The English section is one of the most crucial section for the SSC exam. And for reasons that are self-explanatory, it is one of the sections perceived as the toughest by a good majority of the Indian students and population, even though it is the second most spoken language in the country after Hindi.
However, since it is a key component of one of the most popular exams in the country, it is important to prepare well, and here we are going to outline few key strategies by the help of which, you can prepare yourself for the exam.
English occupies 1/4th of the Tier I exam score. Also, being a language-based paper. It does not require memorizing facts like the General Awareness section or putting much effort in solving a question as in the Quant Section. Hence, it is a high scoring section for candidates who have studied it till 10+2 level.
Tier I contain broadly 3 types of questions:
- Vocabulary based questions
Vocabulary based questions include the following:
- One Word Substitution
- Idioms & Phrases
- Spelling Test
Word Power made easy by Norman Lewis The book fulfils the vocabulary needs of the aspirants. The vocabulary skills, their pronunciations, meanings and their uses in sentences are clearly explained in the book.
Prepare a list of commonly used words in day to day language and try to gauge words that are similar in meaning to them.
Consult a dictionary or any other online sources if you need to.
Idioms need to be memorized and their use in the sentences needs to be learned.
- Grammar-based questions
Grammar-based questions include the following:
- Sentence Completion
- Spotting Errors
- Sentence Improvement
- Conversion into Active/ Passive Voice of Verbs
- Conversion into Direct/ Indirect narration
- Shuffling of Sentence parts
- Shuffling of Sentences in a passage
Plinth to paramount and Wren & Martin
Wren & Martin has always been the top choice of candidates preparing for any type of exam. Go through it thoroughly and you shall see your grammar improving drastically.
Plinth to Paramount has been specially made for the purpose of SSC exams of all types. Solving the exercises will give you an idea of how questions will be asked.
Go through sentence structures, changes in the Active/Passive voice of sentence, Subject-verb agreement, use of articles (a, an, the) in the sentences.
Solve at one previous year or model test paper every single day to improve your accuracy and understanding of sentence formation.
- Other types of questions
These include the following:
- Reading comprehension
Note: There are no books specifically for the purpose of passage related questions. However, you can practice using Plinth to Paramount which includes such type of questions.
Read newspapers, magazines, articles, stories, in digital or paper format to improve your grasping capability of the passage.
English is very important for cracking Tier II of the exam. Being a descriptive paper, basic understanding of the language, grammatical usage, correct spellings all are important for writing effectively and scoring high in the exam. It includes:
- One Essay that is written in 200 – 250 words
- One Letter/Application that is written in 150 – 200 words
Important Topics worth mentioning for the essay:
Olympic Games, Triple Talaq bill, Article 370 & 35A, Encephalitis breakout in Bihar, Satellite launch by ISRO, SpaceX, Hybrid and Battery-operated Eco cars and other common days to day topics in the news.
Important Topics worth mentioning for Application writing:
Formal letter for leave of absence to an authority requesting action against someone or for some cause transfer of duty or recommendations etc.
Informal letters are written for contacting a relative, informing someone of a close relative’s death or mourning ceremony or a prosperous occasion, etc.
Tips to keep in mind while writing:
- Know the Format of writing: Essays and letters do not mean scribbling down whatever comes in your mind. They are structured with introduction at the beginning, a middle part, and a proper ending.
- Write only what is relevant: It is not necessary to include each fact even if you know them.
- Never go off topic: Remember you risk losing the interest of the examiner who is reading.
Make sure that you are constantly checking alerts and interacting with other students preparing for the exam. You can use multiple platforms in order to do so, and Pagalguy is one such platform that allows you interactive comments at a rapid pace.