IELTS is a skill. Like any other skill, you can prepare for IELTS in a smart way. It can be deconstructed and learnt very quickly if you only focus on the critical elements. In this post, I am going to share with you tips and strategies that will help you get 8+ Band in IELTS Reading.
In the Reading Test, these tips help you to complete your test in 40-45min, instead of 60 minutes. Leaving you enough time to recheck, and then re-recheck, and then take a water break… and then come back 5 minutes before the start of next test 😉
I got 9/9 band in Reading Test, and I completed my test in 25 minutes!
By the way, this post is from the full online video course, Ultimate Guide To Hacking IELTS, in which I share in-depth tips and strategies to prepare for IELTS. It is exclusively for AustraliaYours subscribers.
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Let’s now dive in:
Hacking IELTS Reading: Tips To Prepare For IELTS The Smart Way
Hack # 1: Not All Questions Are Created Equal
There are only 5 different types of questions in the Reading Test (General Training). Only 1 type of question requires you to have full understanding of the passage.
All the other 4 types of questions require you to locate information.
For these 4 types you can pretty much answer all questions by understanding as less as 20% of the passage only.
That’s why for each section, you will first flip over the passage to skim the questions and find out whether you need to understand the passage at all.
Note that I’m not asking you to read each question in detail to understand it’s meaning. Just skim through questions to understand what type of questions they are.
Also, once you skim through the questions even before looking at the passage, you will develop a general idea of what the passage might be talking about. With that idea at the back of your mind, when you read through the passage, it will just make much more sense than it would have otherwise.
Hack # 2: Heading + First Sentence = Full Passage
In reading passages, a common mistake that most people make is that they try to skim through the entire passage quickly to get an idea of what’s written in this passage. That’s a terrific waste of time!
You will instead read the heading first, and then the first sentence of each paragraph.
If the first sentence is very short, for example, less than one line of your sheet, then you will read first two sentences.
Also, instead of reading them fast, you will read them slowly and absorb them. This will take just 10-15 seconds per paragraph, but you will get a very good idea of what this entire passage it talking about.
Remember from Hack#1 – you do not need to understand meaning of full passage for 4 out of 5 types of questions. Reading the first sentence only will save you up to 80% of time that you would otherwise waste in reading full passages.
After some practice, you will discover that you will end up reading only 40-60% of the total passages when answering the questions. So why should you waste time trying to understand the full passages?!
Hack # 3: The Ultimate Match Making
Each question has keywords to tell you exactly where to look for the answer. So even before you look for the answer, just look for the keyword.
For example, if the question is, “A trunk shot shows a group of people facing camera” – True, False, or Not Given?
You will first identify that the keywords are trunk shot. How do you know that? Because all the other words, such as group, people, camera, are just common words that will appear several times in the passage.
You will quickly go back up to the passage and find the words trunk shot, and underline them.
Because of Hack#2, 8 out of 10 times, you will know exactly which paragraph the keyword might be in.
Some of the useful keywords to note are names, dates, numbers, and places. These are easy to locate.
Once you have the keywords underlined, read the question again to understand what the question is asking.
Then read one sentence before the keyword, the sentence in which the keyword is, and one sentence after the keyword. More than 90% of the time, you will find the answer within 3 lines of the keyword. Usually, in the same line as the keyword.
With these 3 hacks mastered, you will be able to increase your Reading Test score by 1 Band at least.
We will go into detail of each of the 5 types of questions, strategy to solve them, more hacks, tips and exercises when we prepare for IELTS in the video course to make sure you get 8+ in your Reading Test.
In the complete online video course, with 66 video lectures and assignments, I share with my students hacks, tips, strategy roadmaps, examples, and live-demos of implementing techniques to score 8+ Band in IELTS.
There is a smart way to prepare for IELTS, and we go right into it to help you ace IELTS so you can finally fulfill your dream of living abroad.
You can access the course below: