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Reading Comprehension Tips & Tricks

Reading Skills are a perennial topic for standardized tests.

In first look, reading comprehension looks challenging given that you are asked to read an essay like passage in order to answer merely two to three questions, many times you may feel sleepy, as well as discouraged. Do not be discourages, as there are various ways and methods and strategies that makes reading comprehension easy.
Good before bad: One best thing that one should do is attempt essays or passages with familiar topics first rather than unfamiliar one. This is similar to skipping long questions and attempt easier one first. One must skip passages that do not interests them and keep them to attempt later, if one has time.

Don’t use ‘special’ reading techniques. The current time is not for speed-reading or something like that, its about plain ordinary reading – neither too slow nor too fast.

Read through the entire passage and the questions
before you do anything. It is a common notion among students that if they read the questions first and then look for the answers in the passage, then they will efficiently answer the questions. What many do not realize is that if they look for answers without going through the passage, then they will simply be wasting time and this will confuse them even more and many of them may even miss the context of the passage while doing so..

Familiarize yourself with reading comprehension questions.
Once you are familiar with the common types of reading questions, you will be able to take note of important parts of the passage, also will be able to save a lot of time. There are mainly six type of reading questions.

• Main Idea–These questions ask for central thought or main significance of the passage.
• Specific Details – These questions ask for ideas that are stated explicitly.
• Drawing Inferences – These questions ask for intended meaning of any given statement.
• Tone or Attitude – These questions test your ability to sense an emotional state of the author.
• Context Meaning – These question ask for the meaning of a word giving the reference of the context.
• Technique – These question ask for the method of organization or may be about the writing style of the author.

Read. Read. Read. The best preparation strategy for reading comprehension is to read continuously. One who is not habitual to continuous reading may lose concentration while reading passages. So make a habit of reading daily.

Reading comprehension tests becomes less problematic when you have trained yourself to read and understand fast. Keep in mind always that it is easy for you to understand a passage in which you are interested. Also as you go through the passage, make mental notes of it like ideas that may be asked.

Reading Strategy

For a standardized test of reading comprehension you need a strategy to be successful. You have to keep several steps in mind:

• First, make a note of the time and the number of
sections.Keep a proper eye on time as you attempt the test. Give around four to five minutes per senction. Now, read directions for each and every section carefully before selecting which question to attempt. You must be clear on what you are about to do!

• Now you’re ready to begin reading the selection.
Carefully read the passage, and note down significant character or events on a rough sheet. Note down or underline important one-word summaries of characters, important happenings, numbers, or key ideas. With this you will have better ability to retain information and be able to focus on wandering thoughts. Though you must always keep in mind that you main goal is to find the information that answers your question. Even if you find passage interesting, remember you goal and work faster towards it.

• Now read the question and all the choices. Now since you have read the passage completely, and have a general idea of the passage and have marked all the important points.Read all the questions and their choices. Never choose an answer without reading all the choices carefully. Many questions are often designed to confuse – you must stay focused and clear. Usually the answer choices will be based on one or two inferences from the passage. Keep this in mind.

• Search for the answer. Since you have a general idea of what different choices are, refer the passage again and scan for relevant information. Look out for big words, they may be usual or unusual or unique words. This makes your job easy as you can scan the text for a particular word.

• Mark the Answer. Now you have the information the question is asking for. Go back again to the question, and scan the choices quickly and mark the correct one. Understand and practice different variety of reading comprehension passages in order to get acquainted with several types of reading comprehension based passages.
As you go on with practicing and keep practicing with different period based passages, you will get familiar with new types of passages and it will become easy for you to attempt questions.
Many students prefer answering the question in the order they are asked rather than going about randomly, they feel this saves their time. Whereas some prefer going about questions randomly to see which questions are difficult to answer and which are easy to answer..

Finally, its you who will decide what works best for you. If you wish to answer beginning with difficult questions, we have a recommendation for you. Try answering factual questions first, they are easy to find in the passage. Now answer inference based questions, that, too after going through the questions many times. Guessing based questions take the longest time to answer, so save them for the last..

Use the practice tests to try out both ways of answering and
see what works for you.

Main Idea and Supporting Details

Identifying the main idea, topic and supporting details in a passage can feel like an overwhelming task. The passages used for standardized tests can be boring and seem difficult – Test writers don’t use interesting passages or ones that talk about things most people are familiar with.

Despite these obstacles, all passages and paragraphs will have the
information you need to answer the questions. The topic of a passage or paragraph is its subject. It’s the general idea and can be summed up in a word or short phrase. In some standard tests, a short description of the passage is given along with some information about the passage like from where it has been taken. Do make sure to read the description as it might help you to recognize what the passage is about. If not, go through the passage and get the answer yourself. For example:
Over the years, school uniforms have been hotly debated. Arguments are made that students have the right to show individuality and express themselves by choosing their own clothes. However, this brings up social and academic issues. Some kids cannot afford to wear the clothes they like and might be bullied by the “better dressed” students. With attention drawn to clothes and the individual, students will lose focus on class work and the reason they are in school. School uniforms should be mandatory.

Ask: What is this paragraph about?
Topic: school uniforms

Once you get to know what the passage is about, it becomes easy to find the main idea behind the passage. The main idea is something that the writer wishes you to know about the passage. Writers usually state the main idea in the form of a thesis statement. If you wish to find the main idea of a paragraph, read the topic sentence properly, which could be in the beginning or in the last of the paragraph.

If you’re looking for the main idea of an entire passage, look for the thesis statement in either the first or last paragraph. The main idea is usually restated in the conclusion. To find the main idea of a passage or paragraph, follow these steps:

1. Find the topic.
2. Ask yourself, “What point is the author trying to make about the topic?”
3. Create your own sentence summarizing the author’s point.
4. Look in the text for the sentence closest in meaning to yours.

