films. 11. Discuss the importance of religion in society today. 12. ‘Far too much attention is given to beauty products and treatments.’ Do you agree?

1. To what extent are small businesses preferable to large ones? 2. ‘A good leader must always look beyond the needs of his or her country.’ Do you agree? 3. Does the book still have a future? 4. Is History anything more than the study of warfare? 5. Should medical science always seek to prolong life? 6. ‘The only worthwhile form of discipline is self-discipline.’ Discuss. 7. How far can the needs of minorities be met in modern Singapore? 8. Can the media ever be relied on to convey the truth? 9. Was life for young people in Singapore better in the past than it is today? 10. ‘Statistics measure everything but prove nothing.’ Discuss. 11. Does the modern world place too much reliance on technology? 12. ‘The family has suffered at the expense of career in Singaporean society.’ Is this a fair comment?

  • Is there a case for keeping animals in zoos?
  • ‘Conformity should be the main aim of all schools.’ How far is this true?
  • Can the trade in weapons ever be justified?
  • ‘If people become ill it is largely their own fault.’ How far do you agree?
  • Does a study of history make you optimistic or pessimistic about the future of the human race?
  • ‘Science and religion will always conflict.’ Discuss.
  • Should the police have unlimited powers when dealing with crime?
  • ‘The prospect of a Third World War is now unthinkable.’ Do you agree?
  • Do you agree that city life is becoming increasingly unattractive?
  • ‘Air travel creates more problems than benefits.’ Is this a fair comment?
  • Is friendly rivalry ever possible?
  • ‘A work of art can never be valued in just financial terms.’ Discuss.

Note: We did not compile any questions earlier than 2002 because of the change in syllabus.

We want to create a space for our students to learn, the right way.

We’ve all been there; being clueless, feeling helpless. Not really sure what to ask, or who to ask. Not young anymore, and not old enough.

You still have to walk your journey ahead, but we’ll be happy to walk with you. Even for a little bit.

a level gp essay questions 2018

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A Level General Paper (GP) Essay Questions

Are you ready to tackle the challenges of A Level General Paper (GP) 1 essay questions? At illum.e, we believe in empowering students to embrace critical thinking and express their ideas confidently. Explore our curated selection of information and tips revolving around GP essays. Unleash your intellectual potential and excel in the A Level GP Paper 1 examination with our support.

The A Level GP Latest Syllabus:

The GP 2024 syllabus focuses on developing critical thinking, analytical, and communication skills in students. It aims to enhance their ability to analyse and evaluate a wide range of topics from various perspectives. 

The scheme of assessment for the GCE Advanced Level H1 General Paper Syllabus includes two papers. Paper 1, which is the essay section, comprises eight questions, which we will dive into detail below. Paper 2 involves analysing three passages (approximately 1200 words) for comprehension, inference, analysis, evaluation, summarisation, and synthesis. Questions cover connections between passages, application of themes, and overall understanding. Both papers carry 50 marks each, with a total duration of 3 hours for both papers. The syllabus includes themes such as Society and Culture, Economics, Politics, The Arts and Humanities, Science and Technology, and The Environment. 

The A Level GP 1 Exam Format:

The A Level GP Paper 1 exam format comprises 8 thought-provoking essay questions that cover a wide range of topics from different disciplines. These questions delve into both local issues of interest and global concerns. Students are required to choose one question out of the 8 and provide a well-crafted essay within a recommended word count of 500 to 800 words. 

The essay is evaluated based on:

Content:  30 marks

Use of English:  20 marks

Total mark:  50. 

Paper 1 carries a weightage of 50% and the duration of the exam is 1 hour and 30 minutes.

We have meticulously compiled a comprehensive selection of essay questions sourced from past A Level exams and reputable schools' prelims and resources. Moreover, our dedicated team of experienced tutors, who are also accomplished assessment book writers, have developed in-house materials and practices to ensure our students receive top-notch resources and guidance.

For a comprehensive list of 2022 Prelim Questions, please visit  2022 General Paper Questions . Here are a few examples of the stimulating questions you can explore:

  • "Increased international cooperation has failed to make the world a better place." Do you agree? - ASRJC
  • Is freedom always desirable? - ACJC
  • Evaluate the claim that the Arts are essential for a civilised society. - ACJC

Engage in critical thinking and analysis as you delve into these essay questions. Practice and refine your essay writing skills to excel in the A Level GP Paper 1 examination.

