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Categorisation Practice & Tips for IELTS Reading Recent IELTS Exam Questions

Current IELTS exam topics and questions:

April 16, 2015 by Liz 69 Comments

 Recent exam questions
Like 150 people like this. Be the first of your friends.

You can get categorisation questions in IELTS reading and below is a useful
categorisation practice exercise to help you develop your skills. Post Your IELTS Results

Share your IELTS test results

IELTS Categorisation Questions
Post Your Test Results
1. Skim read the passage first before you tackle the questions.
2. Check the categories available & prepare any possible paraphrases
(paraphrases are not always possible)
Advanced IELTS Writing Lessons
3. Read through the statements in each question
Expert Writing Task 2 Lessons with High 
4. Spend time paraphrasing vocabulary in the statements before you try and
Score Techniques Advanced WT2 Lessons
categorise the information
5. After preparing the statements, try to locate the information in the passage by
scanning the text
Search this website … SEARCH
6. Sometimes you must use a process of elimination to find your answer

The key to this type of question is being good at paraphrasing and scanning for Recent Lessons
specific information. Answers for Medical Robots Reading
December 28, 2017

Beds in the Ancient World Reading Lesson for IELTS: Medical Robots
December 27, 2017

Answer to gap fill reading lesson

December 22, 2017

IELTS Reading Practice: Fill the Gaps Exercise

December 21, 2017

Answers to which preposition

December 20, 2017

Bed styles in ancient Egypt remained very much the same for over 2000 years. Which preposition?
They are among the most intriguing of furniture items because of their structure. December 19, 2017

Many were slanted down at an incline from the headboard. A foot board ensured
that the sleeper would not slip off in the middle of the night. Furniture makers also
IELTS Extra Information
constructed side rails on many beds. Writes Sibal, “almost all beds featured legs in
the form of animal legs, ranging from heavy bulls legs to gazelle-like forms with IELTS Book List
hooves, and the feline type with paw and claw, frequently identified as lions legs.”
IELTS Band Scores
The mattress was usually made of wooden slats, plaited string, or reeds, which
then held woollen cushions or some other soft material. Sheets were made of linen. Useful Websites for IELTS

Roman bed-frames were pretty much the same. It would have had a mattress on
top of it, stuffed with feathers or straw, and wool blankets. But most Etruscan and
Roman beds would have been made of wood and strung with wool or linen string.
In the bedrooms, the ceilings were vaulted and lower above the bed, often making
the room appear a cramped and stuffy place. Simple beds. to which shortly after
the Homeric age a pillow for the head was added, continued to be used by the
poorer classes among the Greeks at all times. Thus the bed of the orator Lycurgus
is said to have consisted of one sheep-skin and a pillow.

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In Ancient Greece, the beds of persons of high rank was covered with skins upon
which the pillows were placed, and over these linen sheets or carpets were spread.
6 friends like this
Lastly, there was thick woollen cover or blanket for the sleeper. Poor persons slept
on skins or beds of dry herbs spread upon the ground. These simple beds, had a
cover or ticking of a mattress which was made of linen or woollen cloth and the
usual material with which it was filled with was either wool or dried weeds. At the
head part of the bed lay a round pillow to support the head; and in some ancient
pictures two other square pillows are seen, which were intended to support the
back. The covers of such pillows are striped in several pictures on ancient vases
and were therefore probably of various colours. They were undoubtedly filled with
the same materials as the beds and mattresses.

Questions 1-4
Categorise the information below into the following categories. Please note that for
this particular practice, answers will not come in order in the passage. Choose the
correct letter (A-C) for your answer. Letters may be used more than once.

◾ A = Ancient Egyptian
◾ B = Ancient Roman
◾ C = Ancient Greek

1. Bedrooms did not seem spacious.

2. The beds were not flat and horizontal but rather angled downwards.
3. Pillows could be decorative.
4. Mattresses were stuffed with wool.


Click below to reveal the answers.

1. B (making the room appear a cramped)
2. A (Many were slanted down at an incline from the headboard)
3. C (pillows are striped in several pictures on ancient vases)
4. C (it was filled with was either wool …)

The passage is compiled of information from various sources, including

touregypt and mlahanas

All reading exercises on have been written by myself to help you prepare for
your IELTS test.


Below is a list of useful vocabulary and paraphrases for words in the passage
above. You should always use reading passages and listening transcripts to help
you build your knowledge of vocabulary.

