Intensive DELTA Course Weeks 8 & 9


A joke in phonemic script. I’d explain it to you, but… (A great idea from an input session.)

It’s all over! Apart from the actual exam, of course. I’ve combined the last two weeks (which covered Module 1) into one post, mostly because there’s not a lot to say.

Pretty much the whole course was spent getting to know the rubrics of the exam,  how to lay out our answers, and practising it.  There was a lot of self-study, either in groups or individually, and not so much input.  We did a couple of mocks and marked them ourselves to find out where we need to study more. Unfortunately, due to the opacity/subjectivity of the marking system, I don’t have a clear idea of how well I’m doing – so I’ll just have to study more! The advantage of doing a course is that you get lots of past papers to practise with (but no answers for the December exams; not sure why!).

Doing Module 1 straight after Module 2 has its advantages and disadvantages: on the plus side, we’ve just done loads of reading and essay writing which is all relevant to the exam, and most of it is still in our heads. On the downside, I’d wager that everyone was absolutely knackered and after Module 2 and needed a break before they could get motivated again. And the tutors don’t get a break – they still have to mark all our papers.  Added to that, the exam itself is kind of frustrating, in that they seem to require answers in a certain way, none of which is clear until you’ve read an exam report, and even then it doesn’t always make sense – which makes it hard for the tutors as well. There’s definitely a sense of jumping through Cambridge’s hoops, and ideally our input sessions would have focused more on this area, rather than on the layout of our answers, which, while undoubtedly useful, is available online (Sandy Millin’s wonderfully useful blog post about Module 1).  Apparently the exam is going to change next year to become a bit clearer, a bit more transparent, which should be better for everyone!

Sandy Millin and Lizzie Pinard have done fantastic jobs of listing useful resources and other tips for the DELTA exam – definitely worth a look before you consider doing the DELTA and during the course. Thanks, ladies!

So, that wraps up my Intensive DELTA course posts. I hope that some of you have found them interesting or useful if you are thinking of taking any of the modules. It’s not without the realms of possibility that I might write more after the exam or while doing module 3. Watch this space!




  1. Vicki Hollett · · Reply

    Well done you! I’ve really enjoyed following your journey and I know it must have been a stack of extra work on your DELTA schedule, but I’m so glad you charted it for us all to share. Many, many thanks. Oh and I’d give you a distinction in a heartbeat!

    1. Aw, Vicki! What a lovely comment to wake up to! Thanks!

  2. Hi Emma,
    It’s been great to follow your journey, and I’m glad my blog could help you with it. I hope the exam went well, and I’m sure you’ll be fine with it. The joys of the Delta exam are definitely something better forgotten once experienced! Now that you’re done with modules 1 and 2, do you want to join in with the Delta conversations? I know you’ve still got Module 3 to do, but it would be great to have your voice there, either before or after you’re done with it!
    Have a good Christmas,

    1. Hi Sandy,
      Thanks for the message – I’m still taking your advice and have gone on holiday. It’s good to move away from the delta and remember what else is out there! I’d be happy to join in with the delta conversations – thank you for asking!
      Happy Christmas to you too!

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