There are several kinds of errors in written communication, particularly in English. These errors take place due to grammatical mistakes or slips in idiomatic usage. Grammatical errors are quite widespread. For tackling, such questions in Competitive Examinations, where English is an integral part, one should have knowledge of some common errors and rules of English grammar and usage. Hence the study material together with concepts on this topic is dealt with in detail in the item concerned.
The English language is rich and complex. There are many confusing aspects to the rules of grammar and spelling. Many words are quite similar but have very different meanings. It is almost impossible to avoid common errors in English. There are so many rules to remember and so many confusing words.
Error free writing in English is the result of constant practice and hard work. This fact should encourage us: it means that the ability to write well is not a gift that some people are born with, not a privilege extended to only a few. If we're willing to work, we can improve our English.
Errors in English generally take place particularly in matters of -- Sequence of Tense, Punctuation, Plural Verb for Singular Subject, Nouns, Noun-Number, Possessive Case, Pronouns, Adjectives, Verbs, Adverbs, Articles, Prepositions, Question Tags, If-conditionals and so forth. As such, we need to be proficient in matters of English grammar to read, write and speak good English.
Spotting error is an essential part of almost all the competitive examinations, which
include Test of Objective English. The foreign students of English commit some mistakes,
relating to all the important aspects of English grammar. This item, exclusively offered for
Spotting Errors, sets out to throw light on those grammatical errors which the students most frequently commit.
It is, in this connection, an overview of the English grammar items are offered in a tabular form, which often test how good the skills of our English are. In short, we can understand that the items included in the table are popular in the realm of Spotting Errors in our written English. As such, it is important and better to have a close scrutiny of these topics from their basics to the advanced levels in terms of their usage. A standard High School English Grammar book shall be of good use in this regard.
In this section of the examination, sentences are given with the grammatical / the word usage and/ or the spelling errors which we are expected to identify and rectify the error part. For attempting such questions, familiarity with the basic grammar rules, including spellings and the correct usage of words is essential. Some sentences may not have any error, in which case No Error is marked as our answers.
|S. No.||Grammar Item|
|1.||Use of Articles|
|2.||Use of Prepositions|
|3.||Case of Concord (Subject – Verb Agreement)|
|4.||Use of Conjunction|
|5.||Use of Tenses|
|6.||Use of Gerund|
|7.||Use of Infinitive|
|8.||Use of Pronouns|
|9.||Use of Adverbs|
|10.||Use of Adjectives|
|11.||Use of Question Tags|
|12.||Use of Nouns|
|13.||Use of Punctuation|
|15.||Choice of Words (appropriate words for the context)|
In almost all competitive exams, "Error-spotting" is a regular item and in SSC Exams this is for 10 marks. A thorough knowledge of basic rules of English grammar helps you in avoiding solecisms in your spoken and written English. This item is meant to test just that. Here are some questions taken from previous exams for your practice.
Directions(Qs. 1-45): Under each question, a sentence is divided into three parts and named 'A, B and C'. Find out which part of it is an error and mark it as your answer. If the sentence is free from errors, mark D as your answer.
1. On holidays (A),/ Rani prefers reading story books (B)/ than English poetry (C)/. No error (D).
2. In the recently held Cricket First Test Match against Australia (A),/ our second inning (B)/ was just devastating, to say the least (C)/. No error (D).
3. It is high time (A)/ the AP Government arrests (B)/ the miscreants who are vandalizing idols in Hindu temples (C)/. No error (D).
4. One must always love (A)/ his (B)/ parents and help siblings (C)/. No error (D).
5. His initials is engraved (A)/ on the back of (B)/ his watch (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CPO-2014)
6. There is no agreement (A)/ between you and I (B)./ So we are now free to go our way (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-MTS -2014)
7. Being harassed (A),/ he left hostel (B)/ bag and baggage (C)/. No error (D). SSC-CGL -2014)
8. When I was passing through the forest (A)/ I happened to see (B)/ a number of deers (C)/. No error (D) (SSC-MTS-2014)
9. Supposing if (A),/ he tell the truth (B)/ he can escape the punishment (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-MTS-2013)
