READING COMPREHENSION PRINCIPLES

A M
Flashcards by A M, updated more than 1 year ago
A M
Created by A M over 7 years ago
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Graduate Test Prep Flashcards on READING COMPREHENSION PRINCIPLES, created by A M on 04/09/2013.

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Question Answer
When you notice the long or short reading comprehension question 1. Read the question 2. count the paras, and prepare notes structure 3. mark choices ABCDE on your answer sheet to save time.
Your notes will most probably be structured as follows (mainly for tough passages) First para clearly understood Main idea for each following para Big surprises, results, payoffs for each para. THE POINT A,B,C,D,E listed to save time.
Add to the previous point Furthermore; Moreover; In addition; As well as; Also; Likewise; Too (MALTAFI)
Provide contrast On one hand; On the other hand; While; Rather; Instead; In contrast; Alternatively (AWIIROO)
Provide conceding contrast ( author unwillingly agrees) Granted; It is true that; Certainly; Admittedly; Despite; Although (AGCIDA)
Provide emphatic contrast (author asserts own position) But; However; Even so; All the same; Still; That said; Nevertheless; Nonetheless; Yet; Otherwise; Despite (DONNYBHEAST)
Dismiss the previous point In any event; In any case Double eyes
Point out similarity Likewise; In the same way Il
Structure the discussion First, second etc.; To begin with; Next; Finally; Again
Give example For example; In particular; For instance FIF
Generalize In general; To a great extent; Broadly speaking BIT
Sum up, perhaps with exception In conclusion; In brief; Overall; Except for; Besides (BOEII)
Sum up, perhaps with exception In conclusion; In brief; Overall; Except for; Besides
Indicate logical result Therefore; Thus; As a result of ; hence; so; Accordingly (THATSA) * update
Indicate logical cause Because; Since; As; Resulting from BARS
Restate for clarity In other words; That is; Namely; So to speak TINS
Hedge or soften position Apparently; At least; Can; Could; May; Might; Should; Possibly; Likely MACCLAMPS
Strengthen position After all; Must; Have to; Always; Never; etc... HAMAN
Introduce surprise Actually; In fact; Indeed IIA
Reveal author's attitude Fortunately; Unfortunately; other adverbs; So-called FUOS
Relationship Focus attention Signal words (ARI) As for; Regarding to; In reference to
should implies moral judgement.
In order to trick you on some specific questions, the GRE will offer incomplete answers that incorporate language from throughout the passage but do not directly bear on the question at hand.
Beware of choices that are out of scope Introduction of an unwarranted assertion supported nowhere in the passage. "Might be real world plausible. However, if the answer is not supported in the passage, it is out of scope.
Watch out for one word wrong Just one word (or maybe 2) is incorrect. Includes extreme words. More prevalent in General Questions.
Always be careful to differentiate between opinions ... and facts on RC passages.
Be aware of extreme language like always, never, no way, everytime, everywhere
When considering a tone question look for instances in which the AUTHOR'S OPINION is revealed. Disinterested (Impartial, neutral), skeptical, optimistic, cynical.
A question that asks for an inference from the passage is a specific question; make sures that you find evidence for any inference in the text. Make sure each inference can be defended by going back to the text, and does not go far beyond the language in the passage.
When assessing a passage's organization.. consider the main idea of each paragraph.
Keep an eye out for numbers, calculations, dates and conclusions that may be made as a result of mutual exclusivity. Same
Don't rely entirely on short-term memory to answer specific questions. Same.
The Seven strategies for Reading Comprehension For General Questions:Use a SCORING SYSTEM when stuck between two answer choices. For SPECIFIC QUESTIONS: Match the keywords in specific questions to key words in the passage. Defend your answer choice with one or two proof sentences. FOR ALL QUESTIONS: JUSTIFY every word in your answer choice. AVOID answer choices that contain extreme words. Choose an answer that infers as little as possible. Do not forget to PREVIEW the first question before reading the passage.
For General Questions, instead of rereading, dive right into the answer choices and start eliminating. If you need to, review the Point so that you are certain in your knowledge of the author's main message. Armed with the point, you should be able to eliminate 2 or 3 choices quickly.
For General Questions, rereading the entire passage ... may actually be distracting. An incorrect answer choice may pertain only to a detail in a body paragraph. As you reread, you might spot that attractive detail and choose the wrong answer.
If you are stuck between two answer choices on a General Question.. use a Scoring system to determine which answer choice relates to more paragraphs. 1st para: 2 pts one more pt for each additional para. Usually, more pts = corr ans Tie: select the ans choice that pertains to the 1st para over any choices that do not.
For Specific questions, first read the question and focus on the keywords you are most likely to find in the passage. Then, look back over the passage to find those keywords. Use your HL or SS as a search tool, if necessary. DO NOT LOOK AT THE ANSWER CHOICES. Four out of five of them are meant to mislead you.
