If you're an SS3 student in Nigeria, chances are you're sitting for your Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) very soon. While you might think of the exam as one similar to your regular end-of-term assessment, note that you need commitment and adequate preparation to attain high scores in your WASSCE.

It's normal to feel nervous going into the exams. However, if you take the time to prepare and study for your examinations, you can be sure of coming out with flying colours.

Also, with your SSCE being the first of the exams you'll sit for to gain admission into a university, you need to go into it with complete preparation, especially for compulsory subjects such as the English Language.

To help you in your preparation, we've compiled the best study resources and tips that'll help you pass the exams. Read on below to find out!

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A Brief Overview of English Language and English Literature in SSCE

Suppose you're in the Arts department in secondary school, English Language and Literature are two of the most important exams in your SSCE.

Anything less than a Credit in the English Language technically means you didn't pass your exam and, as a result, might need to write another one or combine your current results with another SSCE you write later.

On the other hand, English Literature is probably the exam that you need to go into in full swing. While failing it doesn't necessarily make your results useless, you won't be able to study any Arts & Humanities course in the university as most require a credit in Literature in English.

With the above, you should fully understand the importance of your English Literature and English Language exams now.

When it comes to the exams themselves, you need to be creative and precise in presenting your answers.

Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) boards such as WAEC and NECO recently changed the syllabuses for English Language and Literature in English. The new syllabuses were used in 2021 and are expected to be the standard till 2025.

It's essential to go through them and ensure you understand the new requirements, mainly the prescribed English textbooks, African and Non-African prose and drama, and pieces of poetry.

Thankfully, the study resources and tips below will help you find and tailor your preparation to the new requirements in your West African Senior School Certificate Examination (SSCE) syllabus.

Senior school certificate examination
Study as many textbooks as possible before your West African Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE), even if it's to download their PDF format.
Image Credit: Unsplash

Study Guide for the English Language in your SSCE

One of the crucial things you need to understand is your workload in your exam. You'll have three papers to tackle, which are the objectives paper, essay paper, and test or oral English.

The objectives section is pretty straightforward as you'll deal with 100 multi-choice questions. When it comes to the essay paper, you'll be tasked with writing an article, essay, letter, or even a report. These are optional; therefore, ensure to pick only the one you're good at.

The last paper tests your understanding of spoken English, from rhymes to syllables, phonetic symbols, intonation, vowels, and consonants.

You'll need the suitable study materials to scale through in all of these. Essential English and Modern English, which are popular textbooks in Nigerian secondary schools, should bring you up to speed. You can download these two in PDF format.

In addition, you can pick a word or two from the dictionary to learn every day. This practice broadens your vocabulary and increases your chances of being able to answer the synonyms and antonyms section in Paper 1 of your English Language exam.

All in all, your textbooks are the most valuable materials to inquire into. Although lengthy, they'll equip you with all you need to know if you start studying early enough.

Read more on tips for passing your SSCE/WAEC.

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Study Guide for English Literature in Your SSCE

SSCE WAEC
Be time-conscious when revising for your West African Examination Council and don't wait until it gets close before studying.
Image Credit: Unsplash

The study materials you'll need differ when it comes to the subject that defines you as an Arts student, and so do the revision practices. However, the exam can come easy if you use the right resources for English Literature.

But before we delve into all that, candidates need to understand the typical workload in their exams. The 50 questions in the objectives are based on Shakespearean literary art and a general understanding of English literature.

Given that, you might want to learn as many literary terms as possible, from hyperbole to synecdoche, alliteration, simile, etc. Thankfully, you can get all these in textbooks such as Exam Focus in English Literature; inquire into it.

The theory section of your English Literature exam will test your understanding of the prescribed African and Non-African prose, drama, and poetry in the West African Examination Council (WAEC) syllabus.

Thankfully, all candidates have to do to understand these is read them and then study their analysis in textbooks such as Exam Focus. The recent novels prescribed by WAEC are an exciting read; therefore, candidates shouldn't get bored from reading them.

Methods for Studying English Language & English Literature Past Questions & Answers

No matter how well candidates read your textbooks, their preparation wouldn't be complete without understanding how WAEC sets questions in their exams before they go into it.

Past questions and answers give you insights into what to expect in your exam, never mind that they also help tailor your exam focus to areas and topics prescribed in your syllabus. In addition, you'll also get an idea of the volume of terminologies to learn in English Language and Literature in English.

Be that as it may, there are a few methods you can employ to get the most from these past questions, which are as follows:

  • Study all past questions from at least ten previous exam years to get an idea of the question pattern and see what's changed in recent years compared to older years. This technique can also be applied to JAMB UTME
  • Build up your vocabulary by learning words and literary terms in the objectives sections. You can download Literature PDF and download a dictionary app to help you in this regard.
  • Attempt all questions in an exam year without looking at the answers. This helps you test how much you've learned from reading your textbooks.
  • Take note of repeat questions and learn their answers. There's a possibility that WAEC will repeat the same or similar questions in your exam

Revision Tips and Material for SSCE/WAEC English Language and Literature

Senior school certificate examination
You can learn on the go using apps for English language and Literature exams in WAEC and JAMB UTME. Image Credit: Unsplash

Revising your English Language and Literature textbooks and PDF is very important to attain high scores in your exams. This begs the question: What are the best ways to revise for your exams, and where can you find online study materials?

You can get everything you'll need via your smartphone or computer. But, first, the methods with which you revise these materials are equally important.

You need to study in a serene and quiet environment to enable you to focus on your study. You can learn late into the night if this isn't feasible during the day. Furthermore, pen down facts and terms you feel can be difficult to remember later and then cross-check regularly to make them stick in your memory.

Lastly, avoid starting your revision just when your exams are about to commence. There's only so much you can learn within this short time; therefore, start your revision at least 2-3 months before your exams begin.

When it comes to online revision materials, you can use websites such as myschool.ng to get past questions and answers in a CBT style. Apps such as uLesson Educational App, Oral English Companionship, and English Essays for WAEC NECO are also available to give you a much-needed soft landing.

How to Get a Private Tutor to Guide You for Your Exams

Any help that'll aid the preparation for your exams is welcomed at this stage, so you might want to consider the services of an English/Literature tutor to prepare you ahead of your exams. Thankfully, there are many competent English Language and Literature tutors in Nigeria to help you in that regard.

You can get one of the best private tutors on Superprof to help you prepare for your examinations.

Superprof is an online tutoring platform that helps students across Nigeria connect with tutors and professionals in their subjects and courses of interest. All you have to do to start learning with a Superprof tutor today is to browse through the list of available ones and then select the best for you.

You can get tutors to come to your house to give you private lessons or you could learn with them online. 

The online option is your best bet if you don't want a one-on-one physical class. With just a stable internet connection and your smartphone or computer, you'll be up and running. Video conferencing apps such as Skype, WhatsApp, or Zoom will be used for the online lessons.

Most of the Superprof tutors offer the first hour of their lessons with you for free which allows you to appraise their teaching method and see how it works for you. Depending on your tutor, lessons after the first cost between ₦500–₦5,000 per hour, whether you're studying for WAEC or JAMB UTME.

 

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Damilola

A seasoned writer with sublime experience in various niches, Damilola is creative in his craft. He's a permanent/guest writer on websites in the heath & fitness, business, tech, pets, and entertainment industries. As a freelance writer with years' experience, he harnesses his expertise well, breaking down information in the simplest terms for common readers.