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OC Reading Test | Essential Guide [With Tips and Sample Papers to Ace the Test]

Written by Shefali Sundram

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The OC Reading Test is used to assess a student’s verbal and critical thinking ability. It can, however, be a challenging test for students who do not have practice in reading passages and comprehension questions.

OC Reading Section is the first of the three sections in the Opportunity Class Test. The other two are OC Mathematical Reasoning Section and OC Thinking Skills Section.

In this article, we will cover, the types of questions, the format of questions as well as some tips that will help you ace the OC Reading test.

Let’s dive straight in

What is the structure of the OC Reading Test

The OC Reading Test is the section of the OC test that assesses a student’s verbal reasoning and critical thinking ability.

This test is for Year 4 students for a place in academically selective Year 5 Opportunity Classes. In this test, students are given various texts to read and then asked questions about the texts.

Students are given a reading test paper with 25 multiple-choice questions to answer in 30 minutes during this test.

The OC reading test is the first test to be conducted on the day of the test. 

Test segment FormatNumber of questionsDuration
Reading Paper Based2530 minutes
Structure of the OC Reading Test

What kind of questions are there in an OC Reading Test

The OC reading test comprises passages that you need to read and multiple choice questions which you will answer based on the passage. It basically is to evaluate your comprehension ability and to test your understanding.

Typically the OC Reading test has two comprehension questions along with four short extracts.

Usually, you need to find answers to questions based on comprehension, know the inferred meaning of a literal text, and guess phrases.

The three basic types of questions that are always asked in the OC reading test are:

  • Find Answers: You must scan the comprehension so that you can spot some specifics in the reading and know what is essential according to the questions asked. Do not miss out on details, reading accurately is important. 
  • Guess Phrases and Meanings: It is important to know the meaning of words but of course, you would be seeing certain words for the first time and that is why it is important that you know how to guess the meaning by understanding the context and seeing what fits best. 
  • Know the inferred meaning from the text: Students must be able to find the appropriate meaning specific to the question for this skill. Furthermore, students must select the correct meaning from a variety of other meanings presented in the passage. Finding the inferred meaning precedes finding the literal meaning. Students are asked to read a passage and then draw conclusions about the situation. Students must be able to read between the lines by considering the writer’s word choice in order to do so.

Sample OC Reading Test questions

For example, this is the sample paper on the official NSW website which has various extracts, there are two extracts with the respective questions asked: 

Make sure to go through these sample tests and practice them for a better understanding of the OC reading test. 

Skills you should possess to ace the OC Reading Test

  • You should be able to find answers to the questions: Finding information entails searching for answers to the questions given to you. For example, suppose you are asked, “What did the character do after waking up in the morning?” Look for the answer in the passage where it is mentioned and mark your response appropriately. You can read the questions before you start reading the passage in this way you will be aware of what exactly you are looking for.
  • You should be familiar with phrases and be able to guess words: You may see many words for the first time, making it difficult to understand what the text is saying. Make learning to read words with context a habit.
  • It is critical that you understand a text’s literal and inferred meanings: These questions require you to summarize a portion of the text or the entire text in order to determine the literal idea or meaning being conveyed. You must select the correct meaning from a variety of meanings presented in the passage. It’s critical that you can read between the lines and determine the author’s tone. It is critical that you practice reading long texts because it will help you and save time when you take the test.
  • To ace this test, you must practice daily: It is critical to maintain consistency and focus in order to ace the test. Regularity in practice will help you gain an understanding of how the test will actually work. 

How to prepare for the OC Reading Test

You should be familiar with the OC test and its format. As mentioned above, the OC reading section involves finding meanings of words, guessing meanings or phrases, and knowing the inferred meaning of a text to be exact. You should be aware of the test’s details because they will help you know what to expect from yourself.

Make a timetable for yourself that you will stick to. Set aside time for each subject based on your strengths and weaknesses. It is essential that you follow a set schedule in order to cover all the segments of the test.

Maintain a strict timetable and it is important that you set aside a specific time for each test and know where to prioritize your time. 

The questions on the OC test are of varying difficulty comes up when solving reading comprehension. Some questions may be difficult to understand, while others may be difficult to read. When your child encounters questions like these, you want him or her to know exactly how to respond.

Reading comprehension comes into play here. If your child understands what is being asked of him or her, he or she will have a much easier time finding the correct answers. You should begin reading passages and taking practice tests. These are some books that will help you practice reading comprehension

While you practice and read passages there is a possibility that you might not know the meaning of certain words so make sure you mark those words and look up the meanings. It’s essential for you to know the meanings of the words, thus you could start going through the dictionary as well. You will feel much more confident once you try improving your vocabulary.

Here are a few books for OC Test Prep that will help you to improve your comprehension and vocabulary

OC Reading Test sample papers

It is beneficial to practice sample test papers because they will provide you with an accurate representation of the OC test.

Each practice test contains two parts, part 1 and part 2. Each section of the OC test contains 25 questions and has a time limit of 30 minutes. 

The links to sample papers of the OC reading test are given below:

Please carefully read through the directions before starting your test. You will have two chances. At the end of the test, your first attempt will show you whether you were right or wrong, and your second try will show you the correct answers.

Make sure to practice the sample papers to get familiar with the structure of the OC Reading Section.

Tips to crack the OC Reading Test

  • If you are struggling with the OC reading test, begin by reading comprehension passages and practicing sample questions. Set aside time for this and prioritize this section of the OC test.
  • Make a distraction-free environment for yourself by creating a safe and comfortable study environment.
  • Take frequent breaks in between to help you concentrate better.
  • It is absolutely essential to revise. For example, if you are unfamiliar with certain word meanings and learn them during the day, it will be beneficial if you review them at night, sort of like a short recap.
  • While practicing, review your mistakes and take note of where you went wrong.
  • If you are running out of time on the test, try limiting your reading time by first looking at the questions. This way, you’ll know exactly what you’re looking for and what’s most important.
  • Every Reading question should be answered with concrete proof from the passage. To understand the main message, students must read between the lines.
  • When you are giving the test make sure to answer all the questions even if you aren’t sure of the answer, you never know if the answer you mark is correct.

Written by

Shefali Sundram

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