Candidates are advised to attempt the sample paper provided for the LAT. Please visit the Practice material page.
Candidates should try to complete the writing tasks in two hours under 'test conditions'. Once completed, it is often helpful to ask someone else to read the answers and to suggest improvements or alternative approaches to the prompts. (Note that it is not necessary to agree with the prompts). It can also be useful to put the tasks aside for several days before re-reading them to look for ways to make improvements.
Candidates are often concerned about the expected length of the writing tasks. Within reason, the quality of the writing is much more important than the length. Candidates only have 60 minutes to plan and answer each task, and the examiners do not have unrealistic expectations of what can be produced in that time.
The following questions will be considered in assessing the writing of candidates:
- What kinds of ideas has the candidate developed in response to the prompt?
- To what extent and how well has the candidate explored the ideas and issues in the prompt?
- Has the candidate developed a structured and organised piece of writing?
- Has the candidate written clearly and fluently?
- Is the language used by the candidate precise and appropriate?
On the test day responses to the prompts are written directly into an answer booklet given to candidates. Working space is provided to plan the answers. Candidates should write neatly and legibly in pen. Pencils are not acceptable.