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RC comparative passages: read one passage then answer Q's on that passage first?

youbbyunyoubbyun Alum Member

Hey all,

so i hear of ppl who for RC comparative passage, they first scan the answers and see if there are specific questions that relate only to ONE passage. they then read that ONE passage, and then do the questions for that passage also.

Then, they read the second passage and finish the rest of the questions.

Question: what is your strategy for RC comparative? Do you read both passages back to back? or do you first glance at the questions, see if there are any questions that only address one passage (sometimes i know all the questions address both passages), and then just read one passage first and then do the questions?

Thanks.

Comments

  • ATLsat_2019ATLsat_2019 Legacy Member
    455 karma

    Hmm... I don't love this approach personally. I tend to get really confused if I do a lot of skipping around so I like to read both straight through and comprehend and remember everything I can about both, then hopefully don't have to go back to the passages much at all. I don't look at the questions before reading.

    The comparative passages tend to be a lot shorter and simpler than the other 3, so I typically find it isn't a problem to keep each author's perspective distinct in my head. Though if you find yourself mixing up the two passages then maybe reading one at a time is worth a try.

    Ultimately though, I feel like under timed conditions you'd end up wasting valuable seconds scanning questions and going back and forth.

  • keets993keets993 Alum Member 🍌
    6045 karma

    So I know that JY advocates for reading one passage then quickly going through questions. That way it may be possible to eliminate answer choices that are incorrect based off that one passage. This is a quick process, not meant to spend a lot of time on it. That's followed by reading through the second passage and going through whatever is left.

  • akistotleakistotle Member 🍌🍌
    9361 karma

    Hey @simplereally :smile:

    If you are interested in learning about this approach, you can join J.Y.'s sessions on the following dates:

    PT62 Passage 3: Mon, May 21, 9pm - midnight EDT
    PT63 Passage 4: Fri, May 25, 9pm - midnight EDT
    PT64 Passage 3: Tue, May 29, 9pm - midnight EDT
    PT65 Passage 3: Sat, Jun 2, 9pm - midnight EDT

    (These are all comparative passages)

    https://7sage.com/discussion/#/discussion/15999/rc-review-pts-58-65-all-rc-sections-may-3rd-june-2nd-9pm-midnight-edt/p1

  • paulmv.benthempaulmv.benthem Alum Member
    1032 karma

    @simplereally said:
    Question: what is your strategy for RC comparative? Do you read both passages back to back? or do you first glance at the questions, see if there are any questions that only address one passage (sometimes i know all the questions address both passages), and then just read one passage first and then do the questions?

    Thanks.

    As of late, I have been using J.Y.'s method to tackle comparative reading passages. For me, one of the key advantages is that it helps to separate the two arguments more clearly in my mind. In other words, by quickly doing a couple questions for the first passage (if there are any particular to the passage), I get a better sense of that argument. Consequently, I find it easier to set up a "conversation" between that passage and the second one, which ends up speaking to many of the common question types for comparative RC (common detail, difference in argumentative style and tone, points of disagreement, etc.).

    Hope that helps as you figure out what works best for you! :smile:

  • youbbyunyoubbyun Alum Member
    1755 karma

    @akistotle

    thank you!

  • Habeas PorpoiseHabeas Porpoise Alum Member Sage
    edited May 2018 1861 karma

    I'm a huge fan of JY's approach. I read Passage A, then go through the questions and cross off/answer whatever I can, before moving on to Passage B and finishing up.
    I recommend trying both and seeing which method makes you feel more comfortable with the passage and more confident in your ability to answer questions.

  • jurisprudentjurisprudent Alum Member
    edited May 2018 326 karma

    Personally, this approach doesn't work for me. I get too cautious/anxious about eliminating answer choices on the first round after reading Passage A without having read Passage B. I think it definitely depends on your reading style, but for me, it's much easier to read Passage A and then read Passage B "against" Passage A: in other words, I compare and contrast as I read and try to retain the gists of each Passage.

    In terms of length, it's the exact same as other single passages in the section, so I shouldn't have any trouble remembering where the details are located. Also, most of the questions for comparative passages are comparison questions, and having a comprehensive understanding of how the passages are similar and different is the key to getting these answers correct -- prematurely eliminating any answer choice before I get to do a comparison doesn't work for me.

  • stepharizonastepharizona Alum Member
    3197 karma

    I'm a fan of this method. Skim for the Passage A questions and also do the "both would agree/disagree" many times you can get to the right answer with just one passage or down to 2 ACs before reading passage B.

    I treat them like agree/disagree LR questions and make the TChart

  • Leah M BLeah M B Alum Member
    8392 karma

    Honestly, I've tried the JY approach of reading 1 passage and then tackling some questions but it just didn't really work for me. I took way less time by reading both passages and then going through the questions just once. It feels to me like a typical "disagree" type of LR question but longer form. The passages are usually 2 different viewpoints of the same issue. As I read the 2nd passage, I'm absorbing it and also considering how it aligns/differs from the 1st passage. Then I approach the questions knowing the full picture. It probably is an individual thing, you can try out both ways and see what works best for you.

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