How to solve Reading Comprehension

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

Hi Everyone,

Almost every exam of English language has a section called “Reading Comprehension”, fondly called RC by some. It carries 10, 15, 20 and sometimes more than 20 marks out of the total 30, 40 or 50 marks.

Meritshine recently released a video lesson for Reading Comprehension. In case you missed it, you can go through the link below to view it – 

Video Lesson on Reading Comprehension

While those who read regularly find it not so difficult to tackle, others find it difficult to deal with. Therefore, they leave it. Your efforts should be guided towards solving the questions of reading comprehension and not leaving them because one thing that you should always keep in mind is that it is a scoring section which can help you clear cut off easily. This can be done with a little practice. This practice involves two things; One, “to know why you fear” and Second, “to know how to solve faster”.

Let’s analyse both of them.

An aspirant fears this section in the exam for various reasons. I found some of them. They are as follows:

1. Not studied through English medium
2. Lack of vocabulary
3. Lack of reading habit
4. Inability to analyse the given information

Now see, you cannot do anything about your past (i.e. through which medium you studied). So stop whining about that. Look forward to the future. You can easily take care of the rest three points mentioned above if you have grit. If you have a tendency to surrender very soon, this is not for you. However, you can clear it easily if you know how to convert your weakness into your strength. Start exposing yourself to different genres of reading. Delve into ideas pertaining to economy (national and global), philosophy, administration, law, national and global issues (e.g. Sub-prime crisis, Al-Niño effect, Trump factor, Brexit, Demonetisation, etc.). Read them first in a language you feel comfortable with and then read them in English. This will help you a great deal.

You should also be able to analyse what has been written. Focus on key words in a sentence. Try to make sense of the grammatical constructions used. You should clearly understand what the author has mentioned and what he has not mentioned. You should know where the author is trying to take you. What is it that he is trying to say and what is it that he is not saying. Ask questions and solve them yourself while reading the passage. Ask as many as possible. This way, you can dig out everything that the author has written. Reading comprehension is a test of your ability to dig out information.

Let me tell you how to do it.

  • First of all, have a bird’s eye view of the entire passage so that you immediately know what the passage is all about.
  • Then, there are paragraphs. Have an overview of the paragraphs given in the passage.
  • Don’t read word by word unless necessary. Read groups of words together.
  • See what he is saying in those paragraphs. Is the author only providing you with the information on something? Is he supporting an argument? Is he mentioning facts and data to support what he is saying? If yes, what these facts and data are?
  • The more number of questions you will ask yourself, the deeper you will dig. Go on to the questions.
  • Read the question and decide in which paragraph you will find the answer. Now you will easily get the answer.
  • Practice this method to master it. I have seen my students mastering it with patience. I also know a few people who can read more than 500 words in a minute and answer the questions. You can do it too.

Apply this knowledge in reading the following passage. Then, answer the questions.

Women’s education in India is one of the foremost concerns of the Government of India as well as of the society at large. It is due to the fact that at the present time, the educated women play a very significant role in overall development and progress of the country. Women hold a prominent position in the Indian society and all over the world. However, since the prehistoric times women were denied opportunities and had to suffer from the hegemonic masculine ideology. This unjustifiable and unwarrantable oppression had resulted into a movement that fought to achieve the equal status of women all over the world. Women’s education in India is the consequence of such progress and this led to the tremendous improvement of women’s condition throughout the world. Nevertheless, eradication of female illiteracy is considered as a major concern today.

In the present era, the Indian society has established a number of institutions for the educational development of women and girls. These educational institutions aim for immense help and are concerned with the development of women. In the modern society, women in India have come a long way. Indian women are at par with men in all kinds of tasks like reaching the moon, conquering Mount Everest, and participating in all fields. All this is possible just because of education and the profound impact it has had on women.  

1. Education for women is necessary

  • to usher in a modern and progressive society
  • to protest against masculine supremacy
  • to enable them to be literate
  • to enable more women to conquer Mt. Everest

2. In present times, education for women is not at par with that of their male counterpart because

  • Female illiteracy is a major social problem.
  • Indian women are traditionally more preoccupied with their household duties.
  • Ours is a male dominated society.
  • Indian women did not join the worldwide movement to gain equal status for themselves.

3. …………………………….has been a major boost for female literacy in India today.

  • The modern governmental system
  • Increase in the number of broad-minded men
  • Increase in the number of women in prominent positions
  • The global movement to gain equal status for women

4. Progress and improvement in education for women has enabled them to

  • overthrow male hegemony
  • bag coveted positions for themselves
  • create an impact on all aspects of life
  • all of the above.

5. Find the option opposite in meaning to unjustifiable.

  • Progressive
  • Reasonable
  • Methodical
  • Compulsory
  • Justification

You can leave your answers in the comments. We will review them wherever required. 

Practice regularly and you will be able to do it with ease.

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