Look at the example paragraph again. It’s already established that the topic of the paragraph is school uniforms.

What is the main idea/topic sentence?

Ask: “What point is the author trying to make about school uniforms?”

Summary: Students should wear school uniforms.
Topic sentence: School uniforms should be mandatory.
Main Idea: School uniforms should be mandatory.

Each paragraph offers supporting details to explain the main idea. The details could be facts or reasons, but they will always answer a question about the main idea. What? Where? Why? When? How? How much/many? Look at the example paragraph again. You’ll notice that more than one
sentence answers a question about the main idea. These are
the supporting details.

Main Idea: School uniforms should be mandatory.
Ask: Why? Some kids cannot afford to wear clothes they like and could be bullied by the “better dressed” kids.

Supporting Detail

With attention drawn to clothes and the individual, Students will lose focus on class work and the reason they are in school.

Supporting Detail

What would you do if the author doesn’t state the main idea in the initial sentences of the passage, then the passages may have an implied idea. It may seem difficult but it is not. Paragraphs are always organized around ideas. You must ask yourself “What the author is trying to imply by creating a relationship between the details?”

Cocoa is what makes chocolate good for you. Chocolate comes in many varieties. These delectable flavors include milk chocolate, dark
chocolate, semi-sweet, and white chocolate.

Ask: What is this paragraph about?
Topic: Chocolate
Ask: What? Where? Why? When? How? How much/many?
Supporting details: Chocolate is good for you because it is made of cocoa, Chocolate is delicious, Chocolate comes in different delicious flavors

Ask: What is the relationship between the details and what is the author’s point?
Main Idea: Chocolate is good because it is healthy and it tastes good.

Testing Tips for Main Idea Questions

1. Skim the questions – dont look up at the options, before reading the passage.
2. Questions about main idea might use the words “theme,” “generalization,” or “purpose.”
3. Save questions about the main idea for last. In standardized tests like those of IBPS PO, the answers to the questions can be found in order of the passages
3. Underline topic sentences in the passage. Most tests allow you to write in your testing booklet.
4. Answer the question in your own words before looking at the answer choices. Then match your answer with an answer choice.
5. Cross out incorrect answer choices immediately to prevent confusion.
6. If two of the answer choices mean the same thing but use different words, they are BOTH incorrect.
7. If a question asks about the whole passage, cross out the answer choices that apply to only part of it.
8. If only part of the information is correct, that answer choice is incorrect.
9. An answer choice that is too broad is incorrect. All information needs to be backed up by the passage.
10. Answer choices with extreme wording are usually incorrect.

Drawing Inferences And Conclusions

Drawing inferences and making conclusion happens all the time with us humans. In fact we do it every time we read something, without even realizing it! For example, remember the first time that you saw the movie “The Lion King.” When you meet Scar for the first time, he is trapping a helpless mouse with his sharp claws preparing to eat it. When you see this
action you guess that Scar is going to be a bad character in the movie.

Nothing appeared to tell you this. No caption came across the bottom of the screen that said “Bad Guy.” No red arrow pointed to Scar and said “Evil Lion.” No, you made an inference about his character based on the context clue you were given. You do the same thing when you read!

Whenever you draw an inference or make a conclusion, this is exactly that you do, here, you are making educated guess based on the information that author has given to you. We call these hints “context clues.” Scar trapping the innocent mouse is the context clue about Scar’s character. Usually you are making inferences and drawing conclusions the entire time that you are reading.

It happens many times that you don’t even realize that you are constantly making educated guesses based on context clues. For example, you can think about a time when you were reading a book and something happened in the story-line of the book. Now you didn’t made it suddenly, it appeared to you because, actually, you were picking up the context references and making inferences from whatever you were reading.

Let’s try an easy example. Read the following sentences and answer the questions at the end of the passage.

Shelly really likes to help people. She loves her job because she gets to help people every single day. However, Shelly has to work long hours and she can get called in the middle of the night for emergencies. She wears a white lab coat at work and usually she carries a stethoscope.

What is most likely Shelly’s job?

a. Musician
b. Lawyer
c. Doctor
d. Teacher

This probably seems easy, isnt it? Drawing inferences isnt always simple, but this is the same basic principle that you will apply. How did you know Shelly was a doctor? She helps people, she works long hours, she wears a white lab coat, and she gets called in for emergencies at night. Context Clues! Nowhere in the
paragraph did it say Shelly was a doctor, but you were able to draw that conclusion based on the information provided in the paragraph. This is how it’s done!

There is a catch here, remember, whenever you draw inference based on some reading, you should only use the information given to you by the author. Many a times, we come to a conclusion by adding something we already know, which leads to incorrect answers.

Let’s take an example, you have a bully in your school, his name is Billa. Now, let’s assume you are reading a story and the main character in the story is Billa. You cannot infer that character in the story is also a bully just because his name is Billa. This time you should only use the information given to you by the author to avoid drawing the wrong conclusion.
Let’s try another example. Read the passage below, and answer the question.
Social media is an extremely popular new form of connecting and communicating over the internet. Since Facebook’s original launch in 2004, millions of people have joined in the social media craze. In fact, it is estimated that almost 75% of all internet users aged 18 and older use some form of social media. Facebook started at Harvard University as a way to get students connected. However, it quickly grew into a worldwide phenomenon and today, the founder of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg has an estimated net worth of 28.5 billion dollars.

Facebook is not the only social media platform, though. Other sites such as Twitter, Instagram, and Snapchat have since been invented and are quickly becoming just as popular! Many social media users actually use more than one type of social media. Furthermore, most social media sites
have created mobile apps that allow people to connect via social media virtually anywhere in the world!