Note:  We want to emphasise that we do not claim copyright for questions sourced from other schools or external resources. These exam questions can be found on various blogs and websites, and we acknowledge that there are publishers who produce and print these questions for commercial sale.

Past Year A Level GP Essay Questions

Explore a rich collection of past year A Level GP essay questions to enhance your preparation. Delve into the nuances of different topics and gain valuable insights into the expectations of the examination. Follow the links below to access the specific A Level GP essay questions from various years:

  • General Paper A Level Questions 2015
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2016
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2017
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2018
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2019
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2020
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2021
  • General Paper A Level Questions 2022

A Level GP Essay Questions By Topic

In the A Level General Paper 1 examination, candidates are presented with a diverse range of topics to express their informed, critical, and creative responses. The suggested topic areas encompass historical, social, cultural, economic, political, philosophical, scientific, mathematical, geographical, literary, linguistic, artistic, and global/local issues. These questions require candidates to draw upon their knowledge from various disciplines, showcasing an awareness of significant issues and their implications for individuals and society. The ability to convey sustained arguments supported by examples is crucial.

At  illum.e , we provide resources and question analysis to help you navigate these topics effectively.

Explore the following links for GP Paper 1 essay questions categorised by topic:

  • Science and Technology Questions
  • Arts and Culture Questions 2022

Additionally, delve into our question analysis to gain deeper insights into the nuances and approaches to tackling GP Paper 1 questions:

  • Science and Technology Question Analysis

Prepare yourself for the broad spectrum of GP essay topics and equip yourself with the knowledge and critical thinking skills required to excel in your A Level GP examination. While you’re at it, check out our guide on  how to study for the General Paper  and our library of  GP notes .

Choose illum.e for GP Tuition and Ace Your Paper 1

Are you looking to excel in your A Level General Paper examination? Look no further than illum.e for comprehensive  GP tuition  that will empower you to confidently tackle Paper 1 and achieve exceptional results. Our experienced tutors are dedicated to helping you develop critical thinking skills, refine your writing abilities, and expand your knowledge across a wide range of topics.

At illum.e, we offer engaging and interactive lessons that stimulate intellectual discourse, providing you with the necessary tools to excel in GP essay writing. Our tutors provide in-depth coverage of GP essay writing techniques and strategies, ensuring you have a solid foundation to tackle the exam with confidence. With our GP tuition programme, JC students will also receive individualised guidance and personalised feedback to enhance their performance.

Choose illum.e as your trusted partner in your GP journey and unlock your full potential. Take the first step towards achieving exceptional results in your A Level GP Paper 1.

a level gp essay questions 2018

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Past A Level GP Essay Questions

2023 paper 1 questions, 2022 paper 1 questions, 2021 paper 1 questions.

1. How far is the pursuit of happiness the most important human goal?

2. ‘Scientific advancement breeds complacency.’ How far do you agree?

3. ‘Power these days lies more with the people than the politicians.’ To what extent is this true?

4. To what extent has social media devalued true friendship in your society?

5. To what extent is charitable giving desirable?

6. ‘Films are concerned with escaping from the problems of everyday life, rather than addressing them.’ Discuss.

7. ‘What an individual eats or drinks should not be the concern of the state.’ What is your view?

8. Is news today reliable?

 9. ‘The arts are nothing more than a luxury.’ How far is this true of your society?

10. ‘Staging major sporting events brings nothing but benefits to the host country.’ Discuss.

11. Are global tourism and travel still necessary when everything can be experienced or achieved online?

12. ‘Advertising is largely about persuading people to buy what they do not need.’ How far do you agree?

2020 Paper 1 Questions

2019 paper 1 questions, 2018 paper 1 questions, 2017 paper 1 questions, 2016 paper 1 questions.

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a level gp essay questions 2018

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a level gp essay questions 2018

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2019 General Paper Essay Questions

These are the 12 essay questions for the A-Level General Paper (GP) in 2019, as well as our thoughts on studying smart for it. For 2018 GP Paper 1, click here .