For Specific q's, once u find the keywds... you should reread the surrounding sentence or sentences to answer the question. You may have to do a little thought work or TAKE A FEW NOTES to figure out what the sentences mean. That is expected: after all, you did not master those details the first time through.
JUSTIFY every word in the answer choice. If u cannot justify every word in the answer choice, eliminate it.
Reading comprehension inferences rarely go far beyond what is stated in the passage. In general, you should infer so little THAT THE INFERENCE SEEMS OBVIOUS. IT IS OFTEN SURPRISING HOW SIMPLISTIC GRE INFERENCES ARE. If an answer choice answers the question AND can be confirmed by language in the passage, it will be the correct one. Conversely, you should eliminate answer choices that require any logical leap or stretch.
When you read "The passage suggests...." or " the passage implies..." you should.. rephrase that language: The passage STATES JUST A LITTLE DIFFERENTLY..... You must be able to prove the answer, just as if the question asked you to look it up in the passage.
You must decide how frequently you stop to take notes after each sentence, after a couple of sentences or after the entire para. Ans depends on how well you are grasping the content AND PURPOSE of the text, as well as the length of the para at issue. The more difficult the para, the more often u SHOULD stop to process what u have read.
For body paras, it is often counterproductive to .... try and absorb all the details, since doing so takes you away from the main goal of your initial reading and sketching. DO NOT DEPEND ON YOUR MEMORY WHEN ANSWERING DETAIL QUESTIONS. Don't skip, read everything.
When reading body paras, be on the lookout for... big surprises or important results. Sometimes, the GRE buries such surprises or results within the body of a later para and you MUST BE READY TO ADD THEM TO YOUR SKELETAL SKETCH.
The way to find the Point is to ask... What is the most important message that the author is trying to convey in this passage? The purpose of the passage is generally to convey the Point.
Before reading the passage, ALWAYS preview the first question.
BIG PICTURE READING 1 EMOTIONAL ATTITUDE Engage with the passage; own it Like, hate, good/bad characters
BIG PICTURE READING 2 SIMPLE STORY ... in the FIRST read through. Text it to me, table of contents for each para, content (cause, process, categories) and judgement (theories and hypotheses, evaluations and opinions, comparisons and contrasts, advantages and disadvantages) Don't forget twists, qualifications and contrasts.
BIG PICTURE READING 3 Link what you already know Concretizing: actively imagine what the words are referring to.
BIG PICTURE READING 4 Unpack the beginning You should make sure that you grasp 100% of the first para (versus say comprehending 70% of the entire text)
To unpack the beginning 1. Grab a concrete noun first. 2. Turn action back into verbs e.g. there is .... 3. Put only ONE simple thought in a sentence. One subject, one verb. 4. Link each subsequent sentence to the previous one using 'this' or 'these'. eg. This resulted in... 5. Simply quote off details.
BIG PICTURE READING 5 Link what you have just read. What does this sentence mean in relation to everything else that I have just read? Why is this sentence here? What functions does it serve in relation to the previous text itself? DO NOT OVERANALYZE AS YOU READ.
BIG PICTURE READING 6 Pay attention to signals Paragraph breaks and signal words.
BIG PICTURE READING 7 Pick up the pace Do not try to grasp the whole passage deeply the first time through. For elements later on in a long passage, focus more on 1. understanding the beginnings of paras 2. Big surprises or changes in direction. 3. Big results, answers or payoffs.
Most valuable assets on GRE are working memory and attention.
Components of passages The Point, Background, Support and Implications.
How do you become a more active reader? Simply look for the point as you read. You will find that your comprehension of the passage will improve as a result.
THE POINT is the most imp message of the passage. Why is the passage interesting to the author? - relates to the purpose of the passage. RESOLUTION, ANSWER, NEW IDEA, REASON.
The point may or may not make a lot of sense on its own - it may even be spread across 2 sentences. - may be simply to inform readers of fact/s, rather than convince the reader of a debatable position.
For an unfriendly passage make use of writing. You should not plan to use your notes afterwards.
Headline list for short para serves to 1. understand content and purpose. 2. provide general structure without getting bogged down. 3.promotes a fast first reading that still gives you enough time to answer questions.
Create a headline list for short paras by 1. Summarizing or indicating the main idea of each para. 2. read the rest of the para with an eye for big surprises and big results 3. follow the same process for any additional paras. 4. Once you have finished the passage, identify the passage's point.
Headline list for short paras may be used as a search tool to locate specific details. Numbering paras is important.
For short para with 2 associated questions 1.5 min read + headline list General 30 sec, Specific 45 sec.
For the long para SKELETAL SKETCH. Take extra time to summarize the first para. Skull + limbs. IDENTIFY AND WRITE DOWN THE POINT BEFORE START LOOKING AT ANY OF THE ANSWER CHOICES.
Long para time frames 3 min reading and skeletal sketch General 30 sec, specific 60 sec
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