How to Prepare For Exams: Exam Preparation Tips


“How to Prepare for Exam?” A big question that you always ask yourself. Here are some tips that may help you. Dear student friends you people may be of different types. I know, many of you, no all of you are so brilliant students.Yet there may be some problems regarding your studies Let’s discuss it here.Many of you may be working hard and getting good marks and some of you may not be working hard but still manages to get high marks in exams,Others may be wondering how it happens?.And also there will be a few of you study well but still not able to score well in exams.Don’t worry there are some very simple tips by following which you can become master. These tips will tell you ‘How to prepare for Exams in Short time’, ‘How to prepare for a high school exam’ as well as a competitive exam and even you can prepare for exams in a week just by following these tips. It will be even better if you follow this for a long period of time.

 Exam Preparation Tips

 Tips and Tricks For students

There is no short cut to success, this is the first thing you should remember. For this reason you have to study well first of all. But the preparations are different for different types of exams. Some competitive exams need long term preparation while your school level exams may need preparation of one or two weeks.

The 1st tip : Never fear or hate exam and be confident.

Some students study well but still may be much afraid of exams and due to this reason they get distracted and won’t be able to score marks. So leave all your fears and free your mind before starting the study. You have to be confident and it is the most essential power you should have for attaining victory.

 The 2nd tip: Prepare a good time table.

Prepare a time table before starting the study. This should include all the subjects but may not be with equal priority. Tough subjects can be given more time and easier ones less but most importantly some time shall be allotted for entertainment and also there should be sufficient intervals between each subject.

The 3rd tip: Select a proper atmosphere for studying.

No need to explain this point. Study atmosphere has very important role. Can anyone study well while watching TV? So select a place where you feel comfortable. That is where you feel relaxed and can concentrate. And you have to make sure that while you are studying a subject you are concentrating on it only. So keep the books of other subjects away from your eyesight so that you won’t be upset about the things you have to learn. And importantly it is better to study early morning when all the surroundings will be in silence and you can concentrate more. Your concentration really counts. Never place a mirror in the room such that you will ur reflection while sitting to study. This will lead to lack of concentration. And one top secret Study facing east or more accurately North east. This will give you great positive energy and your marks will definitely increase.

The 4th tip : Sit straight

This is so important that you have to sit in proper manner while studying. Don’t study on bed or lying on a chair instead sit straight. Keep your spinal cord straight. And try to place your legs parallel to ground, a little bit raised from the ground. Other wise placing the legs on the ground causes ionization and induces sleep. And be alert that legs are not above the head level. This will affect the blood flow direction and causes sleepiness. It is better to place the legs almost parallel to ground but a little lower.

The 5th tip : Make notes while studying.

This is a very important point. While studying make small notes and that should not be descriptive make theme brief so that you can remember all points while doing revision with the help of that note. An ideal note shall include all important formulae and figures and also other important points. It will be a lot worth if you use this not for the revision in last one or two hours than u skipping through pages of your text book. It won’t take much time to go through this note and if you feel tough anywhere you can refer for that portion in text book.

The 6th tip: Sleep well and Eat well.

You have to sleep well.Sleep deprivation study shows that Optimum hrs for sleep is 6hrs. Especially on the night before exam you have to sleep well, atleast 6 hours and not more than 8 hrs. Remember this will have a great effect on your exam. And have your food as in your daily diet. Don’t fast on exam day. This will have reverse effect, so please have food properly. There are some food items you have to avoid and some other you have to include in your diet on exam day. Check for them later in this article (in tips for parents),And don’t forget to have a glass water before you go to bed, essential to keep your brain cells charged!!!

The 7th tip : Write and Present well.

The presentation is the major factor that affects your marks. Whatever you studied or prepared your marks will depend on how you present them in the answer sheet. The teachers may not be able to read all what you have written. Remember daily they are going through 30 to 40 papers.They will scan for points. So try to present answers in points. In essay questions don’t forget to underline the important points . Your hand writing also affects your marks. Try to write neatly. if it is not good enough, don’t worry, if you presented it in a good manner you can score more marks. And another important factor to remember, As we all know ‘First impression is the best impression’. So, answer the questions you know well, first. This will create a good impression on the evaluator and though you couldn’t write some last answers well, that won’t deduct your mark much. And care shall be taken so that you manage time well and is able to attend all questions. If there is any question out of syllabus, you just attend it. Usually full marks are awarded for such questions.

The 8th tip: Never malpractise in exam hall.

Dear students never malpractise in exam hall as it may even affect your marks and also some times you won’t be allowed to continue the exam. If you don’t know answer don’t write. Keep in mind that you are writing exam for you, to prove yourself. There will be no problem if you have followed the above steps, For sure you can score good marks.

The 9th tip: Believe in God, Believe in you.

The last but not the least point pray well before the exam and your mind should be free at least 5 minutes before exam. Pray can give immense energy and peace to your mind that will definitely do good for you.And it is much important that you are confident about what you can and will always produce pleasant result.

Also remember one thing please don’t discuss soon after exams.This won’t do good and may affect your coming exams.If your friends are discussing question paper avoid them and come to house soon.

And above all you think about your parents their difficulties and sufferings and how they care you , you owe to them much, don’t you?. The best gift you can give them is your victory. So never disappoint your parents. Study is not for them they are compelling you to study for your future. And ultimately what I have to say is that You have a lot of opportunities now.If you are serious in your studies for a few years of your life then the remaining part of your life will be fruitful and you people shall never stop study after getting a degree or a small job always look for higher studies and aims big hurdles like CAT, GATE, GRE, IAS,IES etc.So think your self and try your best.

