How to get a high score in IELTS Academic Reading

Last updated: Jan 19, 20236 min read
How to get a high score in IELTS Academic Reading

The IELTS Academic Reading test is one of the most critical sections of the exam, and a high score is essential for those wishing to study abroad.

Fortunately, with some preparation and practice, it is possible to get a great result in this section!

This guide will discuss the different sections of the IELTS Academic Reading test and tips to get a high score in IELTS Academic Reading.

IELTS test types & sections

The IELTS test is of two types: Academic and General Training.

The Academic version, as the name implies, is aimed at those who wish to study or work in an English-speaking academic environment.

In contrast, the General Training version is more suitable for those intending to immigrate to an English-speaking country or take a professional role.

IELTS Academic Test components

The IELTS test, Academic and General versions, comprises 4 components: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking.

The Listening and Speaking sections are the same for both versions. You will be required to answer questions based on audio recordings in the Listening section.

In contrast, the Speaking section involves an interview with an examiner who will ask you questions about yourself and your opinion on various topics.

The reading and writing sections of the Academic version differ from the General Training version. The reading section involves reading passages from various books, newspapers, and magazines and answering questions based on them.

The writing section requires you to write an essay responding to a prompt.

Overall, the IELTS test is designed to assess your English language proficiency for either academic or professional purposes.

Whether you take the Academic or General Training version, it is important to understand that both versions measure the same language skills but in different ways.

IELTS Academic Reading test

The IELTS Academic Reading test focuses on assessing a range of skills needed for successful academic study at English-speaking universities.

It evaluates your comprehension abilities and how well you can draw conclusions from written material. The IELTS Academic Reading section includes topics such as science, history, art, culture, economics, and education. The passages used in the IELTS Academic Reading section can come from various sources such as magazines, newspapers, journals, and books.

IELTS Academic Reading sections

The IELTS Academic Reading test consists of three sections. Each section contains a passage of text followed by questions based on the passage.

Section 1

The first section contains a passage between 600-900 words, and you will have to answer 10 multiple-choice questions. In this section, you will be tested on your ability to identify the main ideas, opinions, facts, and specific information from the reading passage.

The first section presents factual information, such as facts or processes, and is usually straightforward.

Questions may ask you to complete sentences, match headings to paragraphs or identify specific details from the text.

It is important to read this section carefully as it will give you an idea of the whole passage and then provide understanding for the rest of the reading passages in that particular test.

Section 2

The second section also has a longer passage (around 900 words) but includes more complex questions such as sentence completion and classification. You may also need to look at tables or diagrams as part of these tasks. This section requires good understanding and comprehension skills to get full marks.

The second section requires you to analyse how content is presented within a longer text, which may include tables, charts, diagrams, and graphs. You may be asked to draw inferences, compare and contrast information and identify overall trends in the data.

Section 3

The third section again concentrates on one longer text (600-900 words) but has more questions than sections one and two.

This part focuses on testing your ability to understand in-depth information from the passage, such as inferences, paraphrasing, and vocabulary meaning. You will be expected to identify the author's opinion, purpose and tone of writing.

The third section is often longer than the other two and requires a greater understanding of the text.

You may be asked to explain cause and effect, opinion, or attitude within the passage, or you may have to make connections between different pieces of information.

Due to its length and complexity, you must understand how all three sections should be approached before attempting this section.

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10 tips for getting a high score in IELTS Academic Reading

Getting a high score in the reading section of IELTS Academic can take time and effort. But with the right strategies, you can maximise your reading speed and comprehension to get the highest score possible.

Here are some tips for getting a high score in IELTS Academic reading:

1) Read all instructions carefully

Before beginning any reading passage, take time to read all instructions thoroughly. Pay special attention to anything underlined or italicised, as these indicate important points or questions that will be asked about the reading material later.

2) Skim through the reading passage

Once you've read the instructions, skim through the reading passage quickly. This should give you an idea of what information you'll be reading and help you focus on the key points.

3) Read actively

As you read, you should mark or highlight important information that stands out to you. Don't just read the words silently; also, think about what you've read to evaluate and make connections. Actively reading will help you better understand the context, which is essential for answering questions on the reading exam.

4) Practice timed reading passages

Practice reading passages in a timed setting to get used to reading faster under pressure. This will force you to stay focused and increase your reading speed to finish all the reading sections with time left over.

5) Answer Questions In Order Of Difficulty

Start with easier questions first and then move on to more difficult ones. This way, you will have more time to think about the answers, and you can also use what you learned from reading the easier questions to help answer the more difficult ones.

6) Take reading comprehension quizzes

To test your reading comprehension skills, take reading comprehension quizzes or practice tests that simulate IELTS Academic reading tasks. This will help you get familiar with the types of questions asked on the exam, as well as give you an idea of how much material needs to be read in order to answer a question correctly.

7) Monitor your progress

Track your reading speed and accuracy over time by taking timed reading tests regularly. This will help you identify any areas where you may need improvement and give you an idea of how prepared you are for the reading section of IELTS Academic.

8) Learn vocabulary

Learning new words and phrases can help increase your reading speed as well as comprehension. Make sure to look up any unfamiliar words or terms in a dictionary or online resource so that you can understand them quickly during the reading section of IELTS Academic.

9) Get feedback

Ask friends, family members, or teachers to give honest feedback on your reading abilities after each reading test. This will help you identify any reading weaknesses that need to be addressed before taking IELTS Academic Reading.

10) Have confidence

Finally, remember that reading is a skill that can be developed over time. As long as you practice and stay focused, you'll be able to get the highest score possible in the reading section of IELTS Academic.

Achieve your highest IELTS score!

Signup for your free IELTS masterclass with Edvoy.

Learn from the best of the best teacher with over 17 years of experience.

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IELTS Academic Reading is an essential component of the IELTS exam and a valuable tool for those who wish to study or work in an English-speaking environment.

With the proper preparation and strategy, you can get a high score in IELTS Academic Reading. It is important to understand the question types and practice reading extensively before taking the test.

Developing a good understanding of English grammar, vocabulary, and comprehension skills can also increase your chances of achieving a higher score.

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