ESL and IELTS Help 4 U

Test Strategies – Reading

Posted on: June 11, 2010

Here are a few tips about the IELTS Reading test.

1. Read all the instructions carefully.

2. There is not enough time to fully read and understand each reading passage. Your task is to answer the questions only — not to fully understand the entire passage — so read all the questions before reading the passage. Underline key words to help you identify the information you are looking for.

3. Skim and scan through the passage to find the answers. (skim: let your eyes move over the text quickly; scan: look at the text more closely for your answer) The topic sentence for each paragraph will tell you what that paragraph is about and will help to focus your search.

4. Sometimes one word is used in the question when another word or words that mean the same thing are used in the passage. Once you find your answer, read “around” it — a little before and after — to make sure you have the correct answer.

5. Pace yourself; this means go at a quick but relaxed speed. If you go too fast, you’ll miss important words which could cause you to misunderstand what you are reading. If you go too slow, you’ll run out of time.

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