How to attempt Case-based questions in Board Exams?

The introduction of case-based questions in the board pattern for classes 10, 11, and 12 is probably in the best interest of students. These questions although appear to be like classic passage-based questions that most of us are familiar with in the English curriculum but they are very much different in the sense that these questions will require you to link the given case with your topic in the respective chapter and then answer based upon your understanding.

How to attempt these questions?

  • One must remember to not find the answers directly in the given passage but also think efficiently to derive the answer
  • Case-based questions are either MCQs or Assertion Reason Questions, so for attempting such questions you must follow the rule of elimination
  • Eliminate the options which you think cannot be the answer to the given question. This increases your chance of being right.

Do not be impulsive when you see the option which is in your mind. It’s better to think over other options as well.

How to prepare for these questions?

Preparation of these questions requires you to study NCERT textbooks line by line ensuring that you have proper knowledge of each and every topic that is there in your curriculum. Any case-based question that appears in the board exam will always be linked to one or the other topic from the textbook. Covering all topics will give you confidence in such questions.


Following is an example of a case-based question for Science students of classes 10, 11, 12:

“The word organic means pertaining to life. In early times, people thought substances like sugars, starch, proteins can only be obtained from living organisms like plants and animals. So, they called such substances as organic compounds, and chemistry dealing with them was named organic chemistry.”

Also, as there was no known method of preparing them in the laboratory at that time so it was believed that there was some “vital force” of nature that can produce such compounds.

“The vital force theory was disproved when, in 1828, a German Scientist F. Wohler synthesized the first organic compound urea in lab process. So, the old concept of organic chemistry was given, and it was accepted that organic chemistry is the study of Hydrocarbons and its derivatives.”

For questions number 1 to 2, two statements are given one labeled Assertion (A) and the other labeled Reason (R). Select the correct answer to these questions from the codes (i), (ii), (iii), and (iv) as given below:

i. Both Assertion (A) and Reason (R) are correct statements, and Reason (R) is the correct explanation of the Assertion (A).

ii. Both Assertion (A) and Reason (R) are correct statements, but Reason (R) is not the correct explanation of the Assertion (A).

iii. Assertion (A) is correct, but Reason (R) is an incorrect statement.

iv. Assertion (A) is incorrect, but Reason (R) is a correct statement.

1. ASSERTION(A) – Organic chemistry is the study of compounds derived from plant and animal sources.

REASON(R) – Organic means pertaining to life.

2. ASSERTION – Although Carbon dioxide, carbonates and Bicarbonates are carbon compounds, but they are not studied under organic chemistry.

REASON- Organic Chemistry is the study of Natural compounds.


1(iv). Organic chemistry is the study of hydrocarbons and their derivatives. Tip: If you had just studied the first paragraph and attempted this question, your answer would have been (ii) and it would have been wrong. As it is mentioned in the third paragraph that earlier theories were discarded so the old concept is not true anymore.

2(iii). If you take a look at the assertion, this statement is not there in the given passage. But this does not make it false. Here, you have to apply your own knowledge to solve this question. Carbonates and oxides are studied in inorganic chemistry. Organic chemistry includes the study of Hydrocarbons like methane and their derivatives like ethanoic acid, etc.

So, proper knowledge, patience, practice, and preparation will help you through case-based questions in the final exam. Make sure you go through a variety of such questions before taking the exam. Good Luck!