In this article, Dhruv Singhal discusses How to Use newspaper if you want to crack CLAT.

Understanding why Newspapers are important from CLAT perspective

Common Law Admission Test has been taken in order to check the overall capabilities of the candidates to solve the problem in a limited time frame. It tests the logical reasoning capabilities as well as the decision making capabilities in the shortest possible time. Along with this, candidates are tested on other fronts as well like English, Maths and General Knowledge. Hence it is very important for the candidate to prepare in all the fronts. To check the overall speed of the candidates is the primary objective of this exam and when it is about speed it is essential to read quickly and comprehend the same completely. For this candidates must make sure that they develop the habit of reading newspaper as it will not only help in general knowledge but also increase the overall capabilities and comprehension abilities of the candidates.

Reading newspaper has various advantages and it actually is a sheer myth that it only helps in improving general knowledge.  

Reading newspaers not only gives you an edge over the GK section it enhances your skills in other sections as well.

English – A candidate can improve his English if he read newspaper daily. Essentially a candidate can complete his paper in time only if he has good reading and it can only be improved by practice, so why not doing practice by reading newspapers?

Logical Reasoning – It generally observed in CLAT that half of the portion of this section is covered by the logical reasoning questions. These questions can only be attempted if the candidate have sharp logical mind. Reading newspaper is no doubt helpful in this front because it is observed that daily newspaper reading will improve the logics and sharp the brain which will effectively improve the logical reasoning capability of the candidate.

Legal Reasoning – This portion is generally covered by the principles and facts questions. Candidates have to apply their mind and answer the question on the basis of principle given. This is a lengthy section and can only be completed in time if the candidate read and comprehend effectively and efficiently.

These are not exclusive benefits of reading newspaper. There are various other benefits which are not specifically related to any particular subject but will help in improving the overall capabilities of the candidates. These general benefits are:

  1. Cultivate and Improve reading habit and comprehension abilities of the candidate. This will help the candidate to complete this exam in time and with maximum percentage of correct answers.
  2. Give idea about sentence formation and sentence structure. This will help the candidate when he is solving English, Logical Reasoning and Legal Reasoning because it will help the candidate in getting correct idea of what the examiner is asking before answering it. This leads to the more effective answers in the paper.
  3. Improve General Knowledge and provide the candidate with abundance of knowledge. The primary objective of reading newspaper is to get well versed with current affairs. This purpose will be served if candidates read newspaper daily. Also it becomes easy for the candidates to memorise a particular news because of the knowledge of the historical event relating to that news.
  4. Important events of the world come into light. Some specific pages of the newspaper will report those events which are very important for the general public to know. Like front page of any good newspaper will report only those news which are the important events of the day.
  5. Increase in Confidence. The daily reading habit of the newspaper provides adequate confidence to the candidates. They would get information about politics, economy, sports, geography etc. This will help the candidate not only in exam but also in the overall personality development which is essential for the candidate and a must requirement in any of the law school for overall development of the candidate in future.

Common Law Admission Test became tougher every year because of the increasing level of competition and the significant growth in the number of students appearing in this exam. To qualify and nail this exam candidate must have an edge over other candidates. Reading newspaper will provide the candidates with the edge that is essential for cracking this exam. But candidates generally ignore this exercise because it is a time-consuming. Here are some tips that a candidate may use in future while reading newspaper. These tips help the candidate to complete a newspaper in comparatively less time with full efficiency.

How should a law entrance aspirant figure out what to read in the newspaper and what to leave?

As stated above, many students find this task difficult because of the paucity of time. Here are some points that will help the candidate to read a newspaper in comparatively less time with full efficiency.

Selective Reading

It is not possible for the candidates to read the whole newspaper as it is time consuming and also unnecessary. Candidates are required to read only that news which are important and that have major impact on the society. For example it is essential for the candidate to know about important appointments, some important obituaries, major sports event, major political event, major scientific event, major economic event or any major judicial decision. Generally that news which is related to only a single state and which have less significance on the society are considered to be less important. For instance the news which appear on the front page are more important as compare to the other back pages because these news are not state specific and has higher significance at the national level. This type of selective study will help the candidate to read the newspaper in comparatively less time, efficiently and effectively.

