CPE Reading Strategies Task I Summarize 1 or more of the authors’ ideas on a given topic Draw a relationship between (compare) aspects of the readings Analyze and evaluate (give your response to) an aspect of the readings Relate the content of the readings to your experiences or beliefs Analyze the Reading: Vocabulary Go back and check the meaning of circled words and phrases. Identify key words Write a brief definition of those words in the margin or at the bottom of the page. Analyze the Reading Re-read the essay slowly and carefully. Isolate the single most important generalization the author makes: the thesis. Follow the author’s line of thought What is the structure of the author’s argument? Thesis The thesis determines the structure!!! Thesis: the generalization the author is trying to prove. What is the author trying to prove? Thesis may be in stated in one place, at the beginning or at the end, or sometimes it is never stated directly. When you get the main idea, find the thesis and underline it. If there are several that appear to be the thesis, they probably fit together, some supporting one main idea. Reread the Essay for Structure What are the main divisions in the essay? If there is an introduction, draw a line under it and label it ‘intro’. Where is the body? What are the main points made in the body? What points does the writer make to prove the thesis? Are some paragraphs just illustrations of a main point? Are some paragraphs transitions from one point to another? Structural Divisions Locate the points in each structural division: what is the topic sentence of each important paragraph? Underline the topic sentence. Sometimes the topic sentence is at the beginning and sometimes at the end of the paragraph. Skeleton of the Argument The thesis and the main points are the skeleton of the author’s argument Follow the author’s reasoning by tracing the argument Use transitional or structural words like ‘but’ ‘moreover’ or ‘on the other hand’ to figure out the relationship between the points. What is the main point that the author is trying to make? Write out a thesis statement for the entire essay. Mark up the long reading. What is the author’s main claim or main idea? What is the thesis? What does the author use as a support for his or her thesis? How convincing do you find the author’s argument? Which parts or ideas are most convincing? Which least? How could the reading be used for Task I? What sections(s) of the reading might the test focus on? What theme(s) might the test ask you to write about? What personal experiences or observations could you relate to the ideas and main points in the reading?