- December 9, 2022
The state exam in Polish language and literature will be preceded by an intermediate test
In 2024, students will be able to take the final exam in Polish language and literature at the state level. This novelty is especially valid for today’s students of the 3rd grade of middle school from schools with Polish as the language of instruction.
In just a few months, in the spring of 2023, they will have to pass a mandatory intermediate test in Polish language and literature, which will be used, among other things, to assess the student’s ability through listening and reading comprehensions as well as text editing.
The state exam in the mother tongue will be included in the pool of exams to choose from, i.e., the student may take it or resign from taking it. However, the intermediate test in the 3rd grade of middle school will be obligatory. The new model of secondary education no longer provides for an exam in Polish language and literature at the school level.
Intermediate Test – April 19
“Since September 1, in schools of the Polish national minority, an updated program of Polish language and literature is being implemented, this year’s students of the 3rd grade of middle school will be the first to face the changes in external assessment, which are foreseen after the renewal of the core curriculum. In 2023, they will take an intermediate test in Polish language and literature,” says Rūta Krasauskienė, director of the National Education Agency.
Danuta Szejnicka, representative of the National Education Agency, president of the Polish Studies Association in Lithuania, in an interview with “Kurier Wileński”, explains that already in this school year, they started working accordingly with the renewed core curriculum in Polish language and literature, and on April 19 next year, the students of 3rd grade of middle school who are learning in line with the updated curriculum will take an intermediate test in their native language. These same students, while being in the 4th grade of middle school, will have the right to choose a state exam in Polish.
Changes in the external assessment of students’ achievements, which will be implemented next year, were presented to the Polish educational community by the National Agency for Education. After approval of changes in the mode of organizing and conducting final exams in 2022-2023, students of the Polish national minority will be able to take the state exam in Polish language and literature after two years (in 2024), after passing the obligatory intermediate test (lit. tarpinis patikrinimas) from the Polish language and literature.
After passing the intermediate test in the 3rd grade of middle school, students gain the applicable number of points, with the maximum number of 40 percent. With this score, the students then move on to the next class. The result of the intermediate test will be added to the result obtained during the final exam. It will also be recorded in secondary education certificate – comments Danuta Szejnicka.
In accordance with the renewed core curriculum, the student’s work will be focused on improving basic competences. It is the development of speaking, listening, text comprehension and text creation skills. They will be integrated with media education, which is becoming more and more important in the modern world. The implementation of the renewed core curriculum of Polish language and literature began on September 1, 2022, in the 3rd grade of middle school. From September 1, 2023, the core curriculum of the Polish language and literature will be implemented in grades 1, 3, 5, 7, 9 (1st grade of middle school), 3rd and 4th grades. From September 1, 2024, the renewed core curriculum will apply to all grades of initial, primary, and secondary school.
Intermediate test structure
The intermediate test in Polish language and literature will consist of 3 parts: listening, reading, and creating a text. The test will be held electronically and will last an hour and a half. During the listening part, students will receive one or more audio recordings on various cultural and social topics of up to 5 minutes in length, and in the reading part, texts covering different socio-cultural contexts of up to 800 words. It will be checked whether and to what extent students have understood the main information, thoughts, opinions, or assessment. Writing tasks will test text composing and text editing skills, in other words – proper use of linguistic means to achieve correctness, clarity, and coherence of the text, etc.
At the final exam – test and written work
The state final exam in Polish language and literature will consist of 2 parts: a test and a written paper. The test will include literary and cultural texts of up to 800 words. It will test how students analyse, interpret, evaluate, compare, draw conclusions, apply knowledge of different contexts and the general understanding of literature and language.
Two topics of the essay will be proposed to create the text (one of which concerns the topics of the first part) or a text for interpretation. When creating an essay, the student will be required to refer to at least 2 literary or cultural works, of which at least one should come from the list of obligatory works. Texts from the list of recommended authors and reading lists may be proposed for interpretation. The minimum size of the created text is 250 words. The exam is meant to last 3 hours.
The introduction of the final exam in the mother tongue at the state level was announced in the Declaration on the education of the Polish national minority in the Republic of Lithuania and the Lithuanian national minority in the Republic of Poland. According to schedule for the implementation of the declaration signed by the ministers of education of both countries, a point was provided for assessing the possibility of introducing such an exam. It can be said that this point has been achieved – emphasizes Danuta Szejnicka.
I hope that students will choose the Polish language and literature exam. It receives the rank of the state, becomes competitive in relation to other language exams. It will also be taken into account during recruitment to universities – points out Szejnicka
Translated by Anna Maria Nowak within the framework of a traineeship programme of the European Foundation of Human Rights, www.efhr.eu.