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The Reading Comprehension section of the HF Exam

Types of text given on the HF Reading Comprhension:

Texts you are given are  usually discursive and persuasive, i.e. they discuss and take a position on an issue. They may be from a quality journal or newspaper, such as the Guardian, New York Times  or  Economist. It will help you prepare for the exam  if you regularly read  these and similar magazines, newspapers and websites; look  more at the  Commment and Opinion pages, not just news summaries, as mere news papges tend to be just descriptive. 

It is important that when you read for self-study and practice, you consider

  • the overall position of the author
  • where in the text the author is giving his  opinion and when  he is simply referring to opinions of other people

Types of questions on the HF Reading Comprehension

The first few questions (usually 5 questions) on the HF Reading Comprehension section  are  multiple choice. Of the four possible answers, only one is the right answer.

These are followed by  some  general or written answer  questions. Usually there are two of these.

These written answer questions will need answering in English. You do not always have to use complete senteces but the answers must be complete and give as much relevant information as possible.

Note that prior to Summer Semester 2006 we had on the exam questions asking you to paraphrase a sentence or phrase. These are no longer asked on the HF exam.