Important Details of Reading Comprehension Under ISEE

4 Important Aspects of ISEE Reading Comprehension Questions

The ISEE admission assessment for private schools in the U.S. includes a Reading Comprehension section, wherein the students are provided with grade-appropriate reading passages, followed by questions on those passages. The objective of this test section is to assess the ability of the students to evaluate and comprehend the information in the reading passages and thereafter, make appropriate inferences from them. This article focuses on the key aspects of Reading questions, such as a description of the question types that will appear in this section of the exam, their ordering etc.

The 4 Key Aspects of the ISEE Reading Comprehension Test:

The key characteristics of this section are listed as follows:

  1. Number of Questions

    In the lower-level test, 5 questions for every reading passage (there are 5 passages in total) are provided to the students. Hence, there are a total of 25 such questions that are posed at this level.

    In the middle and upper-level ISEE Reading tests, 6 questions per reading passage (there are 6 reading passages in total) are provided. Hence, there are a total of 36 such questions that are posed at these levels.

  2. The Design of Questions

    The questions of Reading test, are designed to be grade-appropriate and curriculum-based. All the questions are framed based on the standards established by the National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE). The questions are generally from 6 categories established by the NCTE (at all the levels of the test). Each question has 4 answer options, of which one is the correct answer. The 6 question categories and appropriate examples are listed as follows:

    • Main Theme QuestionsThe questions in this category test the ability of the students in understanding the central theme in the passages.
    • Supporting Ideas’ QuestionsThe questions in this category are designed to assess the ability of the students to identify and understand all the supporting ideas in the passages that strengthen their main theme.
    • Inferential QuestionsThe questions of this section evaluate the skills of the students in analyzing and interpreting the results or conclusions that may not be explicitly stated in the passages, but can be implied or inferred from the statements in those passages.
    • Synonyms/VocabularyThe questions in this category ask for the meaning and context of words and phrases mentioned in the passages.
    • StructureThe questions in this category probe the students on the way the ideas in the passages are organized and require the students to determine a particular sequence of events or the relationships between entities in the passages.
    • StyleThe questions that belong to this category evaluate the ability of the students to understand the underlying tone, style and main standpoint of the passages. Apart from this, some questions that require the students to identify the figurative parts of speech (such as metaphors, similes, ironies etc.) in phrases and words are also included in this category.
  3. The Ordering of Questions

    At all levels of the ISEE test, the questions in all the sections (except the Reading Comprehension section) are generally ordered in the ascending order of their level of difficulty. Hence, the easier questions appear first followed by the difficult ones. However, in the Reading test, the questions are ordered logically based on the content that appears in the passages.

  4. The Scoring of Questions

    The questions of this section are scanned and scored electronically, wherein the total number of correct answers is calculated. No negative points are awarded for incorrect answers. The total number of correct answers is called a raw score, which is then converted to a scaled score. The scaled score for these questions is added to the scaled scores of the other test sections to arrive at a total scaled score.

Thus, we have discussed in detail the chief aspects of the Reading Comprehension questions, along with examples. We hope this information has provided you with a clear idea of what kind of questions to expect in this test. Best of luck to all the ISEE applicants!