Parents do help your kid in studies

Tips for parents

Dear Parents I know how much you are concerned about your child’s studies. But you also have to take some preparations.You can be your children’s guide.So please do the following tips.

1: Often Visit your child’s school and his/ her teachers and get feedback about your child.

2: Speak openly to your child so that he/she feels that they are safe to share any of their problems with you and thus keep a good understanding relation with your child. Don’t blame them if they got low mark else give them confidence and gave them the feeling that you are always with them. This will increase their confidence.

3: Sit with your child and help them in their studies whenever you get time.And also help them in making a good time table.


4.Speak with them and try to make them aware about the importance of study and make them aware that you are caring their studies

5. Allow them also to play watch television etc. and if possible make them participate in some extra curricular activities. This will have a long term effect in your child’s personality development.Remember a sound mind in a sound body so allow them to play well.


6. Be careful about the food items that you are giving them on exam days. It is better to avoid food items such as potato or tapioca on the day of exams and also food items with much chilly in it are not desirable.Try to avoid fried items which may contain fatty acid. Instead giving Curd, milk , honey, chocolate having cocoa with in it etc may do good. Also show cares in their sleep, allow them to sleep 6hrs.


7. While going to exam wish them and send them happily. Don’t make them unhappy on exam day.

Some students may be suffering from over sleepness, deppression etc. Some of they need medical treatment take them to clinic. for example if over sleepness is there the haemoglobin level in blood may be low so check it and cure it. For deppression you may meet a counsellor. Parents have to be extra care full in these cases.

If you followed all this steps and write exam without fear and with prayer your success is a must, because you all are so brilliant students.


To conclude

I think this small article may help you to take some simple steps before exams that may help you to achieve good marks. I wish you all a very successful life. Dear friends remember, you are the future of this world. Contribution from each one of you will have an impact on the world. And it is your duty to serve the society. Be good and kind at heart. Do help your friends those who have difficulties in studies. Above all don’t forget to enjoy the beauty of life, while competing for life. So find time to enjoy love everyone help others and be alert in your studies when the time comes and be cautious about your future. All the best, Go ahead with confidence, Life is definitely yours.

Hope you all liked this small article. If so please suggest this to your friends so that it will be useful for them too. And also rate the hub up so that it is available for more people. Thanks for reading.


High School Cause and Effect Prompt

Writing Prompts for High School

High School Cause and Effect Prompt

1. At a recent conference at the University of Chicago , David Walsh of the National Institute on Media and the Family presented a paper titled “ Video Game Violence and Public Policy.”

The paper stated that “79% of American children now play computer or video games on a regular basis. Children between the ages of seven and 17 play for an average of eight hours a week.”

“The growth of electronic games has not been without controversy, however. The subset of games that feature violence, gore, and antisocial behavior has raised concern among parents, educators, child advocates, medical professionals, and policy makers.”

According to Walsh, research shows reason for concern:

“Exposure to violent games increases physiological* arousal. . . .Heart rate . . . and . . . blood pressure all increase when playing violent games. . . . These are the same types of physiological reactions bodies have when engaged in a fight.”

“Exposure to violent games increases aggressive emotions.” In one study, “students who were more ‘addicted’ to video games were significantly more likely to be in a bad mood before, during, and after play than were non-addicted students.”

“In a study of 8th and 9th graders, students who played more violent video games were also more likely to see the world as a hostile place, to get into frequent arguments with teachers, and to be involved in physical fights.”

*physiological: relating to the body’s normal functions and processes.

Using the information presented in the paper, experiences from your own life, and/or other information you have read, write an article for your school newspaper about the negative effects of playing violent video games.

As you write your article, remember to:

• Focus on the negative effects of children playing violent video games.

• Consider the purpose, audience and context of your article.

• Organize your ideas and details effectively.

• Include specific details that clearly develop your article.

• Use standard grammar, spelling, and punctuation.

NEW High School Definition Prompt

1. Perseverance is a steady effort to maintain a course of action, purpose, or belief, often in spite of difficulty. Write a speech for a school assembly about the meaning of perseverance as it applies to personal success. You may use the following information as well as your own experiences, observations, and/or readings.

The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time you fall. Source: Nelson Mandela

Pain is temporary. It may last a minute, or an hour, or a day, or a year, but eventually it will subside and something else will take its place. If I quit, however, it lasts forever. Source: Lance Armstrong

I would go and look at a stonecutter hammering away at his rock perhaps a hundred times without as much as a crack showing in it. Yet at the hundred and first blow it would split in two, and I knew it was not that blow that did it, but all that had gone before. Source: Jacob A. Riis

Do not think of today’s failures, but of the success that may come tomorrow. Remember no effort that we make to attain something beautiful is ever lost. Sometime, somewhere, somehow we shall find that which we seek. Source: Helen Keller

It’s not that I’m so smart; it’s just that I stay with problems longer. Source: Albert Einstein

If you run into a wall, don’t turn around and give up. Figure out how to climb it, go through it, or work around it. Source: Michael Jordan

As you write your speech, remember to:

• Focus on the meaning of perseverance as it applies to personal success.

• Consider the purpose, audience and context of your speech.

• Organize your ideas logically and effectively.

• Include specific details that clearly develop your speec.

• Edit your speech for standard grammar and language usage.

