ISLPR Language Services Blog

Develop your Reading Skills: Skimming

Posted by on Apr 19, 2021 at 10:26 AM

If you’ve been reading our blog posts and following our advice, you should know by now that the only way to improve your English is to consistently use the language and obtain feedback! It is for this reason that we provide (both free and paid) activities, webinars, courses and general information aimed at improving your language. We don’t believe in teaching you tricks to pass a test.

This week’s blog post focuses on developing your reading skills and specifically focuses on the skill of skimming. The beauty of the activity we have provided below is that it can be used on any piece of text that you are interested in reading.


    • You skim the text to find out what it is about. For example, you might skim a book to see if it is something you actually want to read.
    • You do not need to read every word in a text to find out what it is about.
    • You should aim to skim a text quickly to get a sense of the general idea before reading it in more detail.

Skimming strategies

    • Read the title.
    • Read the headings and subheadings.
    • Read the first and last sentences of paragraphs.
    • Read the first and last sentences of sections.
    • Look at photos and graphs.

Reading Activity

Paste the following link into a web browser.

Give yourself around two minutes to skim the article. Take notes. Use the skimming strategies above. When you have finished, write two or three sentences that summarise what the article is about.

Please note: activities that we include on our blog are free for you to use and practise in your own time. We will not be able to reply to emails requesting that these activities be marked. If you would like someone to look over your writing, we recommend booking a tutorial.

Did you find this activity helpful?

The activities in this blog post are similar to the types of activities we include in our 6-week reading and writing online course.

In our 6-week course, we provide participants with a series of workbooks that aim to improve their reading and writing skills. We mark all participants’ workbooks individually and return them with individual feedback and comments. To learn more about our 6-week online course, click here.


We are providing a 15% discount on our online course if you enrol by 09 July 2021. Enrol now via the link below to take advantage of this offer. Discount code: RW15off! at the checkout.

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