Knowledge of the language is essential but does not guarantee an excellent result. You still need to be able to solve the tests – it is a separate skill, not enough to pass a language test, but if you are not practising it may lower your score, and if you perfected it, you will increase your score despite your relatively weaker language skills.
The ability to solve tests consists of two things – on the one hand, full awareness of what tasks the test consists of and what are they designed to check, and on the other hand, strategies for solving each task. Reading and Use of English – text with gaps and four possible answers (multiple choice cloze)
This kind of task appears in addition to FCE, CAE and CPE on other exams.
t may also appear on an English test at school. The task checks the following skills:
• knowledge of collocation, phrasal verbs
• the ability to use the best expression in a given context,
• words that have similar but different meanings, so precision in using words,
• The most common expressions, e.g. relations between prepositions (of, on, in, for, etc.) and other parts of speech – verbs (approve of), nouns (ban on, in advance) and adjectives (eligible for),
• Grammatical connectors, e.g. because, hence, (in) addition (to).
So in order to get through this task smoothly on the CAE, CPE, FCE exam, you have to practice these language aspects in all kinds of ways. In a text with gaps and possible answers, called multiple-choice cloze, only one word fits, although to mislead the student, synonyms of the correct answer are added as alternatives. Sometimes most or even all options fit grammatically, but only one word makes semantic sense (meaning). Strategies to increase your chances
There are many strategies that you can use to increase your chances of getting the maximum number of points:
Firstly, give a try Engxam Daily Practice module with free with daily multipe choice exercises and practice everyday
• Depending on the amount of time and individual speed of reading, read the whole text – knowing the context will make it easier to activate the appropriate vocabulary in your brain, that will fit the context.
• As you read the text, try to fill in the gaps without looking at possible answers. It is also a good exercise to solve another common examination task – a text with gaps,part two in Use of English in FCE, CAE and CPE.
• The most important rule – focus on the text around the gap, the text just before the gap and just after the gap. There is usually the key to choosing the right answer.
• The previous rule is related to this one: pay attention to the form of words in possible answers. If there is a plural form of the verb after the gap,
• When you run out of time, because you have started this task for some reason at the end, do not read the whole text, but only the sentence with the gaps and try to choose the correct answer on this basis. The disadvantage is that sometimes the answer key will be in a different part of the sentence, not necessarily bordering directly on the gap. However, this is the ultimate survival strategy and should not be overused, but applied as a last resort.
• If you have a problem choosing the answer, try a negative selection.Do not think about what fits, but about what definitely does not fit. • Again, if you have time or you attended a speed reading course, it’s good idea to read the gaping sentences after you have chosen an answer to see if your answers make sense.
• Fill in all the answers if necessary – guess. Even if your internal code of honour allows you to do so. Especially in this task where you have a 25% chance to select the correct option and usually it is a chance of 1 to 3 or even 1 to 2, because in many cases you can reject one or two answers.
• When preparing for the exam, especially in the first stages, use the books, test books that contain hints next to the task or explain in the answer key why the answer is correct or not. This allows you to feel the thinking style of the test developers. And a single book is not enough, even in the best, most comprehensive, one type of task appears several times – not enough to train you to a level that provides comfort during the exam. You can also prepare for the language exam together with an experienced teacher who will have the materials and share his or her experience with you. Read as much as possible
In your mother tongue, you usually read about 200 words per minute, in a foreign language you usually read less, especially if you come across many unknown words. Meanwhile, tests, especially those confirming language proficiency at C1 and C2 levels, are prepared with the assumption that you are able to read and understand texts at about the same pace as the native speaker. This skill is very helpful in life, but difficult even in your mother tongue, not to mention a foreign language. However, you can significantly speed up your reading pace with a few tips (significantly – in the sense that this affects your ability to solve language tests):
Learn as much language as possible. The better you know the language, vocabulary and grammar, the faster you will read in it.
Read as much as possible, even in your free time, not necessarily with a view to preparingfor the exam. The brain trained in reading in a given language stops seeing single letters (pay attention to how preschoolers read – they spell, "knock") and starts grasping whole words or even a few words often appearing in your company at once. How to practice online?
This is where Engxam (English Exams) come in. We are a dedicated online-only exam revision platform for the mastery of English. We help you to feel more confident with the language, though crucially pass these Cambridge exams and succeed.
Published by Amazing Languages