High School Expository/Informative Prompts

1. NEW A television network is looking for ideas for a new television series for teenagers. Write a letter to the president of the network explaining your idea for the new television show. Include all the information that will help the president evaluate your idea, including the show’s title, what kind of show it is (such as reality, comedy, music, game, or sports), specific details or features of the show that would be appealing to teenage viewers, and an example of what viewers might see in a typical episode.

2. Write an essay explaining the importance of being able to see a situation from another person’s point of view.

3. Write an essay explaining why it is important to forgive.

4. Music plays an important role in every culture and in every individual’s life. Write an essay explaining the role music plays in your culture or in your own life.

5. Write an essay explaining what makes a great leader.

6. Some people feel that the public school system does not adequately prepare students for the real world. Identify one improvement you think schools need to make in order to better prepare students for life after high school. Write a letter to the school board in which you describe this improvement and explain why it is needed.

7. Write an essay explaining why a decision you made was the right one.

8. You are serving on a committee that will design a new high school for your community. Choose one feature for the new high school that you will suggest to the design committee. Write a report to the committee, explaining what this feature is and why it is beneficial.

9. In order to survive, people have been known to go to great lengths and to do things they would not ordinarily do. Write an essay for your teacher that explains the lengths to which people will go in order to survive. You may use examples from real life, books, movies, or television shows to support your essay.

High School Persuasive Prompts

1. NEW Occasionally, students in elementary school are allowed to advance to the next grade even though they have not successfully completed the lower grade. Advocates of “ social promotion” think that keeping a child in a grade for longer than a year hurts his or her development and self-esteem. Write an essay stating your opinion on this issue, making sure to support your opinion with convincing reasons.

2. Your city council is considering a proposal that would ban the use of cell phones in privately owned businesses such as restaurants, movie theaters, and retail stores. Violators would be subject to a fine. What is your position on this issue? Write a letter in which you convince the city council to support your position, giving strong evidence for your reasons.

3. In some countries every young person must serve two years of military service. Should we have a similar policy in the United States? Write an essay stating your position on this issue and supporting it with convincing reasons. Be sure to explain your reasons in detail.

4. Your state legislature is considering a bill that would require a person to earn a high school diploma before he or she could receive a driver’s license. What is your position on this issue? Write a letter to convince your state legislature to accept your point of view.

5. Your city council is considering a curfew that would make it illegal for teenagers to be out on the streets after 10 p.m. on weekdays or after midnight on weekends. What is your position on this issue? Write an essay that would convince the city council to agree with you. Be sure to support your position with detailed reasons.

6. A well-known football coach once said, “Winning isn’t everything, it’s the only thing.” Do you agree or disagree with this statement? Write an essay in which you state your position and support it with convincing reasons.

7. Your local school board is considering requiring students to take part in community service programs in order to graduate. What is your position concerning this issue? Write a letter to the members of the school board stating your position and supporting it with convincing reasons. Be sure to explain your reasons in detail.

8. In an effort to save money, your local school board is considering eliminating elective subjects such as art, band, and auto mechanics. What is your position on this issue? Write a letter to the school board stating your position and supporting it with convincing reasons. Be sure to explain your reasons in detail.

9. Some people believe it’s better to grow up in a small town. Other people think it’s better to grow up in a big city. What is your position on this issue, and what reasons support your position?

10. Your principal is considering a new grading policy that replaces letter or number grades on report cards with pass or fail. What is your position concerning this issue? Write a letter to your principal stating your position and supporting it with convincing reasons. Be sure to explain your reasons in detail.

High School How-To Prompt

1. Your friend wants to get a part-time job after school or on weekends. Write a composition in which you tell your friend all the steps he or she should take in order to get a part-time job.

High School Descriptive Prompts

1. Think about your favorite season, and then write an essay describing that season. Include sensory details so that a reader can imagine what it is like to experience the season, and make sure it is clear from your description why this season is your favorite.

2. Think of a time when you experienced a rainstorm. In a composition, use sensory details to describe what the rainstorm was like so that a classmate could clearly imagine the experience.

3. Most people have a place where they feel comfortable and relaxed. Think of a place where you feel comfortable and relaxed. Picture it in your mind. In a composition, describe this place for your classmates so that they can imagine what it is like and how you feel there.

High School Narrative Prompts

1. NEW Think about a time when you faced a challenge. Write a story about that time, including how you dealt with the challenge and what its outcome was. Be sure to narrate an event or a series of events and to include specific details so that the reader can follow your story.

2. NEW Write a story about a time when you taught something to someone. What you taught could be a song, an activity, a game, a way of figuring out a homework problem, or something else. Be sure to narrate an event or a series of events and to include specific details so that the reader can follow your story.

3. Think about an event in your life that taught you an important lesson. Write a narrative in which you tell what happened and how you learned a lesson. Be sure to include specific details so that a reader can follow your story.

High School Biographical Narrative Prompt

1. Write a narrative about a person or character who overcomes an obstacle or a difficult situation. The character must be a person from history or from literature, movies, or television.

High School Writing About Literature Prompts

1. Read the poem “Our Son Swears He Has 102 Gallons of Water in His Body” by Naomi Shihab Nye. In an essay, discuss the son’s relationship with his parents and explain what the last stanza reveals about this relationship. Be sure to include specific examples from the text to support your ideas. Remember that your response will be evaluated in two ways—on your understanding of the poem and on the quality of your writing.

