Tip number eight is to develop strategies for IELTS. Now this is mainly for the reading section of the exam and remember there are 11 different task types in the reading. That means 11 different styles of questions that they might ask you in the reading section of the exam. So for each of these different task types you need to practice them and you need to find a way that works to answer it in the shortest possible time. Time is a big pressure in the reading section of the exam you only have one hour to answer 40 questions.
Let’s have a look at an example (see video). There is an example of one question type which is matching the headings to the paragraphs.
So how would we approach this? There are a number of questions you might ask yourself
Should you read the text first?
Should you read the questions first?
Should you read all of the text or just one paragraph at a time?
Should I read paragraph A?
I’m going to attempt to answer them for you now.
Should i read the text first?
Yes, I think you should. But read it very quickly, you’re skimming it to get an idea of the general overall topic. You’re not reading it to find out all the information so just one or two minutes to get a general idea of the topic and then stop.
Then read the questions, particularly make a point to read the instructions first so that you know what you have to do. In this case we look at the last question:
Do I need to read paragraph A?
The example here is paragraph A so they’ve already answered it for you. You don’t need to read paragraph A so you can start with paragraph B. I would suggest you read paragraph B then come and read the list of headings and choose the heading that’s most appropriate for the paragraph.
Then read paragraph C and choose a heading and D and choose a heading and finally E and choose the heading. You’re reducing the amount of reading you have to do in order to answer each question and save yourself time wherever possible.
So this is something you need to try and work out for yourself which strategy works best for you. There are certain strategies that teachers can provide you with to help you but some of them work better for some people, and maybe another one works a little bit better for a different person, so it’s about practice finding what works for you and then increasing the speed in which you do it.