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We got the OLSAT tests. Our child took the test at the end of January. She enjoyed preparing and thought the questions were challenging.

About ISEE Reading Comprehension

On the ISEE Reading Comprehension section there are reading passages followed by questions. There are five passages, each followed by five questions, on the ISEE Lower Level. On the ISEE Middle Level and ISEE Upper Level, there are six passages, each followed by six questions. Many students may find that they will not have enough time to complete the entire ISEE Reading Comprehension section. It is important to figure out (with a parent or tutor) what pace works best for you. Be sure not to rush through this section, as this may lead to careless mistakes. 

ISEE Reading Comprehension Questions

  1. Main Idea - these questions evaluate the student’s ability to determine a general theme, message, or central idea in the passage (or section of the passage).
  2. Supporting Ideas - these questions assess the student’s ability to recognize specific concepts which support the main idea or a different crucial idea in the text.
  3. Inference - these questions ask the student to arrive at a conclusion based on content that is not obviously stated in the text. Inference questions may ask the student to analyze and interpret text, compare and contrast ideas, and/or predict outcomes or subsequent events.
  4. Vocabulary - these questions ask students to define words based on the context of the text.
  5. Organizational/Logic - these questions require students to determine the structure, summary, relationship, pattern, or sequence of the passage. Students are also asked to identify important features of various literary genres, such as instructional, narrative, and informational.
  6. Tone/Style/Figurative Language - these questions evaluate the student’s comprehension of point of view, mood, tone, and figurative language (simile, irony, images, metaphor, and personification).

ISEE Reading Comprehension Tips

There may be passages and questions that are easier for you while others may be more difficult for you. A good strategy is to first answer the questions that you know and then return to the more difficult questions. If you are still unsure what the answer is, use the rest of your time coming up with the best guess. Even if you do not know the answer at all, it is a good idea to guess on the ISEE, as points are not deducted for incorrect answers.

  • Hint: As you read the passage, write down notes such as the main idea of each paragraph. After you finish reading the passage, determine what the passage is about and its main purpose. This will help you answer the questions following the passage.
  • Hint: When you read the questions, try to think of the answer before reading the answer choices and then compare your answer to the answer choices.
  • Hint: When asked a vocabulary question, find the word in the passage and reread the sentence. Try covering the word in question to help you determine what it means in the context of the passage. Be sure to use context clues and direction words for guidance.

ISEE Reading Comprehension Test Prep

Help your child prepare for the ISEE Reading Comprehension section with TestPrep-Online! We will offer ISEE Practice Test packs, which include ISEE Reading Comprehension practice tests. The ISEE Practice Test pack includes realistic practice tests as well as helpful tips, allowing your child to become familiar with the test structure. Help your child start preparing for the ISEE test with TestPrep-Online so that s/he can come to the test with confidence and ready to succeed. 

Click here for free ISEE Sample Questions

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