The CLAT 2022, entrance to National Law Universities(NLUs) for the undergraduate law courses such as B.A.LL. B and B.B.A.LL. B., will focus on evaluating the comprehension and reasoning skills and abilities of candidates. The idea of the examination is to check the aptitude and skills necessary for aspiring lawyers. The Consortium Website clarifies that rote learning will not be of much help, though prior knowledge of static content might occasionally be useful to respond to questions in the Current Affairs section. Tips to crack Current Affairs for CLAT with “The Hindu”.
As far as the structure of the examination is concerned, the UG-CLAT 2022 shall be a 2-hour test, with 150 multiple-choice questions carrying 1 mark each. The provision for (¼) negative marking has also been kept. This means a deduction of 0.25 marks for every wrong answer. These questions would be divided into the following 5 subjects:
- English Language
- Current Affairs, including General Knowledge
- Legal Reasoning
- Logical Reasoning
- Quantitative Techniques
Taking one look at the pattern of paper helps us understand that the reading of “newspaper” is helpful in not one, but at least two sections directly, and another section indirectly.
Syllabus of Current Affairs for CLAT – Tips to crack Current Affairs for CLAT with “The Hindu”
The “Current Affairs including General Knowledge” section will be composed of 35-39 questions or will constitute roughly 25% of the paper. The paper of 2022 will sport passages of up to 450 words each will be provided to you. As per the syllabus listed on Consortium Website, the passages will be derived from news, journalistic sources and other non-fiction writing. The questions may include an examination of legal information or knowledge discussed in or related to the passage. However, it has been clarified that any additional knowledge of the law beyond the passage shall not be required at all.
Further, the website clarifies the pattern of questions which will be followed in this section. Each passage will be followed by a series of questions that will require a demonstration of your awareness of current updates along the lines of –
- Contemporary events of significance from India and the world;
- Arts and culture;
- International affairs; and
- Historical events of continuing significance.
The structure of the section means that the best way to prepare for this section of the UG CLAT 2022 is to have or develop a habit of reading a good set of newspapers and periodicals. Reading the editorial and opinion sections of newspapers would be the most beneficial as these often provide the context and background, i.e., the historical, associated, and ancillary information related to the main subject.
Pro Tip – The “Fact Compendium” or the “Monthly Bullets” are not very helpful for CLAT because –
- They do not contain the wider context and the ramifications of the “subject”;
- They do not prepare you for comprehension of 450 words for solving questions in the Current Affairs section.
This means the best bet you got is reading newspapers. And what could be better than reading the most circulated English language paper, the Hindu!
Tips to crack Current Affairs for CLAT with “The Hindu”
First things first, understand and remember that “The Hindu” is not to be read cover-to-cover for the purposes of cracking the CLAT examination. Neither do you have to remember the entire passages of the article you read! Let’s break things down for you. Tips to crack Current Affairs for CLAT with “The Hindu”.
Tip #1 – Read Selectively
Just like “It is okay to be selective about who you invite into your life because not everyone deserves a seat at your table”, you have to be selective in reading the newspaper as well. Here are a few things you can keep in mind while reading your copy of “The Hindu”-
- Use the syllabus breakdown and guidelines as your holy scroll. Keep referring to the syllabus while reading your news and try to focus on areas and themes mentioned. For example, you might want to skip the regional news.
- Read the Business and Economy sections of “The Hindu” to become comfortable with the language used in the market. Focus on growth parameters, trends and issues connected with monetary and fiscal policies.
- The Page that deals with current national and international issues has to be read thoroughly from top to bottom. Understand the underlying issues and keep an eye out for recurrent themes in subsequent news items. Try developing a holistic understanding of the issues.
- Focus on any items related to Judgments from the High Courts and the Supreme Court. Also, any new legislation or controversial provisions, repeal, amendment, etc should also be on your radar.
- Some special editions of “The Hindu’ dedicate an entire page to Science & Tech, or Art & Culture. Read them and also understand the specific technical vocabulary used. This will help you navigate the Question Paper better on the D-day.
Always remember that you don’t have to become an expert on any of the subjects. Just jack of all trades shall help you be through with it.
Tip #2 – Focus on the Issue rather than the News
Do not limit yourself to just the specific item of the news. Read about the issues in the wider context. For example, if the news item discusses “Removal of Supreme Court Judge”, do not limit yourself to just who and what, but also read about “What is the procedure of ‘impeachment’ of a Supreme Court judge?”, “What are its ramifications?”, etc.
You should also try to analyse the common themes which have been repeated in the past year’s question papers and couple them with the themes demarcated in the syllabus to get the whole picture. Last year all the passages like Indo-China disengagement, Chabahar Day/INSTC, Ramsar Sites/World Wetland Day, Covid-19 Vaccines Maitri, etc were all contemporary issues discussed last year.
Tip #3 – Follow the Hindu’s editorial religiously
The Editorial & Opinion are the most valuable part of the entire “the Hindu”. The Op-Ed section is valuable for all three sections based on long passages, namely – English, Current Affairs including general knowledge and legal reasoning. The Ed section helps you understand the issue holistically. The question setter might pick an entire passage directly from this section. Reading the editorial section also makes sure that you do not fall into the trap of meaninglessly memorising long lists of facts without understanding their wider context, and how they relate to other information.
Tip #4 – Apply your knowledge
The key to cracking all sections of the CLAT paper is practice. While inculcating a reading habit and elaborate vocabulary might help you navigate the question paper better, applying your knowledge through attempting mocks and sectional tests can help you get the edge by solving faster, more accurate and overall better. But how do you apply your knowledge in this section?
Once you have a fair idea of the expectations of the question setter by repeated iterations of the syllabus guide, you’ll be able to “see the questions” in a passage you read. For example, if there is a comprehension passage on cyclones, it should click to you that will be expected to know the difference between cyclones, typhoons and hurricanes. That’s how to start applying!
Explainer on Utilising your “The Hindu” knowledge in the CLAT Current Affairs section
Remember that the Current Affairs section is not intended to test your retention power for mere facts or trivia-based knowledge. Now that we know the premise of the question paper and also how to read “The Hindu” effectively, let’s look into some tips to juxtapose your reading habit with the solving of questions of the d-day. Tips to crack Current Affairs for CLAT with “The Hindu”.
- The Current Affairs section of the CLAT paper is designed to test your depth of understanding of issues and events of significance. Don’t worry about whether you will remember all the elements of the passage when you come to the questions – the idea is not to test your ability to memorise the passage and answer questions that test your recollection. Try to jog your memory about any related information you may have read or come across in your preparations.
- Also, as per the Consortium guidelines, the focus of the passage remains on more recent or contemporary events. The questions arising from the passage, however, might test your knowledge of historical information related to such events and their significance. This is done to gauge your understanding of the causes of such current events.
- In line with the overall theme of the UG CLAT 2022, the focus is on comprehension, and your ability to understand and decode the information set out in the passage. While you may not be asked vocabulary questions in this section of the paper, you may be asked the meaning of certain statements made in the passage, insofar as they relate to information associated with such statements – for example, a passage relating to cyclones may ask you what the difference is between a cyclone, typhoon, and hurricane.
These were all the tips to help you crack Current Affairs for CLAT with “The Hindu”. Stay tuned to Oliveboard. Ciao!
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