2. “The Story of an Hour” tells a story about a woman who receives some shocking news. Read the story. Then, write an essay discussing Mrs. Mallard’s conflict in the story and how she deals with the conflict. Be sure to include examples and details from the story to support your ideas. Do not merely summarize the story. Remember that your response will be evaluated in two ways—on your understanding of the story and on the quality of your writing.

3. “What Happened During the Ice Storm” tells a story about some farm boys and pheasants during an ice storm. Read the story. Then write an essay in which you discuss the story’s theme. What does the author say about human nature and how people behave in challenging situations? Be sure to include examples and details from the story to support your ideas. Do not merely summarize the story. Remember that your response will be evaluated in two ways–on your understanding of the story and on the quality of your writing.

4. Often in literature, character relationships change and evolve. From the literary works you have read, choose one in which a character’s feelings toward another character change. Write an essay in which you explain how the character’s feelings changed, why the feelings changed, and how this change affects the work as a whole. Include specific examples from the work of literature you have chosen to support your points. Also include the title of the work and, if you remember, the work’s author.

High School Writing About Nonfiction Prompts

1. Read “Teen Drivers,” and think about the ideas the author presents. Then write to explain some ways that your views on teenage driving have been confirmed or changed as a result of reading the article. Be sure to include specific information from the article to support your explanation. Do not merely summarize the article. Remember that your response will be evaluated in two ways—on your understanding of the article and on the quality of your writing.

2. Read “A Lady in a Machine-Shop.” Then write an essay explaining what skills and qualities Margaret Knight possessed that led to her success as an inventor. Be sure to include specific information from the article to support your ideas. Do not merely summarize the article. Remember that your response will be evaluated in two ways–on your understanding of the article and on the quality of your writing.




When the number of molecules leaving the liquid to vapour equals the number of

molecules returning to the liquid from vapour, equilibrium is said to be attained and is

dynamic in nature. Equilibrium can be established for both physical and chemical

processes and at this stage rate of forward and reverse reactions are equal. Equilibrium

constant, Kc is expressed as the concentration of products divided by reactants, each

term raised to the stoichiometric coefficient.

For reaction, a A + b B ƒ c C +d D

Kc = [C]c[D]d/[A]a[B]b

Equilibrium constant has constant value at a fixed temperature and at this stage

all the macroscopic properties such as concentration, pressure, etc. become constant.

For a gaseous reaction equilibrium constant is expressed as Kp and is written by replacing

concentration terms by partial pressures in Kc expression. The direction of reaction can

be predicted by reaction quotient Qc which is equal to Kc at equilibrium. Le Chatelier’s

principle states that the change in any factor such as temperature, pressure,

concentration, etc. will cause the equilibrium to shift in such a direction so as to reduce

or counteract the effect of the change. It can be used to study the effect of various

factors such as temperature, concentration, pressure, catalyst and inert gases on the

direction of equilibrium and to control the yield of products by controlling these factors.

Catalyst does not effect the equilibrium composition of a reaction mixture but increases

the rate of chemical reaction by making available a new lower energy pathway for

conversion of reactants to products and vice-versa.

All substances that conduct electricity in aqueous solutions are called electrolytes.

Acids, bases and salts are electrolytes and the conduction of electricity by their aqueous

solutions is due to anions and cations produced by the dissociation or ionization of

electrolytes in aqueous solution. The strong electrolytes are completely dissociated. In

weak electrolytes there is equilibrium between the ions and the unionized electrolyte

molecules. According to Arrhenius, acids give hydrogen ions while bases produce

hydroxyl ions in their aqueous solutions. Brönsted-Lowry on the other hand, defined

an acid as a proton donor and a base as a proton acceptor. When a Brönsted-Lowry

acid reacts with a base, it produces its conjugate base and a conjugate acid corresponding

to the base with which it reacts. Thus a conjugate pair of acid-base differs only by one

proton. Lewis further generalised the definition of an acid as an electron pair acceptor

and a base as an electron pair donor. The expressions for ionization (equilibrium)

constants of weak acids (Ka) and weak bases (Kb) are developed using Arrhenius definition.

The degree of ionization and its dependence on concentration and common ion are

discussed. The pH scale (pH = -log[H+]) for the hydrogen ion concentration (activity) has

been introduced and extended to other quantities (pOH = – log[OH–]) ; pKa = –log[Ka] ;

pKb = –log[Kb]; and pKw = –log[Kw] etc.). The ionization of water has been considered and

we note that the equation: pH + pOH = pKw is always satisfied. The salts of strong acid

and weak base, weak acid and strong base, and weak acid and weak base undergo

hydrolysis in aqueous solution.The definition of buffer solutions, and their importance

are discussed briefly. The solubility equilibrium of sparingly soluble salts is discussed

and the equilibrium constant is introduced as solubility product constant (Ksp). Its

relationship with solubility of the salt is established. The conditions of precipitation of

the salt from their solutions or their dissolution in water are worked out. The role of

common ion and the solubility of sparingly soluble salts is also discussed.

Input and Output devices

In Computers, input/output, or I/O, refers to the communication between an information processing system (such as a computer), and the outside world, possibly a human, or another information processing system. Inputs are the signals or data received by the system, and outputs are the signals or data sent from it. The term can also be used as part of an action; to “perform I/O” is to perform an input or output operation. I/O devices are used by a person (or other system) to communicate with a computer. For instance, a keyboard or a mouse may be an input device for a computer, while monitors and printers are considered output devices for a computer. Devices for communication between computers, such as modems and network cards, typically serve for both input and output.

