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Find What's Important in the Question

It cannot be stressed enough that before you attempt to answer a question, you must first understand the question. This understanding is achieved by carefully reading each word in the question. Let's look at the following sample test question:

All of the following are true regarding the functions of the United Nations, except:

If you read this question and didn't see the word except at the end, you would be looking for statements that are true regarding the United Nations. The question is asking you to identify something that is not true.

It would be easy to miss the word except if you're not careful. It's the last word in the statement. Your mind wants to "take a peek" at the responses and, before you reach the end of the question, your eyes begin to drift toward the possible answers. Don't jump the gun. Read the question carefully and underline the word except.

If we change the United Nations question slightly to read:

Which of the following is not a function of the United Nations?

Here again, if you're not careful, you may miss the word not in the question, especially if you're running short of time to complete the test and you're reading very quickly. If you slow down a bit and read the question carefully, you would probably underline the word not. In addition, you also should underline or focus on the words function and United Nations.

You have to crawl before you walk. You have to crawl through the question before you walk through the responses to select your answer.