What is the most likely reason that other social media sites like Twitter and Instagram were created?
a. Professors at Harvard University made it a class
b. Facebook was extremely popular and other people
thought they could also be successful by designing
social media sites.
c. Facebook was not connecting enough people.
d. Mark Zuckerberg paid people to invent new social
media sites because he wanted lots of competition.

Here, the correct answer is B. Facebook was extremely popular and other people thought they could also be successful by designing social media sites. How do we know this? What are the context clues? Take a look at the first paragraph. What do we know based on this paragraph? Well, one sentence refers to Facebook’s original launch. This suggests that Facebook was one of the first social media sites. In addition, we know that the founder of Facebook has been extremely successful and is worth billions of dollars.

From this we can infer that other people wanted to imitate Facebook’s idea and become just as successful as Mark Zuckerberg.

Let’s go through the other answers. If you chose A, it might be because Facebook started at Harvard University, so you drew the conclusion that all other social media sites were also started at Harvard University. However, there is no mention of class projects, professors, or students designing social media. So there doesn’t seem to be enough support
for choice A. If you chose C, you might have been drawing your own
conclusions based on outside information. Maybe none of your friends are on Facebook, so you made an inference that Facebook didn’t connect enough people, so more sites were invented. Or maybe you think the people who connect on Facebook are too old, so you don’t think Facebook connects enough people your age. This might be true, but remember
inferences should be drawn from the information the author
gives you! If you chose D, you might be using the information that
Mark Zuckerberg is worth over 28 billion dollars. It would
be easy for him to pay others to design new sites, but remember,
you need to use context clues! He is very wealthy, but that statement was giving you information about how successful Facebook was—not suggesting that he paid others to design more sites!

So keep in mind drawing inferences and conclusions is simply about using the given information you have been provided with to make an educated guess. You do this every single day, so we hope this concept doesn’t scare you. Look for the clues given in the context and make sure they support your claim, and accurate inferences and conclusion can be made by you.

Meaning From Context

Many times in a reading comprehension based questions, you are asked for the definition of a word, which you need to infer from the surrounding text, this is called as “meaning of context”. Here are a few examples with step-by-step solutions, and a few tips and tricks to answering meaning from context questions.

English language consists of thousands and thousands of words. So, it becomes impossible for a human being to know meaning of each and every single word, also we don’t have enough time to search it on internet, every time we read a word, we don’t understand. Even the smartest person on the earth may fail to give meaning of these words, but we can use context clues to actually determine the meaning of words..

Context clues are really just little hints that can help us determine the meaning of words or phrases and honestly, the easiest way to learn how to use context clues is to practice!

Let’s start with a few basic examples.

In some countries many people are not given access to schools, teachers, or books. In these countries, people might be illiterate.

You may not know the meaning of the word illiterate, but let’s use the clues in the sentence to help us. So, if people are not given access to schools, teachers, or books, what could happen? The people in the country probably don’t learn what we learned in school so they might not know some of the things that we learned from our teachers. So, illiterate actually means “unable to read or write”. This makes sense based on the context clues!

Let’s work through another example.

We have so much technology today! So much technology that many people have started using tablets and computers to read ebooks instead of paper
books! In fact, some of these people actually think that reading paper books is archaic!
Let us have a look at the context clues. So, what we get to know from the paragraph? A lot of technology is around us, many times people read ebooks instead of actual books. From this we can draw the conclusion that ebooks are beginning to replace paper books because ebooks are newer and better.
So if ebooks are newer and better, it must mean that paper books are older. Archaic actually means “very old or old fashioned,” which again we determined from the context clues.
Let’s see if you can try a few on your own now.

Cody noticed the strawberries in his refrigerator were old and moldy, so he abstained and threw them away.

What does abstained most likely mean?
a. chose not to consume
b. washed
c. shared
d. cut into pieces

The correct answer here is A. The context clues told you the strawberries were old and moldy and told you that Cody did something and then threw them away. If the strawberries were moldy, and Cody abstained, it makes sense that he didn’t eat them—which is choice A. You may have chosen answer B. If the strawberries were old and moldy, Cody could have washed them. But use ALL of the context clues. After he abstained, he threw them away. Why would Cody wash them and then throw them away?

That doesn’t make sense! In addition, why would he share them if they were old and moldy? Finally, I suppose Cody could have cut them into pieces, but why would he need to do that before throwing them away? It doesn’t make as much sense, so choice A is the correct answer!

Let’s do one more.

Scott had a disdain for Lily ever since she lied to their boss and got him fired.
a. Compassion
b. Hate
c. Remorse
d. Money

The correct answer is B. Scott was fired because Lily lied. Can you imagine if this happened to you? I think you would have some pretty strong feelings just like Scott! It’s simple! By understanding the context, you can determine the meaning of even the hardest of words!


Reading Comprehension Strategies and Tips

Reading comprehension being the high scoring part of every competitive examination, the accuracy of students is the lowest in this part. Today, we will share some tips and strategies to help you improve your score.

Here are the strategies that you can use  :-

How to select passages to attempt

Since, in every competitive examination, there is a lack of time, also, you need to choose between various available passages. As there are question sets with reading comprehension, your selection makes a big impact on your final marks..

Are you comfortable with the topic

It is very important that before selecting a passage, you choose the topic on which the passage is based. If you love history, then you should not skip a topic which is based on Aurangzeb. If you love reading about a particular topic, your reading as well as accuracy will be high in this topic.

Skip the topics you are unaware of. There are high chances that you will mark wrong answers for this comprehension.

Vocabulary Usage

Vocabulary cant be built in a week or in a few days. Its a time consuming process. So before you attempt a passage, skim and find out if you are comfortable with the topic, if yes, then attempt the passage.

Author’s tone

Its very important to understand the tone in which the author has written. The author may be optimistic, pessimist, sarcastic, angry or contemplative. If you understand what the author is trying to say then there is a high probability that you will mark the right answers.

