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Subject-wise Analysis of ICSE Board Exam Paper: Essential Topics and Chapters

Rigorous preparation needs to be undertaken to face the ICSE boards and pass with flying colours. The syllabus of ICSE class 10 is vast and has been developed to ensure the all-round development of each student. Students need to start exam preparation months in advance to ensure the syllabus is covered in time, and they still have a few days left for proper revision of each subject.

Trend analysis often shows that the board exam gives more weightage to some topics and chapters in a particular subject than others. Here is a subject-wise breakdown of the most important topics for ICSE board exams.

·        English

The ICSE board exam will have separate exams for English Language and Literature. The literature exam will consist of long and short-answer questions from plays by William Shakespeare and over 15 short stories and poems. Titles that receive more importance in the exam are: 

    • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou
    • The Blue Bead by Norah Burke
    • An Angel in Disguise by T.S. Arthur
    • Daffodils by William Wordsworth
    • The Little Match Girl by Hans Christian Andersen
  • The Patriot by Robert Browning

·         Maths

The mathematics paper will consist of two main sections with questions ranging from 1-mark MCQs to 6 marks lengthy numerals. Questions such as graphs and geometrical questions fetch more marks, so students should positively attempt those. Students can solve ICSE sample papers to practice formulas. Important topics for the board exams include:

  • Statistics
  • Mensuration
  • Quadratic Equations & Applications
  • Trigonometry
  • Circles 
  • Similarity

·         Science

Science is divided into three subjects - Physics, Chemistry, and Biology. The question paper pattern for all three is the same. Students will have 2 sections in the paper, of 40 marks each. The questions will be a mix of ICSE MCQ questions, short answer, and long answer questions. 

Important chapters for Physics include Force, Refraction of Light at Plane Surface, Lens, Sound, and Calorimetry. 

Chapters that enjoy more weightage in Chemistry include Organic Chemistry, the Study of compounds, Electrolysis, and Periodic Properties.

Topics that have more marks allotted are Circulatory System, Sense Organs, Nervous System, Reproductive System, and Photosynthesis.

·         Social Studies

History and Civics are combined in one paper. Section A consists of 3 questions from Civics, while B has questions from History. Since Civics has 3 chapters and students have to attempt any 2 questions, they can choose to study any two of the three chapters. In History, important chapters include:

  • The First War of Independence, 1857
  • Indian National Movement
  • World Wars
  • United Nations and NAM

The geography paper is divided into two parts. Part I consists of MCQs, maps, and topography. Part II contains long answer questions from various units of the syllabus. Essential chapters for the long answer questions include Climate, Soil, Natural Vegetation, Water Resources, and Mineral and Energy Resources. 


Students can easily complete the entire syllabus if they start preparing for the exams in advance. You can use study materials offered by e-learning websites such as TopperLearning to ensure you cover all your bases and familiarize yourself with the exam pattern. Resources such as practice tests, sample papers, and revision notes can help you practice each topic thoroughly and help you gauge your level of preparation.


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