Developing exploratory analysis: Analyse – Synthesise – Evaluate

Analysis is a key skill which is required across many subjects, but particularly in English.  At the highest level, developed, exploratory analysis which supports an overall interpretation is required. Below is a strategy to support students in developing more detail in their analysis: it relies upon taking gradual steps through progressively more challenging skills.

Analysis using the ASE-berg


At the top of the ASE-berg is the smallest amount of information: this is symbolic of the explicit meanings which can be found within the text.  In order to access and explain at this level, students are using knowledge and comprehension skills to decode and understand the text.  There will be low level inference at word or sentence level.

However, below the surface there are many more meanings; the deeper students delve, the more they find, the more exploratory their ideas will be and the more refined their interpretation will become.  In order to explore meanings in depth, below the surface, students need to use skills of analysis, synthesis and evaluation.

Below is an example of how to use ASE-berg to develop analysis and explore meanings in one quotation.