In comprehension passage in WAEC, the thought of the writer are presented to the students for reading, understanding and explaining.therefore, comprehension is a process of reading, understanding and explaining what is written in a passage(s).
This thoughts are based on points, expressions, use of grammatical words, synonyms and vocabularies. The comprehension is to test your reading understanding of the passage . Your reading will be tested through your interpretation or explanation of the content, point or idea of the passage in your own words.
NOTE: Do not copy word to word from the passage which you feels answers the questions and do not concern yourself with the correctness of the facts of information if you feel they are myths in the passage. Do not allow your belief or opinion of the passage affect your answers.
Do answer the questions with the original thought and your understanding of the passage.
STEP BY STEP APPROACH TO COMPREHENSION PASSAGE
Comprehension demand a careful reading understanding through skills (studying and practicing) and the ability to read the passage with great understanding of the subject matter or theme of the passage and the topic sentence
- Read the questions of the comprehension passages to know the main point and significant point that answers the questions one after the other
- Notice the attitude of the author of the comprehension passage and the subjects
- Your total understanding is required and you can go back to the questions and start answering each of the questions one after the other . Use one answer for a question and your own word or expression to show that you really understand the passage fully.
- You are free to make reference to the word used in the comprehension passage but do not copy word to word as an answer
- Where comparison is mentioned in the passage, your answer should indicate or show your understanding of the passage.
- In the section where the candidate is asked to replace a word or phrase with another word or phrase, the word should give terms of meaning and collocation. A word or phrase in a noun or adjective in tense aspect should be in the same or similar form of verb
- The answers should always make a complete sense in relation to the understanding of the passage before it can be accepted for scoring
- Spell your words correctly and your answer should be error free grammatically
- Half a mark is deducted at each scoring point for grammatical or expression error you commit.
- Where you give two answers to a question and one of them is wrong, you are to be awarded zero.
- Where words/expressions are used to replace another words/expressions in the passage, but do not fit in perfectly (in terms of part of speech, tense or number), you will be awarded zero.
- Present your answers in your own words. However, if you are asked to quote from the passage you must lift and don’t change word.
- Read through your question manuals for practical demonstrations of what we have discussed. It is very important to do this.
UNDERSTANDING THE MAIN IDEA OF A COMPREHENSION PASSAGE
The main idea of a comprehension passage is the most essential part of a story or any piece of writing: the nucleus. The main idea of a piece of writing can usually be located if you can determine what the topic or subject is.
To find the topic, ask yourself the simple question, ‘What is this passage about?’ The main idea, therefore, is the chief point a writer is making.
Read a comprehension passage below and give it a title of your own to reflect the main idea or the story line. The story flows from the topic or subject of discussion.
Each paragraph contains a topic sentence. The topic sentence is the statement under which other part of the paragraph can fit. It could be located at the beginning, within or at the end of the paragraph.
Sometimes the main idea in a piece of writing are inferred. This means that they are not explicitly stated. A paragraph or a comprehension passage may lack a topic sentence, but that does not mean that it lacks main ideas.
You will need , therefore, to figure out the implied idea by deciding on the point of all the details. You must ask yourself:
- What is the main point the author (writer) is trying to make with these detail?
- Do all or most parts of the paragraphs or passage support this idea?
- Your answer is a pointer to the main ideas or story line.