10. We must have (A)/ sympathy for (B)/ needy and poor (C)/. No error(D). (SSC-MTS-2014)
11. Speakers after speakers (A)/ come on to the stage (B)/ to perform (C)/. No error (D).
12. Rupa lost (A)/ a five hundred rupees note (B)/ at the Metro station (C)/. No error (D).
13. I (A)/ have (B)/ many works to do (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CGL-2011)
14. I have read (A)/ all the works (B)/ of Shakespeare (C)/. No error (D).
15. Old habits (A)/ die (B)/ hardly (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-LDC-2012)
16. The teacher told to (A)/ students that they must attend (B)/ to school regularly (C)/. No error (D).
17. My youngest son goes (A)/ to the school (B)/ everyday (C)/. No error (D).
18. I (A)/ am having (B)/ three children (C)/. No error(D).
19. I (A)/ am having (B)/ my lunch now (C)/. No error (D).
20. The future of food companies (A)/ seems quite secure (B)/ owed to ever-growing demand (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CGL-2011)
21. My servant (A)/ hanged up the lamp (B)/ on the wall (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CO-2011)
22. The notorious serial killer (A)/ was hanged (B)/ at the district prison yesterday (C)/. No error (D).
23. These poisonous gases (A)/ will effect (B)/ our health (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-LDC-2011)
24. Indira Gandhi as the PM (A)/ had effected (B)/ many Constitutional changes (C)/. No error (D).
25. All the students (A)/ look forward (B)/ to meet the Chief Guest at the function (C)/. No error (D).
26. Ravi says that (A)/ he reads all kinds of novels (B)/ to pass away the time (C)/. No error (D).
27. Geeta came here (A)/ three times (B)/ this month (C)/. No error (D).
28. Ravi said that (A)/ he had touched the girl (B)/ by a mistake (C)/. No error (D).
29. The patient was (A)/ accompanied (B)/ with his friend (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-SO-2002)
30. Ten kilometres (A)/ is (B)/ a long distance to walk (C)/. No error (D).
31. Why (A)/ on the Earth (B)/ has he not come? (C)/ No error (D).
32. Yesterday (A)/ it rained in Hyderabad (B)/ cats and dogs (C)/. No error (D).
33. Each of these boys (A)/ play games (B)/ in the play ground (C)/. No error (D).
34. The company is using (A)/ modern methods (B)/ since 2015 (C)/. No error (D).
35. You should have used the money (A)/ for paying your debts (B)/ instead of buy a motor bike (C)/. No error (D).
36. My cousin sister (A)/ invited me to the party (B)/ yesterday (C)/. No error (D).
37. My father (A)/ has returned back (B)/ to Hyderabad yesterday (C)/. No error (D).
38. My brother is very wise (A)/ but he often (B)/ comes to me and asks money (C)/. No error (D).
39. We have (A)/ excellent furniture (B)/ at our home (C)/. No error (D).
40. Thank you (A)/ I am (B)/ completely fine (C)/. No error (D).
41. The poet (A)/ describes (B)/ the Spring season (C)/. No error (D).
42. My father in his youth (A)/ could (B)/ cope up with all temptations (C)/. No error (D).
43. Many a students (A)/ loves (B)/ to bunk classes often (C)/. No error (D).
44. Rani is (A)/ very angry (B)/ on me (C)/. No error (D).
45. My boss was (A)/ very angry (B)/ about my absence yesterday (C)/. No error (D).
Directions(Qs. 46-50): Under each question, a sentence is divided into five parts and numbered as A, B, C, D and E. Your job is to identify the part which is an error. If you think that the sentence is correct as it is, choose, "No Error" (E) as your answer.
46. British farmers (A)/ receive only (B)/ a little aid (C)/ since their farms are relatively effective (D)/ No error (E).
47. A line of new and old cars (A)/ stretched continually (B)/ down (C)/ the narrow street (D)/. No error (E).
48. It could be (A)/ possible that (B)/ She left the wallet (C)/ at the lodge (D)/. No error (E).
49. The CM (A)/ is very convinced (B)/ that the new scheme (C)/ would be useful for the poor (D)/ No error (E).
50. My daughter is (A)/ having (B)/ some troubles (C)/ with her Head of the Department (D)/. No error (E).
Directions (Qs. 51 - 103): Under each question, a sentence is divided into some parts and named A, B, C. Pick out the part which is an error. If the sentence is correct as it is, choose 'No Error' (D) as your answer.
