Hello. My name is Emma, and in today’s video,
we are going to talk about the reading module of the IELTS. I’m going to tell you some of my
top IELTS reading tips. So let’s get started. During the reading module of the IELTS, there
will be three passages that you read, and for each passage, there are a bunch of questions
you have to answer. The first tip I have for you is: don’t spend too much time reading the
passages. What happens to a lot of students is they read word-for-word everything. They
see a word they don’t know, they keep trying to understand the meaning. You don’t have
to understand everything to understand the passage. If you don’t
know a word, that’s fine. The better thing to do than to slowly read is
to use skills such as skimming which means you quickly read for the main idea or scanning,
meaning you look for key words or you look for specific detail. A lot of students, what
they do for the IELTS is they will actually read the questions first, and then they will
read the passage. And that way, they… They know what they’re looking for. You don’t have
to do this; it’s one technique. Some students find this a lot easier, other students like
to read the passage first and then answer the questions. I recommend trying both out.
First do the reading, then the questions, then try to read the questions first and read
the passage and see what you like better, what you’re more
comfortable doing. So the key thing here is: don’t read slowly.
It’s a timed test, you have three parts you have to get through, 40 questions; it’s very
important that you read quickly. You can start practicing reading quickly also. There are
a number of resources out there where you can actually start practicing. And time yourself
when you practice, make sure you’re not going over time. Number two, similar to number one, my tip
is: don’t spend too long on each question. Some of the questions are difficult-they’re
possible, you can do well on them-but some of them, you might be reading and you might
think: “Oh, I don’t know what the answer is,” and you might look at it, and think, and try,
and try, and try. Well, the problem is if you spend too much time on a question, there
are 40 questions and the one hour limit for the test, it goes by very quickly. So you
can spend too much time on each question. So what I recommend is read a question, try
to figure out the answer. If you don’t know it, you can put a star beside it and come back
after. Don’t spend too long on any question. You can also take a guess,
move on, and come back later. My third tip: spend less time on earlier questions.
For the reading module, the… Like I said, there are three passages. The first passage
is the easiest, then the second passage, and then the third question. If you spend all
your time on the first passage, you’re not going to have time to do the second and the
third. And, like I said, the first one is easier. So a good idea is to spend less time
on the first passage, maybe about 17 minutes, then the second passage maybe spend about
20 minutes, and the third passage maybe 23 minutes. You don’t have to follow this exactly,
but the main idea is spend less time on part one, more time on part three
because part three is harder. My fourth point is: make sure you have enough
time to transfer your answers. They will have an answer sheet and you’re supposed to write
your answers on it. It’s very important to leave yourself time to transfer your answers
from your test paper to the answer sheet. A lot of students, they work through the booklet
and then they realize there’s no time to transfer their answers, so make sure
you leave time for this. Okay, my fifth tip is a very, very common
error students make: three words or less. In the reading section, also in the listening,
in the instructions you will also… Or you will often see the words: “Write three words
or less.” They mean: write three words or less. A lot of students write too many words
here. So, for example: if I’m talking… If I’m doing a reading on archeology and, you
know, I have to write an answer and my answer is: “the tomb of the Pharaoh”, for example.
This is a Pharaoh, if you don’t know, ancient Egypt. If the instructions tell me: “write
three words or less”, and my answer is: “the tomb of the Pharaoh”, I’ve written way too
many words. I’ve written one, two, three, four, five, so that’s too many. So I would
get this wrong on the IELTS, get a big “X”. Even though my answer was right, because I
didn’t follow the instructions and I wrote too many words, I’m going to get it wrong.
So what would be the correct answer in this case is: “the Pharaoh’s tomb”. This is three
words. So in this example, that would be correct; we haven’t gone over three words. Also, I
could write for these questions maybe one word or maybe two words. I can write one,
two, or three words – no more than that. Very common mistake. Number six is another common mistake students
make, their spelling. A lot of students forget that the reading section also has a writing
component and that is you have to write your answers. You also have to spell your answers
correctly, and many students, unfortunately, make spelling mistakes. So it’s very important
to practice spelling before you do the IELTS. It will help you with the listening section,
the writing section, and the reading section. I can’t emphasize this enough. Smelling…
Spelling… Not smelling. Spelling matters. Okay? One idea is you can get a book and any
time you spell a word wrong, write it in your book and practice those words. Have a spelling
book for yourself so you can see which words you often make mistakes with. Number seven, a lot of students also make
this mistake with grammar. You have to use the correct grammar when you’re answering a
question. So, for example, sometimes maybe the answer is: “castles” with an “s”, but a
student might write the singular version in their answer, maybe they just write: “castle”
but the correct form would be with an “s”. So you always have to be aware of grammar.
The best thing to do is after you write your answer, check it to see if the grammar makes
sense. Were they looking for singular answer? Were they looking for a plural answer? Okay? So
that’s very important to keep an eye out for. Finally, my last… My last tip for today is:
a lot of students don’t read the instructions properly. This is a very, very big mistake to
make. A lot of students, they’ve done lots and lots of IELTS tests and they think they
know it, so they don’t bother reading the instructions. Always read the instructions.
Even if you’ve done a hundred IELTS tests, read the instructions just to make sure. For
example, some common mistakes that happen is for multiple choice in the reading section,
maybe the question will ask you to choose two answers and if you don’t read the instructions
properly, you might just pick one. Or maybe it asks you to pick three answers. So it’s very
important to read the instructions properly. Another common issue with instructions is people
confuse: “Not Given”, “Yes”, “No” questions with: “Not Given”, “True”, or “False” questions.
They’re different. So by reading the instruction, hopefully you can see the differences. And
then when you’re supposed to write: “Yes”, you don’t write: “True”, and when you’re supposed
to write: “No”, you don’t write: “False”. So make sure you don’t mix those
questions up. Read the instructions. So, in order to practice the IELTS, I invite you
to come visit our website at www.engvid.com. We have a quiz there on some of these tips
you’ve just learned. And also, I would recommend visiting another site: www.goodluckielts.com
for a lot more information on the test. I know you’re going to do well on test day.
So good luck. I’m rooting for you; I know you’re going to do a good job.
Until next time.