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How to Do MCQ Type of Questions – IELTS Reading

How to Do MCQ Type of Questions – IELTS Reading

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MCQ stands for multiple choice question which is considered to be one of the difficult questions in IELTS Reading test. In such MCQs, you are given several options out of which you have to choose one option. Candidates appearing for the IELTS exam find the multiple choice questions as quite daunting since they get confused with options and end up with just guessing the answers. However, if proper strategies are adopted, MCQ type of questions can be solved well. Let us find out what these extremely useful strategies are:

Underline Keywords

The most effective strategy to solve MCQ question in IELTS reading is to underline the important keywords in the question as well as options. Once you highlight the keywords, you can focus on such words only to avoid getting distracted or getting confused while choosing the right option. This strategy works great when you find long statements as the options. Let us do this by taking the help of an example,

What is the major reason behind Mike to join job at a young age?

  • He was facing financial constraint and job was the only way he could earn income
  • He wanted to gain work experience as early as possible for an early start in his career
  • He was not interested in studying and wanted to be employed

In the above question, main keywords can be marked as below:

What is the major reason behind Mike to join job at a young age?

  • He was facing financial constraint and job was the only way he could earn income
  • He wanted to gain work experience as early as possible for an early start in his career
  • He was not interested in studying and wanted to be employed

You can see that you need to mainly concentrate on the important words that could easily make a short image of the question in your mind. Once you read the passage to confirm the right option, you will find this strategy as a helpful one.

Focus on Stem of Question

Stem or focus of the question in MCQ of IELTS reading is something really important, a word or phrase in the question that can help you to get rid of confusion and to identify the right option. In the above question, “major reason” is the focus or stem of the question. In the options of above question, all the options are the reasons and may be valid in Mike’s case or in other words, you may find all the options in the reading passage but you need to choose only the reason which is the major one.

Understand the Question Well

Without understanding the question and just by simply matching keywords of question with the keywords in the passage, it won’t be possible to find the right answer in MCQ type of question in IELTS reading. Hence, read the appropriate paragraph carefully and then only mark the right answer. Matching the keywords may help you to identify the type of paragraph which you need to refer but the actual answer you can come to know only when you understand it.

Attempt All Questions

Finally, the last IELTS reading exam tip to solve MCQ type of questions is that when you are not sure of any question even after carefully reading the paragraph, you can guess your answer. Also, it is recommended to attempt all the questions and never leave any question without attempting because there is no negative marking.


Practice MCQ type here: Multiple Choice Exercises (mini-ielts.com)

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