IELTS Energy 206: Why Can’t I Understand Everything I Read?

IELTS Reading tipsDo you wonder why you can’t understand everything you read?

Found out why this is true today and learn what you can do about it so that you can get a higher reading score on IELTS.

Today you’ll get advice from Jessica and from 3 Keys IELTS students.

The Facebook group in our course is getting active.

A lot of our students have been asking great questions and Jessica replies but many students also respond to student questions.

Here is one question that a student in our course recently asked:

“Recently I have realized that articles from USA Today and the NY Times are too difficult and I can only understand 50%;  however, even if I translate each word it still looks like a bunch of un-linked words. What should I do to break through?”

 

Here is our feedback:

You should not try to translate every word. It is never going to be possible to translate every word. The point is to understand the meaning, the intent or the context.

On the IELTS you won’t understand every word. The people who write the test don’t expect you to understand every word.

You are making the mistake of trying to go from understanding small words to understanding the larger context. You need to do the opposite.

 

What to do:

  • Practice being ok with not understanding. Just do your best to get the overall meaning. It’s not about individual words.
  • Read for overall gist then go back and look up 3-4 words that are key for understanding and explore those words.

If you think too much about small problems and small details you will panic and you will get paralyzed.

You need to get used to being in the place where you are powerless and you can’t understand everything.

What do you think about today’s episode?

Let us know in the comments below.

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Photo Credit: https://www.flickr.com/photos/nicksie2008/15335995656/in/photolist-pnbZdd-48vQEC-8dCC3-ukcyMs-q6UuCd-aUskV-qGyUm-ayZtHj-7uoKa3-w1Tfv7-7qW8ee-ayWQ4v-8aJsRo-qGUz4M-dEpG5A-3yCizh-7dpzSz-nLouN2-pB92Sx-mAvKkj-x725Kp-uA7AGu-86KxQn-8QHPbj-8DRMqF-ayZtq9-8oHs4W-rudfcp-hTtYVi-bZzcH-fyydD5-ah52P5-7QiUN-nnWDwq-nmbQhE-95p44-2rm88-4rhJSQ-fkHdYj-d7XkpN-d2aVUN-suoofj-75ztWE-6iBan-7NXXqY-ayWQi2-dss7nN-8msWmi-8kQijD-kHm8jf
  • I.E. 160 : Why You Are Not Understanding What You Read
    1) Stop translation
    2) Get direct meaning from the context
    3) Understand the BIG picture