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Saturday, July 22, 2006

GRE Reading Comprehension

Reading comprehension questions test your ability to understand a passage and answer question on the basis of what is stated and implied in the passage. You need to read the passage first so that you can identify the main idea of the passage and appreciate features such as the author's tone and attitude as well as the organization of the passage. Scroll back to the relevant point in the text as you do each question.
Passages on the GRE vary in length from short extracts that take one and a half minutes to read to ones that take three and a half minutes to read. Allow approximately 1 minute to answer each question after completing the reading. The GRE Computer Adaptive Test (CAT) passages will not normally have more than 4 questions per passage. Our mini tests contain two passages each with 3 or 4 questions to be completed in a total of 10-12 minutes.


The reading passage is accompanied by a set of questions based on the passage and any introductory material that is given. Answer the questions according to what is stated or implied in the passage. 
10 There is not the slightest doubt that birds and mammals are
now being killed off much faster than they can breed. And it
is always the largest and noblest forms of life that suffer
most. The whales and elephants, lions and eagles, go. The rats
and flies, and all mean parasites, remain. This is inevitable
15 in certain cases. But it is wanton killing off that I am
speaking of to-night. Civilized man begins by destroying
the very forms of wild life he learns to appreciate most when
he becomes still more civilized. The obvious remedy is to begin
conservation at an earlier stage, when it is easier and better
20 in every way, by enforcing laws for close seasons, game preserves,
the selective protection of certain species, and sanctuaries.
I have just defined a sanctuary as a place where man is passive
and the rest of Nature active. But this general definition is too
absolute for any special case. The mere fact that man has to
25 protect a sanctuary does away with his purely passive attitude.
Then, he can be beneficially active by destroying pests and
parasites, like bot-flies or mosquitoes, and by finding antidotes
for diseases like the epidemic which periodically kills off the
rabbits and thus starves many of the carnivora to death. But,
30 except in cases where experiment has proved his intervention to
be beneficial, the less he upsets the balance of Nature the
better, even when he tries to be an earthly Providence.

To best understand the passages, we recommend developing a habit of reading actively.
We often ask our students to read a passage aloud. If we hear them drone from one sentence to the next, we know that they're reading indifferently. They haven't caught the tone and flow of the passage.
It is crucial that you integrate and synthesize the passage as you go through it. You can't be passive in your reading: it's not enough just to let your eyes move from word to word. Think about what you read.


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GRE Word List said...

Thanks for sharing the tips about RC. An aspirant should posses GRE Vocabulary skills to crack RC, Sentence Completion and Text Completion.