IELTS Reading Sample (Academic) #4

Reading Tip

As a general strategy, do not start by reading the passage. You do not yet know what information you are looking for, and you will waste precious time if you try to read and understand every detail.

Firstly, read the heading of the test. This will give you a very general idea of what the passage is about.

Secondly, quickly read through the questions. This will help you focus when you read the text, as you will have some idea what to look for.

Thirdly, turn to the passage, and read it through quickly. The purpose is to get a general understanding of the passage – you do not need to understand everything.

Finally, turn again to the questions and begin to work through them, referring back to the passage when you need to, and reading important sections carefully and slowly.

Questions 1-5

Reading Passage 1 has eight paragraphs, A-H.

Which paragraphs contains the following information?

Write the correct letter A-H in boxes 1-5 on your answer sheet.

NB You may use any letter more than once.

1the possibility of carrying out research on children before they start talking 

2the difficulties in deducing theories from systematic experiment 

3the differences between analysing children's and adults' language 

4the ability to record children without them seeing the researcher 

5the drawbacks of recording children in an environment they know 

Questions 6-9

Do the following statements agree with the information given in Reading Passage 1?

In boxes 6-9 on your answer sheet write

TRUEif the statement agrees with the information
FALSEif the statement contradicts the information
NOT GIVENif there is no information on this

6In the 19th century, researchers studied their own children’s language. 

7Attempts to elicit very young children’s opinions about language are likely to fail. 

8Radio microphones are used because they enable researchers to communicate with a number of children in different rooms. 

9Many children enjoy the interaction with the researcher. 

Questions 10-14

Complete the summary below.

Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 10-14 on your answer sheet.

Ways of investigating children’s language

One method of carrying out research is to record children’s spontaneous language use. This can be done in their homes, where, however, it may be difficult to ensure that the recording is of acceptable . Another venue which is often used is a , where the researcher can avoid distracting the child. A drawback of this method is that it does not allow children to demonstrate their comprehension.

An alternative approach is to use methodology from the field of . In this case, a number of children are asked to carry out a , and the results are subjected to a .

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