Guide to 4 Ways to do IELTS Reading Effectively
Completing 40 questions for three reading passages (3 passages) Academic in 60 minutes is not an easy task. In fact, there are many different ways to take the IELTS Reading test. So you know the fastest, most accurate, and effective way to do it? Here are four approaches to the IELTS Reading test for your reference.
4 Ways to do IELTS Reading Effectively
In IELTS Reading, 2 factors determine a candidate’s score:
- Methods and techniques for homework
1. Skimming & scanning
Skimming is a technique of quickly skimming without focusing on any particular content.
Scanning is also the fact that you read the article quickly. However, scanning aims to find data and specific information needed to answer questions.
Steps to perform skimming and scanning?
During this process, someone will highlight important content or keywords. Those who are lazy can highlight information that is quite recognizable—for example, a proper name, number, or specialized word.
After scanning, you read the question and check the passage to find the information needed to answer that question.
Types of lessons applied: Types of exercises to fill in words, choose answers such as Multiple choices, True/False/Not given, Sentence completion, etc.
Note: In theory, after skim is done, you will scan faster. But I think if you skim and don’t understand anything about the lesson, it’s a bit of a waste of time.
Example: Matching Heading post type – Matching matching titles
When we are asked to match a paragraph with the appropriate heading, there will always be more answers (more number of headings) than are paragraphs.
Step 1: Underline the keywords of each heading (title) first.
My criteria for choosing keyword(s) (keywords) will be the words that will separate that heading from other headings.
For example, if the text is about “Botanical Forest”, I definitely wouldn’t choose words like “environment” because that word often appears in all headings.
Instead, I will choose specific words like “preservation”, “attitude towards…”, “the reason why…”, etc.
Step 2: At this point, I will not read the whole paragraph in a hurry but will read the first and last sentences of that paragraph first.
This is because in many cases, the opening and ending sentences generalize or include the main idea of the paragraph. Then I will compare those two sentences with the keywords identified above.
Note: Keywords in headings may not appear in the paragraph. For example, if the keyword I have is “environmental protection,” I will notice sentences related to “green space” or “government efforts …”.
Example: Gap Filling – fill in the blanks slowly from the passage.
Similarly, I will perform the following steps:
Step 1: Identify keywords that are the words around the place to be filled in
At this step, I will predict how those words will be paraphrased in the paragraph. From there, make a guess whether the word to be filled in is a noun, a verb, or an adjective.
Step 2: Immediately switch to find essential words such as proper name, data, date, … to identify and localize the position to read.
The reason it can be localized is that those words will be preserved and rarely paraphrased, so I will identify them very easily.
I will roll my eyes through each line of the paragraph to read, then find the right keyword I need (remember, it will be paraphrased, so you have to understand the meaning). After determining that, the answer will be right next to or right away from there.
One way you can make scanning easier is to use your fingers or a pencil to “draw lines” for your eyes. After applying this method, I feel more focused than looking at the text with all the words and just reading it.
2. Deep read & scan
This is the “sticky rice” school, so you have to read the whole article to fully understand the content. Then move on to the questions section.
Types of articles applied: Compared with skim & scan, readers grasp the layout better. At the same time, you can also gain a deeper understanding of the content. From there, reading-heavy questions like Matching Headings and True/ False/ Not Given can be easily answered.
Note: The disadvantage of this method is also quite obvious: it is very time-consuming. Besides, you also need an excellent vocabulary to be able to follow this method.
3. Read each passage & circle the question
This is an easier variation of the second method. Instead of reading the whole text in-depth, focus on reading each paragraph.
In method 2, you can read the whole article you don’t remember. But in this way, you will have to process less information, remember more, and have a higher chance of being correct.
Note: The bad thing about this method is that there are passages in a Passage that the test question doesn’t ask about at all. This wastes your reading time.
4. Read the question & scan
This is pretty easy to understand. You read and analyze the question. After that, you just go to do the scan read to answer the question.
Instead of skim hard to remember, difficult to read deeply, and difficult to read each paragraph to know which passage to read, analyzing the question carefully before doing it helps you to remember quickly (the question is much shorter than the reading passage), find it quickly and do it quickly.
Note: This method has a risk that sometimes the question is too difficult to find the data (because you have not read the text before). However, this situation can be remedied simply by zoning out the questions you have done to find out where to read in the text. From there, you can solve the rest of the questions.