Importance of reading newspapers for Verbal ability preparationRahul Singh
Importance of reading newspapers for Verbal ability preparation:
It won’t be wrong to say that newspapers are a vital component of life. They are the only source through which we get a concise overview of the happening around the world. While news channels also provide us with this information, the habit of reading gets instilled with the help of newspapers. This is why students, especially those preparing for competitive exams, have a huge benefit from reading newspapers.
From the point of verbal ability preparation for CAT and other entrance exams, giving mocks and sectional tests is fine, but to master the skill of cracking reading comprehension questions, aspirants need to develop this habit. Only by consistently reading newspapers every day, you can see an improvement in your VARC section, but that is sure to happen. Read on to understand more about the importance of reading newspapers for Verbal ability preparation.
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Why is reading newspapers important for Verbal Ability?
Apart from increasing your knowledge about current affairs, reading newspapers will also help you in a lot of areas:
Reading RC quickly:
By reading newspapers regularly, your reading speed increases tremendously. Newspapers have a variety of information from various sources like Local, National, International, and Scientific news, and such kind of exposure is very beneficial from the point of view of RCs. Students usually just stick to one kind of genre that they like, but it is a fact that the passages that come in exams are from universal topics similar to what we find in newspapers. Hence, to get into the habit of reading and comprehending RCs quickly, you have to get into the habit of reading newspapers. The high-speed reading clubbed with understanding the statements in the first attempt will help you to save a lot of time in solving the Reading Comprehension and Data Interpretation problems in CAT.
Articles and editorials are all written by experts, and hence, reading those will help to improve your vocabulary. While reading the newspaper if you come across any new word or phrase, try to guess the meaning of the word according to the context given in the article. After guessing, verify it by referring to the meaning of the word in the dictionary. This exercise will help you in remembering the word and you will never forget it.
You can also keep a note of these new words, either in your diary or in your mobile notepad app, and keep revisiting these words once in a while so that you don’t forget the old words when you learn the new ones. Also, try to use these new words in your daily conversation, writing, or chatting and inculcate them everywhere so that you won’t forget and your vocabulary is enhanced.
Improve your language skills and communication skills:
Reading is the best practice for improving your grammar. When you read, you understand the word usage and sentence formation, which will eventually help you with questions like ‘correct the sentence’ or ‘complete the sentence’ that are usually asked in the Verbal section of exams. Newspapers are written by the best in the literary field, so you can rely on them for the most appropriate use of words and grammar. This will not just help you with your VARC, but also in your WAT and GD section. As your grammar gets better, your communication skills will also get better. Thus, it will lead to the all-around development of your English language skills.
Useful for WAT/GD/PI:
Newspapers have loads of information about current affairs, politics, science and technology, education, sports, and stock markets, which is extremely important from your GD-WAT/PI point of view. Group discussion topics will be mainly on current affairs, hence reading newspapers can help you in the long term. Newspapers will also help you to know about statistics, facts, and figures which a student can substantiate during group discussions. Further, for essays in the WAT conducted during the GD/PI round, the essays are asked mostly about current events and recent happenings. This will give the student an upper edge when compared to other students.
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Important Newspaper sections to cover for your exams:
The front page of the newspaper is reserved for important and breaking news, this will be mainly related to current events and happenings in India and around the world. Hence, be smart and identify and filter out which news is important and read only the relevant news which will help you in your preparation. Filter out all the irrelevant news and read the ones that matter.
This section usually consists of local news that is usually on a small scale and irrelevant from the exam point of view. You can just skip this section, or go through it just for the sake of gaining knowledge.
Editorial and Opinions:
This is a very important section and is often neglected by students. Usually, everyone just focuses on the first few pages and skips the rest. However, you will find editorials usually on the last few pages of the newspaper. This section is written by experts, hence you can find an abundance of knowledge here, and can help you a lot in improving your vocabulary and language skills.
National news and International news:
Focus on these sections as well, as they are very important from the point of view of increasing your general knowledge for the interview rounds.
This section will help you to increase your acumen in the field of finance and stock markets, mergers, and acquisitions. Major happenings during the year can be asked in your exams or interviews, hence read these sections thoroughly.
You can Glance through this section by just noting the major sports events that have been conducted and the winners of the events. You may get questions from this in your MCQs
A great practice would be to take note of all the facts and important news separately. Maintain a small notebook and keep noting them down. Revise these notes before the exam or before the interview. This will help you to remember the event on the final D-day.
What to avoid while reading newspapers:
- Avoid going through the unnecessary advertisements given in the newspaper
- Avoid gossip and Bollywood columns, no one will ask you what Priyanka Chopra wore to the Met Gala
- Give less focus to crime news, you can read them for your knowledge but they won’t be needed for your exam preparations.
Best practices to read the newspapers:
- A quick scan of the newspaper will give you a clear idea about what to read and what to ignore
- Mark news words and phrases with a pen and quickly find the meanings of those with the help of a dictionary.
- Articles on the editorial page are highly recommended and one must spend maximum time reading these editorials thoroughly with patience. The key to success in improving your reading comprehension is to read editorials daily and understand them.
- Another good practice would be to practice writing articles on your own. To do this, read one editorial thoroughly, and then write about it in your own words. Try not to revisit the editorial once you start writing. If you have to refer back, read the whole editorial again and then begin writing again. Don’t read it in bits and pieces and try writing. Believe me, this will help you tremendously not just for your RCs but also your WAT section.
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Best Newspapers for exam preparation:
1. The Hindu:
It has the best editorial section that covers matters on a variety of subjects. The ‘opinion’ sections on their online website can be useful for your GDPI discussions.
2. Economic Times:
Great source of business and economic information. The difficulty level of reading this newspaper is high, so you have to continue reading it every day to get a hang of it. You can learn some great advanced words through this paper.
3. Times of India:
Good for general knowledge and recently happening. It’s pretty easy to read, unlike the Economic times, hence it can help you improve your grammar and reading comfort. It also has a really good editorial section, which is a must-read!
4. Indian Express:
It has a great editorial section that explores every heated matter in detail. Must read for increasing GK and improving reading ability.
5. Business Standards, Financial Express:
Mostly advanced Business and finance-related topics are covered in these. If you are reading the economic times, you don’t need to read these regularly. However, Financial Express has some of the best-written articles, so you can read them once or twice a week.
With all these benefits mentioned above, every student must inculcate the habit of reading newspapers. It will not just help you with your RCs, but also your vocabulary, grammar, WAT, and GD-PI. Remember, it takes only 21 days to form a habit. So what are you waiting for? Start now and within 21 days, reading newspapers will become a part of your life, and you wouldn’t have to worry about GK ever again.
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