Mistakes to Avoid in CSS-2017, Highlights of Examiner’s Report on CSS-2016 Exam

Mistakes to Avoid in CSS-2017

Subject: ESSAY

1. Majority of the candidates attempted the paper in such a way that ideas were not coherent, organized or focused on the topic.

2. Random thoughts were brought together without any logic al reasoning or research-based facts and arguments.

3. There was lack of creativity which might be expected of candidates appearing in the competition exam.

4. The demands of the topics was to build an argument from multiple angles and substantiate it with facts and figures however, a large majority of the candidates incorporated formulaic and crammed up material in the essays.

5. Most of the candidates did not fulfil the criterion of required length.

6. The essays were also replete with errors of grammar, spellings and punctuation; in fact, there was not a single script which was error-free.

7. The outlines of the essays were not properly structured. Either they were brief or if they were detailed, most of the time, the aspects mentioned in the outlines were not discussed in the essays.

8. Overall, the standard of the scripts was dismal and highly unsatisfactory.

Subject: English (Précis & Composition)

1. The majority candidates appeared unable to tackle the questions in a befitting manner.

2. Most of the candidates failed to write précis in the third person and past tense.

3. They lacked vocabulary along with an objective approach and produced précis in paragraphs’ form by writing it in direct speech violating the norms of précis writing.

4. Majority candidates did not possess strong command over syntax, phraseology and etymology of words to effectively translate the given Urdu paragraph into true meaning.

5. The candidates were also engaged to solve some grammar-related intricacies but majority:

(a) showed weak knowledge and application of writing conventions such as capitalization and punctuation;

(b) demonstrated frequent spelling mistakes;

(c) produced writing that has not been a joy to read;

(d) lacked language arts skills especially in the areas of conveying their thoughts and ideas clearly;

(e) wrote sentences that conveyed incomplete thoughts; and

(f) reflected a weak grasp of organization in their writing.

Some possible causes for the errors/mistakes experienced while marking the scripts:

a. The candidates were not ready to produce the linguistic construction at their level.

b. The language required from them might have been beyond their expectation.

c. Over-generalization.

d. Bad models.

e. First language interference.

Hence, it is imperative to communicate institutions of higher education to take required academic measures to enhance English language proficiency of the graduates.


1. Question paper reflected the whole prescribed syllabus.

2. Majority of the students solved all the required questions.

3. Out of these students 2% were extraordinary, 3% were excellent, 20% were very good, 30% were good, 40% were ordinary and 5% were failure.

4. Extraordinary students quoted the references from various books.

5. Knowledge of the failure students was not up to mark.

6. Some students did not follow the instructions given on the question paper, e.g. writing question number properly.

7. Most of the students wrote Ahadis and Quranic Ayyah in a wrong way, which shows their poor command over Arabic.

8. Students need to improve their Arabic Writing skills.

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