In OAS Main Examination English Paper is compulsory and You have to qualify this paper otherwise you will be disqualify from exam. In this paper a question comes Expand the Idea with 20 marks weightage. For example in Last year Paper the question was as follows:
Q4. Expand the idea contained in ONE of the following: 20
a) Every cloud has a silver lining.
b) All that glitters is not gold
c) Honesty is the best policy
d) He makes no friends, who never made a foe
You have to attain ONE question out of the given FOUR. But the problem is in this type of questions- what you have to write? or what actually the question meaning. Let’s discuss it for your understanding.
According to Bain “To expand an idea into a paragraph implies a sustained purpose and forbids digressions and irrelevant matter”. Expansion means amplification or enlargement for a proverb, a maxim, an epigram, or a statement. It usually consists of following things:
a) the meaning of the given Subject.
b) an explanation of the implications of the subject
c) an illustration of what the subject means.
d) an elaboration of the subject by means of some quotation.
The most important thing is to find out what exactly the given subject means. Then you should write down the relevant to the subject that arise in your mind.Next you should organize your ideas logically, cutting out whatever is irrelevant.
An expansion should in no case exceed 250 words while usually, one paragraph would be enough, sometimes become necessary to organize your ideas in two paragraph for the sake of clarity and proper development of your argument.
An expansion is not an essay, but something concentrated that it could be developed into essay if necessary.
A good expansion must have clarity, brevity, and coherence. It must avoid repetitions, digressions and irrelevant matter.
Example: “Manners Maketh a Man”
Answer: God created man into his own image. But all human beings are not human beings. There is something we call social ethics. How to live in society amongst our fellow beingsm particularly in out society, is an art learnt by practice. Manners are at the root of a good and refined social behaviour. It is not learning that makes one a good social being, it is education that make the complete man. Education implies nobility, humility and good manners mean good social being. There is a story of Diogenes who was know for his canine (doggist) temperament. One day Alexander the great went to see him because he wanted his advice on some urgent matter. The philosopher, a great learned man was sitting in a tub of water basking in the sun. When the Emperor had stood there for a quite a long time, the Emperor said: “Can I do anything for you”? The philosopher after a pause said: “get away and don’t obstruct the light of the sun”again he was silent. From this we can guess that Diogenes was not a cultured person inspite of all his learning. Manners in a man to be cultured, polite, tolerating and mannerly letters need to be added to man to make a complete man-manners.
N.B: You may use the story of Diogenes in other positive examples also.