Reading for Understanding, Analysis and Evaluation

Your close reading exam will be worth 30 marks. This part of the exam assesses your understanding of a text, your ability to analyse language/structure and your ability to evaluate the piece of writing. You will build on the skills taught from S1-S3 and complete in class assessments to practise these skills.

For National 5,  you will read one article and answer approximately 9 questions.

For Higher,  you will be given two articles. Read the first passage and answer the first set of questions (you will spend most of your time on these). Then, you will complete one final question in which you compare/contrast the two articles


For Close Reading past papers, click below.

You will need to search under ‘English’ and then choose National 5 or Higher:

+ Check out BBC BITESIZE and ‘EXPLAIN IT AGAIN’ websites for extra support!


For advice on how to approach the HIGHER final close reading question:


Reading Articles: on-going tasks for improving close reading skills

To improve your RUAE skills, you should increase your reading of non-fiction journalism. We recommend that pupils read articles from The Guardian, The Telegraph etc.  You can access these articles online!

For each article you read, complete the following task to demonstrate your skills of understanding, analysing and evaluating:

  1. Title of the article:
  2. Author:
  3. Purpose:
  4. Summarise 4-6 USING YOUR OWN WORDS key points made throughout the article:
  5. Write down any words which you DON’T know:
  6. Take a guess at what each word might mean (using CONTEXT clues)
  7. What else do you notice about the article? Any use of IMAGERY? Any examples of SENTENCE STRUCTURE? Why are they used? ANALYSE THEM!
  8. What is the overall tone of the article? How do you know? Provide a reference.
  9. Evaluate the article: was the introduction effective? Why? What about the conclusion paragraph?


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