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English For CLAT: Things one must know to crack it through


Generally, English section in any law entrance exam (CLAT, AILET, SET, LSAT, AIL-LET, etc.) consists of three broad constituents- Vocabulary, Grammar and Reading Comprehensions. A considerable amount of emphasis has been given to this section in majorly all the law entrance exams. CLAT specifically allows 40 out of 200 marks for this section, which means that scoring well in this section can be influential in determining your rank. It is immaterial that you have been studying English since you were a child or you started at a later point in time, the fact that you need to invest dedication into your efforts, matters the most.

One needs to realize that it is a competitive exam where a thousand others are working hard for achieving something, so only working hard does not matter, there has to be a combination of hard and smart work by the aspirant to find a spot in national law schools. Here are some things one can do to crack this section with a little more perfection than others-

1. For getting through the twist and turns of the vocabulary-

  • - One must know the precise meaning of the words, one is familiar with. We often come across familiar words but are not clear about their meanings when asked, so brushing up of such ‘familiar’ words would help us in marking the correct or the closest answer while taking the exam.
  • - In order to emerge successful in CLAT, you need to have a diverse vocabulary, this would not only help you get through CLAT, but would also differentiate you from others in your law school life, and a good vocabulary is also a tool to become a successful lawyer. If you come across a new word, immediately look for its meaning and its usage and start using it in your routine, so that it is not lost in your mind. Also, you can subscribe to online dictionaries which provide you with the ‘word of the day’ facility, so you are knowing a word daily.
  • - Be attentive towards the spellings of the word and do not merely have a superficial idea about it because the spelling questions which come in exams, give a very similar frame with a little alteration and a rough idea about a spelling would not be able to fetch you a mark for the question and thus, be careful and considerate enough to check the spelling of a word while reading it.
  • - While learning new words and their usages, try to know a few synonyms and antonyms of those words, so your range is wider and the possibility of cracking a vocabulary question is more. Also, keep using the words in your routine for sustaining it in your minds for a prolonged period.

  2. For comprehending the reading comprehensions in its true letter and spirit-

  • - Don’t forget that CLAT or any other law entrance exam is a scheduled exam and would not run until you finish it but you need to run along with the time or preferably, ahead of it. So, reading comprehension or ‘unseen passage’ in a simpler term is one of the most time-consuming questions you’ll come across in CLAT, because of its length and complexity (sometimes). But, the length of the passage is equally proportional to its weight as it carries around 8-10 questions in itself. Therefore, a judicious and smart use of time is called upon to solve this component of English.
  • - One must develop a reading habit to read long and tedious passages quickly and comprehensively. Sub-vocalization is an impediment in fastening your reading habit. The term ‘sub-vocalisation’ refers to the habit of people saying words in their heads while reading which makes your reading speed slow as your eyes might be fast to look but your habit of saying words would not let you compete with what your eyes are looking and you will run according to the speed of your reading those words. You can counter this habit by distracting your mind from saying words in your head by either chewing a gum or listening to music.
  • - You need not look at each ‘is’, ‘that’, and ‘this’ in a passage and only looking at some words in a line would help you comprehending it and will consequently increase your speed of not only reading but comprehending the passage.
  • - Practice as much as you can, because mastering the skills required to get good marks in RCs would need practice and no short way or trick is there to make it easy for you. You can start with the passages which interest you to develop the habit of reading and later on target long and uninteresting passages, once you inculcate the reading habit in your daily routine.

  3.  For becoming a Grammar Nazi-

  •  - You simply need to go back to the basics in order to score well here. This component would not trouble you much if you had paid attention to the primary school classes of English. You literally need to revisit your old English textbooks to just revise what you have already studied in detail.
  •  - People usually rely on their instinct to solve questions of grammar. They see a question, they see the choices and just mark the answer that ‘sounds right’. This perception may lead you into trouble. So, prevent yourselves from using such instincts while solving the grammar questions and know well before answering.
  • - Practice error/correction questions as much as possible. These type of questions make your thinking speed fast and sometimes you find a similarity between these questions and the ones which come in exams, so then you already know the correct alternative. Practicing would literally make you perfect in this section.
  • -Read articles which have no grammatical flaws. This would have a two-fold impact. Firstly, you would learn the grammatical intricacies and secondly, your reading habit would develop further.

These are some tips which would lead you to a good law school in the country and especially would also help you to improve a language which determines your status in the society- English.

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