Reading Comprehension On The SHSAT: How to Improve Your Skills

Reading Comprehension On The SHSAT - How to Improve Your Skills

Reading Comprehension is an important section in the Specialized High Schools Admissions Test (SHSAT). This section measures the student’s ability to understand, analyze, and interpret written material. 

The SHSAT exam is known for its challenging reading passages, and doing well in this section can greatly boost your overall score. In this article, you’ll learn useful ways to improve your Reading Comprehension skills. Let’s begin.

What is Included In The SHSAT Reading Comprehension Section?

The Reading Comprehension section of the SHSAT includes non-fiction or fiction reading passages, or poetry, followed by questions that will usually ask you to find a main idea, locate a detail in the passage, find synonyms of specific words, or draw an inference. 

In addition, students can be required to comprehend other information from the passage like 

  • analyzing the author’s tone or purpose
  • comparing and contrasting information
  • identifying cause and effect relationships, etc.

Here are some key strategies you must implement to excel in the SHSAT Reading Comprehension section.

Important Ways To Improve Reading Comprehension Skills

1. Read, Read, Read

Make it a practice reading a variety of texts from different study materials. You can opt for books, magazines, newspapers, and online articles covering a range of subjects, like history, science, literature, social studies, etc. 

To improve reading skills, analyze the structure of the passages and the author’s use of language. Pay attention to the information presented and identify the main purpose and subject of a passage supporting details and transitions. Practice critical thinking to comprehend other important points from the passage.

2. Practice Summarizing

The SHSAT exam requires students to read and comprehend long complex passages and answer questions based on their understanding of the text. Learning summarizing can be helpful in the SHSAT exam and other academic pursuits.

Summarizing is a good comprehension strategy to break down the big piece of content into relevant succinct pieces using your own words. You can practice summarizing to help yourself recall the main points or ideas and ignore non-essential information.

3. Strengthen Vocabulary

The role of vocabulary in Reading Comprehension is well recognized. You cannot understand what you are reading without knowing its meaning. Dive deeper into word learning strategies. Make a vocabulary notebook and add any new word you learned everyday. Try to use the word in multiple sentences. 

If you face difficulty memorizing the word, you can draw a picture or Doodle, use flashcards, and vocabulary apps to remember it. Practice reading passages with unfamiliar vocabulary. This will help you learn how to use context clues to understand new words.

Tips To Do Well In The Reading Comprehension Section

  1. Practice taking notes while reading to remember important information and stay focused.
  2. To answer questions correctly, carefully read and understand what each question is asking. 
  3. Focus on the main words/phrases in the question and use them to find the answer in the passage.
  4. Identify sentences or paragraphs that are unclear, illogical, unnecessary, disorganized, or challenging to comprehend and read them multiple times to understand their meaning.
  5. Always review your answer after completing a Reading Comprehension practice test to see what you did well and what you need to improve. 

You can enhance your skills to understand and analyze written material by practicing regularly with dedication. At Kitab, we assist students in evaluating their Reading Comprehension abilities, creating a personalized strategy to enhance their skills, and help them prepare for the SHSAT with practice resources and mock exams.