Below you’ll find all the free resources you’ll need to prepare for the IELTS reading test.
- Getting Started
- IELTS Reading Exam Information
- IELTS Reading Question Types
- IELTS Reading Lessons
- IELTS Reading Practice
- The #1 Way to Improve Your IELTS Reading Scores
- Next steps
There are two types of exam: Academic or General Training. Before you begin preparing, you need to find out:
1. What score you need; and
2. Whether you need to take the General Training IELTS or Academic IELTS exam.
The institute that requires your IELTS certificate can provide you with this information.
The types of question that you receive in the Academic reading exam are exactly the same as the question types that you get in the General Training exam. However, the passages of text that you must read are different.
General Training students will have to read a combination of long and short texts of both a general and work-specific nature.
In comparison, Academic students must interact with three long texts of an academic nature.
IELTS Reading Exam Information
The IELTS reading exam is divided into three sections of increasing difficulty.
This test requires you to answer 40 questions in 60 minutes.
In my opinion, the IELTS reading exam can also be seen as a vocabulary exam. The reason is that you need a wide range of vocabulary to understand the passages of text given to you. You must also have an awareness of synonyms if you wish to identify the information required to answer the questions correctly.
You can find my guide to improving your vocabulary for the IELTS reading paper here:
IELTS Reading Question Types
There are several different types of questions on the IELTS reading test and each one has its own problems and strategy. Click on any of the links below for a full step-by-step guide to answering each question type you could receive on the IELTS reading exam:
This post will help you answer short answer questions more effectively by looking at a sample question, identifying common problems and giving you a strategy to use on exam day.
This article will help you answer multiple choice questions more effectively. We look at common problems and how to fix them.
In these kinds of questions, you will be given a summary of information from the text and there will be some gaps in that summary.
In this IELTS reading question, you will be given a list of incomplete sentences with no endings and another list with possible endings. Your job is to match the incomplete sentences with the correct ending based on the reading text.
In this question type, you will be given a number of sentences with gaps in them and asked to complete the sentences with words from the reading text. Check out this article to learn how to do so strategically.
‘True, False, Not Given’ questions requires you to identify if the information in a text is true or not. You will be given a number of factual statements and you have to check in the text if they are true or not. This is probably the most difficult question in the reading paper.
This article will help you match headings more effectively in the IELTS reading test. In the IELTS Reading test, you may be asked to match headings to sections of text. This type of question tests your ability to understand the main idea of each paragraph.
On the IELTS reading test, you might get a question that asks you to label a diagram. This post will show you examples, look at common problems and provide you with a strategy for answering these questions effectively.
In this type of question, you are asked to match someone’s name, normally an expert, researcher or scientist, to a statement. This article will show you how to do this effectively.
In this kind of question, you are asked to match statements to paragraphs in the reading text. This post will look at example question types and show you my step-by-step strategy for matching information to paragraphs.
IELTS Reading Lessons
- How to Complete IELTS Reading in Less Than an Hour
- Guessing Meaning From Context
- The Secret to Getting a 9 on Your Reading Test
IELTS Reading Practice
The links below will direct you to multiple reliable sources of IELTS reading practice papers:
It’s important that you use reliable materials when you practice IELTS reading because this is the only way of getting an accurate idea of your current ability. The post below will show you how to find reading practice materials and demonstrate how you can improve your practice sessions from home:
The #1 Way to Improve Your IELTS Reading Scores
You will find all of the free guidance you’ll need for IELTS Reading on my Reading Mini-Course.
It’s completely free to join and has all the free strategies you will need to improve your IELTS Reading exam skills. Click the link below to get started:
That depends on the score you need to achieve. You’ll find help with calculating your score here:
This is absolutely fine, as long as your written answers are consistent and clearly written for the examiner.
This depends on a number of factors, but you’ll find our guide to improving your reading speed here:
To a very limited extent. Read the following article if you wish to gain a comprehensive understanding of skimming and scanning and when to use them:
In short: improve your exam technique and your reading speed. You’ll find a strategy for improving both of these features at the link below:
We do, but they are only available to our VIP Students.
You will find free and reliable practice questions at the following websites:
The British Council
You will also find these in the Cambridge Past Papers books, available in any good book store.
I hope these resources have helped you to gain a better understanding of the IELTS reading test.
If you wish to learn my strategies for IELTS reading in a series of video lessons delivered straight to your inbox, you should check out my free online reading course. Learn more below:
For more personalised help with your reading skills, send me an email at email@example.com to ask me about my VIP Reading Course or join the waiting list here.
We are constantly adding to our collection of free resources, so if you have a suggestion, please let us know in the comments below! 🙂