CBSE Unit Weightage for English Core Classes XI and XII

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Class XI ( 11th )

One paper of Hoursand 100 Marks

Unitwise Weightage

Reading Unseen Passages (Two)8 + 7 = 15 marks
Writing5 + 8 + 7 = 20 marks
Grammar10 Marks
Total45 marks
  1. Textbook
  2. Supplementary Reader
4 + 10 + 6 = 20 marks
Long Readin Text-Nove7 + 8 = 15 marks
  1. Listening
  2. Speaking
5 + 5 = 10 marks
Reading Project10 marks
TOTAL100 marks


Reading Comprehension-15 Marks

Reading Unseen Passages for Comprehension and Note Making This section will have two unseen passages followed by a variety of questions. The total length of the two passages shall be around 1100 (600 + 500) .

Question 1: Long Reading Passage of 600 Words-08 Marks

Question 1 shall have two sets of questions

  1. 6 Questions carrying 1 mark each, out of which two shall be MCQs 6 × 1 = 6 Marks
  2. Vocabulary Testing-2 Questions carrying one mark each. 2 × 1 = 2 Marks
  3. Question 2: Reading Passage of 500 Words for Summary and Note Making 07 Marks
  4. Note making-5 Marks
  5. Summary-2 Marks

Section B

Writing Skills-20 Marks

WRITING-20 Marks40 periods

Question 3: One out of two short writing/composition tasks based on notice/poster/advertisement (50 Words) . -05 Marks

Question 4: One out of two compositions in the form of article, speech, report writing or a narrative (150 − 200 Words) -08 Marks

Question 5: Writing one out of two letters based on verbal input. It would cover all types of letters. 07 Marks

Letter types may include:

  1. business or official letters (for making enquiries, registering complaints, asking for and giving information, placing orders and sending replies) :
  2. letters to the editor (giving suggestions on an issue)
  3. application for a job
  4. letter to the school or colleges authorities, regarding admissions, school issues, requirements/suitability of courses etc. 07 Marks

Section C

Grammar-10 Marks

Different grammatical structures in meaningful contexts will be tested. Item types will include gap filling, sentence re-ordering, dialogue completion and sentence transformation. The grammar syllabus will include determiners, tenses, clauses, modals and Voice. These grammar areas will be tested using the following test types.

Question 6: Error Correction-04 Marks

Question 7: Editing Task-04 Marks

Question 8: Re-Ordering of Sentences-02 Marks


Textual Question-20 Marks

Questions on the prescribed textbooks will test comprehension at different levels: Literal, inferential and evaluative based on the following prescribed textbooks:

  1. Hornbill: Text Book published by NCERT, New Delhi-12 Marks
  2. Snapshots: Supplementary Reader published by NCERT, New Delhi-08 Marks

The following have been deleted:

  1. Name of the Text Book: Hornbill, Snapshots
  2. Name of the lessons deleted: Landscape of the Soul, The Adventure, Silk Road, The Laburnum Top (Poetry) , The Ghat of the only World

Question 9: One out of two extracts based on poetry from the text to test reference to context, comprehension and appreciation. 01 × 04 = 04 Marks

Question 10: Five out of six short answer questions (up to 40 words) on the lessons from poetry prose and plays from both Hornbill and Snapshots with 3 + 3 pattern (3 questions each from each book) . 05X02 = 10 Marks

Question 11: One out of two long answer questions based on the prescribed Text Books both Hornbill and Snapshots with 1 + 1 pattern (150 Words) . 01X06 = 06 Marks


Long Reading Text-Novel-15 Marks

With a view to inculcate the habit of reading among the students, CBSE has introduced compulsory reading of a Long Reading Text-Novel in the English Core Course and will be evaluated in both Formative and SummativeAssessments.

The long reading text prescribed for class XI is: The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde (unabridged version 1906 Edition)

or Up From Slavery by Booker T. Washington 2000 Edition Schools can opt for anyone of the above texts.

There will be two long answer questions on the theme, plot, character and incidents from the prescribed Novel.

Question 12: Long Answer Question (Approximately 150 Words) -08 Marks Question 13: Long Answer Question (Approximately 130 Words) -07 Marks


Conversation Skills-10 Marks

Formal testing of Conversation skills both listening and speaking will be conducted in Classes IX and XI by CBSE in collaboration with an external agency. Conversation Skills-10 marks

(Listening + Speaking) Conversation Skills will be tested both as part of Formative & Summative Assessment. Out of the 10 marks allotted for Conversation, 05 marks may be used for testing listening and 05 marks for testing speaking. The Conversation Skills Assessment Scale may be used for evaluation.

Listening The examiner will read aloud either a passage on a relevant theme or a short story. The passage may be factual or discursive. The length of the passage should be around 350 words. The examinees are expected to complete the listening comprehension tasks given in a separate sheet while listening to the teacher. The tasks set may be gap-filling, multiple choice, true or false or short answer questions. There may be ten different questions for half a mark each.