◾ intriguing = fascinating, interesting

◾ slanted = inclined, leaning, sloped
◾ featured = included, presented
◾ gazelle = a type of deer
◾ hooves = the feet of a deer or horse
◾ paw = foot of a lion, cat or dog
◾ claw = the nail on the foot of a lion, cat, dog or bird
◾ vaulted = curved, domed
◾ cramped = over crowded, small, confined
◾ stuffy = airless, unventilated
◾ orator = speaker

◾ IELTS YNNG & TFNNG Reading Practice
◾ IELTS Reading Information & Tips (FAQ)
◾ IELTS Reading: All Lessons and Videos

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Filed Under: IELTS Reading Tagged With: cateogrisation, history topic


Parya says:
December 4, 2017 at 8:52 am

I believed that people are doing everything to earn money but Liz changed my
mind, I think Liz is an angel and she’s got a spiritual soul.
A lot of free materials for us to achieve our goals. I’m sure you will get something more
valuable than money from universe.
God bless you.


Liz says:
December 4, 2017 at 11:34 am

Thank you so much for your kind comment. The only thing I want from the
universe is my health. I’ve been too sick for the last two years to make more video
lessons – I’m hoping next year I might get better


Memoona amin says:

November 3, 2017 at 5:07 pm

Thanks for another reading practice passage …I got 4/4 correct…you r vry
fabulous teacher..


Qasim says:
October 11, 2017 at 6:35 pm

4/4, quite easy passage

Liz you are an awesome teacher!!
Many thanks for help and producing excellent stuff.



Liz says:
October 11, 2017 at 7:01 pm

You’re welcome


Moni says:
October 4, 2017 at 4:48 am

Hello Mam
I got 3/4. But i want to get full marks. How I got it?


Liz says:
October 4, 2017 at 11:50 am

Practice and development of paraphrasing awareness with question type



Karamjeet kaur says:

September 6, 2017 at 11:46 am

Hi Liz, interestingly I got everything from the passage. Feel so good


riemz says:
May 17, 2017 at 12:46 pm

hi liz, i only got 1/4 in all ur exercises…can u please help still


Liz says:
May 17, 2017 at 1:23 pm

Check the answer key again. I’ve put the relevant key words to help you
understand the answer. If you didn’t get the right answers due to your level of English,
then think about getting extra English lessons before your test.


Ivan Miguel says:

August 17, 2016 at 1:34 am

Hi Liz,

I’m a little confused with the meaning of the word “cushion” (regarding question 4). Is
not pillow a synonym for cushion?

Ivan Miguel


Liz says:
August 17, 2016 at 4:34 pm

A cushion is found on a sofa or chair rather than a bed.


Ivan Miguel says:

August 17, 2016 at 4:44 pm

I understand now, thank you!


farhat says:
December 27, 2017 at 12:05 am

Answers did not come in order


Liz says:
December 27, 2017 at 12:22 pm

Answer come in order for some questions in reading but not for others.
You need to know which question types follow which rule for reading.


saeed aziz says:

May 18, 2016 at 9:51 pm

Nice article by the way, i failed in paragraph C and paragraph G where

“Taxonomy” is a strange synonym for me, i thought it was for comparsion between
different species.

for paragraph G , i was confused between pangolin trade and being in danger due to
deterioration of places and haunted for food, also trade for they are demanded from china
for their body parts.
how to focus more and choose the best answer where it seems to one paragraph has more
than one solution?

Thanks in advance


Liz says:
May 19, 2016 at 7:16 am

Unless you are aiming for band 9, you will get some answer wrong. It’s only


Kim says:
May 23, 2016 at 3:28 pm

I have no idea what both of you did say. I can’t find any relations
between his question to this pratice. By the way, where is Paragraph G?
All the best,

Liz says:
May 23, 2016 at 7:38 pm

He is referring to another reading practice.


Julia says:
January 31, 2016 at 2:14 pm

Finally, I got everything right!!!

Feel so good!
I usually got about 70% right in reading and listening practice.
I will try harder!
Thanks Liz:)


Archana says:
December 31, 2015 at 8:08 am

scored 3/4.I made mistake for 1 because of my abysmal knowledge about the
meaning of cramped and stuffy.Thank you liz.


arvi says:
August 28, 2015 at 8:03 am

OMG! I got it perfect….but its quite easy though:)


Andres says:
August 23, 2015 at 9:54 pm

4/4 =D .. I´ve been looking for a website like this in ages. If I had known before
about it, I would have scored a better ielts last year. Thx Liz . Regards from Colombia.


Genta says:
July 24, 2015 at 6:21 am

Hi Liz,
I completed the exercise above and scored 3/4, there is something I wanted to ask you
relating the last question of this exercise. You posted A (Ancient Egyptian) as right for
question 4 No skins or pillows were used.
I chose B (Ancient Roman) referring to this sentences in the paragraph : Roman bed-
frames were pretty much the same. It would have had a mattress on top of it, stuffed with
feathers or straw and wool blankets.