Length of passage

Without going into any details, simply prefer smaller passages.

Difficulty level of questions

If you feel that the questions are beyond the conclusion you found from the passage, its better to skip that question. Never mark a nearest answer. Mark answer only if you are sure about it. Accuracy of most of the candidates is lowest in this part of every competitive exam.

How to attempt Reading comprehensions

Step 1 – Read the passage quickly as you read an article in a newspaper. Don’t be in hurry. Try to understand author’s tone and subject matter.

Step 2 – Note the flow of ideas in the comprehension. You can remember that in your mind. It’s better to write 2-3 words for each idea.

Step 3. Make a relationship chart of ideas

chart of ideas

Step 4 – Read the questions

Step 5 – Never assume anything related to real life. Find answers from the author’s point of view.

Generally you will find author’s opinion from concluding paragraph.

How to improve your score in Reading comprehensions

Speed reading and practice

You have just 2-3 minutes to read a 1000 words comprehension. If you can’t do this, then you need to work on your reading speed. Try to build a habit of reading ling paragraphs online. This habit will increase your reading speed as well as accuracy.

Skip it !

Yes that’s right

If there are 2 comprehensions and only 8-10 minutes left then it’s a smart decision to attempt only 1 comprehension properly.


Practice makes a man perfect. More practice will lead to increase in speed as well as accuracy.

9 Expert Tips to answer Reading Comprehension in Bank-PO without Mistakes

In the English section of SBI PO Prelims exam and other Bank-PO exams, out of 30 questions, 10 questions are expected to be RC based questions. And if you focus on Reading Comprehension (RC) and attempt all 10 questions pertaining to RC, you can easily clear the sectional cut off marks (usually the sectional cut-off is around 33%).

The comprehension passages may be easy on their own but there are certain technical jargons and terms being industry specific are difficult to understand and any person who does not has the knowledge and background in Banking and Economics may face difficulties.

Following are Few Tips shared by Experts to Solve Reading Comprehension:

1.  Quickly Skim Through the Passage

30 seconds should be spent on skimming through the passages thoroughly before you attempt the passage based questions.

2.  Practice Reading Comprehensions on the Computer

A huge difference is there in attempting a Reading Comprehension online than offline. When you attempt reading comprehension online, your speed may be down as it is difficult to skim through content, also you are unable to underline important points and mark different areas in a passage. You can improve your speed only if you practice regularly.

3.  Read the questions first

Before reading the passage, skim through the questions that need to be answered. With this you shall be having a fair idea of what the passage is talking about. Once you start reading the passage, you will be able to locate the answers to the questions.

4.  Solve Past Years Question Papers

Solving previous years question papers will help you get acquainted with the actual format of the paper and you may be lucky to get questions on similar lines.

5.  Familiarize Yourself with Specific Terminology

You should make yourself familiar with different terms associated with Economics, Business and Banking. It will help you for general understanding and better awareness of the topics.

You should have knowledge of a few terms like Economics, debit, credit, Microeconomics, Macroeconomics, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI), Foreign Portfolio Investment (FPI), Cash Reserve Ratio, Non-Performing Assets, Repo Rate, Reverse-Repo Rate, etc.

6.  Make Inferences

Making inferences from what you read is very important. While infering you draw conclusion from what you have read and this leads to conclusion.
While answering questions in exams, a candidate has to read between the lines. Candidates can answer the questions by using the clues given and by drawing inferences as the answers to the questions are not directly given in the passage. Candidates will face such type of questions in IBPS and SBI Bank PO exams.

7.  Categorize Questions as Per Their Nature

In order to maximize you score, you should attempt reading comprehension based passage in a way that, you should attempt vocabulary first, then move to factual based questions, this would maximize your marks in minimum time..

8.  Remember, Accuracy is Important

If you find any question too difficult to answer, simply skip it. Mark the answer of any question only if you are sure about it, dont even mark the answer in the nearest possible case. Try to attempt accurately and do not guess answers.

9.  Read Newspapers

Read newspapers like Economic Times, Business Line, The Hindu to understand the nature of various types of passages asked in competitive exams . Also try reading across various topics to get familiar with a variety of topics, this familiarity will help you answer the reading comprehension based questions with ease.

How to increase your Reading Speed

After most of the exams like IBPS, GMAT, GRE, CAT and SAT got online, reading speed became a crucial part in preparation strategy. Today I am going to share amazing skills to speed up your reading speed. Most of the times readers complaints that they could do better if they had more time. You can save lot of time by increasing your reading speed. This would help you not in scoring high in English Language section but also increase your score in all other sections as you will read and understand questions and statements quickly. These techniques will help you build reading skills. So here are the techniques :-

Divide a line into parts

This is a marvelous technique. In this a line is divided into two or three parts. In order to try this technique, you should divide a line into three parts and read it aloud. Once you feel that you are comfortable in doing that, divide every line into three parts.

What to learn

Never read word by word rather read by group of words.

Concentrate on First and Last alphabet of a Word

This is my favourite technique. Many friends and followers experienced 60-70% increase in their reading speed and hence their a reasonable impact on their score. I am sure you are understanding what I am saying, try to read this :-

What to learn

For any word, concentrate on the first and the last character of the word, practicing this technique will improve your reading speed by many times.

Never stop anywhere

Many people while reading a passage, stop at a point where they find difficulty and then look for its meaning and then move forward. This technique, although good, breaks the rhythm of then reader every now and then. So, its better to read everything at one go, and thereafter look for its meaning.

Improve your Vocabulary and Grammar

The more you understand a language, the more is your speed of reading. As when you become familiar with a language it becomes easy for you to get the meaning of word each time you read and with this your reading speed improves as you begin to grasp the context easily.