Speaking shall be tested either through narration using a sequence of pictures or through description of a picture of people or places. It may also require speaking on a given topic involving a personal experience. Description of a picture (can be pictures of people or places)


  • The duration of the speaking test should not be less than 5 minutes for each candidate.
  • At the start of the examination the examiner will give the candidate some time to prepare for the task.
  • Once the candidate has started speaking, the examiner should intervene as little as possible.
  • Topics chosen should be within the personal experience of the examinee such as: Relating a funny anecdote, retelling the theme of a book read or a movie seen recently. Defending characters ′ actions in the story.

Conversation Skills Assessment Scale


The learner:

  1. Has general ability to understand word and phrases in a familiar context but cannot follow connected speech.
  2. Has ability to follow short connected utterances in a familiar context
  3. Has ability to understand explicitly stated information in both familiar and unfamiliar contexts
  4. Understands a range of longer spoken texts with reasonable accuracy, and is able to draw inferences
  5. Shows ability to interpret complex discourse in terms of points of view; adapts listening strategies to suit purposes.


The learner:

  1. shows ability to use only isolated words and phrases but cannot operate on connected speech level
  2. in familiar situations, uses only short connected utterances with limited accuracy
  3. shows ability to use more complex utterances with some fluency in longer discourse; still makes some errors which impede communication
  4. organises and presents thoughts in a reasonably logical and fluent manner in unfamiliar situations; makes errors which do not interfere with communication
  5. c a n s p o n t a n e o u s l y a d a p t s t y l e appropriate to purpose and audience; makes only negligible errors.


Reading Project-10 Marks

IInculcating good reading habits in children has always been a concern for all stakeholders in education. The purpose is to create independent thinking individuals with the ability to not only create their own knowledge but also critically interpret, analyse and evaluate it with objectivity and fairness. This will also help students in learning and acquiring better language skills.

Creating learners for the 21st century involves making them independent learners who can ‘learn, unlearn and relearn’ and if our children are in the habit of reading they will learn to reinvent themselves and deal with the many challenges that lie ahead of them.

Reading is not merely decoding information or pronouncing words correctly, it is an interactive dialogue between the author and the reader in which the reader and author share their experiences and knowledge with each other which helps them to understand the text and impart meaning to the text other than what the author himself may have implied. Good readers are critical readers with an ability to arrive at a deeper understanding of not only the world presented in the book but also of the real world around them. They not only recall what they read but comprehend it too. Their critical reading and understanding of the text helps them create new understanding, solve problems, infer and make connections to other texts and experiences. Reading does not mean reading for leisure only but also for information, analysis and synthesis of knowledge. The child may be encouraged to read on topics as diverse as science and technology, politics and history. This will improve his/her critical thinking skills and also help in improving his/her concentration.

Reading any text should be done with the purpose of:

  1. reading silently at varying speeds depending on the purpose of reading:
  2. adopting different strategies for different types of texts, both literary and non-literary: Recognising the organisation of a text:
  3. dentifying the main points of a text; understanding relations between different parts of a text through lexical and grammatical cohesion devices.
  4. anticipating and predicting what will come next.
  5. deducing the meaning of unfamiliar lexical items in a given context: Consulting a dictionary to obtain information on the meaning and use of lexical items:
  6. analysing, interpreting, inferring (and evaluating) the ideas in the text: Selecting and extracting from text information required for a specific purpose.
  7. retrieving and synthesising information from a range of reference material using study skills such as skimming and scanning:
  8. interpreting texts by relating them to other material on the same theme (and to their own experience and knowledge) : And reading extensively on their own for pleasure.

A good reader is most often an independent learner and consequently an independent thinker capable of taking his/her own decisions in life rationally. Such a learner will most assuredly also be capable of critical thinking.

Reading a book should lead to creative and individual response to the author՚s ideas presented in the book in the form of:

  • short review
  • dramatisation of the story
  • commentary on the characters
  • critical evaluation of the plot, story line and characters
  • comparing and contrasting the characters within the story and with other characters in stories by the same author or by the other authors
  • extrapolating about the story՚s ending or life of characters after the story ends
  • defending characters ′ actions in the story.
  • making an audio story out of the novel/text to be read out to younger children.
  • Interacting with the author
  • Holding a literature fest where various characters interact with each other
  • Acting like authors/poets/dramatists, to defend their works and characters.
  • Symposiums and seminars for introducing a book, an author, or a theme
  • Finding similar text in other languages, native or otherwise and looking at differences and similarities.
  • Creating graphic novels out of novels/short stories read
  • Dramatising incidents from a novel or a story
  • Creating their own stories
  1. A Reading Project of 10 marks has been introduced in class XI.
  2. Schools may use books of their own choice.
  3. Schools can vary the level but at least one book per term is to be read by every child.

