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Reading Exercise 8

This exercise is based on a full-length reading passage. It is broken into clearly marked sections, so your survey will be very straightforward. There is a wide variety of question types, so make sure you read the questions carefully and answer them accordingly. Prepare another answer sheet before you begin.

Time: 20 minutes

Question 48

Choose the best answer A, B, C or D.

48) Which of the four skills is most important for students?
A Listening
B Writing
C Reading
D No single skill

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Question 49

Answer question 49 by selecting no more than three words from the reading passage. Write your answer in box 49 on your answer sheet.

49) What is one advantage of written text over spoken discourse?

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Questions 50-52

Read the following statements and indicate whether or not they reflect the information in the reading passage by writing:

In boxes 50-52 on your answer sheet, write

TRUE if the statement is true according to the passage
FALSE if the statement is false according to the passage
NOT GIVEN if the information is not given in the passage

50) The speed of a reader’s eye movement is irrelevant. 

51) Reading slowly generally increases comprehension. 

52) Reading is a passive skill. 

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Questions 53-55

The paragraph below is a summary of part of the reading passage. Complete the summary by choosing a maximum of two words from the reading passage to fill the spaces numbered 53-55. Write the words in boxes 53-55 on your answer sheet.

Word order is very important in predicting and (53) .................... the most usual combinations. To extract meaning quickly and effectively, it is also important to recognize conventional (54) .................... and the importance of the (55) .................... and discourse markers.

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Questions 56-61

The paragraph below is a summary of the following section of the reading passage. Complete the summary by choosing the appropriate word, phrase or clause from the list below to fill the spaces numbered 56-61. Write the corresponding letter (A-N) in boxes 56-61 on your answer sheet. Note there are more choices than spaces, so you will not need to use all of them.

A a quarter of a second
B regular short breaks
C efficiency
D backskipping
E practice
F focus
G half an hour
H fixations
I improve comprehension
J pauses and jumps
K sense units
L skimming and scanning
M a guide
N two hours

In reading, the eyes must follow the printed text, but in order to (56) ..................... clearly they must do this in a succession of very rapid (57) ..................... Confidence can reduce the amount of re-reading of words and with (58) .................... the reader can fix on larger ‘chunks’, increasing reading speed and at the same time improving concentration and understanding. This process can be helped by using a visual guide whilst reading. To preview a passage, or to locate specific information (59) .................... are useful techniques. Through practice, more can be read in a given time but for maximum (60) .................... study periods should be broken into short sections of about (61) .....................

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Questions 53-55 were a gap-fill of the type you have already practised; questions 56-61 were also of the gap-filling type, but this time you had to select from a bank of words and phrases. You may find both types in IELTS.

I hope you controlled your time and answered the questions accurately. Having used the passage for practice, you may now like to read it again more carefully and, where appropriate, use the information in it to improve your own reading skills.