This part of the exam is split into 2 different exams, The reading part and the Use of English part. In total there are 7 parts to this exam and you have 1hr 15 mins to complete it. Part 1, 5, 6, and 7 are Reading, and part 2, 3, and, 4 are towards the Use of English exam. Here we are going to take a deeper look into the reading parts.
PART 1 - MULTIPLE-CHOICE CLOZE
In the first part of the exam, you will see a text that has 8 gaps. You need to complete the text using the given choices (A, B, C, OR D) to each question. You will receive one mark for each correct answer.
Remember that there are 8 gaps in total.
This part will test your understanding of the vocabulary used as well as your knowledge of phrasal verbs, collocations, idioms, fixed phrases, just to name a few.
Some of the choices of words are very similar in meaning, so it is up to you to work which one.
Look at the preposition given because this will give you a clue to the answer and, also thinking about the general context of the sentence and what point it is trying to make will help too.
As mentioned before, parts 2, 3, and 4 are Use of English. So we are going to continue to part 5. For this part, you have a long text to read about a particular subject and be given 6 questions to answer with 4 choices of answers. Each correct response is worth 2 points.
The topic of the text can range from various of different subjects, as you can see, the example I’m using today is about Artic ice management. The text are normally between 4-5 paragraphs.
This will test your reading for detail and understanding of the writer’s opinion, attitude, purpose, and main ideas.
Example of questions could be:
The questions will go in order with the text… However, be careful, just because it has the same word in the answer as in the text… It´s probably NOT the answer. So always double-check!
Now you will have a long text with 6 gaps, and you need to fill in the gaps with the options of 7 different sentences. You do not need to use one sentence. Each correct answer is worth 2 marks.
This can be difficult as some of the sentences are similar. But try to keep in mind the structure of the text, if the sentence sounds like a conclusion, then it is most likely not going to be for the opening paragraph.
Also, consider the following:
NAMES & PRONOUNS
…and when I stopped, I saw Jack. ____________.
A possible answer could be – “He was just waiting…….”
A possible answer could be – “However, that idea soon changed….”
….actresses were known for these roles. _______.
A possible answer could be – “These days though has changed…..”
Think of these when answering and reread it to make sure that it all connects without it sounding too strange.
And for the last part of this exam, it requires you to read 4 different texts about a subject. In each text, You are reading for specific information, detail, opinion, and attitude about the subject. Then there are 10 statements, and you need to match them to the text. There is only one possible answer to each statement. There is one point for every correct answer.
Then, some examples of statement could be:
One way to do this is to find synonyms – if a word is in both the text and a question it is probably NOT the answer. Cambridge won’t make it that easy!
A lot of the questions are about people’s thoughts and feelings, so learn as much of that vocabulary as possible. Such as words for regret, accusation, acceptance, etc…
- Read for fun – The more you read, the quicker to be able to go through the given text and improve you understanding of it.
- Study synonyms and antonyms – It is always useful to know other words that mean the same.
- Only give one answer for each question. Giving two options will lose you marks.
- Don’t spend too much time on one question or part of a paper if you are finding it difficult. Move on and go back to it at the end. Time management is key!
- Always try to write an answer and not leave any blank spaces on the answer sheet.
Once the exam have been completed, B2 First results are then reported on the Cambridge English Scale.
You will receive a separate score for each of the four skills (reading, writing, listening and speaking) and use of English, giving you a clear understanding of your performance. These five scores are averaged to give you an overall result for the exam. You will also be given a grade and Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) level.
Feel like you need to practice some exercises? Or want to try out the other parts of the exam?
If you have any questions, you can contact us anytime. Good luck with your exam!