51. My name is Rajesh (A)/, but close friends (B)/ call me as Raj (C)/. No error (D).
52. My father often (A)/ calls me name (B)/ for my mistakes (C)/. No error (D).
53. I and you (A)/ have come (B)/ very late (C)/. No error (D). 4. Police have said (A)/ that you and I (B)/ have jumped traffic signals (C)/. No error (D).
55. The Arabian Nights (A)/ are indeed (B)/ a very interesting collection of stories (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CGL-2011)
56. At the back side of (A)/ our college (B)/ we have a rock garden (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CO-2011)
57. Geeta always talks (A)/ as if (B)/ she was a great singer (C)/. No error (D).
58. The teacher (A)/ has took (B)/ the responsibility (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CISF-2010)
59. Either of (A)/ the two drivers (B)/ are responsible for the accident (C)/. No error (D).
60. Neither of (A)/ the three students (B)/ helped the old man yesterday (C)/. No error (D).
61. It is (A)/ a quarter to ten (B)/ by my watch (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-MTS-2013)
62. She (A)/ is my (B)/ confidant (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-MTS-2013)
63. I read (A)/ a great deal of (B)/ books (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-MTS-2013)
64. One of my good quality is (A)/ that I do not take things (B)/ like this very seriously (C)/. No error (D).
65. I heard to my surprise that the present (A)/ I send for Ravi was not (B)/ to his taste (C)/. No error (D).
66. Rani always prefers working in a relaxed atmosphere (A)/ than (B)/ one full of pressure and tension (C)/. No error (D).
67. Gopi was angry with Geeta because he thought (A)/ her remark was aimed (B)/ before him (C)/. No error (D).
68. My students have heard of Socrates, I suppose (A)/. Undoubtedly he was one of (B)/ the greatest man of the world (C)/. No error (D).
69. Hari was grateful to me for the help (A)/ that I had extended (B)/ for him in the hour of his need (C)/. No error (D).
70. A proverb is no proverb (A)/ to us till our life (B)/ has illustrated with it (C)/. No error (D).
71. These days the cost of living (A)/ is so high that most people find it difficult (B)/ to make both ends meet (C)/. No error (D).
72. Meena is too busy in her current programmes (A)/ to take up (B)/ any new ones (C)/. No error (D).
73. When my brother went out (A)/ for a long walk yesterday, (B)/ he suffered a massive stroke but luckily survival (C)/. No error (D).
74. Had Mala done her homework properly (A)/ she wouldn't have (B)/ failed in the exams (C)/. No error (D).
75. The quality of construction of our new house (A)/ was highly appreciable (B)/ by most visitors (C)/. No error (D).
76. The new project is (A)/ to big (B)/ for the new engineer to handle (C)/. No error (D).
77. Veeru has been (A)/ a dishonestly businessman (B)/ for many years now (C)/. No error (D).
78. It was clear from the way my uncle and aunt (A)/ were behaving that they had been (B)/ lost their senses (C)/. No error (D).
79. The climate of Hyderabad (A)/ is hotter (B)/ than Bengaluru (C)/. No error (D).
80. Your new TV is (A)/ superior than (B)/ my TV in all respects (C)/. No error (D).
81. A famous Economist from the World Bank (A)/ will provide us an insight (B)/ into the economic future of our country (C)/. No error (D).
82. This Current Affairs Magazine is (A)/ very informative (B)/ and reasonable priced (C)/. No error (D).
83. Our main advantage over other countries (A)/ is our large human capital (B)/ which make our country an ideal outsourcing base (C)/. No error (D).
84. Veena and Meena are good friends (A)/ and there are no secrets (B)/ among themselves (C)/. No error (D).
85. Do you play (A)/ cricket (B)/ on Sundays? (C)/. No error (D).
86. My sister can speak (A)/ the Telugu, (B)/ besides English (C)/. No error (D).
87. Sita is working in the IBM (A)/ and her sister Gita is (B)/ right now with TCS (C)/. No error (D).
88. Madhu is a singer-musician and (A)/ he can play (B)/ guitar very well (C)/. No error (D).
89. My brother is a Sachin (A)/ in his college (B)/ cricket team (C)/. No error (D).
90. My MP father is very active in the Parliament (A)/ and he often takes part (B)/ in heated debates (C)/. No error (D).