Liz says:
July 24, 2015 at 11:23 am

The problem is that in the paragraph about Romans, it also mentions the use
of pillows and skins – see the last two sentences. So, the answer must be A which never
mentions the use of skins or pillows.
All the best


Genta says:
July 24, 2015 at 1:52 pm

Hi Liz,
very clear,

thanks a lot


Monika says:
July 21, 2015 at 11:41 am

Dear Liz,
I would like to thank you very much for your blog. I’ve found your it accidentally, which
I’m very happy about. I aiming for score 7. Even though I’ve recently received 8,5 from
listening and 7,5 speaking, I struggle with writing and sometimes obtain lower score from
reading (before 8.0, now 6.5). I finally understood how to write an introduction! I
hope that learning from your blog will help me achieve my goal very soon.
One thing I would like to ask you is that I do not quite understand why for question 4 in
the task above the answer is A. Ancient Egyptian. Can you please explain?
I would appreciate it a lot.
I found the information right after description of the bed in Ancient Roman that the
pillows were introduced after the Homeric age, which is Greek.


Liz says:
July 21, 2015 at 12:23 pm

I’m afraid it is a bit of trick question. There is no sentence which states that
Ancient Egypt didn’t use pillows or skins. But there is information that Ancient
Romans used pillows and Ancient Greeks used skins. So, that means the only
civilisation which didn’t show the use of skins or pillows is Ancient Egypt.
All the best


Monika says:
July 22, 2015 at 12:13 pm

It is confusing… but thank you, I think I get it now


rehema says:
October 8, 2015 at 3:39 pm

i got it all, thanks,


Liz says:
October 8, 2015 at 3:47 pm

Well done!


talat says:
May 1, 2015 at 6:51 pm

3 out 4

Margaret Sophy says:
April 19, 2015 at 2:17 pm

Dear Lizz,

I wrote Ielts Writing Task 2 essay, I would like you to correct my essay please. How i can
send my essay. Please let me know your mail address, or any other option. please reply


Liz says:
April 20, 2015 at 7:53 am

Unfortunately, I don’t offer essay marking or grading. You will need to find
an online teacher or local teacher to help you.
All the best


Mohammad hassan says:

April 21, 2015 at 8:29 pm

Hi Liz,
I am very weak in reading. Four time I have seated in GT IELTS exam. I got only 5.5 in
reading. Could you advise me how can I get band score 7 plus in reading.

Mohammad Hassan, Bangladesh


Liz says:
April 21, 2015 at 8:33 pm

Here are two useful links:
Read both pages very carefully to check your understanding of the IELTS reading
skills. Also, to get band score 7, you must have a very good level of English is
understanding of less common vocabulary and good understanding of
paraphrasing. Think carefully as to whether you have that level of English.


Mohammad hassan says:

April 21, 2015 at 9:02 pm

Actually I am very weak in matching heading and sometimes confused in
true/false/NG pattern.

Please advise me.



Liz says:
April 22, 2015 at 7:01 pm

Please see my video:


margaret sophy says:
April 17, 2015 at 4:41 pm

Mam this is Margaret Sophy. Thank you mam for your immediate response.
Writing module twice I have got 7 in writing and once in speaking mam.if u permit me I
will write 2 task2 and post u .plz can u correct and tel me the mistakes and score
mam .plz kindly help me mam.


Liz says:
April 17, 2015 at 5:24 pm

Sorry but I do not have time to mark and do error correction. I will try to
find time to give you a comment but that’s about all.


Ilkhom says:
April 17, 2015 at 4:29 pm

Hi Liz

i’m Ilkhom from Uzbekistan i need writing task 1 vocabulary like beginning phrases or
smth like that
.Please help Me ?

Thank you for replying.


Liz says:
April 17, 2015 at 4:31 pm

All my lessons are in the writing task 1 section. Each type of task 1 has
variations on language, linking devices, vocabulary, key features etc. So, you will need
to work through them slowly and logically.


margaret sophy says:

April 17, 2015 at 4:11 pm

Mam, thank u for your useful website for me. I have written ielts exam for 8
times, all the time I scored 6.5 band score in reading, speaking, and writing Where my
desired score is 7 individually. Once I saw your website just week before. I gained lot of
confidence. Mam I need video clips for matching heading, choose the best ending, match
the sentence to the paragraph, and for multiple choise question. Please reply mam


Liz says:
April 17, 2015 at 4:30 pm

Unfortunately it takes me a lot of time to make videos but they will come
slowly. It is possible that you will need to work on your level of English to secure a
band score 7. Exam skills are essential but the right level of English is also essential.
Take work on both exam skills and your English language and don’t book at test until
you frequently score 7 in practice tests.