  • How far should countries have relations with others whose human rights record is poor?
  • To what extent should income equality be a goal in your society? 
  • ‘Science is the only answer to global hunger.’ Discuss.
  • Consider the view that social media has more influence than politicians. 
  • To what extent is artificial intelligence replacing the role of humans? 
  • ‘A leader’s responsibility should always be to his or her own country, not other nations.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Religion is an important part of the lives of young people today.’ Consider whether this is true in your society.
  • Does violence in the visual media portray reality or encourage the unacceptable? 
  • Is globalisation to be welcomed or feared today?
  • Should both parents take equal responsibility for raising their children? 
  • Assess the importance of food within Singaporean culture.
  • Can fiction teach us anything meaningful about the real world?

What we got right?

Some of the essay questions this year were well within the scope of our speculation. Let’s analyse the paper in details.

Firstly, science and technology — one huge and content-heavy topic — makes up two of the twelve questions [Q3 about science on food, and Q5 on AI]. Science and technology is the engine driving the 21st century; it is therefore no wonder that a lot of discussions in the past few years centre around its impact on us. For Q5 on AI, which many students attempted, we need to make some degree of speculation about the future. One probably knows that to answer such speculative questions, the key is to consider these four elements: past successes, past failures, current challenges and current opportunities. To accurately answer this question, students need to distinguish AI from other technologies. Humanoid robots and automation aren’t always AI. Some good examples of AI are self-driving cars and trucks, chatbots, facial recognition, (broadly speaking) machine-learning. We believe that science and technology, alongside environment and globalisation, would be a fruitful topic to cover in the next few years.

Secondly , there is a question on globalisation [Q9]. As discussed, the three forces shaping the world today are Tech, Globalisation and Environment . To do well for this question, you must know what constitute globalisation and what do not. Globalisation is easily defined as the flow of goods and services, capital and information, migration, and the prevalence of MNCs. Students need to recognise that increased air travel and tourism aren’t usually associated with globalisation. Discussions on cultural dilution should also be avoided simply because many students cannot successfully craft a solid paragraph on culture.

Thirdly, Media , as expected, is a subject of growing importance given our fast-changing relationships with news companies and online platforms. There are surprisingly TWO questions on media this year [Q4 and Q8]. Many schools have tested students on media in their preliminary examinations. The key to answering these questions well is understanding the underlying concepts — what constitutes media and what does not.

Lastly, there is the recurring theme of politics and governance . If you recall, questions on diplomacy and international relations appeared three times in the past four years: in 2015 ( How far is it possible for one country to forgive another for its past actions? ), 2016 ( ‘Countries experiencing conflict should be left to sort out their own problems.’ How far do you agree? ) and 2018 ( ‘Foreign aid does not solve long-term problems.’ To what extent is this a fair viewpoint? ). This year, the same is asked about countries with poor human rights records [Q1]. Countries that might come to mind are the usual suspects, North Korea, China (Xinjiang?), Syria, Crimea, Saudi Arabia…

Another question Q6 on politics and governance focuses on slightly more domestic issues of governance. To do well for this question, one has to perform a comparative analysis, which isn’t always easy.

What did we miss?

However, we notice several breaks in patterns this year. The arts, which usually make up one of the twelve questions (this seems to be the case every year, with the exception of 2016) was not tested. The closest is a question on literature: whether we can learn anything practical from fiction.

Secondly, let’s consider the topic of Environment . With activists like Greta Thunberg and the Singapore Climate Rally in 2019, you’d think it’ll be hard to ignore a topic that has garnered so much worldwide attention over the past decade. But nothing was tested on environment this year.

Thirdly, there are usually several questions involving philosophical musings. Take, for example, these questions: How far is failure an essential part of success? (2018) and “No cause is ever worth dying for.” Discuss. (2015) These questions require one to read many biographies and stories on well-known people and draw on personal experiences. But we didn’t get any questions on philosophy this year, either.

In my experience, what usually catches students off guard are questions on sports, education, and crime and punishment . (Hot Tip: When sports questions appear, it tends to appear in years with huge sports tournament i.e. World Cup or Olympics) These smaller topics do not occur as regularly in Cambridge A level GP papers as you might expect. As we anticipated, none of these topics appeared this year. A good rule of thumb is to only focus on these topics when you have some extra revision time or if these are topics that you feel strongly about. I encourage reading widely but these cannot be your only options.