What to learn

Improve your grammar and vocabulary. You don’t need to do anything else, this is not a trick rather this is a scientific fact. I recommend you to buy these two book which I refer frequently

  • Word Power Made Easy
  • English grammar by Murphy

Practice more by reading online Blogs and Newspapers

Practice makes a man perfect. If you start reading newspapers and blogs, you will experience increase in your reading speed as well hold on language.

What to learn

Read newspaper everyday, you may also download newspaper apps on your smartphones. I read Indian Express. I love “The Hindu” but it is not available in my city, else it is my first choice. I won’t give any negative review those silly “AD FIRST” newspapers. Their main goal is to attract people with graphics and stupid news, whereas these newspapers are filled with ads and paid news. These are one of the top newspapers in India.


Practice Sets For Reading Comprehension

Finally some good news: The Central government has begun to recognise that women workers need adequate maternity protection. Of course, the new measures announced are still quite limited. The ministry of women and child development has decided to increase maternity leave from the current 12 weeks to 26 weeks and extend this to all women workers in both public and private employment. The ministry of labour is to require all establishments with 30 women workers or 50 total workers to provide crèche [kresh(A hospital where foundlings (infant children of unknown parents) are taken in and cared for)] facilities for their employees, either at the premises or within half a kilometre.
These are definitely welcome measures, apparently a response to low and declining rates of female work participation. India stands out in the world because of shockingly low rates of recognised work participation by women (around 24 per cent) that have even declined over the past decade. This obviously represents a huge economic loss for the country — but it is also a sign of the continuing low status of women and their lack of agency in Indian society.
As it happens, most women in India do indeed work, but they are involved not in paid employment but in unpaid work in their homes or communities. Such work is socially necessary but unsung and unrewarded — everything from cooking and cleaning to looking after the young, the old and the sick, to collecting fuel wood and water for households, to tending gardens and livestock, and so on. Bizarrely during the recent economic boom in India, official data suggests that more women have moved from paid or recognised employment to doing unpaid work in their households.
There are many factors behind this peculiar tendency. The sheer inadequacy of job creation in the economy makes it hard for women to find suitable jobs. Gender gaps in education also work against them. For less skilled women, available paid jobs tend to be physically arduous and pay much lower wages than for men. The double burden of paid work and unpaid work creates extreme time poverty for working women. So when family incomes improve even slightly (as they did in the previous decade when real wage rates were rising — something that is no longer the case) women may be less inclined to try and do both.
And there are other impediments to women working outside the home: Patriarchal attitudes within families and social restriction on mobility; concerns about commuting time and about security at work and during the commute; and the difficulties of managing domestic responsibilities along with the paid jobs, given the unequal division of household work between men and women within families.
So maternity leave for the actual period of childbirth and the immediate aftermath is only one of the many concerns that working women have — though it is in itself a big one. If the government does succeed in making private employers provide increased maternity leave and in providing crèches at or near workplaces, that will certainly be a step towards somewhat easing the double burden that working mothers face. It would put India (at least legally) in a better position than many other countries like the US, though still far behind more enlightened countries in northern and eastern Europe as well as Central Asia. Some countries like Canada and Australia even provide a year of parental leave, which can be shared between parents.

  1. Which of the following can be the suitable title of the passage?
    1) Working or non working Women
    2) Paid or unpaid working women
    3) What works for women at work
    4) Women at work
    5) None of these

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation: What works for women at work
  2. Choose the word which is MOST OPPOSITE in meaning of the word ‘ peculiar ‘ as used in the passage?
    1) Particular
    2) General
    3) Individual
    4) Intrinsic
    5) Strange

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 2)
    Explanation: General
  3. Which of the following statements is/ are true according to passage?
    1) If government increase maternity leave in jobs then it would put India in a better position than many other countries.
    2) Lack working participation by women obviously represents a huge economic loss for the country.
    3) Recently, official data suggests that more women have moved from paid employment to unpaid work in their households.
    4) All of above
    5) None of these

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation: All of above
  4. Choose the word which is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word ‘ impediments ‘ as used in the passage?
    1) Obstruction
    2) Boost
    3) Help
    4) Promotion
    5) Support

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 1)
    Explanation: Obstruction
  5. Choose the word which is MOST OPPOSITE in meaning of the word ‘ aftermath ‘ as used in the passage?
    1) Remainder
    2) Inception
    3) Issue
    4) Outcome
    5) Payoff

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 2)
    Explanation: Inception
  6. According to the author, why India stands out in the world ?
    1) Because of less skilled women in India.
    2) Inadequacy of job creation in the economy.
    3) Because of shockingly low rates of recognised work participation by women that have even declined over the past decade
    4) Because of Gender gaps in education.
    5) None of these

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation: Because of shockingly low rates of recognised work participation by women that have even declined over the past decade
  7. Choose the word which is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word ‘ Bizarrely ‘ as used in the passage?
    1) Usually
    2) Normally
    3) Generally
    4) Unusually
    5) Commonly

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation: Unusually
  8. Which of the following statements is/ are wrong according to the passage?
    A) Maternity leave has been extended 12 weeks to 20 week to all working women in private or public sector banks.
    B) Some countries like Canada and Australia even provide only few month parental leave.
    C) Gender gaps in education also work against for women.
    1) Only A and B
    2) Only A and C
    3) Only B and C
    4) All of these
    5) None of these

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 1)
    Explanation: Only A and B
  9. Choose the word which is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word ‘adequate’ as used in the passage?
    1) Inferior
    2) Unequal
    3) Insufficient
    4) Enough
    5) Unfit

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation: Enough
  10. According to the author, what are the obstructions to women working outside the home?
    1) The difficulties of managing domestic responsibilities along with the jobs.
    2) Concerns about commuting time and about security at work and during the commute.
    3) Patriarchal attitudes within families and social restriction on mobility.
    4) All of above
    5) None of these

