IELTS Reading Examination

The Reading section of the IELTS test measures the ability of test takers to understand (comprehend) meanings and ideas in higher-level texts and passes. There are two types of IELTS Reading texts:

1. General Training Reading

http://www.ieltsessentials.com/prepare/free_ielts_practice_tests/gt_reading.aspx

The General Training Reading test lasts 60 minutes.

There are three sections:

Section 1 contains 2-3 short factual texts, one of which may consist of 6-8 short texts related by topic (for example advertisements). Topics are relevant to everyday life in an English-speaking country and require no specialized knowledge.

Section 2 contains two short factual texts focusing on work-related issues (for example applying for jobs, company policies, salary, and work conditions).

Section 3 contains one longer, more complex text on a topic of general interest.

Texts are authentic and are taken from notices, advertisements, company handbooks, books, mazines, and newspapers.

Question Types

A variety of questions are used, chosen from the following types: multiple choice, identifying information and/or writer’s views/claims, matching information, headings, features, and/or sentence endings, sentence, summary, note, table, flow-chart, and diram label completion, and short-answer questions.

Marking
Each correct answer receives 1 mark. Scores out of 40 are converted to the IELTS 9-band scale.

Academic Reading
http://www.ieltsessentials.com/prepare/free_ielts_practice_tests/academic_reading_test_1.aspz

The Academic Reading test is 60 minutes long.

There are three sections. The total text length is 2,150-2,750 words.

Each section contains one long text.

  • Texts are authentic and are taken from books, journals, mazines and newspapers. They have been written for a non-specialist audience, and are on academic topics of general interest.
  • Texts are appropriate for, and accessible to, test-takers entering undergraduate or post-graduate courses, or seeking professional registration.
  • Texts range from descriptive and factual to the discursive and analytical.
  • Texts may also contain non-verbal materials, such as dirams, graphs or illustrations.
  • Should texts contain technical terms, a simple glossary is provided.

Question Types

A variety of questions is used, chosen from the following types: multiple choice, identifying information, and/or writer’s views/claims, matching information, headings, features, and/or sentence endings, sentence and/or summary completion, note, table, flow-chart,  and/or diram label completion, as well as short-answer questions.

Marking

Each correct answer receives 1 mark. Scores out of 40 are converted to the IELTS 9-band scale.

Preparing for the IELTS reading section, your main purpose is to improve your reading for specific information, reading for gist, and intensive reading skills.

Remember that time is a factor and practice your skills through sample tests, giving yourself more time at first, then narrowing it down to 60 minutes. Consider this practice as free reading with your mind on gist at first and then looking for specific information. Through the following link you will be able to find a large volume of reading practice material.

http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/general/talkaboutenglish/
When doing a practice IELTS Reading test:

  • Scan the passe, find and underline the word(s) and/or sentence(s) for each question.
  • First answer the questions that are easier, and work by eliminating the obviously wrong answers.
  • Whatever you do, pick an answer for all multiple choice questions, even if you are not certain.

Here are some extra links to help you with your practice:

http://www.ielts.org/test_takers_information/test_sample.aspx

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