Here’s the thing, we do not spot questions. We only strive to keep students up-to-date with the rapidly evolving world, and perhaps, to view it with a healthy dose of curiosity and fascination. Cambridge has been very consistent in ensuring their questions reflect the modern world that we live in. We have zoomed-in on the topics that are worth pursuing because of their contemporary value. Students should continue to focus on these topics

  • Science and Technology
  • Globalisation
  • Environment

However, we should also consider some emerging topics that are presenting new challenges in our society

  • Income equality
  • The nature of work

If you would like to learn more about studying smart for your GP, or how to be absolutely in love with it as we are, check out our other guides in our blog section. If you need some First Class help with the GP, call us or email us and we’ll be happy to help!

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a level gp essay questions 2018

5 Tips for Writing a General Paper Essay that Will Score You an 'A'

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Students often fall into two camps when it comes to how they approach the General Paper (GP) essay. The first group believes religiously in spotting questions and the power of the memorised template essay. However, tweaks to familiar questions by crafty examiners can negate the template’s effectiveness, and what if the spotted questions fail to turn up altogether? The second group is the opposite, and regard GP as a subject they can breeze through without much studying. Just choose any question that looks easy or interesting, write what comes to mind and hope for the best, right? Sadly, the best is rarely achieved. You have probably been in one or even both of these groups at some point. Neither approach is entirely wrong or correct - they wouldn’t exist if they didn’t work to some extent. However, if your goal is to write a GP essay that will score you an A, then you will need more than an approach that works to some extent. 

Here are 5 tips from The Learning Lab that will help you improve your writing and your chance at an A for the General Paper. 

a level gp essay questions 2018

1. Read the Questions Carefully

You get a total of 12 questions to choose from for your GP essay. Take a moment to read all of them carefully. While you should choose a topic that you are familiar with or passionate about (e.g. tech, government legislation, foreign affairs, generation gaps), avoid choosing a question immediately just because it seems familiar. As your teachers would have told you, some questions are traps! You may have studied the Cold War and the demise of the Soviet Union in A-Level History, but that doesn’t mean you have the arguments and examples to adequately answer if communism is dead today. 

Conversely, you may find that some of the general knowledge you have absorbed in preparation for the exam can be applied to a question on a less familiar topic, and provides the breadth of examples that markers look for. A good practice is to shortlist two or three questions before you start planning, just in case you hit a snag when formulating your argument and need an alternative.

a level gp essay questions 2018

2. Plan Out Your Essay

Planning out your essay is essential for many reasons. Firstly, it helps you avoid the perils of jumping straight in with a template argument or no argument at all, only to realise after an hour that you haven’t really been answering the question. The subject may be called General Paper, yet your essay should be anything but. This is also when you spot the trap questions and steer clear. Secondly, it allows you to structure your points and counterpoints in a logical flow to best support your thesis statement and overall argument. Thirdly, planning enables you to take stock of the examples you have to back up your points.

Ask yourself:

Do you have enough to substantiate each point? 

Which example is better used for which point?

 Are there obvious gaps that you can’t think of a way to fill, and should you quickly go and look at another question instead?

a level gp essay questions 2018

3. A Clear and Concise Introduction is Better than a Stylish One

A good introduction in a GP essay does its job and quickly moves both you (the writer) and the reader on to the meat of the essay. It sets up your argument clearly and provides a preview of what is to come. Under timed conditions, style that piques the reader’s attention is a bonus. Remember that a complete essay with all points substantiated and a conclusion will always score better than an incomplete essay with an impressive and memorable introduction.

You should also avoid giving too detailed a description of your points in the introduction. A good rule is to keep the introduction as short as possible: you should not write much more than an opening sentence, a thesis statement, and a sentence to link your introduction to your first point. 

a level gp essay questions 2018

4. Link Your Arguments Together and Stay on Point

This is often the difference between an average essay and a good one, and between a good essay and an excellent one. The highest-scoring GP essays are not the ones with the most distinctive style or the most flowery language, but the ones with the tightest arguments and structure. Everything you write should aim to answer the question, so that your thesis statement, points, and examples mutually reinforce each other and your overall argument. Signposting is your best friend: leave the examiner in no doubt of which piece of evidence supports which point and why, and use keywords from the question and your thesis statement repeatedly. 

