IELTS Reading: Special Tips for Table Completion

In this question, you will be given a table of some texts with a few blank spaces. Normally, there will be a few columns in the table, and each column will contain a specific group of information. Look at the example question below.


The information about coconut palm's different parts, description and uses is given in the first, second and third columns respectively. There are some blank spaces as well. You need to fill these gaps based on the reading passage. Remember, you are instructed to use ONE WORD ONLY to fill each gap.

IELTS Reading Table Completion Question

Source: Cambridge English IELTS Past Papers

This question is quite easy to answer, because the given information and expressions in the table are short and organised. You just need to remember some important solution tips:

  • Look at the instruction sentence at first, see how many words you are allowed to write for each answer.

  • Skim the table before you go for the reading passage. You don't need to understand everything, just get a general idea of the table and try to understand how the text direction flows.

  • Text arrangement in the table might be or might not be ordered as in the reading text. Therefore, be aware of both the situations.

  • Find the main points of discussion. In this example above, trunk, leaves, flowers and fruits etc. are the main points.

  • Be aware of grammar when you are filling these gaps. In this question, if your grammar is wrong, your answer will be considered wrong, even if you provide the required information.

  • Take a quick look at the gaps, and try to predict the type of words (noun, verb, adjective, adverb etc.) that you might need for answer.

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