You  would think it would go with out saying that you shouldn’t  miss anything out when studying   and answering questions. However, we have already seen that when revising you need to ensure the maximum ROI (return on investment). 

The next two methods we will examine ensure that once you have been asked a question you consider and answer every aspect. When you combine this with the study method of predicting questions you may be asked, you will develop a robust and comprehensive study system. The methods we will be looking at are the Black Red Green and PEE. 

The Black-Red-Green Method

The Black-Red-Green method was developed through the Royal Literary Fund. This method helps you to ensure that every aspect of the question that has been asked has been considered 

The Black-Red-Green Method Stages

 Read the question given and underline relevant parts of the question using: 

  • BLAck is for BLAtant instructions – something that must be done (an obvious instruction or directive)
  • REd is for REference point, or REquired input. This is usually to do with definitions, terms, theories, authors etc.
  • GREen is for GREmlins, or GREen lights – these are subtle signs that you could easily miss, or hints on how you should proceed or place your emphasis


Another popular method to break down and answer a question is the PEE approach: 

  • Point
  • Evidence
  • Explain

 This method builds an argument around a series of logical, coherent, linked paragraphs. 

The PEE Method Stages

Build an effective paragraph using: 

P = Paragraph that makes one point in the right depth 

E = Explanation, Evidence and Examples 

E = Evaluation 

You may also want to consider leaving some lines in between each paragraph in order that: 

  • you can add further explanation or evaluation if exam time permits
  • you signal you have moved from one point onto the next
  • it is easier for the marker to read

PEE Expansion

So, lets expand on explanation, evidence and examples and evaluation – the ‘E’ ‘E’. Explanation, evidence and examples These form the bulk of your paragraph and provides you with the opportunity to demonstrate your knowledge and understanding of the topic being questioned. 

You should construct well written, robust analysis which is written in logical, flowing sentences. One of the ways you can do this to great effect is the Seven Point Scale for Perfect Paragraphs (see below). 


You should include evaluation in each of your paragraphs and not just the concluding one. You should ask yourself: 

  • how important is the point or argument you have made?
  • what does your argument depend upon?
  • do your sentences build on each other?
  • to what extent is your argument based on facts, opinion or unreliable data?

The Seven Point Scale for Perfect Paragraphs 

1open using words from the question to give focus
2use relevant theory to explain and analyse the point
3follow a logical path of analysis (use connectives)
4use ‘hooks’ and ‘cues’ from the question to support and form  your points
5use real examples and evidence to support your point
6come back to the question for focus
7conclude with an evaluative statement