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation: All of above

Once again, a vigorous monsoon so vital to India’s economic fortunes has left some States in a shambles. From Assam to Karnataka, heavy rainfall in a short span of time has created paralysing floods that have taken a heavy toll of life, wiped out crops and destroyed hard-earned assets. When the waters recede, a familiar cycle of assessment of damage by Central teams, preparation of loss estimates and expensive restoration work such as repairs to river embankments, will follow. In Assam, where 31 deaths have been recorded already, there are projects to strengthen the embankments of the heavily silted Brahmaputra; the Flood Control Department as well as the disaster relief force have well-funded budgets. Yet, the hundreds of crores of rupees periodically spent on flood preparation, relief and mitigation research in the State have not yielded a protocol that reduces the impact of heavy rain. The swollen river invariably dissolves the weak earthen embankments overnight. Now that another furious season is providing fresh insight into the causes, effects and impact of rain and floods in northeastern India and elsewhere, it is time the Centre took a coordinated view in tackling the crisis. To begin with, it has to review the efficacy of the flood forecasts issued by nearly 180 specialised stations now in operation, and the pattern of responses of the 19 States and Union Territories that receive these alerts.
Urban India is no less traumatised by floods, but city governments have not learnt too many lessons from devastation and losses. The scenes of gridlock and frustration in Gurgaon, Bengaluru and Delhi last week travelled around the world, just months after the disaster in Chennai. Can there be a surgical solution to sclerotic urban planning? Bengaluru is the epitome of governmental indifference to wetlands, most of which have been severely encroached upon or polluted. Being able to live with floods in today’s dense cities requires that these lakes be desilted and restored on a war footing. New artificial wetlands may have to be created to compensate for those that have already been built over. The spectacle of flooding and destruction should convince the Environment Ministry that it is retrograde to sanction large real estate projects without an environmental impact assessment. Some real estate companies have been slapped with penalties by the National Green Tribunal for encroaching upon lakes, but urban planning agencies are equally responsible and must also be called to account for tacitly sanctioning the violations. Provision of relief to those affected by the latest floods has to go beyond patronagepolitics, and meet the actual needs of the people, particularly those who have suffered extreme losses.

  1. What according to the passage are well-funded budgets?
    1) state governments
    2) the Flood Control Department as well as the disaster relief force
    3) the urban planning agencies as well as rural planning agencies
    4) the National Green Tribunal
    5) None of the above

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 2)
    Explanation: its option second; the Flood Control Department as well as the disaster relief force
  2. Which among the following is TRUE according to the passage given above?
    1) it has to review the efficacy of the flood forecasts issued by nearly 170 specialised stations now in operation, and the pattern of responses of the 29 States and Union Territories that receive these alerts
    2) the two hundred crores of rupees periodically spent on flood preparation, relief and mitigation research in the State have not yielded a protocol that reduces the impact of heavy rain
    3) Bengaluru is the epitome of governmental indifference to wetlands, most of which have been severely encroached upon or polluted
    4) Both A and B
    5) None of the above

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation: its option third; Bengaluru is the epitome of governmental indifference to wetlands, most of which have been severely encroached upon or polluted
  3. Which among the following is FALSE according to the passage given above??
    1) New artificial wetlands may have to be created to compensate for those that have already been built over
    2) Being able to live with floods in today’s dense cities requires that these lakes be desilted and restored on a war footing
    3) the Flood Control Department as well as the disaster relief force have well-funded budgets
    4) None of above
    5) All of the above

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation: its option forth which is none of above.
    All given options are correct hence, correct choice will be option forth.
  4. Which of the following is/are the companies have been slapped with penalties by the National Green Tribunal for encroaching upon lakes?
    1) some textile companies
    2) urban planning agencies
    3) some real states
    4) both A and C
    5) All of the above

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation: its option third; some real states.
  5. Which of the following would be a suitable title of the passage?
    1) urban planning
    2) urban infrastructure
    3) Return of the great deluge
    4) Bengaluru waterlogging
    5) civic infrastructure

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 3)
    Explanation: its option third ‘Return of the great deluge’ will be appropriate title for given passage.
  6. Which among the following is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word “patronage”?
    1) advocacy
    2) submission
    3) detraction
    4) opposition
    5) antagonism

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 1)
    Explanation: advocacy – public support for or recommendation of a particular cause or policy.
  7. Which among the following is MOST OPPOSITE in meaning to the word “spectacle”?
    1) exposition
    2) ordinariness
    3) marvel
    4) combined
    5) production

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 2)
    Explanation: ordinariness – a common or average situation, amount
  8. Which among the following is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word “sclerotic”?
    1) healthy
    2) detest
    3) steady
    4) diligent
    5) arthritic

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 5)
    Explanation: arthritic – affected by or associated with arthritis.
  9. Which among the following is MOST OPPOSITE in meaning to the word “swollen”?
    1) amplify
    2) alighted
    3) dazzled
    4) compress
    5) accumulate

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 4)
    Explanation: compress – flatten by pressure; squeeze or press.
  10. Which among the following is MOST SIMILAR in meaning to the word “shambles”?
    1) disarray
    2) scramble
    3) precipitation
    4) precipitance
    5) surge

    Answer & Explanation
    Answer – 1)
    Explanation: disarray – a state of disorganization or untidiness.

Directions: Read the following passage and answer the questions that follows.

July 15, 2010 turned out to be a historic day, as the Indian rupee got much awaited symbol, just like other leading currencies of the world, viz Dollar, Euro, Pound Sterling and the Yen. The new symbol of rupee is an amalgamation of Devanagari ‘Ra’ and the Roman ‘R’ without the stem. Till now, the rupee was written in various abbreviated forms in different languages.

