Many students often say that IELTS reading section is the toughest part of the whole IELTS exam. According to them; speaking, listening and writing sections can be tackled with relative ease. It is a fact that you have to read very fast and in order to score good marks on the reading test; you must learn the art of reading with increased amount of concentration. There is no short cut to success and if you follow a systematic method of approach, you can better your score effectively. Here are some important IELTS tips to improve your score in the reading section:
Create clear cut understanding about the structure and pattern of the reading test
You get 60 minutes to answer 40 questions and no extra time is allotted to answer the questions. The reading test focuses on assessing different skill levels of the candidate and they include the ability to find specific information, complete a diagram or summary, identify the purpose of the author, find specific information, follow the key argument and find the difference between main ideas and support details. 14 different types of questions are included in this section and the best IELTS coaching programs cover all types of questions to make the preparation highly result oriented.
Read and understand the instructions with great care and vigilance
When you write any test or exam, you have to read the instructions carefully. IELTS reading test is not different as well. The reading test gives specific instructions and if you do not closely follow these instructions, you may get the question wrong. If you are asked to write one word; you must write only one word not two words. If the answer demands two words; you must write only two words. For example; if the answer is ‘blue and green’ and the answer asks for two words; you must write ‘blue, green. When you write ‘blue and green’, the number of words becomes three and you will lose the mark. Reading test contains these types of specific instructions and you need to follow these instructions carefully to get the answers right.
Utilize time effectively
Many students commit the mistake of writing answers in the booklet and then, transferring them into the answer sheet. It is a very time consuming process, especially for a time-based test like IELTS reading test. You must fill start recording the answers in the answer sheet itself as you go. It is absolutely essential to pay close attention to the task prior to start reading the test and you must keep on practicing lots of reading tests in a daily manner to get accustomed to the pattern and structure of the exam. Effective time management is the key and it is always advisable to finish each section within 20 minutes. You can spend 16 to 17 minutes for reading and 3 to 4 minutes can be taken to answer the questions and checking the answers. The speed and style of every individual is different and everyone must find out what works best for them.
Develop your vocabulary but be cool
Developing your vocabulary is an integral part of IELTS coaching. Inadequate vocabulary is one of the key reasons why many students do not get the score they need in the reading test. Learning vocabulary is not all about learning the meaning of the word but it is more about understanding when you can and cannot use a word. This process is also about knowing what collocations can be used with words. The reading test makes use of synonyms and paraphrase sentences to check your vocabulary level and the leading IELTS coaching centers advise students to read, note and review to improve their vocabulary. Reading is undoubtedly the most effective way for enhancing your vocabulary and you must learn how to guess the meaning from the context. After all; you are supposed to do this in the exam and it is absolutely necessary to keep on practicing this method while preparing for the test.
Other important IELTS tips include leaving no blanks, focusing on your understanding of the text instead of not getting carried away by your existing knowledge of the topic, not spending excess amount of time for answering difficult questions, learning the art of skimming and scanning, and improving your reading speed. There is no substitute for hard work. You must keep on practicing with great dedication and discipline and, extreme care must be given to identify your weaknesses because it always helps you improve your score in IELTS reading section.