IELTS Reading Tips & Tricks

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IELTS Reading Tips

For a non-native speaker of English, it a daunting as well as a challenging process to get adjusted in anglophone universities and proudly settle in developed countries. To avoid any discomfort, it is mandatory for candidates to clear an English Proficiency Test. Most of the leading educational institutes demand a scorecard of the same along with the application. Wondering how to prepare for IELTS? There are four main sections of IELTS Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking. IELTS reading test 60 minutes long and comprises 40 multiple-choice questions, short-answers, identifying writer’s views, labelling diagrams and summary based questions. You may also begin your IELTS preparation online.  Here are some tips on how to ace the IELTS Reading section! 

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IELTS Reading Tips and Tricks

In order to carve your niche in globally acclaimed educational institutions that fall within the ambit of Australia, British, Canadia, Ireland, New Zealand, United States, etc.  you need to get a good IELTS score. To fetch a high score you need to gear up your strategies. Glance through the important IELTS reading tips you should take into consideration:

Practice Makes a Man Perfect

It is important to get a hold of previous sample papers and start practising to crack the test. Nowadays, candidates can find IELTS reading tips on youtube as well. Read newspapers, magazines and books that provide excellent reading practice for the IELTS exam. Enhancing your reading skills would give you an upper hand in the final exam.

Read Instructions Meticulously

Spend a good amount of time understanding the questions that are asked in the paper. Read all the instructions properly before you start writing answers accordingly. Stick to the word limits given in the paper, if the answer is to be given in 3 words, then follow the instructions as exceeding word limits can affect your score negatively. 

Skim the passage 

One of effective IELTS reading tips is to skim the entire passage and get a general idea out of that which can be used in the answers. Reading the entire passage will take a long and you won’t be able to finish your paper. Keep a skimming time for passage of 2-3 minutes, underline the important keywords that you notice. If you scan the passage properly, you will locate all the answers within the passage without wasting your time.


Scanning or reading rapidly to identify specific facts in the text is an important tip to keep in mind while giving IELTS Reading. When scanning ensure that you underline important specific information and numbers. You must look for information like names, dates, figure, statistics etc.
Identify the keyword through the given question and then quickly scan the text for it, and possible synonyms.


Develop your vocabulary but remember that learning vocabulary is not just knowing the meaning of the word but it’s use in a sentence. It is also about the collocation, how words can be used with either verbs or nouns. You can develop your vocabulary by practicing reading passages and writing a word list including common phrases when finding the answer.

It’s always paraphrased

The IELTS reading section is designed to test your understanding of language complexities. For every correct answer, you will be required to choose from the options, there will always be a paraphrased fragment in the text that says absolutely the same.

Find proof in the text, Underline and Number

Read and find out the exact location of the answer in the passage. Compare the answer to the key words and it will automatically get you to the answer. After finding the answer, underline that rephrased line in the passage. Then write the number on top of the question that is answered by that line.

Don’t leave any questions unanswered

Yes, you won’t be penalized for unanswered questions but you will be marked zero for the same. Never leave any question unanswered. When you know there’s no time left, just guess and write something, what if you manage to guess right.

Improve your reading speed

Here’s how you can speed up your reading speed;

  • Increase your reading gaze to include three words at a time, rather than bouncing from one word to the next. Catch three at a time and aim to expand it to about five words in each glance.
  • You may use a pointer to increase speed. The pointer will land between every three words. Moving it quicker through the text you will help you progress faster.

Choose your material carefully

You must choose subjects you genuinely have an interest in. This will help you stick with the book and read more. This will also build your language skills rather than your exam skills.

Active Reading

Make sure you highlight any important phrases that you see in the text that helps you understand the passage or sums up the context of the reading. This will act as references when you are searching for answers in the text.

GT Test

The first two passages in the GT Test are different to the academic test but the third passage is similar. You can look for practice tests in the IELTS Cambridge Test. Same skills and questions apply to both the GT and Academic.

Don’t forget spelling

Do not forget the spellings hold equal importance in the reading part as you are supposed to write down your answers. The vocabulary for answers is quite simple compared to that in the passages. A common mistakes that students do while writing the answers is to write turu or flase instead of true or false. So always double-check your spellings in the IELTS Reading Test.

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Enhance your Writing and Vocabulary 

You should keep a tap on your writing skills and increase your vocabulary because the reading section of IELTS is all about effective writing and accurate words. The paper will be framed around a set of phrases and synonyms. Reading voraciously is one of the important IELTS reading tips you should take into account. The more you read, the stronghold on vocabulary can be expected. 

How to get High Band Score in IELTS Reading?

Time Management

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Proper utilisation of timing is of paramount importance when it comes to writing IELTS paper. Don’t waste your time on a single question that can take more than the required amount of time, choose to leave it and move to others. Try finishing each section within 20 minutes and spare some time for reading passages. 

Don’t Panic

If you find some of the questions difficult, don’t start panicking. Read the question paper thoroughly and answer lies somewhere in the passage only. If you still find the question hard to answer, leave it unattended for a moment and switch to other parts of the paper. Don’t let one unknown question ruin the chance of getting a good score. 

Here Are Some Tips For – True, False & Not Given Questions


How to improve your IELTS reading score?

1. Read the text first and then answer the questions.
2. Look at the questions first, and then read the text with those questions in mind.
3. Pre-assess the essay
4. Browse for the main point
5. Foresee the content and purpose of the text
6. Draw word meaning from context
7. Discern the tone of the writer

What is the time duration for IELTS reading?

60-minutes is the given time for completing the IELTS Reading Section.

What is the most common mistakes in IELTS reading?

The most common mistakes that students do while taking the IELTS Reading is ignoring the instructions.

These were some of the essential IELTS Reading Tips for you! Keep the goal in mind, seek the right guidance and get an appropriate score to get into your dream university. Let Leverage Edu be at your service in case of any doubts or preparation tips pertaining to the exam. We deeply believe to push a student to greater possibilities through our expert guidance. Book an E-meeting session with us and get your career sorted!

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