91. Drinking and driving (A)/ are (B)/ a major cause of accidents (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CO-2011)
92. Time and tide (A)/ waits (B)/ for none (C)/. No error (D).
93. It is time (A)/ the Govt withdraws (B)/ the new farm laws as demanded by the agitating farmers (C)/. No error (D).
94. Vasu wrote (A)/ three letters (B)/ this month (C)/. No error (D).
95. Meena and Veena (A)/ are waiting here (B)/ since morning (C)/. No error (D).
96. Heavy rain (A)/ prevented us (B)/ to go to the cinema (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-TA-2004)
97. The group of experts (A)/ want to meet (B)/ the CM tomorrow (C)/. No error (D).
98. My sister (A)/ has read (B)/ pages after pages of the Bible (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-TA-2004)
99. His son (A)/ is working (B)/ very hardly (C)/. No error (D). (SSC-CGL-2011)
100. The Hindu is (A)/ more popular (B)/ than any other newspaper in India (C)/. No error (D).
101. The earth (A)/ goes round (B)/ the Sun (C)/. No error (D).
102. Yesterday (A)/ it has rained in (B)/ Hyderabad continuously (C)/. No error(D).
103. Each of these women (A)/ has a house (B)/ and a car (C). No error (D).
Key With Explanations
1-C; Use always 'Prefer to'.
2-B; Correct it as 'Innings'.
3-B; Correct it as 'arrested'. After the usages like "It is time/ high time, As if/ as though", use the verb in V2-Form.
4-B; Correct it as One's parents. When 'One' is used as a Pronoun in a sentence, use always One/ One's in the same sentence (In British English which we follow).
5-A; Correct it as 'Initials (Subject in Plural) are'.
6-B; Use always 'Between you and me.'
8-C; The Noun Deer has no plural form.
9-A; Use either 'Supposing or If' not both)
10-C; Before Adjectives, use Definite Article, 'The' to make them Nouns (the needy and the poor)
11-A; When you want to use the same Noun side by side, joining them with the preposition, 'After', the noun must be Singular like war after war, singer after singer.
12-B; Correct it as a 'Five hundred rupee note'
13-C; Use always 'Work', not Works.
14-D; Use 'Works' only in the sense of poems, novels, and plays of an author.
15-C; Correct it as, 'hard'. 'Hardly' is used only in the negative sense, No/ little.
16-A; Do not use the preposition, To after the Verb Told.
17-B; Do not use Definite Article 'The' before the words school/ college when you go there as a student or teacher. But use 'The' when you go there as a visitor to meet someone.
18-B; Correct it as 'I have' which means to possess.
19-D; Use 'Having' only in the sense of Enjoying/ experiencing Something or Entertaining guests.
20-C; Correct it as 'Owing to'.
21-B; Correct it as,'Hung up.' (hanghung-hung)
22-D; The Verb,'hanged' is used only in the sense of killing someone by hanging.
23-B; Correct it as 'Affect' which means to have impact.
24-D; 'Effected' means to 'bring about or Cause changes.'
25-C; Correct it as, 'Meeting.' After the words,'Look forward to,' always use a Gerund (A verb in -Ing form) or a Noun.
26-C; Use just, 'Pass'. Pass Away means to die.
27-A; Correct it as, 'Geeta has come here. 'When you use Time Adverbs like This morning/ Week/ Month, see the sentence is in the Present Perfect Tense.
28-C; Use the fixed expression, 'By Mistake'.
29-C; Correct it as, 'By his friend'.
31-B; Remove the Article, The. When you use the word Earth with a capital letter, no article is used.
33-B; Correct it as, Plays. Each + Plural Noun + Verb + S.
34-A; Correct it as, Has been using. When there is the Preposition, Since, use the Perfect Tense.
35-C; Correct it as Buying.
36-A; Do not use cousin Sister/ Brother.
37-B; Do not use, Returned back, just say Return/ Returned.
38-C; Use Ask for money/ help from someone. For information, just use, Ask (Asked my name)
42-C; Just use, Cope with.
43-A; Just use Many + A + Singular Noun.
44-C; Correct it as, Angry on+Someone.
