Scan Reading is in the category of speed reading, a skill that is acquired after quite a lot of conscientious reading and constant methodical reading practice. Scan reading (also referred to as scanning) means that you rapidly go over a piece of writing in order to locate specific facts, ideas or information.
Scan reading is an indispensable tool for your IELTS Reading test. When you are given a passe followed by multiple choice questions, scanning helps you start by analyzing the structure of the passe and going through the questions so that you can find helpful keywords.
- Locate and underline the parts you need by keeping your key words in mind.
- When you find the sentences that contain the information you seek, read them through in context and concentrate on answering the relative questions.
- Remember that you have a limited amount of time to complete each task.
Even if it seems that there is a thin line that separates scan reading from skimming, in reality these two activities serve entirely different purposes, both separately and combined.
Skimming is also speed reading, but this time you are reading for gist, which means that you will have to read the whole article, chapter or passe you are interested in to gain a general impression of the facts or ideas contained, and gather a better overview of the text. You are not necessarily searching for specific information, but it is important to note a few key words or phrases.
Skimming is the correct reading method for answering your overall comprehension questions.
Skimming a piece of writing you must:
- Initially give all parts of the passe equal attention.
- Note the key points that can help you get the gist ignoring excessive or irrelevant details.
- Remember that time is always a factor.