The new symbol designed by IIT Bombay post-graduate shri D Udaya Kumar was approved by the Union Cabinet on July 15. “It is a big statement on the Indian currency. The symbol would lend a distinctive character and identity to the currency and further highlight the strength and global face of the indian economy,” said Information and Broadcasting minister Smt. Ambika Soni, while briefing the media on the Cabinet decision.

The new symbol will not be printed or embossed on currency notes or coins, but it would be included in the ‘Unicode Standard’ to ensure that it is easily displayed and printed in the electronic and print media.The encoding of the rupee symbol in the Indian standards is estimated to take about six months while encoding in the Unicode and ISO/IEC 10646 will take about 18 months to two years. It will also be incorporated in software packages and keyboards for use in India.

On March 5, 2009 the Government announced a contest to create a symbol, which would reflect and capture the Indian ethos and culture. Over 3000 entries were received, which were evaluated by a jury headed by the deputy governor, RBI, which also included experts from three reputed art and design institutes. The Jury selected five entries to the Govt. to take a final decision.

Shri Udaya Kumar’s entry was the ‘Best of Five’. He will get an award of Rs. 2.5 Lakh and more than an incredible fame, as the designer of the rupee symbol. “My design is a perfect blend of Indian and Roman letters— capital ‘R’ and devanagari “Ra” which represents rupiah, to appeal to international and Indian audiences. .. It is based on the tricolour, with two lines at the top and white space in between.”a visibly-happy kumar said.

The genesis of the word ‘rupee’ is in the sanskrit word ‘raupya’ which means silver. Indian Rupee is variously called ‘rupaya’ in Hindi, ‘rupiya’ in Gujarati’, ‘roopayi’ in ‘Telugu’ and ‘kannada’.’rubai’ in Tamil and ‘rupyakam’ in sanskrit. However in Eastern India it is called ‘Taka/Toka’ in Bengali and assamese and ‘tanka’ in Oriya.

India stands among the earliest to issue coin, and a result it has seen a wide range of monetary units throughout its history. There is some historical evidence to show that coins may have been introduced the first time some time between 2500 and 1750 BC.

  1. Who is the Union Information and broadcasting Minister ?
    A) Smt Sushma Swaraj
    B) Smt Meera Kumar
    C) Smt Pratibha Devisingh Patil
    D) Smt Ambika Soni
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  2. What is the Importance of 15 July in the history of Indian rupee?
    A) The new Rupee symbol replaced the old.
    B) The international community approved the Rupee symbol.
    C) The cabinet approved the much-awated Rupee symbol.
    D) Both (1) and (3)
    E) None of these.

    View Answer
      Option C
  3. Which of the following countries has a currency symbol ?
    A) China
    B) France
    C) Singapore
    D) Germany
    E) not mentioned

    View Answer
      Option E
  4. Who has designed the newly approved Rupee symbol?
    A) A teacher posted IIT Bombay
    B) Mr. Udaya Kumar of Maharashtra
    C) Mr D Udaya Kumar a postgraduate
    D) Information and Broadcasting Minister.
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option C
  5. The new design of rupees “₹” finds its origin in
    A) Devanagri
    B) Roman
    C) Devanagri and Sanskrit
    D) devanagri and Roman
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  6. What is the importance of new Rupee symbol?
    A) It highlights the strength of the Indian economy.
    B) Now Indian rupee gets value like Dollar, Pound Sterling, Euro Yen
    C) Now most of the the foreign countries will maintain their foreign exchages reserves in Rupees.
    D) Now it will be a fully convertible currency.
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option A
  7. Where is the genesis of the term ‘rupees’?
    A) It has been derived from Sanskrit word ‘Raupaya’.
    B) It finds its origin in the term ‘Raupaya’ of Hindi.
    C) ‘Rupiyo’ in Gujarati
    D) ‘Roopayi’ in Tamil and Kannada
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option A
  8. What does ‘Raupaya’ mean in Sanskrit?
    A) NGold
    B) Diamond
    C) Silver
    D) Bronze
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option C
  9. What is Rupee called in Oriya?
    A) Taka
    B) Toka
    C) Rupyakam
    D) Tanka
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  10. When was the first coin introduced?
    A) Between 250 and 750 BC
    B) Between 2500 and 1750 AD
    C) Between 250 and 759 AD
    D) Between 2500 and 1750 BC
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  11. When was the process to develop a new rupee symbol initiated?
    A) 15 July 2010
    B) 5 June 2009
    C) 5 March 2009
    D) 31 January 2010
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option C
  12. Which among the following methods did the govt. Adopt to get the new symbol?
    A) All the leading artists were asked to design
    B) A contest was announced for the purpose
    C) The contestants were interviewed
    D) The governor of RBI was asked to decide the process.
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option B
  13. What do the two lines of the esign mean?
    A) They reflect the federal structure of the govt.
    B) They reflect the mixed structure of Indian Economy
    C) They reflect the new liberlised Indian economy
    D) they reflect the true-colour Indian flag
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  14. How many designs were sent to the Govt. For approval?
    A) 3000
    B) 2000
    C) 10 out of 3000
    D) 5 out of more than 3000
    E) None of these

    View Answer
    Option D

Directions: Read the following passage and answer the questions that follows.

