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Question type 5 of 9: Other completion questions in IELTS reading


Question type 5 of 9: Other completion questions in IELTS readingQuestion type 5 of 9: Other completion questions in IELTS reading. On this page, we will look at the fifth of the 9 types of question used in the IELTS reading test – other completion questions.

What do I have to do for other completion questions in IELTS reading?

‘Other’ completion questions are the group of questions when you have to add missing information to the information you are given. This includes finding the missing words for summaries, tables, flowcharts and notes. Here are some examples:

Summary completion:

Complete the summary below.

Choose NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS from the passage for each answer.

Write your answers in boxes 1 – 5 on your answer sheet

Table completion:

Type of yoga Difficulty Focus Additional info
Bikram Though Beginner postures are used, it is physically challenging due to 1.____ Strengthening of the body on a physical and cellular level. Heated room allows detoxification of the body and encourages 2.___
Iyengar Suited for those unused to exercise. Improving 3.____ Good for people of all abilities.




• 1. _______ of mono-unsaturated fatty acids.
• Lowers risk of 2. _______ (reduces LDL / increases HDL cholesterol levels).
• Vitamin E and phenols in 3. _______ oil
• Defence against 4. _______ problems (example: colon cancer)

What is this question type testing my ability to do?

Summary, table, flowchart and notes completion questions all test your ability to locate and understand specific information in the reading passage. The skills you need for these questions are the same, so we will look at them as one type of question.

What are the best steps for answering other completion questions in IELTS reading?

There are 5 steps that we recommend following for this question type:

Step 1 – Read: Read any headings, labels, notes or other information given.

Step 2 – Keywords: Identify the keywords that will help you locate the area of the passage

Step 3 – Identify:  Find the relevant area of the passage

Step 4 – Read: Read the section of the passage (step 3) in detail

Step 5 – Confirm:  Confirm your answer

What useful tips are there for this question type?

  • TIP 1: If the instructions state ‘NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS AND/OR A NUMBER’, at least one of the answers is a number
  • TIP 2: Wrong spelling will cost you a point
  • TIP 3: Answers in a specific area but NOT necessarily in the order of text
  • TIP 4: Consider the grammar of the section you are completing
  • TIP 5:  Sometimes answers can be split with ‘and’ / ‘or’. (E.g. Used by many as a way to combat the __ and ___of a busy life)
  • TIP 6: For ‘split’ questions, answers may have to be in separate boxes

What are the common errors with this question type?

One of the most common errors with this question type is writing more words than the limit allows. Another common error is writing the answer to split questions in the SAME answer box, when the 2 options should have been in separate boxes.

Now practice!

Click the link in the table below to test your skills with other completion questions in IELTS reading


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