If a favourite example of yours doesn’t quite fit the argument you are crafting, cut it. Unlike Mathematics or the Science subjects where plonking down some calculations or facts could earn you some marks, in GP, it’s better to keep your examples on point rather than try to show everything you know.

a level gp essay questions 2018

5. Pay Attention to Grammar and Spelling 

While you don’t have to be Shakespeare to ace the General Paper exam, you do need to communicate what you have to say clearly. If you have followed the previous 4 tips to the letter, the last thing you want is to distract your marker from your compelling argument with basic spelling or punctuation errors. Writing essays under exam conditions can often be a mad rush, but it’s wise to slow down a little to make sure you don’t spell words wrongly or leave them out by mistake. And of course, if you happen to have time to spare after finishing, do read through your essay again!

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If you have any questions about our range of programmes or class schedules, you may fill in the form below or contact us at 6733 8711 or  [email protected] .

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If you have any questions about our range of programmes or class schedules, you may contact us at 6733 8711 or drop us an email at  [email protected] .

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GP Essay Questions

GP Essay Questions A-Level

GP Essay Questions A-Level . Have a look at these GP Essay Questions from A-Level past papers.

  • ‘The strong do what they will; the weak do what they must.’ Discuss.
  • “For parents to choose the sex of their unborn child is neither natural nor desirable. Discuss.”
  • Should marriage be a life-long commitment?
  • “A life without challenge and risk is not worth living.” How far would you agree with this view?
  • Should promises always be kept?
  • “The decisive use of force is the only practical means to resolve territorial conflicts.” Discuss.
  • How important is a discipline in society?
  • Can anything worthwhile be gained from continued research into historical events?
  • Is personal morality the concern of the State?
  • Consider the value in the life of planning.
  • “The best test of a civilised society is the way in which it treats its weakest members .” Discuss
  • To what extent can international aid be really effective? Refer to specific examples to support your answer.
  • Should any limits be placed upon scientific developments?
  • Why, in a scientific age, are people still interested in – or afraid of – the supernatural?
  • ‘Films which have the greatest appeal are usually those which have the least value.’ By reference to specific examples, consider how far this is a fair assessment.

The Knowledge Loft - Free notes for General Paper (GP) tuition

2019 GCE A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions

a level gp essay questions 2018

Our JC2 students have just completed their GP exams, and here are the essay questions that came out for Paper 1 this year. Which Question would you have chosen to answer? =)

  • How far should countries have relations with others whose human rights record is poor?
  • To what extent should income equality be a goal in your society?
  • ‘Science is the only answer to global hunger’. Discuss.
  • Consider the view that social media has more influence than politicians.
  • To what extent is artificial intelligence replacing the role of humans?
  • ‘A leader’s responsibility should always be to his or her own country, not other nations.’ Discuss.
  • ‘Religion is an important part of the lives of young people today.’ Consider whether this is true in your society.
  • Does violence in the visual media portray reality or encourage the unacceptable?
  • Is globalisation to be welcomed or feared today?
  • Should both parents take equal responsibility for raising their children?
  • Assess the importance of food within Singaporean culture.
  • Can fiction teach us anything meaningful about the real world?

Which question would you have chosen to answer? =) Stay tuned to The Knowledge Loft as we discuss some of these essay questions in the coming weeks!

A Level General Paper Notes, Essays and Tuition

2021 A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions

The 2021 paper was made up of a notably large number of questions under the media theme: a third of questions were under the media theme, covering topics of social media, news, films and advertising. We managed to spot the question on advertising despite it being a rather niche topic, and our students that year would know that ‘media’ is among the first themes we covered. We covered all aspects tested—we had lessons exclusively for social media, news, films and advertising respectively. These subtopics are often combined by teachers under a rather rushed, surface-deep lesson on ‘media’, overlooking these key components.