NOVEMBER 8th was not just the day of Donald Trump’s election. It was also when Indians found out most banknotes would lose all value unless promptly exchanged. Ever since, many have expected their patience in enduring the ensuing chaos to be rewarded in some way. Might scrapped cash unredeemed by presumed tax-dodgers be recycled into a lump-sum payment to each and every citizen? Or would the annual budget, presented on February 1st, be full of giveaways ahead of a string of state elections? In the event, the budget was restrained to the point of dullness. But the government’s closely-watched “economic survey”, released the previous day, hinted at a much bigger giveaway in the works: a universal basic income (UBI) payable to every single Indian. The idea of a cash payment made to citizens irrespective of their wealth is centuries old. It has become newly fashionable in some rich countries, among both left-wing thinkers (who like its redistributive aspects) and their right-wing foes (who think it results in a less meddlesome state). The idea has had its fans in India: a small UBI scheme was launched as a pilot in the state of Madhya Pradesh in 2010.

Its inclusion in the annual survey, a breeding ground for policies that was drafted by the government’s chief economic adviser, Arvind Subramanian, gives a new focus for fans of the measure (and its opponents). A UBI is usually discussed in abstract terms. There is now a proposed amount: 7,620 rupees ($113) a year. Equivalent to less than a month’s pay at the minimum wage in a city, it is well short of what anyone might need to lead a life of leisure. But it would cut absolute poverty from 22% to less than 0.5%. Mr Subramanian also provides an outline of how it would be paid for. Crucially, the money would largely come from recycling funds from around 950 existing welfare schemes, including those that offer subsidised food, water, fertiliser and much else besides. Altogether these add up to roughly the 5% of GDP he thinks his version of UBI would cost. Starting such a programme from scratch would take up around half the central government’s annual budget, such is the pitiful state of direct-tax collection in India.

The pros of UBI are clear: India is keen in theory to help its poor, but not very good at it in practice. Much of its welfare subsidies ends up in the hands of the relatively rich, who are more likely to make use of air-conditioned trains or cooking gas—or able to bribe the bureaucrats in charge of deciding who deserves subsidies. In-kind benefits are pilfered by middlemen who would find it harder to get at payments made to beneficiaries’ bank accounts. Mr Subramanian acknowledges that managing the transition to a new system would be difficult. In much of India, citizens have to travel at least 3km (2 miles) to get to a bank. Digital payments are still a minority pursuit. One advantage of the proliferation of welfare schemes is that if one of them fails to pay out, others might. Another obstacle is that a fair few billionaires would also benefit from a truly universal UBI. Telling an illiterate farmer that a food-in-kind scheme he has used for decades is being scrapped to finance a programme that will put him on par with Mukesh Ambani, a tycoon who lives in a 27-storey house, will not be a vote-winner. In truth, Mr Subramanian’s proposal stops a little short of true universality: for his sums to add up, take-up must be limited to just 75% of Indians. That means either a return to flawed means-testing, or a hope that the better-off will voluntarily opt out.

Implementing a UBI would be easier in India in one important way: getting the money to recipients. Well over 1bn Indians now have biometric identification cards, known as Aadhaar. The system can handle money, usually by diverting incoming payments to a bank account linked to an Aadhar number. A blast of cash to all citizens enrolled in the scheme would be a feasible way to distribute the money—though that would mean everyone got money, including the conspicuously rich. It will take time before 1.3bn Indians receive such a transfer. Keen as Mr Subramanian is, he concludes that UBI is “a powerful idea whose time even if not ripe for implementation is ripe for serious discussion.” For now the government is focused on meeting its long-held 3% deficit target, which it expects to miss by just 0.2 percentage points next year, and on the aftermath of “demonetisation”. But the idea will not go away. It may seem folly in a country home to over a quarter of the world’s truly poor to give people money for nothing. But it would be a swift, efficient way to make it home to far fewer of them.

  1. What is false regarding UBI?
    i. UBI will be directly beneficial to the end customer.
    ii. UBI will be beneficial to poor.
    iii. UBI contributes 5 % of GDP
    A) Only i
    B) Both i and ii
    C) Both i and iii
    D) All of these
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option C
    Refer to para 1 and 3.
  2. What, according to the passage, is the advantage of possessing an Aadhar?
    A) facilitates distribution of money
    B) Benefits 75% of Indians
    C) End customer will be directly benefitted.
    D) Only A and C
    E) All of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  3. Explain the term “to make it home”:
    A) to get the desired result
    B) to get a home
    C) to be successful
    D) to be satisfied
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option C
    to make it somewhere= to be successful in getting there
  4. What, according to the passage, is true about Mr.Subramanian ?
    A) He is the chief secretary of India.
    B) He drafted UBI and explained how it will work.
    C) He acknowledges transition to a new system is easier.
    D) Both B and C
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option B
  5. Write the most appropriate antonym of”pilfered” :
    A) fliched
    B) abstract
    C) returned
    D) fleeced
    E) lifted

    View Answer
      Option C
    pilfered = steal things of little value
  6. What are the advantages of UBI?
    A) payable to every indian
    B) would benefit end customer
    C) cost 5% of GDP
    D) All of these
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  7. What is the tone of the passage?
    A) Informative
    B) Optimistic
    C) Anxious
    D) Sad
    E) Amazed

    View Answer
      Option B
    Though informative, the author is quite optimistic about UBI. Mr. Subramanian’s remark in the last para and the concluding lines “an efficient way to make it home” defines all
  8. Write the most appropriate synonym of “conspicuously”:
    A) notably
    B) cognitively
    C) blurrily
    D) covertly
    E) gradually

    View Answer
      Option A
    conspicuously = clearly visible, attractive
  9. What, according to author, is expected by Indian public?
    A) a miracle after demonetization
    B) a lump-sum payment
    C) giveaways in the upcoming budget
    D) Both B and C
    E) None of these

    View Answer
      Option D
  10. What is the title of the passage?
    A) India’s welfare schemes
    B) India and UBI
    C) UBI for everyone
    D) Rupees for nothing
    E) Mr. Subramanian and Indian Economy

    View Answer
      Option D
    As UBI will provide  free cash to the citizens, hence the title Rupees for nothing.


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