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					                     Students’ Copy: About the CCA Testimonial 2009


             The CCA and PQ Testimonials are written by the Civics Tutor.
         Students should provide the Civics Tutor with a CCA draft testimonial.
                   CT may amend and adapt this draft as necessary.



1. Students are to identify 3 major CCA achievements for inclusion in the School Graduation
   Card.

2. Your 3 CCA achievements may be under the same CCA or may be under different CCAs. If
   you have fewer than 3 CCA achievements, you don’t have to stretch it into 3!

3. If you have 2 major (e.g. represented college) and several “not so major” activities (e.g.
   represented class for inter-CT games, led in cheering for faculty etc), you can group the less
   major ones under 1 suitable heading.

4. Preferably, all CCAs must have been at least a 30-week programme that provided year-round
   involvement. i.e. approximately 3 terms or more.

5. Students may include outside CCA if it involved service to the community. This must
   preferably be at least a 30-week programme or commitment – e.g. you gave long term free
   tuition at an institution for disadvantaged children; you participated in dragon boat race etc.

6. For all Outside CCAs (i.e. not organized by school), you must furnish evidence (e.g. a
   progress report from the institution at which you did volunteer work). The nature of the
   community involvement must be clearly stated, as well as name of the organization. Your CT
   must have the necessary information to check on your claim. Such a contribution will be
   recorded under the heading Outside CCA or some other suitable heading.

7. If you wish to record that you have attained an impressive level in your music or some other
   Outside CCA pursuit (e.g. black belt in martial arts), provide the necessary documentation to
   your CT.

8. If you have no CCA at all – not even CIP – in your draft CCA testimonial, please write
   something like:

    College Community
    XXX supported various college functions including the mid-Autumn Festival
    and Chinese New Year celebrations.

9. If you have a lot of CCA participation but no particular achievements, in your CCA draft
   testimonial write:

    College Community
    XXX participated in many college functions and various CCA such as … (fill in
    appropriate information)

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------



                                                                                                            1
                         SAMPLE CCA TESTIMONIAL
   The sample below was provided by MOE School Graduation Card Committee.
                      Please note the factual style of writing.
          Note the headings, underlining, spacing, font size and margins.

GOOD SAMPLE:
Student Council
Jonathan Tan Zi Wei was a member of the Executive Committee and served as the
Honorary Treasurer. He chaired the Organising Committee for the college’s ‘Past vs
Present Games Day’ in 2008.

Sport
In 2009, he was a part of the school Rugby team that won the 7-11 Inter-School 10’s
Competition. He was also a member of the school cricket team.

Community Service
Jonathan went on an Overseas Community Involvement Project to Thailand in 2008 as a
student group leader.


BAD SAMPLE – too much description!

Student Council
Jonathan was a dedicated and hardworking member of the Executive Committee. Serving as the
Honorary Treasurer, he was instrumental in systematic computerization of the council's financial
accounts. He was very positive towards taking up challenges, playing an integral role in the
planning and organizing of several major college activities. His ability to lead and overcome
difficulties is distinctly evident when he was tasked with the organization of the college's Past vs
Present Games Day'. Despite the poor response one month before the event, his committee on an
aggressive marketing exercise, eventually recruiting a sizeable number of past students that
ensured the event was a success.

Rugby
Apart from being academically inclined, Jonathan is an excellent athlete. He played both cricket
and rugby for the college. In 2006, he was part of the team that won the 7-11 Inter-School 10's
Competition. As an athlete, his coaches had only praise for his commitment and passion for the
games he played. Without fail, he would be the first to report for training and always the last to
leave, helping out with the returning of stores. Though talented, he was definitely a team player
and believed strongly in motivating his fellow athletes.

Community Service
Jonathan has put his leadership skills and talents to good use during his time at the college. Not
contented with merely contributing to the local community one hundred and twenty hours of
service, he went on an Overseas Community Involvement Project to Thailand in 2006. He took
charge of a smaller group of pupils who were tasked with building a school hall for the children.
In fact not only did they build a new hall, but through their enterprising ways, the group managed
to source for a donated second hand computer and projector to furnish the empty hall.

Page Limit



                                                                                                       2
Beginning of Testimonial


   1.      THIS BOX REPRESENTS THE MAXIMUM POSSIBLE SIZE OF THE
           TESTIMONIAL.

   2.      Your testimonial can be shorter but not longer.

   3.      Anything longer will spill over onto the next page of the SGC, even though it fits into one
           page on your computer screen. This spillover is disallowed by the people in charge of
           SGC at MOE. Any sentence or paragraph that protrudes outside this box may be cut out
           and the testimonial will appear incomplete.

   4.      For the CCA testimonial, you must use underlined sub-headings for each paragraph.
           Leave a line between paragraphs.

   5.      Follow the settings of this box, i.e. margins of 2.45 cm (1 inch); do not reduce the margins
           to squeeze in more.
           Times New Roman font size 10, 11 or 12. Anything smaller looks unimpressive.

   6.      IMPORTANT NOTE: Do not box up your testimonial. The box here to give you an
           absolute and visual guide.




                       Last possible line in CCA testimonial.




                                                                                                     3
Before any typing for any document destined for School Cockpit:

Before any typing for any document destined for School Cockpit:

    1.   Microsoft Word 2003, select Tools.
    2.   Scroll to AutoCorrect Options, select AutoFormat As You Type.
    3.   Uncheck the box “straight quotes” with “smart quotes”.
    4.   Click OK.