Daily Reading

“What to Read and What to Leave”

The basic problem that a candidate may face is to decipher and find the relevant news. When we are talking about selective reading many candidates suffer from this problem. Those candidates who read newspaper daily find it easy to decipher the important news. Candidates must understand that they should not read newspaper once in a blue moon and rather they should cultivate the habit of reading newspaper daily. Practice makes the man perfect and the more one will read newspaper the more he will understand and decipher the relevance and importance of a news for this competitive exam. Other than this daily reading habit will gradually boost the morale of the candidate for this exam and make the candidate more passionate for selection. Selective but daily reading will in some time automatically develop and build the confidence of the candidate and prepare the candidate in a better way to face the exam. It also built the comprehension and analytical abilities of the candidate and helps in improving vocabulary with time. But, eventually these benefits could be availed by the candidates only if they cultivate the habit of reading newspaper daily and not once in awhile.

Don’t miss to read the editorial page

Every newspaper contains at least one and at most two pages that occupied the place for articles and views written by the highly qualified personnel of different field on various different issues. These articles and views are related to current issues and contain the view point of the individual writer on that specific issue. The authors of those articles are the qualified individuals of that field and because of this reason their views on that particular issue are very important to know. These articles generally are the amalgamation of various thoughts and because of this reason the candidates who read these articles will be able to look at the things from various different angles and will gradually improve their own mental and evaluation capabilities. Authors while writing these articles use various different tons. Daily reading of these articles help the candidate to decipher the tone of the article which is a very difficult task for a naive reader. Understanding tone is important from the exam point of view as it had been seen various times that question came in CLAT which specifically ask about the tone of the speaker in a particular paragraph. So students should cultivate the habit of reading editorial pages on a daily basis.

Highlight and Memorise Important Words

Vocabulary development is very important for this exam not only for solving any specific question but also to read and understand the whole paper completely. Generally three sections that are English, Logical Reasoning and Legal Reasoning have various questions which contain difficult vocabulary. To solve those questions it is very important to decipher the meaning of those questions properly. Reading newspaper will provide an opportunity to deal with that type of difficult vocabulary on a daily basis. Once the candidate get familiarised and well versed with those words it became easy for him to comprehend and decipher the meaning of the whole sentence properly. For this purpose it is advisable to the candidates to make a separate register and write difficult words daily on that register. This is a very beneficial exercise and candidates will reap the benefits of this in near future. The most important benefit of this exercise is that the candidates will gradually increase their vocabulary without even making any extra effort. Suppose a candidate learn and write only 20 words daily, then in a month candidate have the vocabulary strength of 600 words, while if he follow this exercise regularly for 6 months he will have 3600 difficult words in his pocket. 3600 words are more than enough not only to nail CLAT but any other competitive exam as well.

Write Important News in a Separate Register

Though by reading newspaper a candidate may have various benefits, the most important benefit which is the primary benefit of newspaper reading is to get the knowledge of current affairs. It is true that the news one will read from newspaper will be easily memorise because of the supplementary and historical information provided with main information. But then also there are various news which requires revision like news related to appointments, news related to obituary, sometimes news which are related to sports, economy, politics, or any other event. It is essential to record these news properly in a register so that at the time of exam candidates can revise the relevant news from there well prepared notes. At the same time when a candidate will read the important news about a particular event he may find that there are various other supplementary information which is not possible to record but which is very important for the purpose of exam. For example if you will read about Olympics 2016 there may be a mention of the place where it has occurred, the place and the year of the next Olympic may also be mentioned. Here information about next Olympics is supplementary information which maynot be writen but this information is very important. There are many other similar supplementary information given in the newspaper. It is advisable to the candidates that they must read these type of information twice and try to memorise those information then and there. It had been seen various times in CLAT that questions appear from these supplementary information.

Considering the benefits which a candidate may availed by reading newspaper this exercise should not be ignored.


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