– Written By Akhand Swaroop Pandit
COVID-19 has significantly disrupted the Indian education system. The government has closed all the institutions and postponed various competitive exams, including the Staff Selection Commission (SSC) Combined Higher Secondary Level (CHSL). However, this additional time can rather be a blessing in disguise for aspirants as they now get more time for preparations.
SSC CHSL is designed for class 12 pass candidates who wish to secure government jobs with decent pay scales. It is a 60-minute exam, comprising four sections: English language, general intelligence and reasoning, quantitative aptitude and general awareness. Each section carries 25 questions of two marks, making it a total of 100 questions of 200 marks. The SSC CHSL tier 1 consists of objective type and multiple-choice questions only.
Candidates need to follow a subject-wise preparation module to ace each section of the exam. Here are some tips to help you achieve that –
English: Anybody with a rich English background may speak this language well. But when it comes to writing or solving a question paper, it could be a completely different game. To begin with, candidates must read and digest a lot of content – be it from newspapers, novels or from digital space – to gain a basic understanding of the flow and writing style of language for different modes.
Next, they should work on building vocabulary and perfecting grammar. Since this section has questions, mainly in the form of sentence corrections, direct or indirect speech, and spotting the errors, among others, a stronghold in grammar coupled with a good vocabulary would do wonders.
General Intelligence and Reasoning: This section comprises questions on analogies, coding and decoding, missing characters, Venn diagrams, syllogism, mathematical operations, to name a few. It, therefore, requires a strong and in-depth understanding of the basic concepts regarding these topics.
Also, candidates should nurture their ability to think and enhance their problem-solving skills. Since most questions contain data points, candidates should use them instead of making unnecessary assumptions. For this, using smart tricks is paramount in acing this section.
Quantitative Aptitude: This section is based on Mathematics and consists of questions related to the number system, profit and loss, simple interest and compound interest, algebra, and trigonometry, among others. For starters, candidates must work on honing these concepts by skimming through several illustrations and past year question papers.
After understanding these concepts, they can gradually switch to using shortcut methods. Doing so will not only help them increase their calculation speed but will also leave them with more time to attempt other tough and tricky questions. Remember, avoid using shortcuts unless you gain mastery. Because each wrong answer attracts a negative marking of 0.5 marks.
General Awareness: This section intends to analyse and evaluate the candidate’s general knowledge on subjects including history, geography, polity, chemistry, and current affairs, to mention a few. The more knowledge one has around these subjects, more will be his chances to score well. Candidates must, therefore, read a lot of news content, magazines, and weekly digests along with watching news from reliable sources.
Amidst this process, it is also recommended to take notes, make pointers, and revise them frequently. Since the section will cover a diverse range of topics, the practice of revision will help candidates efficiently memorize the content.
So, follow this subject-wise preparation pattern if you are aspiring to crack this year’s SSC CHSL. Besides this, strive to practice patience and cultivate discipline at every step of your preparation. Not only will it help you score well, but will also boost your growth trajectory from the very beginning of your secure career.
— — The author is CEO and founder Catalyst Group (Online learning platform)
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