If you passed your class 10 board exam with English as your strong foothold then you may wonder the possible opportunities available to you from the language. For those who have opted for English as their first language, will find SSC English as common irrespective of the stream they take. SSC English syllabus is generally available on google, students can check in advance and prepare for what comes next.
The English language is the lingua franca of the world. Its importance in the world is undeniable. Almost 20% of the world population speak the English language, which is around 1.5 billion people. In fact, the medium of communication between people in a country as diverse as India is generally English. So, it does not matter if you are from Haryana, Jharkhand, Kerala, Odisha or Himachal Pradesh, if you can speak English you can communicate with the rest of India.
Therefore, the question of its utility as a subject of its own is pretty much established by the evident demand of it.
Moving on to the SSC English lessons, a student would have to do well to improve in the subject. English, especially in India, enjoys a privilege in the sense that anyone who is extremely good in it holds the possibility of cracking a better job than even the toppers of all subjects. You can find all the necessary information for ssc exam (including ssc examination result dates) on their main website.
In this article, we seek to explore what constitutes the English language, the preparation required for SSC exam, the most likely syllabus you will be dealing with, and the career options available for a student good in English.
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What Do We Mean By The English Language?
Language encompasses all the knowledge that we can have from the world. The philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein has perhaps said it correctly, “The limits of my language mean the limits of my world.” From communication to the mere understanding of anything be it a thing or a concept or feelings, language is required. To put it simply, we cannot do without language.
Having established what language is, we move on to understand the English language. In Indian history, the indelible mark that the British rule left on our culture is the English language. But it would be highly inappropriate to say that English is a foreign language. The linguists all over the world are of the unanimous view that no language is homogenous. Indians, too, have contributed a lot many words in the English language like chutney, juggernaut, nirvana etc. Moreover, they have homogenised the language. You must be familiar with the term Hinglish. In fact, the BBC covered an interesting article on why English matters so much to Indians.
As a language subject, SSC English course consists of reading skills, writing skills, grammar and literature. Aspirants of the English language should strive to improve on these four areas if they are to consolidate their command on the language.
For their better understanding, let us take a brief look at each of the topics separately. Also, it is important to note that these topics also constitute the base of the SSC English exam syllabus.
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The first thing that the language demands of you is your comprehension ability. How well you understand and analyse a written text suggests how good you are in the subject. You will be required to solve comprehension passages which could be of three types: factual, discursive and literary. Along with the prose, you will also be required to analyse poems.
This section basically tests your comprehending ability, your vocabulary and your logical aptitude.
The entrance examination, be it of CAT or a UPSC exam, requires aspirants to solve comprehension passages. Therefore, practising it beforehand can be greatly beneficial to you.
The importance of writing skill is undoubtedly the most in any career you opt. This part of the syllabus will focus on different forms of writing: letter writing, notice writing, paragraphs and essays and so on. You will also be required to write in a particular tone. For instance, the tone of a formal letter can not be similar to that of an informal letter. You should have the apt discretion of where to use rhetoric and where to keep the sentences factual.
Grammar goes hand in hand with reading, writing and speaking, be it any language. This section will cover the parts of speech, rearrangement of sentences in the writing order, sentence construction, dialogue completion and other editing tasks.
Without being good in grammar, you can not possibly be good in either speaking or writing skills.
The beauty of the English language is preserved in its literature. Who can dispute the beautiful poetic lines of Shakespeare or Keats? Literature is the cultural dissemination of a language. You will be required to read a different range of short stories, poems and even plays and a novel or two. The questions from this section will test your literary assessment of a text For unlike other subjects, literature involves the most sophisticated implementation of the language.
You will be required to comprehend the various literary devices used in the text, along with the in-depth meaning (be it philosophical, emotional, factual or psychological) it conveys: The texts may vary from year to year and board to board but will generally cover the canonical writers of the world, either having written in English or in translation.
Preparation Tips For The English Language
While there will be school classes for senior secondary level English but it is always better to opt for extra edge. Given below are some of the tips that may prove immensely beneficial for you.
Solving Test Papers
Past year test papers provide you with the paper models that might be similar to the upcoming English exam. Practice questions from past year papers and you will learn a lot about what you are expected to do with the questions given in the exams. Practice will only make you more efficient in the subject. You can also look for test papers consisting of questions with answers to help you in the initial stages.
Help From The Internet
Online tests or exams are conducted by many online platforms. You can subscribe to them to sit for online mock tests. Giving an online test will help you in the same way as solving test papers would. You can also download important SSC English notes and sample questions in a pdf file.
Coaching Classes And Private Tutors
There are many uncountable numbers of coaching classes across India claiming to improve your English in a matter of a few days. While most of them merely help you in understanding the basics of English, some are actually good. Try looking for a coaching class which deals with the subject in a thorough manner.
A private tutor, on the other hand, will be a better option. The tutor will deal with your problems specifically. From your writing skills to grammar, he will evaluate all your merits and shortcomings.
To help you overcome the obstacle of finding an English teacher, you can take assistance from Superprof. In Superprof, you can look for a private tutor of any subject from Maths to Sanskrit. You can also look for teachers who take online classes, or coaching classes.
Reading More And More Books
To be better in the English language, constant reading practice is a must. With reading, we do not mean just reading NCERT books. From novels to short stories, you should read a good deal of literature to understand the dynamics of the language. Reading English newspapers with good editorial sections, such as The Hindu newspaper, will also be of great help in maintaining the flow of your English language.
Some Other Tips
Apart from the aforementioned tips, there are some more helpful suggestions which can improve your command on English language.
- Refer to a dictionary: Going through a dictionary every day can bring significant changes in your vocabulary. Try learning five new words, at least, every day.
- Watch English movies and news: Watching English movies can be both enjoyable and a learning experience. It will familiarise you with the English language. Try watching more of British movies and tv series, for Indian boards like CBSE mostly follow British English model and grammar rules. Watching the news in English will also standardise your command on it.
- Communicating in English: Communicating with your friends in English is also beneficial in this regard.
Career Options Available For An English Language Student
Apart from being a teacher or professor of English, there are a plethora of options available for a student of English. For someone who is good in English, there is always a vacancy in some job. There are many competitive exams such as Staff Selection Commission, UPSC or civil services exams which rely not only on studying current affairs but heavily involve a good command on the English language.
Apart from this, some of the other career options available for an English language student would be:
- Content Writer
- Social Media Manager
Thus, we see the career options for the English language aspirants are many. If a student is interested in the language, he can make the most out of it without being sceptical about the opportunities.