Note that the designation of a device as either input or output depends on the perspective. Mouse and keyboards take as input physical movement that the human user outputs and convert it into signals that a computer can understand. The output from these devices is input for the computer. Similarly, printers and monitors take as input signals that a computer outputs. They then convert these signals into representations that human users can see or read. For a human user the process of reading or seeing these representations is receiving input. These interactions between computers and humans is called human–computer interaction.

In computer architecture, the combination of the CPU and main memory (i.e. memory that the CPU can read and write to directly, with individual instructions) is considered the brain of a computer, and from that point of view any transfer of information from or to that combination, for example to or from a disk drive, is considered I/O. The CPU and its supporting circuitry provide memory-mapped I/O that is used in low-level computer programming in the implementation of device drivers. An I/O algorithm is one designed to exploit locality and perform efficiently when data reside on secondary storage, such as a disk drive.



Growth is one of the most conspicuous events in any living organism. It is an

irreversible increase expressed in parameters such as size, area, length, height,
volume, cell number etc. It conspicuously involves increased protoplasmic material.
In plants, meristems are the sites of growth. Root and shoot apical meristems
sometimes alongwith intercalary meristem, contribute to the elongation growth of
plant axes. Growth is indeterminate in higher plants. Following cell division in root
and shoot apical meristem cells, the growth could be arithmetic or geometrical.
Growth may not be and generally is not sustained at a high rate throughout the
life of cell/tissue/organ/organism. One can define three principle phases of growth
– the lag, the log and the senescent phase. When a cell loses the capacity to divide,
it leads to differentiation. Differentiation results in development of structures that
is commensurate with the function the cells finally has to perform. General principles
for differentiation for cell, tissues and organs are similar. A differentiated cell may

dedifferentiate and then redifferentiate. Since differentiation in plants is open, the
development could also be flexible, i.e., the development is the sum of growth and
differentiation. Plant exhibit plasticity in development.
Plant growth and development are under the control of both intrinsic and
extrinsic factors. Intercellular intrinsic factors are the chemical substances, called
(PGR). There are diverse groups of PGRs in plants,
principally belonging to five groups: auxins, gibberellins, cytokinins, abscisic acid
and ethylene. These PGRs are synthesised in various parts of the plant; they control
different differentiation and developmental events. Any PGR has diverse
physiological effects on plants. Diverse PGRs also manifest similar effects. PGRs
may act synergistically or antagonistically. Plant growth and development is also
affected by light, temperature, nutrition, oxygen status, gravity and such external
Flowering in some plants is induced only when exposed to certain duration of
photoperiod. Depending on the nature of photoperiod requirements, the plants
are called short day plants, long day plants and day-neutral plants. Certain plants
also need to be exposed to low temperature so as to hasten flowering later in life.
This treatement is known as vernalisation.


Autism is a lifelong developmental disability that affects how a person communicates with, and relates to, other people. It also affects how they make sense of the world around them.

It is a spectrum condition, which means that, while all people with autism share certain difficulties, their condition will affect them in different ways. Some people with autism are able to live relatively independent lives but others may have accompanying learning disabilities and need a lifetime of specialist support. People with autism may also experience over- or under-sensitivity to sounds, touch, tastes, smells, light or colors.

Asperger syndrome is a form of autism. People with Asperger syndrome are often of average or above average intelligence. They have fewer problems with speech but may still have difficulties with understanding and processing language.

How do people with autism see the world?

People with autism have said that the world, to them, is a mass of people, places and events which they struggle to make sense of, and which can cause them considerable anxiety.

In particular, understanding and relating to other people, and taking part in everyday family and social life may be harder for them. Other people appear to know, intuitively, how to communicate and interact with each other, and some people with autism may wonder why they are ‘different’.

About autism

Autism is a lifelong developmental disability. It is part of the autism spectrum and is sometimes referred to as an autism spectrum disorder, or an ASD. The word ‘spectrum’ is used because, while all people with autism share three main areas of difficulty, their condition will affect them in very different ways. Some are able to live relatively ‘everyday’ lives; others will require a lifetime of specialist support.

The three main areas of difficulty which all people with autism share are sometimes known as the ‘triad of impairments’. They are:

  • difficulty with social communication
  • difficulty with social interaction
  • difficulty with social imagination.

It can be hard to create awareness of autism as people with the condition do not ‘look’ disabled: parents of children with autism often say that other people simply think their child is naughty; while adults find that they are misunderstood.

Three main areas of difficulty

The characteristics of autism vary from one person to another but are generally divided into three main groups. These are:

  • difficulty with social communication
  • difficulty with social interaction
  • difficulty with social imagination.

Difficulty with social communication

For people with autistic spectrum disorders, ‘body language’ can appear just as foreign as if people were speaking ancient Greek.

People with autism have difficulties with both verbal and non-verbal language. Many have a very literal understanding of language, and think people always mean exactly what they say. They can find it difficult to use or understand:

  • facial expressions or tone of voice
  • jokes and sarcasm
  • common phrases and sayings; an example might be the phrase ‘It’s cool’, which people often say when they think that something is good, but strictly speaking, means that it’s a bit cold.

Some people with autism may not speak, or have fairly limited speech. They will usually understand what other people say to them, but prefer to use alternative means of communication themselves, such as sign language or visual symbols.

