HomeEnglish LanguageThe Basics of Sentence Ordering for CLAT

The Basics of Sentence Ordering for CLAT

4 minutes read

Questions based on jumbled sentences or sentence ordering help the examiner in judging the examinee’s vocabulary as well as his ability to interpret a given piece of information in a logical manner.

As any successful lawyer would tell you, cases are won on facts and not law. Law is coded for everyone to refer to, but your ability to twist and interpret the facts of a case in your favour will be your USP. Facts are nothing but a sequence of incidents that lead up to an act.Sentence Ordering

Your task in these type of questions will be to figure out the correct sequence of facts and arrange them accordingly, taking the least possible amount of time.

Most questions will have a fixed sentence at the beginning and the end. There will be four sentences in between that link the fixed ones in the correct order.

Let us go through the following examples for better understanding:

Example 1.

The train was scheduled to leave at 8:00 AM.

  1. The ola cab did not arrive till about 7:00 AM.
  2. Fawad was all packed and ready to leave the house by 6:20 AM.
  3. The internet connectivity was slow but he still managed to book an Ola cab for 6:30.
  4. Fawad’s friend Karan was unable to give him a ride at 6:25 AM as he overslept.

Fawad met Mahira at 7:45 AM at the station and they both boarded the train together.

Answer & explanation: In the above example, the sentences given in bold are fixed. Your job is to tweak the remaining four into a sequence that binds all six sentences together.

The correct answer to the above example is PSQR.

The above example follows a chronological sequence and is fairly easy to solve. However, the CLAT examiner will not make it that simple for you.

We need to keep in mind the following pointers while solving such questions:

➤ Understanding the core theme that is being talked about in the sentences.

➤ Understanding the relationship between the sentences vis. Whether it is a cause and effect relationship or a problem-solution one.

➤ Understanding the type of sequence that is being reflected in the sentences. For example: chronological, generic to specific etc.

Let us look at some more examples that have been asked in previous CLAT exams.

Example 2.   [CLAT 2013]

  1. People who start up their own business typically come from two extreme backgrounds: One is a business family background and the other is steady professional family background.
  2. Typically, people from different backgrounds face a different kind of problems.
  3. The people from both backgrounds find it very difficult to establish and manage an enterprise.
  4. Starting up and managing a small business is no joke.
  • 4231
  • 2134
  • 4132
  • 3412

Answer & explanation: In this particular paragraph, the core theme is managing a business. Since the first sentence should give a brief introduction to the theme, we pick 4 as the most suitable option and proceed further to elaborate the background using 1 and hence the answer is ©.

Example 3.

  1. Venture capital is recommended as the ideal source of financing for a successful small business.
  2. Several companies including startups have been funded by dedicated venture funds during this decade.
  3. Despite this, an average Indian entrepreneur understands and appreciation of venture capital has been woefully inadequate.
  4. In the Indian context, though venture capital has been a relatively late entrant, it has already made a reasonable impact.
  • ABCD
  • ADBC
  • ACBD
  • ADBC

Answer & explanation: As suggested by all the options, A seems to be the introductory sentence which makes the core theme, i.e. venture capital clear. Proceeding further, we establish the tone of the paragraph by specifying the Indian context and therefore using sentence D. By looking at the options, we find (b) and (d) to be in consonance so far.

Now, out of B and C, the usage of the term ‘despite’ gives more of a concluding note to C. Therefore, the correct sequence becomes ADBC, i.e (b)

Example 4.

  1. Progress in diagnosis, in preventive medicine and in treatment, both medical and surgical, has been rapid and breathe taking.
  2. Much medicine which is not taken for granted was undreamt of even as recently as 20 years ago.
  3. Presently small-pox has been eradicated, poliomyelitis practically banished, tuberculosis has become curable and coronary artery disease surgically relievable.
  4. The dramatic surge in the field of molecular biology and research by immunologists and geneticists has succeeded in controlling parasitic diseases like malaria and river blindness that affect millions of people around the world.
  • BDCA
  • BACD
  • BCAD
  • BDAC

Answer & explanation: By glancing at the given options, B is seen to be the introductory sentence and the core theme seems to be medicinal advancement. In order to elaborate the introductory statement, D seems to provide ample reasoning. A further establishes the core premise and C gives an example of curable diseases. (d)

Example 5.

  1. Instead, many deaths and injuries result from falling objects and the collapse of buildings, bridges and other structures.
  2. Earthquakes almost never kill people directly.
  3. Fire resulting from broken gas or power lines is another major danger during a quake.
  4. Spills of hazardous chemicals are also a concern during an earthquake.
  • CABD
  • DACB
  • DCAB
  • BACD

Answer & explanation: Upon reading the given sentences, it can be observed that the earthquake seems to be the core theme. Using B as the introductory sentence, we notice the only option with that is (d). Hence, (d) is the answer as it provides the reasoning behind the introduction in A after B.C & D provide more examples of how deaths are caused during earthquakes which aren’t resulting from its direct impact.
Hope you’ve managed to grasp the concept so far. Head on to the practice questions in order to test your ability! All the best!

This article is posted in association with clatapult.com


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Lawctopus Law School
Lawctopus Law School

Cracking the CLAT!

Get access to all major CLAT updates, study material, and more.

Effective Guide to

You can unsubscribe any time.


Takes a second to click the verification link 

sent to your email.