Answer and Essay Writing Strategy by IRA SINGHAL, I.A.S

Answer Writing Strategy

  • Wrote in points wherever possible. Even in the optional. And I write full sentences as points, not phrases. In my previous attempts I used to write answers in paragraph form and I never got any marks. I used to know the whole paper but I still did not get any marks because of writing in paragraph form.
  • Underlined key words – did not ever do this before so it must have helped.
  • Did not give a beginning or an ending paragraph. No time generally. Might have done for a few answers where it was absolutely necessary to start giving the points. I used to write nice starting and ending paras earlier but did not finish the exam paper…so I skipped it this time.
  • Did not use coloured pens. Mainly used the pencil or the pen I was already writing with to underline.
  • Diagrams if possible or needed. Not always possible or needed. Drew them in pen or pencil as convenient.
  • Did not lie to the examiner like in my previous attempts. I wrote only those questions that I knew. Did not attempt questions I did not know. In my previous attempts I used to do that. I saved time and energy by not trying to fool the examiner and writing just any nonsense. Mostly in such cases we keep writing the same thing again and again and I think it might just irritate the examiner. So I did not do that this time.
  • Did not worry about the word limit. Wrote whatever and as much as I knew. It might have been more or might have been less.

Essay Writing Strategy

  • Choosing the topic – I choose topics which can have something substantial to write and not philosophical. This time I wrote on Standardized Testing and Tourism. Both of them have multiple dimensions to talk about. I made the mistake of choosing a topic in an earlier attempt where I knew one part of the question too much and not enough of the other part …wrote it very enthusiastically and got very little marks.
  • Language skill matters in the essay so I wrote a nice grammatically correct one but did not use too complicated words…just to keep it easy to read for the examiner. I focused on not writing colloquial language and did try to keep my spellings in check.
  • I used Subheadings – something I learnt from reading the blog of Gaurav Aggarwal Sir, last year’s AIR -1.
  • I underlined in a couple of places in the essay as well.
  • I made one or two diagrams where I could.

Leave a Reply