Liz says:
April 17, 2015 at 8:33 am

The passages are of similar difficult in the academic reading test. They are only different
in the general reading test. Spend time analysing the vocabulary and meaning of the
questions before you attempt to find the answer. When you say categories, do you mean
question types or topics? I don’t understand your question.


Tariq Refaat says:

April 17, 2015 at 12:54 pm

Thank you for your quick response

I mean by categorizing that while reading I sort and divide text into nouns, dates ,key
words, places ,reasons ,opinions etc

I tried hard to focus but it took me a very long time

Do you recommend focus on two texts to make sure of the correct answer s and then
left the third one to chance


Liz says:
April 17, 2015 at 3:41 pm

I don’t understand. What do you mean to focus on two texts? There are
three passages (3 texts) in the IELTS test. In this lesson there is only one passage –
one text. You don’t need to divide anything into nouns, verbs etc. This isn’t a
grammar test. Read the questions, paraphrase key words and locate answers. Step
by step.
All the best


sita says:
April 17, 2015 at 4:02 am

Hi Liz
One more time I have tried to write an essay, could you please correct it.
Some people believe that children’s leisure activities must be educational otherwise they
are complete waste of time. Do you agree or disagree. Give your answer including
relevant examples from your experience.
It is argued that children’s free time should be utilized with an informative activities if not
under other condition up-bringing to these kids will definitely be good for nothing. In my
opinion, children’s idle hours certainly must be related to educative exercise not fun and
relaxation. Activities such as puzzle and quiz which aids children to expand their
knowledge and urges them finding new ideas.
Firstly, children from their early stage should be guided in a educational frame
work,participating in knowledgeable games tend to have more interest on kids, such
programs help utilization of leisure period which all parents expect to be. Solving quiz,
puzzle ,mathematical solution are some of the examples to effective method and broaden
the knowledge in children. Real example can be taken from school students obtaining first
position, who utilized spare time in educational activities contradictory is the failure one.
This symbolize that correct use of time in an educational matter makes a man.
Furthermore, many researches have found children’s are always curious to discover a
new thing moreover they are willing to learn more if interested. It is unbelievable to hear
a five year child flying an aeroplane, a eleven year boy , world’s chess champion. Despite
their strong eager to gain something these kids won’t have been famous. On the other
hand, if these children’s were enjoying their free time just for pleasure, parents would
definitely feel sorry for them.
In conclusion, It is obvious to believe that children’s spare time must have brainstorming
activities which help bring excitement on them , diversely, only enjoying for the sake of
memorable moment in their life will at the end leave value less object.
word count 267


Liz says:
April 17, 2015 at 8:43 am

Unfortunately, due to over paraphrasing and poor choice of vocabulary, it is

difficult to understand this essay. You must write more clearly. I do not understand the
second paragraph at all. I don’t know what the main point is. For vocabulary and
grammar, this would not get above band score 5. Try to produce accurate language
rather than trying to impress the examiner.
All the best


meg says:
August 27, 2015 at 12:04 am

4/4 Thank you


Liz says:
August 27, 2015 at 10:37 am

Good score !


shiromi says:
April 16, 2015 at 8:18 pm

dear Liz, thank you very much for replying.I will start on working with your
lessons.thanks !


Aurora Hoxha says:

April 16, 2015 at 1:22 pm

Hi dear Liz , hope you are well and healthy I just finished this reading part
and fined out all question but the problem is that in ielts test I took R4 w5 L4.5 S 5.5 I’ve
been study in Australia 50 week general english at AICE college ,I’ve have given the ielts
in November austral but didn’t
Pass ,in liste 5 ,read 4 writ 5 speak5.5 better than in my country Alb please any advice as I
need in each band at least 5 thanks for your great job


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 3:37 pm

It looks like you are steadily improving. If you want band score 5 in each
skill, you are not far from that. Continue developing both your English language and
IELTS skills. You will get there. But make sure you are achieving 5.5 in practice tests
before you take your next test.
All the best


sumbla says:
April 16, 2015 at 12:55 pm
Liz please I want to learn how to write on table in task 1?


sumbla says:
April 16, 2015 at 12:52 pm

Hi Liz, pleass give me more lesson on reading and writting task 1 and 2 and in
listening i have problem in map and multiple choice type questions.


