JAMB Syllabus for English Language aims to prepare the candidates for
the Unified Tertiary Matriculation Examination (UTME).
General Objectives | JAMB Syllabus for Use of English
It is designed to test their achievement of the course objectives, which are to:
(1) communicate effectively in both written and spoken English;
(2) have a sound linguistic basis for learning at the tertiary level.
Questions will be set from the following topics.
1. Comprehension – with 5 questions allocated to it.
2. Cloze passage – with 10 questions allocated to it.
3. Sweet Sixteen – 10 questions allocated to it.
4. Sentence completion – 5 questions allocated to it.
5. Sentence interpretation – 5 questions allocated to it.
6. Antonyms – 5 questions allocated to it.
7. Synonyms – 5 questions allocated to it.
8. Oral forms – 15 questions allocated to it.
Topic 1: Comprehension/Summary
(i) Each of the three passages to be set (one will be a cloze test)
should reflect various disciplines and be about 200 words long.
(ii) Questions on the passages will test the following:
(a) Comprehension of the whole or part of each passage.
(b) Comprehension of words, phrases, clauses, sentences, figures of speech and idioms as used in the passages.
(c) Coherence and logical reasoning (deductions, inferences, etc).
(d) Novels to be Read:
(i) UTME Candidates: “Sweet Sixteen” by Bolaji Abdullahi
(ii) DE Candidates: “The Last Days at Forcados High School”, A. H. Mohammed
(e) Synthesis of ideas from the passages.
NOTE: By synthesis of ideas is meant the art of combining distinct or separate pieces of information to form a complete whole.
Candidates should be able to:
i. identify main points/topic sentences in passages;
ii. determine implied meaning;
iii. identify the grammatical functions of words, phrases, clauses and figurative/idiomatic expressions;
iv. deduce or infer the writer’s intentions including mood, attitude to the subject matter and opinion.
Topic 2: Lexis and Structure
(d) clause and sentence patterns
(e) word classes and their functions
(f) mood, tense, aspect, number, agreement/concord, degree (positive, comparative and superlative) and question tags
(g) punctuation and spelling
(h) ordinary usage, figurative usage and idiomatic usage are to be tested.
NOTE: Idioms to be tested shall be those that are formal and expressed in standard British English.
Candidates should be able to:
i. identify words and expressions in their ordinary, figurative and idiomatic contexts;
ii. determine similar and opposite meaning of words;
iii. differentiate between correct and incorrect punctuation and spelling;
iv. identify various grammatical patterns in use;
v. interpret information conveyed in sentences.
Topic 3: Oral Forms
(a) Vowels (monophthongs and diphthongs
(b) Consonants (including clusters)
(c) Rhymes (including homophones)
(d) Word stress (monosyllabic and polysyllabic)
(e) Intonation (words emphatic stress)
NOTE: Emphatic stress involves the placement of normal stress on words in an utterance for the purpose of emphasis.
Candidates should be able to:
i. make distinctions between vowel types;
ii. differentiate between consonant types;
iii. identify correct accentuation in individual words and connected speech.
Topics By Popularity
below is an average percentage of the number of questions set on
different topics. This computer analysis was done from 17 years of past questions
to come up with these rare statistics. This information should guide
you on some of the topics you should give more attention to:
|Rank||Topic||% Number of Questions|
|1||LEXIS AND STRUCTURE||57.94|
Attah, M. O. (2013) Practice in Spoken English for Intermediate and Advanced Learners, Maiduguri: University of Maiduguri Press
Bamgbose, A. (2002) English Lexis and Structure for Senior Secondary Schools and colleges (Revised Edition), Ibadan: Heinemann
Banjo, A. et al (2004) New Oxford Secondary English Course Book Six for Senior Secondary Schools, Ibadan: UP Plc.
Caesar, O. J. (2003) Essential Oral English for Schools and Colleges, Lagos: Tonad Publishers Limited
Daniel Jones (2011) Cambridge English Pronouncing Dictionary, Cambridge: Cambridge University Press
Egbe, D. I (1996) Mastering English Usage and Communication Skills, Lagos: Tisons
Elugbe, B. (2000) Oral English for Schools and Colleges, Ibadan: Heinemann
Grant, N. J. H, Nnamonu, S. Jowitt, D. (1998) Senior English Project 3, (New Edition) Harlow: Longman
Idowu, O. O, Sogbeson, T. S, Adofo, A. K. Burgess, D. F and Burgess, L. J. (1998) Round-up English: A Complete Guide, Lagos: Longman
Idris, U. (2001) Oral English at Your Fingertips for Schools and Colleges, Lagos, M. Youngbrain Publishers
Igiligi, E. C. and Ogenyi, S. O. (2010) Grammar and Composition in the G.S.M. Age, Enugu: Joe Hills Production Services
Jauro, L. B. (2013) Oral English for Schools and Colleges: A teaching and Learning Approach, Yola: Paraclete Publishers.
Nnamonu, S. and Jowitt, D. (1989) Common Errors in English, Lagos: Longman
Obinna, M. F. (2001) University Matriculation Use of English,(Fourth Edition) Port Harcourt: Sunray Books Limited
Ogunsanwo, O. Duruaku, A. B.C, Ezechukwu, J and Nwachukwu, U. I (2005) Countdown English Language, (Revised Edition), Ibadan: Evans
Olatoye, S. (2006) The Silent Teacher, Ado-Ekiti: Segun and Sons Enterprises
Oluikpe, B. O. A, nnaemeka, B. A, Obah, T. Y, Otagburuagu, E. J. Onuigbo, S. and Ogbonna, E. A. (1998) Intensive English for Senior Secondary School 3, Onitsha: Africana – FIRST Publisher.
Tomori, S. H. O (2000) Objective Tests for School Certificate English: Practice in Lexis, Structure and Idiom (Reprinted Edition), Ibadan: Heinemann
Ukwuegbu, C, Okoro, O., Idris, A. U., Okebukola, F. O. and Owokade, C. O. (2002) Catch-up English for SSCE/UME, Ibadan: Heinemann
JAMB Syllabus for English Language | PDF Document
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