1. How far is the pursuit of happiness the most important human goal? [Miscellaneous]

2. ‘Scientific advancement breeds complacency.’ How far do you agree? [Science]

3. ‘Power these days lies more with the people than the politicians.’ To what extent is this true? [Politics]

4. To what extent has social media devalued true friendship in your society? [MEDIA]

5. To what extent is charitable giving desirable? [Miscellaneous, but we had a lesson specifically on charity!]

6. ‘Films are concerned with escaping from the problems of everyday life, rather than addressing them.’ Discuss. [MEDIA]

7. ‘What an individual eats or drinks should not be the concern of the state.’ What is your view? [Politics]

8. Is news today reliable? [MEDIA]

9. ‘The arts are nothing more than a luxury.’ How far is this true of your society? [Arts]

10. ‘Staging major sporting events brings nothing but benefits to the host country.’ Discuss. [Sports]

11. Are global tourism and travel still necessary when everything can be experienced or achieved online? [Movement of people]

12. ‘Advertising is largely about persuading people to buy what they do not need.’ How far do you agree? [MEDIA]

Programmes & Qualifications

Cambridge international as level english general paper (8021).

  • Syllabus overview

This syllabus builds learners' ability to understand and write in English through the study of a broad range of contemporary topics. They will analyse opinions and ideas and learn how to construct an argument. This syllabus develops highly transferrable skills including:

  • how to develop arguments and present reasoned explanations
  • a wider awareness and knowledge of current issues
  • independent reasoning, interpretation and persuasion skills
  • the ability to present a point of view clearly and reflect upon those of others.

The syllabus year refers to the year in which the examination will be taken.

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COMMENTS

  1. 2018 A-Levels General Paper (GP) Exam Questions

    Our Purpose: To provide students with regular readings, model essays & comprehension answers to help students do well for GP. Our Process: While the selected resources largely focus on creating GP resources to help JC students improve in this subject, they are also designed to be useful and interesting for anyone who is keen to understand the society we live in, in a deeper way.

  2. GP Past Year Exam Questions

    A-Level GP Paper 1 Exam Format:Total mark: 50 (Content: 30, Use of English: 20)Duration: 1 hour 30 minutesWeighting: 50%. Note: These exam questions can be found on various blogs and websites. We do not, in any way, own the copyright to these questions, and we are aware that there are publishers who produce and print these questions for ...

  3. 2018 General Paper Essay Questions

    We covered Q11 on aid in class and in our workshops in 2018. Speakers like Dambisa Moyo (writer of Dead Aid) have spoken out against using aid to further political agenda. It is certainly a narrow topic but one can also use it on issues concerning foreing intervention, diplomacy and poverty. Q1, Q9 and Q12 are more general in nature.

  4. GP Essay Questions 1/100 A-Level General Paper

    GP Essay Questions 1/100. GP essay questions collection past year. Here are all the GP Essay Questions from past year prelim s. To what extent do young people in your society show an interest in their culture and traditions? 'The key to eliminating poverty is education rather than aid.'. Do you agree?

  5. General Paper (GP) A Level Questions 2018

    134 Jurong Gateway Road, #01-311, Singapore 600134. Tel: +65 8861 5086 (Student Management)

  6. Past Years A-Level Exams Archives

    November 30, 2019. November 6, 2019. 'In this section, we will upload sample Essays & Comprehension Passages & Answers from past year's A-Level GP exam papers. If you'd like to improve your GP grade for your exams, do sign up for our GP tuition lessons here (then hyperlink to the page that is 'GP Tuition') or whatsapp us at 98-333-156!

  7. GP Paper 1 Essay Questions Resource

    Paper 1, which is the essay section, comprises eight questions, which we will dive into detail below. Paper 2 involves analysing three passages (approximately 1200 words) for comprehension, inference, analysis, evaluation, summarisation, and synthesis. Questions cover connections between passages, application of themes, and overall understanding.

  8. General Paper A Level Past GP Essay Questions

    2016 Paper 1 Questions. 1. "Any adaptation of a novel for a film, television or the theatre is never as effective as the original.". Discuss. 2. Asses the view that traditional buildings have no future in your society. 3. 'Longer life expectancy creates more problems than benefits.'. Discuss.

  9. GP Essay Questions on Environment

    GP Essay Questions on Environment. GP Essay Questions on Environment. Have a look at these GP Essay Questions on Environment from the past papers. How far can we satisfy the worldwide demand for food and still protect the environment? ' Environmental concerns and economic growth cannot co-exist.'. Do you agree?

  10. Past Papers

    Minutes. 0. Seconds. 📌 Update (s): 13/08/2023 NEW! AS/A Level latest papers added! If any paper is still missing, please report using the Contact Us! tab. 8001-8004-General-Paper-ECR-v2.pdf. 8001_w02_er.pdf.

