IELTS Reading

13 Effective IELTS Reading Tips and Tricks to Help You Score High

Reading Guides
The best IELTS reading tips to help you achieve your band score

Whether you’re thinking of taking the IELTS test or already have a date set, preparing ahead of time will considerably improve your chances of acing the test. 

Reading is one part of the IELTS that tests your ability to read and how well you can comprehend. 

If you know the best IELTS reading tips and the right strategies, you’ll be well on your way to achieving the IELTS reading score you need.   

Before we dive right into the tips and tricks, let’s take a look at the IELTS reading test’s format. 

An Overview Of IELTS Reading Test 

If you haven’t seen it already, IELTS is divided into two main categories based on your purpose to travel: Academic and General. Both the academic and general reading assessments last 60 minutes, and each has 40 sets of questions.  

You will find three texts taken from newspapers, journals, and books in the academic reading test. These passages can be factual or more conversational, and they can include diagrams and illustrations. 

The general reading test is broken down into three sections. The materials in parts 1 and 2 are brief and assess your ability of written communication, such as job descriptions, public information, and more.

Part 3 of the general IELTS reading test includes information that is similar to that found in the academic test. 

The IELTS reading test can seem downright terrifying due to the lengthy passages. To help you overcome the hurdles, we’ve gathered 15 IELTS reading tips that are experts-approved. Let’s have a closer look without further ado:   

Keep Reading To Boost Your Comprehensive Skill 

Enjoy What You Are Reading  

Develop A Reading Strategy 

Take Up Mock Tests 

Manage Your Time Effectively 

Underline Keywords 

Improve Your Reading Speed 

Don’t Sweat Over Unfamiliar Words 

Follow The instructions Carefully 

Guess Your Answers Grammatically 

Don’t Leave Any Questions Unanswered 

Practice, Practice, Practice 

Consider Taking A Mock Test With CTI

1. Keep Reading To Boost Your Comprehensive Skills

Comprehensive Skills
To read more is one of the most effective IELTS reading tips

There is no denying, reading a lot is the best effort you can make when preparing for the IELTS reading test. 

If you don’t already have the habit of reading, start by reading newspapers and online articles. This will assist you in understanding information in less time while also improving your concentration. 

As part of your IELTS reading tips, consider reading a material for half an hour or so every day.  

2. Enjoy What You Are Reading

To read more is one of the most effective IELTS reading tips

It is essential to cultivate the joy of reading. Reading for pleasure not only motivates you to read more, but it also improves your vocabulary and reading abilities. Most importantly, it helps you wrap your head around the material that you are reading. 

Make the most of every reading opportunity. This will help you expand your vocabulary and better understand various synonyms and figures of speech.

Literary reading materials such as novels or short stories may be more enjoyable when you’re reading in the comfort of your own couch. What matters is that you gain experience and confidence reading all kinds of materials.

3.Develop A Reading Strategy

Reading Strategy
Skimming and scanning is a surefire IELTS reading tips for fast reading experience

It is important to plan out your reading strategy and use it effectively during the test to make the best use of your practicing time.

With three lengthy texts and just one hour to read them and answer 40 sets of questions, it’s clear that there isn’t enough time to take in all of the information. So, knowing some simple IELTS reading tips will save you a lot of stress:


‘Skimming’ is the technique used for getting a quick overview of a text. Simply skim over the titles and headings for a general idea of the topic.

Each paragraph should be focused on one core point, which is usually underlined in the topic sentence.


Scanning is the practice of identifying specific key points in a reading material. After identifying the keyword, read the underlying text carefully to find your answer.

4. Take Up Mock Tests

IELTS Mock Test
Take up IELTS mock tests for the best IELTS reading tips and strategies

One of the best IELTS reading tips is taking mock tests and getting familiarized with IELTS. This will also make you feel more at ease during the actual exam.

Take mock tests every other day or have your performance evaluated in a more realistic setting, such as those offered by Chhundu Training Institute.

The more solid your practice, the more likely it is that you will perform exceptionally well. It can’t be the case if you only practice a few times and still achieve a good IELTS reading score.

Manage Your Time Effectively

Time Management
Managing your time efficiently is the golden rule of IELTS reading tips

Work on your reading time. Managing your time is one of the most useful IELTS reading tips. When practicing, choose reading materials of about 1000 words and give yourself 20 minutes to make notes of the more significant ideas.

If you can’t answer a question in the IELTS Reading test, skip it and move on to the next one. Note that you can always get back to the question after answering the easier questions.

