Beyond Practice Tests: Negative Factual Information Questions

Beyond Practice Tests: Negative Factual Information Questions

On a test like the TOEFL, Negative Factual Information questions ask you to find missing things. You’ll get four choices (A,B,C,D). Three things will be true. One will be false. You should choose the false thing. These are the opposite of Factual Information Questions where one thing is true and three are false. For example:

Steven can’t go to the party because of all the homework he has to do. Plus, he doesn’t even have money to get a bus. And Sarah will be there. He really doesn’t want to see her. So, he’ll stay at home again. Tonight he will do his homework. After that, he’ll watch a movie and go on the internet.

Why can’t Steven go to the party?

  1. a. He doesn’t know where the party is.
  2. b. He has a lot of homework.
  3. c. He doesn’t have money for a bus.
  4. d. Sarah will be there and he doesn’t want to see her.

What will he do tonight?

  1. a. He will play video games.
  2. b. He will do his homework.
  3. c. He’ll watch a movie.
  4. d. He’ll go on the internet.

Negative Factual Information questions are pretty easy. The thing that you can’t find is the answer. You should find three things and make sure you can’t find one thing.

Here are five study strategies.

Answers First First, make a list of four things. Then write something that uses three of them. For example, if your list was “bread, butter, eggs, sugar”, you might write “I bought bread, eggs, and sugar.” Of course, your answer can be much longer, but you’ll get used to how to create the questions. This will make it easier for you to answer them.

Change Factual Information Questions Look at some “Factual Information” questions on a practice test. Change the factual information questions into negative factual info questions by changing the grammar of the question. For instance, if the question is “How many cars did he buy” and the answer is “two”. You could change the question to “How many cars didn’t he buy”?

Add to Groups You’ll be very good at these questions if you can see groups quickly. You’ll see groups more quickly if you find groups of things that have stuff in common. Then think of things that you could add to the lists. For example, if you found an article that talked about France, Germany, and Spain; you might write Holland, Italy, and Poland. (They’re all European countries.)

Create Groups After reading something, add sentences to it. Add sentences so that there are groups of three things. So, if the text talks about apples and oranges, you could write about bananas to create a group of three.

Three Truths and a Lie Think of people, places, objects and events. Write three true sentences and one false sentence about them. For example, think about New York City. You could write: It’s in  the USA. The Statue of Liberty is there. It’s the biggest city in the world. The New York Yankees play there. Three are true. Which one is false?

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