Tips for Comprehension Open-ended


In this article, we will be sharing some simple tips when answering True/False questions in the Comprehension Open-ended section of Paper Two in the English Language examination. Often seen as one of the more challenging questions in the PSLE English examination, let us break down the steps to make these questions more manageable.

The full comprehension of a text must cover the word, text and idea/plot-levels. A good reader is able to understand what he reads on the word and text-levels. However, an excellent reader is able to discern what happens in the plot accurately through some textual cues. As we form opinions about characters and incidents that take place, we also make connections between different parts of the text. Aided by our prior knowledge and experiences, we are able relate to the plot at a deeper level.

1) Look at the question stem critically.

  • When it involves how a character felt in the text, refer to the actions and speech of the character.

Let us look at the following excerpt from a comprehension passage.

2) Be careful of questions which look very direct. They often aren’t.

  • This type of question has tricked students many times.
  • If there is lack of overall understanding of the text, students may end up answering such questions directly without making inferences.

Let us look at the following excerpt from a comprehension passage.

Also, remember the following when answering the questions, just like when you answer any question in the Comprehension Open-ended section.

  • Be clear.
  • Be specific.
  • Avoid changing the original meaning of the text when expressing the answer in your own words.

We wish your child the best for the coming English examinations!


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