Answering the easier questions will prepare you to answer the more difficult ones without feeling overwhelmed.

6. Underline Keywords

Highlight Keyword
Underlining keywords is one of the IELTS reading tips to find answers quickly

In practice, underlining the passage’s keywords and major phrases and the questions will help you achieve your aim. It’s a unique way to gain focus through abstract reading that gets you closer to the answer.

Underline facts, figures, and words that are capitalized or highlighted for simple IELTS reading tips. Also, underline the focus words as you read the question and seek those words in the article to find the answers instantly.

7. Improve Your Reading Speed

You must enhance your reading speed while preparing for the IELTS reading test. Here’s a quick guide to boosting your reading speed:

Instead of reading the words individually, enhance your reading glance to include more than one word at a time.

To enhance speed, use a pointer. Try to read three words every time you pin your pointer. You will tend to read faster if you move it quickly through the text.

Don’t sacrifice comprehension in the name of quickness. It’s all too simple to skim through an article and then remember nothing.

8. Don’t Sweat Over Unfamiliar Words

Unfamiliar Words
Understanding unfamiliar words through the context is one of the IELTS reading tips

Try to get a feel of any unfamiliar word. Perhaps the concept or the underlying sentence can help you figure out what it is trying to convey.

Prefixes can be helpful; for example, un- indicates to cancel an activity, re- means to recur, and -wise means pertaining to something.

If it occurs before a noun, it could be explaining what the noun implies.

Keep in mind to prepare for your reading test by extending your vocabulary and mastering the devices, such as prefixes, suffixes, and affixes.

Don’t get too worked up if this doesn’t work. Skip to the next question and return to it after you’re done with the easier questions.

9. Follow The Instructions Carefully

Follow The Instructions
Following instructions are an important rule of IELTS reading tips

Following the instructions carefully is a major rule of thumb to get through the IELTS reading test.

If the instruction directs you to USE ONLY ONE WORD, make sure you don’t write more than that. You might not want to lose points because you didn’t follow the directions carefully enough.

So, pay attention to the instructions provided. It is best to underline the directions, like keywords.

10. Guess Your Answers Grammatically

Most of the time, you can figure out whether the answer is a verb, noun, figure, or word by looking at the question. Use the trick to your advantage by identifying the answers instantly, as grammar plays a significant role here.

This will also help you in guessing whether your answer is a singular or plural word, which is something that many students mistake while providing their answers.

For instance: Missing ‘s’ for a plural answer.

11. Don’t Leave Any Questions Unanswered

Questions Unanswered
Answering all the questions is one of the best IELTS reading tips

Never leave a single question unanswered. When you know you don’t have any more time, simply make a guess and write something. Better yet, there are no penalties for incorrect answers.

You won’t lose a point for incorrect answers. If you leave a cell on your response sheet blank, you’ve blown an opportunity worth a point. You’ll have at least one additional point, allowing you to advance by a single point in your IELTS reading test.

That’s why you should give it a good thought and leave no space!

12. Practice, Practice, Practice

Remember that practicing is the groundwork when preparing for anything, and IELTS is no different. The more you practice, the sturdier you’ll become.

Get into a proper routine and follow the aforementioned IELTS reading tips. The best advice is to spend more time reading and boosting your competencies for the test.

13. Consider Taking A Mock Test With CTI

Train at CTI
Consider registering with CTI for the best IELTS reading tips and tricks

Consider preparing for IELTS with Chhundu Training Institute (CTI) in Thimphu. Get access to the most comprehensive IELTS coaching from our professional IELTS mentors.

CTI aims to provide you with a unique learning experience with an actual test setting. Use our IELTS Bhutan tutorials and exam prep materials to better prepare yourself for the big day.

Taking CTI’s IELTS tutorials and Mock test has a number of benefits, including:

Familiarize with the most realistic set of IELTS format and questions.
Get the most comprehensive knowledge of IELTS.
Have someone to evaluate your skills and work on your weaknesses.
Proper schedule your practicing experience with IELTS-approved tutors.

The above mentioned are the 13 most effective IELTS reading tips that you must incorporate. By taking the IELTS test, you will be one step closer to realizing your dream of working or studying abroad.

Make sure you’re well prepared for the IELTS Reading test because it can be tough. Take a lot of sample tests to feel more confident during the actual test.

Practice, practice, and practice—the 13 IELTS reading tips listed above can assist you in improving your IELTS reading and achieving the band score you need.

You are only expanding your possibilities by practicing to ace the test and get to your ultimate destination. So, why not register for the most resourceful and comprehensive IELTS coaching?


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