Here we look at the five parts of the reading test. There are 30 points altogether for this part of the test, but after marking, this goes down to 25. In the exam (but not with this test) you have to put your answers on an OCR sheet, which is marked by computer.
Part 1. Signs, notices, etc.
There are five questions in this part. The answers are multi-choice (A,B, or C).
In this part you see notices. These are like the signs you would see when you are walking down the street, or on clothes, bottles or similiar things. You are tested on how well you have understood the meaning of the notice. You will also get a short note or an e-mail and must show that you have understood the meaning.
It is important that you understand what the notice is saying, even if you cannot understand all the words. It helps if you try to think where you might see the notice. When you think you know what the notice means, read the choices and choose the one that it nearest your opinion.
Try not to read the choices before you have decided what the answer is - you could get confused.
Part 2. Matching Profiles.
This part needs five answers, and you have eight possible answers to choose from.
You are always given five descriptions - generally of people, but not always. You then have to match them with something from the eight choices that suits their description - for example what present to buy each one for Christmas. In the exam the test is on two pages on the test sheet. Here, you use arrows to move from one choice to the next.
Remember to read all the choices before you start to answer the questions.
Part 3. Extensive reading (scanning).
This part has ten questions. The questions are statements that you must decide are true or false. (Or sometimes you can choose "doesn't say").
Here you should know what answers you want before you read the text, and you are looking in the text for only these answers. For example you might see a description about a funfair, such as Luna Park. You will know what questions you want to answer (How to get there, how much it costs, when it closes in the evening etc,) before you start to look at the text.
It is important to read the questions very carefully BEFORE you start the reading.
Part 4. Reading with interpretation.
There are five multiple choice questions for this part. (A,B, C, or D)
You need to read the text to find not just facts, but also opinions. If, for example, you are reading a magazine review of a new car, you will be asked questions like: Who is this new car for? (a. People who live in the country, b. Housewives c. Businessmen d. Big families.) You may be asked if the reviewer likes the car, and finally shown four pictures and asked which one is the car that the review talks about.
In this part of the test you may not find the exact words you need. More often you will have to understand the questions from the tone of whole paragraphs.
Part 5. Gap fill.
There are ten multiple choice (A,B, C or D). You have to read a text and then choose the right word to put into a gap in the text.
In this part, you are tested not just on your reading comprehension, but also on parts of your grammar. The text is usually like something you might find in a magazine, and it can be on any subject. This is probably the longest and most difficult part of the test, so make sure that you leave plenty of time for it.
It is not a good idea to read your alternatives before you have decided what the missing word should be. Multiple choice questions give you the chance to use wrong answers that you would not have thought of by yourself.