Others will have good language skills, but they may still find it hard to understand the give-and-take nature of conversations, perhaps repeating what the other person has just said (this is known as echolalia) or talking at length about their own interests.

It helps if other people speak in a clear, consistent way and give people with autism time to process what has been said to them.

Difficulty with social interaction

Socialising doesn’t come naturally – we have to learn it.

People with autism often have difficulty recognising or understanding other people’s emotions and feelings, and expressing their own, which can make it more difficult for them to fit in socially. They may:

  • not understand the unwritten social rules which most of us pick up without thinking: they may stand too close to another person for example, or start an inappropriate subject of conversation
  • appear to be insensitive because they have not recognized how someone else is feeling
  • prefer to spend time alone rather than seeking out the company of other people
  • not seek comfort from other people
  • appear to behave ‘strangely’ or inappropriately, as it is not always easy for them to express feelings, emotions or needs.

Difficulties with social interaction can mean that people with autism find it hard to form friendships: some may want to interact with other people and make friends, but may be unsure how to go about this.

Difficulty with social imagination

We have trouble working out what other people know. We have more difficulty guessing what other people are thinking.

Social imagination allows us to understand and predict other people’s behavior, make sense of abstract ideas, and to imagine situations outside our immediate daily routine. Difficulties with social imagination mean that people with autism find it hard to:

  • understand and interpret other people’s thoughts, feelings and actions
  • predict what will happen next, or what could happen next
  • understand the concept of danger, for example that running on to a busy road poses a threat to them
  • engage in imaginative play and activities: children with autism may enjoy some imaginative play but prefer to act out the same scenes each time
  • prepare for change and plan for the future
  • cope in new or unfamiliar situations.

Difficulties with social imagination should not be confused with a lack of imagination. Many people with autism are very creative and may be, for example, accomplished artists, musicians or writers.

Characteristics of autism

The characteristics of autism vary from one person to another but as well as the three main areas of difficulty, people with autism may have:

  • love of routines
  • sensory sensitivity
  • special interests
  • learning disabilities.

Love of routines

One young person with autism attended a day service. He would be dropped off by taxi, walk up to the door of the day service, knock on it and be let in. One day, the door opened before he could knock and a person came out. Rather than go in through the open door, he returned to the taxi and began the routine again.

The world can seem a very unpredictable and confusing place to people with autism, who often prefer to have a fixed daily routine so that they know what is going to happen every day. This routine can extend to always wanting to travel the same way to and from school or work, or eat exactly the same food for breakfast.

Rules can also be important: it may be difficult for a person with autism to take a different approach to something once they have been taught the ‘right’ way to do it. People with autism may not be comfortable with the idea of change, but can cope well if they are prepared for it in advance.

Sensory sensitivity

Rowan loves art but he hates wearing a shirt to protect his clothing – the feeling of the fabric against his skin causes him distress. We have agreed with his school that he can wear a loose-fitting apron instead.

People with autism may experience some form of sensory sensitivity. This can occur in one or more of the five senses – sight, sound, smell, touch and taste. A person’s senses are either intensified (hypersensitive) or under-sensitive (hypo-sensitive).

For example, a person with autism may find certain background sounds, which other people ignore or block out, unbearably loud or distracting. This can cause anxiety or even physical pain.

People who are hypo-sensitive may not feel pain or extremes of temperature. Some may rock, spin or flap their hands to stimulate sensation, to help with balance and posture or to deal with stress.

People with sensory sensitivity may also find it harder to use their body awareness system. This system tells us where our bodies are, so for those with reduced body awareness, it can be harder to navigate rooms avoiding obstructions, stand at an appropriate distance from other people and carry out ‘fine motor’ tasks such as tying shoelaces.

Special interests

My art activity has enabled me to become a part of society. When there is something that a person with autism does well, it should be encouraged and cultivated.

Many people with autism have intense special interests, often from a fairly young age. These can change over time or be lifelong, and can be anything from art or music, to trains or computers. Some people with autism may eventually be able to work or study in related areas. For others, it will remain a hobby.

A special interest may sometimes be unusual. One person with autism loved collecting rubbish, for example; with encouragement, this was channelled into an interest in recycling and the environment.

Learning disabilities

I have a helper who sits with me and if I’m stuck on a word she helps me. It makes a big difference.

People with autism may have learning disabilities, which can affect all aspects of someone’s life, from studying in school, to learning how to wash themselves or make a meal. As with autism, people can have different ‘degrees’ of learning disability, so some will be able to live fairly independently – although they may need a degree of support to achieve this – while others may require lifelong, specialist support. However, all people with autism can, and do, learn and develop with the right sort of support.

Other conditions are sometimes associated with autism. These may include attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), or learning difficulties such as dyslexia and dyspraxia.

Who is affected by autism?

Autism is much more common than most people think. There are over half a million people in the UK with autism – that’s around 1 in 100 people.

People from all nationalities and cultural, religious and social backgrounds can have autism, although it appears to affect more men than women. It is a lifelong condition: children with autism grow up to become adults with autism.

Causes and cures

What causes autism?

The exact cause of autism is still being investigated. However, research suggests that a combination of factors – genetic and environmental – may account for changes in brain development.

Autism is not caused by a person’s upbringing, their social circumstances and is not the fault of the individual with the condition.

Is there a cure?