46-D; Replace 'effective' with 'efficient'. Effective means 'giving some desired results'. 'Efficient' means 'working quickly and without waste'. So their farms are efficient.
47-B; Replace 'continually' with 'continuously'. 'Continually' means something happening with breaks in between. 'Continuously' means something happening without breaks in between.
48-A; Do not use 'could be' with 'possible' when talking about a past event. Say 'it is possible'.
49-B; The Adjective 'convinced' means 'very sure'. The adverb 'very' is therefore not necessary. Before some Adjectives 'the word 'very' should not be used.
50-C; 'Trouble' is generally used as an uncountable Noun. Sometimes it is used as a countable Noun in the sense of 'worries' and 'bad experiences'
51-C; Correct it as 'Call me Raj'. Do not use the word, As after the verb, Call.
52-B; Correct it as, 'Calls me names'. 'Call someone names' is an idiom, meaning scolding someone.
53-A; Correct it as, You and I. Use Singular Personal Pronouns in the order of 2, 3, 1, (You, He/ She and I)
54-B; Correct it as 'I and you'. When admitting mistakes or wrong doings, use the Singular Personal Pronouns in the order of first person, second person and third person (I, you, and he/ she).
55-B; Correct it as, 'is'. With the titles of books, use the Verb in Singular.
56-A; Correct it as, 'At the back of'. Backside means 'Buttocks'
57-C; Correct it as, 'she were'. When talking about unreal things, using as if/ as though, the verb after these words must be in V2 form.
58-B; Correct it as, 'has taken'. When has/ have/ had is used as a Helping Verb in a sentence, use the main verb in V3 form (take-took-taken). This Present Perfect Tense is used to talk about actions whose time is not given or known.
59-C; Correct it as 'is responsible'
60-A; Correct it as, 'None of'. Use Either of and Neither of only when talking about two persons or things.
61-B; Remove the article, a.
62-D; Confidant is a person whom you trust and share your secrets. Confident means faith/ hope.
64-A; Correct it as, 'good qualities'
65-B; Correct it as, 'I sent'
66-B; Correct it as, to (prefer to is a fixed usage)
67-C; Replace before with at.
68-C; Correct it as greatest men, use always one of + a plural noun.
69-C; Correct it as 'extended to him'
70-C; Correct it as 'has been illustrated'
72-A; Correct it as 'with her current'
73-C; Correct it as 'survived'
75-B; Correct it as 'highly appreciated'
76-B; Correct it as, 'too big'
77-B; Correct it as 'dishonest businessman'
78-B; Correct it as,'they had lost'
79-C; Correct it as, 'than the climate of Bengaluru or than that of Bengaluru'.
80-B; Use the preposition to, not than, after the words Inferior, Superior, Senior, Junior.
82-C; Correct it as, 'reasonably priced'
83-C; Correct it as,'which makes'
84-C; Correct it as, 'between themselves'. When talking about two persons or things, use the preposition, Between.
86-B; Do not use Articles before the name of a language in sense that you can speak that language. Sometimes we can use Articles before the names of languages when talking about people who speak a particular language.
87-A; Do not use Articles before the names of companies.
88-C; Correct it as, 'Play the guitar'. Use the Definite Article the when you use the verb, Play + names of musical instruments.
89-D; You can use Articles before the names of persons and places only in comparisons.
90-A; Do not use Articles before the word, 'Parliament' when used as a noun.
91-B; Correct it as, 'is'. The verb should be Singular when two nouns are joined with and to express a single idea.
92-D; The above said rule (41) applies here.
93-B; Correct it as, 'withdrew'. The verb after the words, 'It is time' should be in the V2 form when talking about unreal things.
94-A; Correct it as, 'has written'. When you use the Time Adverbs like, 'this morning/ this week/ this month', the sentence must be in the Present Perfect Tense.
95-B; Correct it as, 'have waited/ have been waiting'. When the preposition since is used, see the sentence is in the Perfect Tense.
96-C; Correct it as, 'from going to'. After the verb, 'Prevent', always use the preposition From + Gerund (a verb + ing form).
97-B; Correct it as, 'wants'. Use always the group of + Plural Noun + Verb in Singular and A group of + Plural Noun + Verb in plural.
98-C; Correct it as, 'page after page'.
99-C; Correct it as, 'very hard'.
102-B; Correct it as, 'it rained'.