Check carefully for:

        Misspelling of name
        Inconsistent spelling of name
        Student’s gender changes in the middle of the testimonial
        Missing vital information

The CCA testimonial draft is to be prepared by you for your CT to work on. Hand in a soft copy to
your Civics Tutor. Your CT will specify where, when and how the soft copy is to be submitted.

Stick to the deadlines set by your CT.

You must also provide separate evidence to your CT that all the claims you make in the
testimonial are accurate. E.g. if you say you have a black belt in tae-kwon-do, produce the
certificate for the CT to verify.

Tips & Further Information:

        Write in the third person.

        Do not use abbreviations without explaining them first. E.g. Music and Dance Society
         (M.A.D.); Community Involvement Programme (C.I.P.); People’s Republic of China (PRC);
         Co-Curricular Activity (CCA).

        If you have been awarded a medal or a special position, provide the full title – do not
         simply say “X was awarded a silver”.

        Use your full official name in the first paragraph (e.g. Jonathan Tan Zi Wei).
         Subsequently just use your given name (e.g. Jonathan OR Zi Wei). Be consistent - e.g.
         do not begin with your English name (e.g. Jonathan) and then switch to your Chinese
         name (e.g. Zi Wei) halfway through. No nicknames (e.g. Johnny)!

        Keep a back-up copy of your CCA testimonial.

        Minimize errors. Ask for advice from your CCA teacher or Civics Tutor if you have
         difficulty writing about something.

        Both your CCA Testimonial and the Personal Qualities (PQ) Testimonial are OPEN
         Testimonials (i.e. you can read them). Set a schedule with your CT for when you can
         read a copy of the final version of both testimonials to check for errors or omissions.

    Once the testimonials have been uploaded on to the School Cockpit, MOE will charge
    a fee for any amendments.




                                                                                                   4
    Students’ FAQ

1. What about special awards or one-off achievements such as winning an essay writing
   competition?

You may include it in one of your CCA testimonial paragraphs, e.g under the heading
Competitions


2. How do I handle a group of unrelated activities that do not come under any particular
   CCA? (E.g. taking part in a variety of sporting activities; inter-CT function/s,
   participating in quizzes, etc)

You may write it in the CCA Testimonial under a suitable heading, e.g. College Community.


3. Will there be a problem of overlap between the CCA Testimonial and the CT’s personal
   qualities Testimonial?

If there is any overlap, it will be slight and is not a problem.


4. I was not very active in school CCAs but have quite a few outside activities that I am
   proud of. May I include these in my CCA testimonial?


Your CT needs clear evidence of your achievements or office held for all information you wish to
have in the CCA Testimonial.

Eg 1. If you have been doing volunteer work at a charitable organization on your own time, not as
part of school CIP, it may be in the CCA Testimonial e.g. under Outside Activities

Eg 2. If you are part of a music band or dance troupe outside College and you do public
performances for money, this will not be in the CCA testimonial.
 BUT, if you perform as a service to the community, then include it in the CCA testimonial;
provide your CT with documented evidence from the organisation/s for which you have performed
these public services.

Eg 3. If you wish to include that you have an impressive certificate for music or Karate or
anything else from music lessons taken outside college… provide your CT with necessary
documentation.

REMEMBER: Not more than a total of 3 paragraphs in the CCA Testimonial.



5. I was very active in my religious organization. May I include the activities and camps I
   organized as evidence of CCA contribution to the community?

NO. Doing things for your religion does not count as CCA.




Checklist for students’ CCA Testimonial Draft 2009


                                                                                                   5
Student’s name and signature: ________________                       Class: 08_______

Students, complete this checklist and attach it to the CCA draft testimonial for your CT, together
with supporting documents. Be truthful. It is difficult to write a favourable Personal Quality
testimonial if you are dishonest.

      Before giving the final softcopy to the Civics Tutor, students are to check the              
                                             following.
1.   As CCA testimonials are short, set page margins at 3’17cm (1.25”) left and right. Times New
     Roman, size 10, 11 or 12.

2.   NO bullets, italics, highlighting, bold print or symbols appear on my draft
     testimonial.

     Each paragraph has an underlined heading, as shown in the sample CCA
     Testimonial.
3.   My CCA testimonial draft is not more than 1 page, not more than 3
     paragraphs.
4.   Each paragraph consists of only 1-2 simple, factual sentences.
5.   If I have both school and non-school CCAs, my school CCA achievements
     are listed first.

6.   I have provided separate evidence to show my CT that all my CCA claims are
     true.
7.   I have used the official name of all my CCAs, Competitions, Awards etc

8.   I have written in the past tense to reflect that my CCAs are all past activities.
9.   I have written in the 3rd person (He was…/ She was…).

10. I have checked carefully for spelling and grammar errors.
    I have used the Spelling/Grammar checking feature on Word to help (set on
    English U.K.)
    I have also asked a friend to help me check my testimonial draft for mistakes.
11. My writing style was simple and straightforward.
    No descriptive terms and adjectives.
12. I have arranged my items to show the CCAs that I was most involved in or
    held the highest office in.
13. I have given a soft copy of the CCA testimonial to my Civics Tutor (even if it
    is a NIL return).
14. If I had no CCAs at all, I have posted a NIL return on the soft copy folder my
    CT has set up.
15. I have been truthful and honest throughout my CCA testimonial. I have not
    exaggerated or told lies just to sound important.




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