Guidelines for Writing Skills and Grammar

A gist of SSC Board Exams

The Secondary School Certificate Examination which is better known as the SSC Board Exam is conducted by various educational boards in India. The Maharashtra State Board, popularly known as the MH Board conducts this examination for all Std. 10th or SSC Board students around the first week of March every year. It also conducts an additional examination in July for all those students who may have failed to acquire satisfactory marks to successfully pass this examination in their previous attempt.

Also Read: Important Tips to get full marks in the Writing Skills section of Board Exams

Breaking Misconceptions

Most often students tend to undermine the importance of English as a subject during their school and college days. This is because there is not much to rote learn or long answers to mug up. However, that doesn’t reduce its importance at all. Instead, English grammar and vocabulary make one of the most scoring sections for the SSC Board examination. And this is what makes learning and practising grammar and vocabulary for your SSC boards a must-try thing.

Evaluation of the latest English Board Paper Pattern

As per the latest paper pattern, the English question paper will be divided into 80 marks of written exam and 20 marks as orals and internal assessments. Furthermore, the 80 marks paper will be divided into three segments namely;

  • Reading Skills - 40%
  • Vocabulary and writing skills - 25%
  • Grammar - 15%

Students will be tested on their caliber, grammar, reading and writing skills. This latest change in the pattern has been welcomed with open hands as it unrolls an easier platform for learning and evaluation of a student’s overall skills.

Before we move ahead, here's is something to note. Firstly, this blog is going to be a long read. We have divided the topic into grammar and writing skills by dwelling into each separately.

What does this blog cover?

  • Topics for SSC English Grammar
  • Few tips surrounding important grammar topics
  • Topics for English Writing Skills
  • Tips on how to attempt each topic

(Additional tips are added at selective points that are highlighted in Italics)

So brace yourself and to get your queries sorted. Gain insights into how to make your SSC exam preparation advantageous.

A sneak into SSC Grammar topics

Grammar comprises of all topics right from that taught in Std 8th. These include ArticlesPrefix and SuffixTensesPunctuations, etc. However, apart from referring to your Std 10th English textbook and grammar book, using reference material will prove to be an added advantage. Herein you can go on to explore the concepts of grammar in detail to gain additional insight into the topics along with offering practice.

Grammar Topics
Types of Sentence - Simple, Compound and Complex
Types of Clauses - Principal, Coordinate, Subordinate
Types of Tenses - Continuous, Present Perfect, Past Perfect, Future, Continuous
Articles - a, an, the
Formation of Words
Types of Voices
Question Tags
Modal Auxiliaries
Formation of Questions

Here are a few grammar and punctuation rules that you must adhere to while studying Std. 10th English books:

  • Understand the functions of every single punctuation mark. For instance, the full-stop is used at the end of an Assertive sentence; the question mark comes at the end of a question and commas are used to separate items in a sentence and so on.

  • It is important to know the difference between prepositions and conjunctions. Prepositions show the relationship between a noun and a pronoun whereas the conjunctions are usually known to be joining words that join two sentences.

  • Gerunds are verbs in their –ing form that do the function of a noun whereas Participles are those verbs in their –ing form that function as an adjective.

  • Article ‘a’ will always be applied before a consonant unless it makes a vowel sound, similarly, the article ‘an’ will be used before a vowel unless that vowel makes a consonant sound.

Now that we have covered the grammar section, let us move ahead to the writing skills section, which holds equal importance in SSC English Examination.

Tips to expand your writing skills

Vocabulary and writing skills together contribute to 15% of your overall score. Thus, performing better in this section expands the possibility of raising your percentage to a great extent. The writing skill section is divided into 9 sections viz. as follows:

Writing Skill Topics
Summary Writing
Letter Writing
Dialogue Writing and Interview Questions
Speech Writing
Information Transfer
News and Report Writing
Views and Counterviews
Developing a Story
Narrating an Experience

Here are a few points to consider when attempting the following sections:-

Letter Writing

Letter writing consists of two types of letters viz. Informal and Formal. Informal letters are written to parents, relatives, friends, etc. whereas, formal letters are written to people who hold some sort of authority. For example, principal, municipal commissioner, etc. The basic characteristics of a letter are the address of the sender, date, salutation, body, and subscription. When it comes to the Formal letters, the only additions are the receiver’s address as well as the subject or reference. In the SSC Exam, you will be given a choice between an Informal Letter and a Formal Letter.

