The 47 ATI TEAS Reading Test questions can be divided into three subcategories, in these approximate percentages:
As you can see, about half of the questions require thorough comprehension of reading material. The other half, or about 53%, ask you to take that understanding and apply it to questions that analyze the content (Integration of Knowledge and Ideas) and/or the author’s craft (Craft and Structure). Here is what you need to know to successfully answer these reading questions. If any of them seem difficult, you should seek additional study materials focusing on those specific topics.
Topics covered in these questions concern what is explicitly stated in the text, including all the various details presented. You will be looking for facts and further information about those facts as you answer the questions.Questions also ask about things that can be inferred from the reading, but may not be explicitly stated. Be sure you can thoughtfully read and understand the written word and draw reasonable conclusions from it.
An author provides support for his or her statements in a passage by adding details. You must look for those supporting details and be able to connect them to the premise the author is supporting.
To answer a question concerning a trend or pattern revealed in written communication, you must look for details that indicate the truth of that trend or pattern. There must be evidence it is true and there must not be evidence that refutes its existence. Look for details that prove the point.
To come to a conclusion after reading a passage or studying a graph or other written material, you must be able to find details that lead you to that conclusion or support it. For example, it is not correct to conclude that all college students skip class unless there are statistics in a passage or graph that prove that fact. An author’s statement to that effect is not enough—you need proof.
Some of the questions include a reading passage, while others may reference a chart, graph, poster, memo, or other type of written communication. You need to be adept at finding the details provided in each of these formats. For example, to understand a graph, you need to be able to read and understand all of its parts, as well as see the picture it provides, as a whole. Here are some valuable tools to use as you decipher various forms of text.
Headings and Subheadings—A longer piece often needs to be broken up and simplified by the use of headings and subheadings. A heading identifies a section of text, while a subheading either identifies a more specific aspect of that section or goes into greater detail on the subject.
Bold Text and Italics—Bold text and italics are used to draw attention to a word. Bold makes the word stand out and is typically used to highlight key words. Italics is not used to make a word stand out, but is used to emphasize a word to give it greater power or importance.
Graphic Features—Although words are powerful, graphic representations of information can beautifully supplement the written word and more effectively illustrate facts, figures, and statistics. When considering graphic features, you may be looking at graphs, scales, maps (with legends and keys), and charts. Graphs, scales, and charts are usually used to display facts and figures, while maps are used to illustrate location. Be sure to read all captions, headings, and other information included with the graphic feature carefully. The graph or chart included may support the text given or it may present the opposite point of view on the subject.
One type of reading prompt on this test is a set of directions. Watch for key words in these, such as after and while, because the order of directions is very important. Sometimes, you will be asked to actually follow a set of directions to answer a question. Here, missing a step or doing the steps out of order can cause you to choose an incorrect answer.
There are some tricky parts of questions about details. First, the written passage or other prompt may include a lot of information that is irrelevant to the questions you are asked. You need to be able to filter this out and find the details you seek.
Second, the question may not be worded to include exactly what is stated in the prompt. It may use different words, with essentially the same meaning. You will need to figure out if the detail in the prompt actually matches what the question asks. To do this, you need to read carefully, without interjecting any of your own thoughts or previous knowledge—just go by what the author actually says.