Personal Recount: Addressing Question Requirements

As you’ve learnt so far, decoding the keywords in the question is crucial to answering the question well and keep from going off topic. This is important for the personal recount as well. Take some time to identify the keywords and make sure you are clear about the essay requirements.

  • Off Topic

    You do not take the time to get a clear understanding of the keywords and describe an incident that does not address the demands of the question.

  • On Topic

    You take time to fully understand the keywords and choose an appropriate incident to describe and reflect on in your recount.


Write about a time when you tried something for the first time.
  • Off Topic

    I eyed the hurdle nervously. Flashbacks of my previous attempt at the sport last year zipped through my mind. Touching the raised tissue of the scar on my knee, I shook my head. I was not about to give hurdling a second chance.

  • On Topic

    I eyed the hurdle nervously. It looked very, very tall. “You can do it,” my PE teacher said, leading me to the start line. The possibility of my knocking into the hurdle and falling painfully to the ground flashed through my mind. Could I really do this?

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