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(Download) ICSE: Class X Syllabus - 2013 "English"

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ICSE (Class X)
Syllabus (2013)

Subject: English


  1. To develop and integrate the use of the four language skills i.e. listening, speaking, reading and writing for the purpose of effective communication.
  2. To develop a functional understanding of the grammar, structure and idiom of the language.
  3. To develop the capacity to read efficiently and access information effectively.
  4. To develop an appreciation of good literature.
  5. To experience, through literature, the thoughts and feelings of the people of the world.

There will be two papers: Paper 1. English Language;

Paper 2. Literature in English.

Each of these papers will be of two hours duration.

Paper 1: English Language (80 Marks)
             Internal Assessment (20 Marks)

Paper 2: Literature in English (80 Marks)
             Internal Assessment (20 Marks)


                                                (Two hours) - 80 marks

Four questions will be set, all of which will be compulsory.

Question 1: Candidates will be required to write a composition from a choice of subjects which will test their ability to: organise, describe, narrate, report, explain, persuade or argue, present ideas coherently, compare and contrast ideas and arrive at conclusions, present relevant arguments and use correct style and format. The subjects will be varied and may be suggested by language or by other stimuli such as pictures. The subjects will be so chosen so as to allow the candidates to draw on first hand experience or to stimulate their imagination.

With one subject, a number of suggestions about the content of the composition will be given, but the use of the suggestions will be optional and a candidate will be free to treat the subject in any way that he/she chooses. The organisation of subject matter, syntax, punctuation, correctness of grammatical constructions and spelling will be expected to be appropriate to the mode of treatment required by the subject.

Question 2: Candidates will have to write a letter from a choice of two subjects requiring either a formal or an informal mode of treatment. Suggestions regarding the content of the letter may be given. The layout of the letter with address, introduction, conclusion, etc., will form part of the assessment. Candidates will be expected to be familiar with the use of appropriate salutation, format and style for letters.

Question 3: An unseen passage of prose of about 500 words will be given. Uncommon items of vocabulary, or structure will be avoided. One question will be set to test vocabulary. Candidates will be required to show that they understand the words/phrases in the context in which they have been used. A number of questions requiring short answers will also be asked on the passage. These questions will test the candidates’ ability to understand the explicit content and organisation of the passage and to infer information, intentions and attitudes from it. The last question will consist of a summary that will test the candidates’ ability to distinguish main ideas from supporting details and to extract salient points to re-express them in the form of a summary. Candidates will be given clear indications of what they are to summarise and of the length of the summary.

Question 4: There will be a number of short answer questions to test the candidates' knowledge of functional grammar, structure and usage of the language. All the items in this question will be compulsory. They will consist of sentence completion, multiple choice or other short answer type of questions.


                                                        (Two hours) - 80 marks

Candidates will be required to answer five questions from at least three of the prescribed textbooks, one of which must be drama, one prose and one poetry.

Prose and Drama

Questions set will be central to the text. Candidates will be required to show that they have understood the passage and are able to clearly give their interpretation of the questions set, which should be in their own words and relevant to the text.

Excerpts may be given from the prose and drama texts leading to questions on the specific book.


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