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 3:38 pm

Try “Improve your Reading Skills” book. See each section of this blog for
more lessons and tips.
All the best


sumbla says:
April 16, 2015 at 4:22 pm

Thank you so much Liz. Liz which college you give lessons? I want to
attend your english session please.


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 4:34 pm

I don’t have any lessons at a college or school. I only work with this
blog part time at the moment.
All the best


Mohammed Amine Chettou says:

April 16, 2015 at 12:11 pm

Hello Liz
I am going to pass the IELTS test , this saturday and I am a bit nervous i have not worked
on Diagram and Map essays in task 1. do you think that 1 day , is enough time to do so?
In the speaking tests , what kind of questions do I have to expect ?
Finally , I would love to thank you very much for your efforts.
Kind regards


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 12:45 pm

Yes, you can learn maps and diagrams in one day. See my models and
lessons for some ideas in the writing task 1 section. For speaking questions and topics,
see my collection in the speaking section. Also check the recent exam questions – you
can find a link on the home page, left side. Students post recent speaking questions
All the best

Adel Tenbellaa says:
April 16, 2015 at 11:41 am

Dear Liz,
I cannot thank you enough for your efforts as well as your valuable advice. In fact, every
time I take an IELTS exam , it’s always the Reading band which lets me down.
However, I’m planning to apply for IELTS test,so I’m really doing my best to pay more
attention on Reading and focus on the techniques of how I get a better score. I can tell for
sure it’s going to be a very big challenging for me to achieve a higher band, but I never
quit my aim in that.
Clearly, I’ve been watching all your Reading Videos and I only started reading the
reading passages on your blog two days ago. Doubtlessly, they’re of great help and
limitless benefits.
Eventually, I always come across new vocabularies which instills an annoying feeling
inside me,therefore, I will be immensely grateful if you kindly could advise me bout this
and how I can overcome such a problematic issue in Reading.
I am looking forward to your advice.
Yours forever,


Adel Tenbellaa says:

April 16, 2015 at 11:50 am

Sorry, but having had my post revised, I cannot believe that I’ve made some
silly mistakes which I could have realized if I had revised my post well before posting.
1- I’m planning to apply for an IELTS test.
2- It’s going to be a very big challenge for me -or- It’s going to be challenging for me .
3- I only started doing your Reading passages.


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 12:47 pm

I don’t really understand your problem. There is no reason to get annoyed

because there is new vocabulary. Just start learning and progressing.


Adel Tenbellaa says:

April 16, 2015 at 1:03 pm

Many thanks for your reply. I will do my best to learn more difficult
vocabularies from all the reading passages in your blog. And I am sorry for my
longer and boring messages.
Best Regards.


Amber says:
April 16, 2015 at 11:05 am

Dear Liz,

Did you happen to work at Jeju Girls Middle or High School?

One of my students attended there; I was private-tutoring her.
I remembered her telling about her English teacher from the UK.
I asked the name of the teacher and it was Liz, I guess.
She was describing her teacher and personality….
Any how,,,,wow! It is a small world!

And for the tuberculosis checkup, it is for one of the clearance regulations to get the
visa in the UK.
I really appreciate your concerns.
Have a lovely day!


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 11:10 am

No, that wasn’t me. They gave me the name “Eli” not Liz in Jeju and I
worked for a private school – a hagwon
All the best


Amber says:
April 16, 2015 at 10:30 am

Dear Liz,

Thanks for another reading practice!

I am goin to Seoul tomorrow.
I have to have a medical checkup for tuberculosis; I am applying for visa soon.
I know you taught English here in Korea. Where did you stay?


Liz says:
April 16, 2015 at 10:48 am

Hi Amber,

I hope the medical check is just routine and not serious. I first taught in Kyongju which
was fantastic. I loved being able to go Pulguska Temple and it was a great chance to
really get to know traditional Korean culture. After that, I moved to Jeju Island and
worked in Jeju City. I loved that too. The people were so welcoming and the island was
just gorgeous. I can’t say enough about the food – just excellent. I still crave kimchi.
Take care and good luck with your plans.
All the best


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Main IELTS Pages Archives About me
IELTS Listening Archives Select Month  Hi, my name is Elizabeth (Liz). I'm
an experienced IELTS teacher
IELTS Reading
from the UK and a graduate of the
IELTS Speaking University of London. I have been teaching
for over 16 years and for the last 9 years I
IELTS Training Writing Task 1
have specialised, exclusively, in IELTS. I have
IELTS Writing Task 1 taught in a number of countries: England,
Spain, New Zealand, South Korea, China and
IELTS Writing Task 2
Vietnam, where I taught at the British
Uncategorized Council.


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