Reading Practice: Short answer questions

Reading Practice:      
Short answer questions

This article provides non-fiction samples to reflect the sort of tasks you could get in your IELTS General Training Reading exam. These samples are not taken from the official IELTS websites, but individually sourced to give you an array of text types.

The answers are at the very bottom, but refrain from looking at these before noting down the answers yourself!

To practice short answer questions, try these tips:

  1. Identify key parts of the question and look for these in the text
  2. Start scanning the passage for the language you are looking for
  3. The answers are most likely in the order of the text
  4. Answer in no more than three words/and or a number for each answer

Practice 1- Recipe


  1. How do you assort the 350g of mixed mushrooms?
  2. What should you see in the first few moments of the mushrooms cooking?
  3. What consistency should the polenta be after stirring?
  4. How long might traditional polenta take to cook?
  5. If it dries out, what can you do?
  6. What should you do as the final step?

Practice 2- Membership Information


  1. How many months do you get free with the annual membership deal?
  2. How many sports are excluded from the membership?
  3. What therapeutic activity is excluded from the membership?
  4. Which activity may you be charged with of an additional £5?
  5. How can you avoid the £5 additional charge?
  6. Sessions at West Reservoir are subject to what conditions?

Practice 3- Instruction manual


  1. What do integrated weight systems reduce?
  2. How can you avoid strain?
  3. How often should the inflator be serviced?
  4. What type of water do you wear full foot fins?
  5. What is the alternative name for open heel fins?
  6. Why should you avoid heavy objects on fins?
  7. What should you consistently have with your dive gear?

Practice 4- Interview

  1. What idiom does Helen McCroy use in the first paragraph to describe balance in her life?
  2. How did she feel when she met her husband?
  3. What quality is similar between Helen and her husband
  4. How does she describe her parents?
  5. What reason does she give for being lucky with her work
  6. Where did her father work
  7. Where was the first part of her childhood growing up?
  8. How does she describe herself as a child?

Answers Practice 1:

  1. cut large one's
  2. golden patches
  3. still runny
  4. around 50 minutes
  5. water or stock
  6. garnish with chervil

Answers Practice 2:

  1. 2 months
  2. 2- tennis and racquet sports
  3. spa experience
  4. Open Water Swimming
  5. join home club
  6. swim test and induction

Answers Practice 3:

  1. strain on back and spine
  2. integrated weight system
  3. every two years
  4. warm water
  5. adjustable strap fins
  6. avoid rubber deformation
  7. replacement strap

Answers Practice 4:

  1. best of both worlds
  2. calm, belonging
  3. impulse
  4. confident parents
  5. choose roles
  6. the foreign office
  7. africa
  8. innocent