Interview Questions or Dialogue Writing

In the SSC English paper, students are given the choice to choose one of the two i.e. either dialogue writing or interview questions. Dialogue writing includes creating meaningful conversations surrounding any given topic. Students must form at least six exchanges on the topic which usually includes generic ones related to our surroundings. On the other hand, under interview questions, you will have to prepare at least 8 to 10 questions to ask a business person, a politician, a celebrity, etc.

Tip: You can find plenty of examples for this section in your SSC English book.

Information Transfer

The basic format of Information Transfer is to either convert a paragraph into a tabular or graphical format or to convert a table/flow-chart into a paragraph. In the SSC examination, you will be able to choose between Non-Verbal to Verbal and a Verbal to Non-Verbal question.

Speech Writing

Under the speech writing section, students will be presented with a topic which they are expected to expand further. Here students are tested on their views, counterviews, depth of thinking, knowledge, the expertise of the subject and formatting of words. The topics can range from Farewell day speech to that of Republic Day.

Tip: Apart from practicing on paper, reading and listening to speeches assist in enhancing individual vocabulary. Additionally, it broadens one’s horizon on how to excel in the artistry of developing impactful speeches.

A Must-read: What are the Important Tips to get full marks in the Writing Skills section of Board Exams?


Furthermore, in this section, students are asked to prepare their views and counterviews. It can be based on any given topic or a statement. In addition to the statement, candidates will also be provided a few pointers on the opposite of which you must base your response.

News Report or Expansion of Theme

News Report refers to presenting a formal description of an event that has happened in the past. The objective of this section is to test the student’s capacity of conveying a piece of information to the readers formally and crisply. You must expand upon the headline provided. On the other hand, the expansion of an idea refers to elaborating on the meaning of a saying or a proverb in your own words. In the case of the SSC English examination, students are given the option to opt for either news report or expansion of theme.

Developing a Story and Narrating an Experience

Developing a story generally involves the creation of a story based on the pointers furnished in the question. Many of the SSC English books will cover this topic through questions divided into those beginning with certain words or ending with certain words. A question that involves the narration of experience will test you upon your ability to creatively describe a certain experience. The same rule of choice between these two questions applies herein.

Unearthing the potential medium to expand the knowledge base

best books for English Grammar and Writing Skills

Its no doubt that Std 10th books prove to be an amazing guide to help you in your studies. However, when it comes to reference material, it presents a platform to gain ample practice by blending textual and non-textual questions. Besides, it presents to students a platform that comprises everything including grammar, vocabulary, and writing skills thereby helping mold oneself in an overall manner. This would serve you a long way and get you an exceptional score in SSC Boards especially when it comes to solving the Std. 10th English paper.

Also Read: A Guide to ace the SSC Board Exam 2020 – Planning, Timetable, Tips, Books

Wish to know more about such rules of grammar to help you score well in the SSC board exam? Then Target Publications’ Std. 10th English books would be your best bet. These books are completely divided and structured in a way to develop comprehension, grammatical, vocabulary and writing skills among students. This educational publication house offers a range of Std. 10th books for the subject of English, each catering to a different study aspect for all-round development of students. A student can opt for any of their following SSC English books:

Target Publications has grown on to become one of the most noteworthy contributors in the education industry when it comes to curating books that serve all the educational needs of SSC board aspirants. If you too want to excel in your Std 10th English grammar, do not forget to checkout the Std 10th book offerings presented on our website for the SSC Boards exam.

Target Publications’ has hailed to be at the helm of the education industry when it comes to compiling books to serve all the educational needs of students. Want to be a maestro of Std. 10th English grammar? Go ahead and check out our Std. 10th books for the SSC Board examination.