Too many students read with the dictionary. While vocabulary building is important for the FCE exam, don’t look up every word you don’t understand in the dictionary! Not only will this method make the reading less pleasurable, it will also stop you from comprehending the text.
However, without understanding each of the texts in the Reading paper, you will not be able to answer the questions correctly. Also, the various parts of the FCE Reading paper require you to not only be able to understand the texts but also to be able to follow the development of a text as well as locating specific information in the text. So, what can you do to improve your reading skills?
Reading for Gist
Lack of text comprehension is one of the main reasons for students getting answers wrong. The question is: how can you improve your comprehension of the text? Instead of looking up the unknown words as you come across them, it is far better to highlight the word and continue reading till the end.
Once you have completed the whole text, write down your highlighted words and see if you can guess their meaning from the text. Check in a dictionary to see if you were right!
As you develop this method, you will see that not only will your reading comprehension improve but also your reading speed.
Vary Your Reading
Graded Readers are a great source of good extensive reading material. However, it is important that you read different types of text. Other sources of interesting reading material can be:
- unabridged short-stories
- newspaper or magazine articles
If you cannot find English newspapers, magazines or journals in your country, the internet can be a great source of good reading material.
Future posts will cover how you can make the most of your graded reader and graded audio book in your preparations for the FCE exam.
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