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Things not to be done with RC passages

Avoid these Pitfalls While Solving RCs

Things not to be done with RC passages


Reading Comprehensions are a trick beast. They are time consuming, energy sapping and information intensive. On the other hand, the rewards they offer are fascinating as well: if you grasp a passage well, you should be able to get most questions in a single passage correct, and this means you gain quite a few marks by solving one set of questions.

While ensuring that you strike a fine balance for this area, it is important that you keep a number of things in your mind and ensure you do not fall into the common pitfalls. Some of the things that you should definitely avoid for reading comprehensions are:

1. Do not over-emphasize trivial details

Details are important but do not obsess yourself with examples, illustrations and so on. You need to understand the main point, not the examples.

2. You do not need to memorize the passage

You do not need to memorize every word in the passage; understand the flow, structure and main points in the passage and you are good to go. For factual or specific point questions, you can always return to the passage.

3. Focus on the main idea of the passage

An obvious extension of the above points: make sure you focus on the main points of the passage, and understand the overall flow and structure of the passage.

4. Do not dig into the passage at first

Always go through the questions first and then the passage. This prepares you for what should you lookout for in the passage. Remember, focus on question statements alone, and do not need to focus on particular answer options. A quick overview of the questions is sufficient.

5. Do not over-emphasize on vocabulary skills for RCs

Having a strong vocabulary is great; it facilitates understanding but remember, being average in the area does not prevent you from understanding the passage. Vocabulary only offers you incremental benefits in the exam. So again do not put yourself under stress in this area, and while reading the passage, make sure you give directives to your brain to understand the gist of the passage and not to get stuck on particular words.

6. Do not spend time on RCs that you cannot comprehend at first

At times we discover a passage which we are simply not able to read. If you are struggling with one such passage in the exam, make sure you have the patience to avoid such a passage, and first finish the ones that you can manage easily. Go back to the tricky passage only if you are required to do so, else avoid these. These are time killers that spoil your overall attempt in the exam.



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