At present, there is no ‘cure’ for autism. However, there is a range of interventions – methods of enabling learning and development – which people may find to be helpful. Many of these are detailed at:

“Cell” The structural and functional unit of life

All organisms are made of cells or aggregates of cells. Cells vary in their shape, size
and activities/functions. Based on the presence or absence of a membrane bound
nucleus and other organelles, cells and hence organisms can be named as eukaryotic or prokaryotic.
red blood cell
A typical eukaryotic cell consists of a cell membrane, nucleus and cytoplasm.
Plant cells have a cell wall outside the cell membrane. The plasma membrane is
selectively permeable and facilitates transport of several molecules. The
endomembrane system includes ER, golgi complex, lysosomes and vacuoles. All
the cell organelles perform different but specific functions. Centrosome and centriole
form the basal body of cilia and flagella that facilitate locomotion. In animal cells,
centrioles also form spindle apparatus during cell division. Nucleus contains
nucleoli and chromatin network. It not only controls the activities of organelles
but also plays a major role in heredity.
Endoplasmic reticulum contains tubules or cisternae. They are of two types:
rough and smooth. ER helps in the transport of substances, synthesis of
proteins, lipoproteins and glycogen. The golgi body is a membranous organelle
composed of flattened sacs. The secretions of cells are packed in them and
transported from the cell. Lysosomes are single membrane structures
containing enzymes for digestion of all types of macromolecules. Ribosomes
are involved in protein synthesis. These occur freely in the cytoplasm or are
associated with ER. Mitochondria help in oxidative phosphorylation and
generation of adenosine triphosphate. They are bound by double membrane;
the outer membrane is smooth and inner one folds into several cristae. Plastids
are pigment containing organelles found in plant cells only. In plant cells,
chloroplasts are responsible for trapping light energy essential for
photosynthesis. The grana, in the plastid, is the site of light reactions and the
stroma of dark reactions. The green coloured plastids are chloroplasts, which
contain chlorophyll, whereas the other coloured plastids are chromoplasts,
which may contain pigments like carotene and xanthophyll. The nucleus is
enclosed by nuclear envelop, a double membrane structure with nuclear pores.
The inner membrane encloses the nucleoplasm and the chromatin material.
Thus, cell is the structural and functional unit of life.

Galileo Galilei (15 February 1564 – 8 January 1642)


Galileo Galilei, commonly known as Galileo, was an Italian physicist, mathematician, astronomer, and philosopher who played a major role in the Scientific Revolution. His achievements include improvements to the telescope and consequent astronomical observations and support for Copernicanism. Galileo has been called the “father of modern observational astronomy”, the “father of modern physics”, the “father of science”, and “the Father of Modern Science”. According to Stephen Hawking, “Galileo, perhaps more than any other single person, was responsible for the birth of modern science”.


His contributions to observational astronomy include the telescopic confirmation of the phases of Venus, the discovery of the four largest satellites of Jupiter (named the Galilean moons in his honour), and the observation and analysis of sunspots. Galileo also worked in applied science and technology, inventing an improved military compass and other instruments.


Galileo’s championing of heliocentrism was controversial within his lifetime, when most subscribed to either geocentrism or the Tychonic system. He met with opposition from astronomers, who doubted heliocentrism due to the absence of an observed stellar parallax. The matter was investigated by the Roman Inquisition in 1615, and they concluded that it could only be supported as a possibility, not as an established fact. Galileo later defended his views in Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems, which appeared to attack pope Urban VIII and thus alienated him and the Jesuits, who had both supported Galileo up until this point. He was tried by the Inquisition, found “vehemently suspect of heresy”, forced to recant, and spent the rest of his life under house arrest. It was while Galileo was under house arrest that he wrote one of his finest works, Two New Sciences. Here he summarized the work he had done some forty years earlier, on the two sciences now called kinematics and strength of materials.The Galileo Galilei

Steve Jobs

Steven Paul “Steve” Jobs (February 24, 1955 – October 5, 2011) was an American inventor and entrepreneur. He was co-founder, chairman, and chief executive officer of Apple Inc. Jobs was co-founder and previously served as chief executive of Pixar Animation Studios; he became a member of the board of directors of the Walt Disney Company in 2006, following the acquisition of Pixar by Disney.

In the late 1970s, Jobs — along with Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, Mike Markkula and others — designed, developed, and marketed one of the first commercially successful lines of personal computers, the Apple II series. In the early 1980s, Jobs was among the first to see the commercial potential of Xerox PARC’s mouse-driven graphical user interface, which led to the creation of the Apple Lisa and, one year later, the Macintosh. After losing a power struggle with the board of directors in 1985, Jobs left Apple and founded NeXT, a computer platform development company specializing in the higher-education and business markets.

In 1986, he acquired the computer graphics division of Lucasfilm Ltd, which was spun off as Pixar Animation Studios. He was credited in Toy Story (1995) as an executive producer. He remained CEO and majority shareholder at 50.1 percent until its acquisition by The Walt Disney Company in 2006,making Jobs Disney’s largest individual shareholder at seven percent and a member of Disney’s Board of Directors. Apple’s 1996 buyout of NeXT brought Jobs back to the company he co-founded, and he served as its interim CEO from 1997, then becoming permanent CEO from 2000 onwards, spearheading the advent of the iPod, iPhone and iPad. From 2004, he fought a long battle with cancer,  eventually leading to his resignation as CEO in August 2011, during his third medical leave. After his resignation, Jobs was elected chairman of Apple’s board of directors.

