Reading Skill 0 - General advice

General tips for Reading


  • Read the instructions for each task carefully, and make sure you follow them, especially instructions regarding the maximum number of words.
  • Make sure you give the text a quick read through so that you are familiar with the topic and how it is developed in the text, but don't worry if you don't understand every word.
  • In the text, underline the names, dates, numbers, etc. from the questions or options, so that you can then locate them quickly.
  • Don't look for the same word in the question and the text. Think of synonyms for words in the options, then choose the option that is closest in meaning to the text.
  • You can write on the Question Paper, but in most exams, you must copy your answers onto the answer sheet, so allow time to do that.
  • Don't spend too long on any one question. Move on to the next question and go back if you have time.
  • Always put an answer on the answer sheet even if you are not totally sure if you are correct.
  • Make sure you write clearly when transferring your answers to the answer sheet. 
  • READ ACTIVELY! Many students rely only on practice tests when preparing for examinations. Taking practice tests is necessary to practise certain test-taking skills and strategies, but tests shouldn’t be the only things you read and listen to. Broaden your exposure to English by reading graded readers, magazines, news articles online, anything that interests you!