At the beginning of the reading test, it’s very important to spend five minutes skimming for themain topic and key ideas in the passage. This will help you later when you answer the question.Scanning for names and numbers can help you locate the information you need quickly.Remember to look out for synonyms and paraphrases.Check the number of words you are asked to use. Make sure you use the correct number.Look for paraphrases of key words to follow the themes through the text and check for linkingwords to trace the argument.Your own knowledge of the subject must not infuence your choice. You are being asked to take theinformation from the text.You can do the questions in any order. You may like to do the questions that help your generalcomprehension before you do the questions that ask you to find detailed information.
Matching headings to paragraphs
There are more headings than paragraphs in this type of question. Although the first sentence of a paragraph is usually the topic sentence, look for more details to make sure you have understood themain ideas of the paragraph, which will be reflected in the heading.
The key to answering these questions is finding the relevant part of the text quickly.For multiple-choice questions that ask you to select from a list of four to eight items the two or three items whish appear in the text, use skimming for gist and scanning for detail to answer them.Remember to look out for synonyms and paraphrases.Use this step-by-step approach to multiple-choice questions:-underline the key words in the question stem and the options;-scan the text for the key words;-compare the options and check with the text to make sure you have found the correct details.
Summarising and paraphrasing
By identifying synonyms and paraphrases throughout the text you will be able to:-recognise he main ideas in each section;-distinguish the main ideas from the supporting ideas or examples.
Matching statements to paragraphs
Skim the whole text and underline the key points before trying to answer these questions.Pay particular attention to the first sentence in each paragraph.When two paragraphs seem to match a statement, scan the paragraphs again for similar ideas and parallel expressions to those in the statement and underline them. Read those sentences carefully tohelp you choose.Its easy to find a title for the whole text after matching paragraphs to their headings.