How to read efficiently?

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When people are taught to read, generally speaking, they learn to read words. To read efficiently, however, you ajso need to read at another level: you need to be able to read meaning, and organisation in a text. As the reading section of the IELTS exam primarily tests your understanding of meaning and your ability to find your way around a text, it is, therefore, not enough just to be capable of reading words alone.

This Exercise 1 helps you to begin developing different strategies to read a text fast and efficiently. The exercise looks at the organisation in a paragraph. Read the paragraph below slowly, and then answer the questions which follow.

The building, completed in l 785, was erected by the enigmatic Frederick Hervey, Earl of Bristol and Bishop of Derry, in honour of Mrs Mussenden, the Earl’s cousin. The Earl Bishop used the folly, which became known as the Mussenden Temple, as a library. Standing dangerously on the edge of a sheer drop into the North Sea, the temple dominates the coastline to the West. The structure’s classical simplicity, with its dome and Corinthian columns, is in stark contrast to the haunting Celtic landscape.
  1. There are four sentences in the text. Which sentences give you the information below?
  • The function of the building.
  •  The physical structure of the library.
  •  The location of the building.
  •  The history of the building.
  1. None of the phrases in number 1 above can be used as titles for the paragraph. Why?
  1. The author wrote the paragraph …
  • to describe the Mussenden Temple.
  • to describe the Celtic landscape.
  • to express his opinion of the madness of Frederick Hervey.
  • to describe the function of the library.

4. The writer uses a series of synonyms in the paragraph. Which words are they?

5. What is the purpose of these words?

  1. What type of paragraph is it?
  • A Is it argumentative?
  • B Is it a cause and effect paragraph?
  • C Does it express an opinion?
  • D Is it descriptive?

7. Below is a list of titles. Which is the most appropriate title for the paragraph?

  • A The enigmatic Frederick Hervey.
  • B The mystery of the Celtic landscape.
  • C The Mussenden Temple.
  • D The classicism of Frederick Hervey’s folly.

8. What is the relationship between the first sentence and the second?

9. What is the relationship between the third sentence and the fourth?

10. There is a division in the text. Where does it occur?

11. What is the relationship between the two parts of text on either side of the division?

Look at the following sentence:
The building, erected by the enigmatic Frederick Hervey, Earl of Bristol and Bishop of Derry,
in honour of Mrs Mussenden, the Earl’s cousin, was completed in 1785.

Compare this with the first sentence in the paragraph above.

12. What has happened to the information in the sentence?

13. What is the main information in the sentence above?

Click Here For Answer

Source: A book for IELTS.

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