On October 5, 2011, around 3:00 pm, Jobs died at his home in Palo Alto, California, aged 56, six weeks after resigning as CEO of Apple. A copy of his death certificate, which was made public on October 10, indicated respiratory arrest as the immediate cause of death, with “metastatic pancreas neuroendocrine tumor” as the underlying cause. His occupation was listed as “entrepreneur” in the “high tech” business. He was widely described as a visionary, pioneer and genius. According to a research, Steve Jobs did more than 70% of his innovative work in the last 7-8 years of his life i.e. after mid 2004.


When I try to define ‘living’, I conventionally look for distinctive
characteristics exhibited by living organisms. Growth, reproduction, ability
to sense environment and mount a suitable response come to our mind
immediately as unique features of living organisms. One can add a few
more features like metabolism, ability to self-replicate, self-organise,
interact and emergence to this list. Let us try to understand each of these.
All living organisms grow. Increase in mass and increase in number
of individuals are twin characteristics of growth. A multicellular organism
grows by cell division. In plants, this growth by cell division occurs
continuously throughout their life span. In animals, this growth is seen
only up to a certain age. However, cell division occurs in certain tissues to
replace lost cells. Unicellular organisms also grow by cell division. One
can easily observe this in in vitro cultures by simply counting the number
of cells under the microscope. In majority of higher animals and plants,
growth and reproduction are mutually exclusive events. One must
remember that increase in body mass is considered as growth. Non-living
objects also grow if we take increase in body mass as a criterion for growth.
Mountains, boulders and sand mounds do grow. However, this kind of
growth exhibited by non-living objects is by accumulation of material on
the surface. In living organisms, growth is from inside. Growth, therefore,
cannot be taken as a defining property of living organisms. Conditions
under which it can be observed in all living organisms have to be explained
and then we understand that it is a characteristic of living systems. A
dead organism does not grow.
Reproduction, likewise, is a characteristic of living organisms.
In multicellular organisms, reproduction refers to the production of
progeny possessing features more or less similar to those of parents.
Invariably and implicitly we refer to sexual reproduction. Organisms
reproduce by asexual means also. Fungi multiply and spread easily due
to the millions of asexual spores they produce. In lower organisms like
yeast and hydra, we observe budding. In Planaria (flat worms), we observe
true regeneration, i.e., a fragmented organism regenerates the lost part of
its body and becomes, a new organism. The fungi, the filamentous algae,
the protonema of mosses, all easily multiply by fragmentation. When it
comes to unicellular organisms like bacteria, unicellular algae or Amoeba,
reproduction is synonymous with growth, i.e., increase in number of cells.
We have already defined growth as equivalent to increase in cell number
or mass. Hence, we notice that in single-celled organisms, we are not very
clear about the usage of these two terms – growth and reproduction.
Further, there are many organisms which do not reproduce (mules, sterile
worker bees, infertile human couples, etc). Hence, reproduction also cannot
be an all-inclusive defining characteristic of living organisms. Of course,
no non-living object is capable of reproducing or replicating by itself.
Another characteristic of life is metabolism. All living organisms
are made of chemicals. These chemicals, small and big, belonging to
various classes, sizes, functions, etc., are constantly being made and
changed into some other biomolecules. These conversions are chemical
reactions or metabolic reactions. There are thousands of metabolic
reactions occurring simultaneously inside all living organisms, be they
unicellular or multicellular. All plants, animals, fungi and microbes exhibit
metabolism. The sum total of all the chemical reactions occurring in our
body is metabolism. No non-living object exhibits metabolism. Metabolic
reactions can be demonstrated outside the body in cell-free systems. An
isolated metabolic reaction(s) outside the body of an organism, performed
in a test tube is neither living nor non-living. Hence, while metabolism is
a defining feature of all living organisms without exception, isolated
metabolic reactions in vitro are not living things but surely living reactions.
Hence, cellular organisation of the body is the defining feature of
life forms.
Perhaps, the most obvious and technically complicated feature of all
living organisms is this ability to sense their surroundings or environment
and respond to these environmental stimuli which could be physical,
chemical or biological. We sense our environment through our sense
organs. Plants respond to external factors like light, water, temperature,
other organisms, pollutants, etc. All organisms, from the prokaryotes to
the most complex eukaryotes can sense and respond to environmental
cues. Photoperiod affects reproduction in seasonal breeders, both plants
and animals. All organisms handle chemicals entering their bodies. All
organisms therefore, are ‘aware’ of their surroundings. Human being is
the only organism who is aware of himself, i.e., has self-consciousness.
Consciousness therefore, becomes the defining property of living
When it comes to human beings, it is all the more difficult to define
the living state. We observe patients lying in coma in hospitals virtually
supported by machines which replace heart and lungs. The patient is
otherwise brain-dead. The patient has no self-consciousness. Are such
patients who never come back to normal life, living or non-living?
In higher classes, you will come to know that all living phenomena
are due to underlying interactions. Properties of tissues are not present
in the constituent cells but arise as a result of interactions among the
constituent cells. Similarly, properties of cellular organelles are not present
in the molecular constituents of the organelle but arise as a result of
interactions among the molecular components comprising the organelle.
These interactions result in emergent properties at a higher level of
organisation. This phenomenon is true in the hierarchy of organisational
complexity at all levels. Therefore, we can say that living organisms are
self-replicating, evolving and self-regulating interactive systems capable
of responding to external stimuli. Biology is the story of life on earth.
Biology is the story of evolution of living organisms on earth. All living
organisms – present, past and future, are linked to one another by the
sharing of the common genetic material, but to varying degrees.