sat1:critical reading tips

<p>Critical reading section</p>

<p>Sentence completion
This section tests your vocabulary and fairly complex sentences.</p>

1] read the sentence and try to think of a word that will make the sentence logical without looking at the choices.
2]look at all the possible answers before making your final choices.
3]read the sentence carefully;watch out for double negatives or negative words or prefixes.
Eg. Madison was not _______ person and thus made few public addresses.
(A) a reticent
(B)a stately
(C)an inspiring
(D)an introspective
(E)a communicative
correct answer: (E).
The sentence tells you what Madison is not like. He is uncommunicative :he doesnot express himself freely and hence makes few public addresses. </p>

<p>4] for unfamiliar words, look out for context clues, i.e. its meaning will be provided in the sentence itself.
The_________ of Queen Elizabeth I impresses her contemporaries :she seemed to know what the dignitaries and foreign leaders were thinking.
(B) malevolence
(C) punctiliousness
(D) consternation
(E) perspicacity
correct answer: (E)
Perspicacity means discernment. The sentence states that the queen knew what others were thinking i.e. she shows perspicacity. Thus we see how the meaning of tough words is given in the question itself.</p>

<p>5]for difficult words:
1.break it into familiar parts
2.know college level words thoroughly. The tests sometimes have tough words which cannot be easily guessed. Go through the official sat guide for the college level wordlist.
To improve your vocabulary you may also consider Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis[not registered by the college board]. This book helps you master words quite effortlessly.
6] in double-blank sentences, go through the choices, initially testing only the first word and eliminating those choices which don’t fit
7]if __________ and ______________
in such sentences, the words in both the blanks have the same meaning.
______<strong><em>as well as</em></strong>____
here the words in the blanks may or may not have the same meaning.
8] watch out for transition words like<br>
i)although, but, despite, even though, however, yet, still rather than, on the other hand, on the contrary, in contrast of in spite of ,instead of etc. which indicate a change in ideas. Thus one should find an antonym or near-antonym for another word in the sentence to get the correct answer.
ii) also, and, besides ,additionally, furthermore, likewise, moreover, etc. which supports a thought developed elsewhere in the sentence. Thus one should find a synonym or near-synonym for another word in the sentence to get the correct answer.
iii) accordingly, for, because, hence, in order to, so..that, therefore, thus etc. which indicate that one thing leads to another
9]If you are unsure of the answer but can eliminate 3 of your choices, only then guess, otherwise go to the next question as wrong answers gets you negative marks.</p>

<p>Reading comprehension
This section tests ones ability to understand what one reads-both content and technicality.
The subject of the passage varies from narratives, humanities, social sciences to arguments, ethnics, sciences, etc. and cannot be predicted or learnt about beforehand.</p>

1] Take about 3-4 minutes to thoroughly read each column that run alongs the entire page. Understand the specific details[eg. examples, views, discussions ] and their purpose, the main idea, and the tone or attitude [eg.condescending, nostalgic etc.] of the author.
2]only after reading the passage one should go to the questions. After reading the questions, try answering them. With a vague idea of what the answer should be, go back to the passage and locate the answer. Then have a look at the choices offered and select the one that best resembles the one listed in the passage.
3] the answer is directly or indirectly given in the passage .make no assumptions or guesses.
4]the answer will never have any too strong/specific remarks or wrong/out of context words.
5] dealing with double passages:read both of them one after the other and then answer the questions. This way you save time and fully grasp the relationship between the passages.</p>