First of all, read a lot! You must also train yourself to read in a certain way; it isn’t necessary to understand every word or everything in the article. Decide what sort of information to look for and focus on that.
If you read long newspaper articles, look at the introductory and concluding paragraphs first. These paragraphs will contain summaries of the article.
Another question that students ask is ‘What should I read?’ This really depends on whether you are taking the Academic or General Training format.
The texts used in the Academic format of the IELTS Reading test are of general interest and appropriate to someone entering a degree course. They are taken from the following sources:
As buying magazines etc can be expensive, I usually suggest that students check what is available at their local library. Alternatively, the internet is an excellent way to find suitable texts.
The texts used in the General Training format of the IELTS Reading test contain the type of English you need to survive on a day to day basis in an English speaking country. They are taken from the following sources:
- Notices (newspapers)
- Advertisements (newspapers, magazines, internet)
- Official documents (internet)
- Instruction manuals (internet)
- Timetables (internet)
I usually suggest that students check what is available at their local library and use the internet to find suitable texts. Another excellent source of practice material is to read things like instructions on food packets or tourist leaflets etc.
Of course there are many other sources of listening materials. Over the years, I have taught from many different IELTS books and I always recommend that my students purchase Adams & Austen IELTS books. These books contain so many useful practice exercises for IELTS.
Don’t forget that if you buy these books here, I will mark an IELTS Task 1 Writing and an IELTS Task 2 Writing from the book you have purchased.
As with anything in life, the more you prepare, the more you will reap the benefits.
Here’s to the best IELTS score possible!