Teachers may opt for:

  • One book
  • Books by one author; or
  • Books of one genre; to be read by the whole class.

The Project should lead to independent learning/reading skills and hence the chosen book/selection should not be taught in class, but may be introduced through activities and be left for the students to read at their own pace. Teachers may, however, choose to assess a child՚s progress or success in reading the book by asking for verbal or written progress reports, looking at the diary entries of students, engaging in a discussion about the book, giving a short quiz or a worksheet about the book/short story. The mode of intermittent assessment may be decided by the teacher as she/he sees fit.

These may be used for Formative Assessment (F1, F2, F3 and F4) only. Various modes of assessment such as conducting Reviews, Discussions, Open Houses, Exchanges, Interact with the Author, writing script for plays can be considered.

Class XII ( 12th )

One paper of 3 Hours and 100 Marks

Areas of LearingMarks-Specified
Reading Unseen Passages (Two)12 + 8 = 20 Marks
Advanced Writing Skills4 + 6 + 10 + 10 = 30 Marks
Textual Questions-Text Book-Flamingo3 + 4 + 12 + 6 = 25 Marks
Textual Questions-Supplementary Reader-Vistas3 + 4 + 12 + 6 = 25 Marks
Long Readin Text-Novel7 + 8 = 15 Marks
Conversation Skills-Listening5 + 5 = 10 Marks
Conversation Skills-Speaking5 + 5 = 10 Marks

Section A

Reading Comprehension-20 Marks

Reading unseen Passages and Note making There will be two unseen passages.

The total length of the two passages will be between 1000 − 1200 words. The passage will include two of the following:

  • Factual passages e. g. Instructions, descriptions, reports
  • Descriptive passages involving opinion e. g. Argumentative, persuasive or interpretative text.
  • Literary passages e. g. Extract from fiction, drama, poetry, essay or biography.

Summary-Section A

Unseen passagesNo. Of wordsTesting AreasMarks Allotted
1.600 − 700Short answer type questions to test local, global and international comprehension, Vocabulary09 + 03 = 12 Marks
2400 − 500Note-making in an appropriate format Abstraction05 + 03 = 08 Marks

Question 1: A longer passage will be given to test reading comprehension. The passage can be literary, factual or discursive. There will be vocabulary testing for three marks. 12 Marks

Question 2: A shorter passage of 400 − 500 words will be given for note making and abstraction. 08 Marks

Section B

Advanced Writing Skills-30 Marks

Question 3: One out of two short compositions of not more than 50 words each e. g. Advertisement and notices, designing or drafting posters, writing formal and informal invitations and replies. 04 Marks

Question 4: A report or a factual description (100 − 125 words) based on verbal input provided (One out of two) . -06 Marks

Question 5: Writing one out of two letters based on verbal input. 10 Marks

Letter types include

  • business or official letters (for making enquiries, registering complaints, asking for and givin information, placing orders and sending replies)
  • bletters to the editor (giving suggestions on an issue or opinion on issue on public interest application) for a job letter to the principal or school authorities regarding admissions schools issues requirement or suitability of courses etc.

Question 6: One out of two compositions based on visual and/or verbal input (150 − 200 words) . Output may be descriptive or argumentative in nature such as an article, a debate or a speech-10 Marks

Section C

Literary Texts (Prescribed Books Flamingo and Vistas) -25 Marks

Question 7: One out of two extracts based on poetry from the text to test comprehension and appreciation. 01X03 = 03 Marks

Question 8: Two out of three short questions from the poetry to test local and global comprehension of text. 02X02 = 04 Marks

Question 9: Six out of seven short answer questions based on the lessons from both Flamingo and Vistas. 06X02 = 12 Marks

Question 10: One out two long answer type questions based on the texts to test global comprehension and extrapolation beyond the set texts (125 − 150 words) . -01X06 = 06 Marks

The following have been deleted from the text:

Section D

Long Reading Text-Novel-15 Marks

With a view to in still the habit of reading among the students, CBSE introduces compulsory reading of Long Reading Text/Novel in the English Core Course and will be evaluated in both Formative and SummativeAssessments.

There will be two long answer questions on the theme, plot, character and incidents from the prescribed novel. Schools can choose any one of the two novels.

Name of the Text BookName of the lessons deleted
  1. Flamingo-Poets and Pancakes
  2. Flamingo-The Interview
  3. Flamingo-Road Ride Stand (Poetry)
VistasVistas-The Third Level Vistas-Journey to the End of the Earth

The novels are: Lord of the Flies (unabridged 1954) William Golding Or Hound of Baskervilles (unabridged 1902) Arther Conan Doyle Question 12: Long Answer Question (Approximately 150 Words) -08 Marks

Question 13: Long Answer Question (Approximately 150 Words) -07 Marks

Section E

Conversational Skills-10 Marks

Testing of Conversational Skills will be done by CBSE.