  11. Cambridge International AS Level General Paper 8021

    The Cambridge International AS Level General Paper encourages learners to develop a maturity of critical thought and argument, and a mastery of expression in the English language. ... Cambridge International Schools can access the full catalogue of teaching and learning materials including papers from 2018 through our School Support Hub. Past ...

  12. 2019 General Paper Essay Questions

    These are the 12 essay questions for the 2019 A-Level General Paper (GP) and easy strategies to tackle them, specially analysed and curated by our team. General Paper Tuition; About Us; Download Resources; ... 12 essay questions for the A-Level General Paper (GP) in 2019, as well as our thoughts on studying smart for it. For 2018 GP Paper 1 ...

  13. GP Essay Questions on Media 6/100 [A-Levels]

    GP Essay Questions on Media 6/100. GP Essay Questions on Media. Have a look at these GP Essay Questions on Media from the past papers. To what extent should the private lives of public figures be the subject of media coverage? "The media can largely be blamed for the worldwide increase in violence.". To what extent do you agree?

  14. A-Level General Paper Essay Writing Tips

    Here are 5 tips from The Learning Lab that will help you improve your writing and your chance at an A for the General Paper. 1. Read the Questions Carefully. You get a total of 12 questions to choose from for your GP essay. Take a moment to read all of them carefully. While you should choose a topic that you are familiar with or passionate ...

  15. English General Paper 8021 AS and A Level Past Papers

    The last series for Cambridge AS Level General Paper (8001) and Cambridge AS Level General Paper (8004) will be November 2018. You may find the part useful :p If you don't want to mess around here between notes, slides, ebooks etc and just want to have past papers of Cambridge International AS and A Level English General Paper (AS Level only).

  16. 2018 A Level GP Essay

    2018 A Level GP Essay - Free download as PDF File (.pdf), Text File (.txt) or read online for free. Qn) To what extent is the pursuit of economic growth a desirable goal?

  17. GP Essay Questions A-Level Cambridge Paper I

    GP Essay Questions A-Level. Have a look at these GP Essay Questions from A-Level past papers. 'The strong do what they will; the weak do what they must.'. Discuss. "For parents to choose the sex of their unborn child is neither natural nor desirable. Discuss.". Should marriage be a life-long commitment?

  18. Home

    The most helpful part about tuition is when Aalden would go through the essays I've written in details and explain to me how I can improve. "GP has never been my strongest topic, and I particularly struggled in short structured questions and summary for paper 2. However, with the help of Aalden I managed to improve from E during my mid-years to ...

  19. 2019 GCE A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions

    Our Purpose: To provide students with regular readings, model essays & comprehension answers to help students do well for GP. Our Process: While the selected resources largely focus on creating GP resources to help JC students improve in this subject, they are also designed to be useful and interesting for anyone who is keen to understand the society we live in, in a deeper way.

  20. 2019 A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions

    A-Level General Paper 2019 Essay Questions. We correctly predicted a huge number of essay questions that came up for A-Level GP 2019! Just check out our Instagram page @generalpaper to check out our highlight on this (where we show a story we posted before the A-Level paper, spotting the topics!). Some of these questions came as no surprise, keeping in the Cambridge tradition of likely setting ...

  21. 2020 A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions

    The 2020 A Level GP essay questions was seen by students as unusual: there were quite a number of miscellaneous questions and questions that were a hybrid of multiple themes. We predicted several topics accurately for our students this year, including sports, science and morality, democracy and technology as well as free speech. 1. How … 2020 A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay ...

  22. 2021 A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions

    The 2021 paper was made up of a notably large number of questions under the media theme: a third of questions were under the media theme, covering topics of social media, news, films and advertising. We managed to spot the question on advertising despite it being a rather niche topic, and our students that year … 2021 A-Level General Paper (GP) Paper 1 Essay Questions Read More »

  23. Cambridge International AS Level General Paper 8021

    This syllabus develops highly transferrable skills including: how to develop arguments and present reasoned explanations. a wider awareness and knowledge of current issues. independent reasoning, interpretation and persuasion skills. the ability to present a point of view clearly and reflect upon those of others.