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True/False Test Taking Tips

Circle key words in the question.

Remember: If any part of the answer is false, the whole thing is false. Every part of a true sentence must be “true.” If any part of the sentence is false, the whole sentence is false despite many other true statements.

Watch for words like “never,” “always,” “every,” “all,” “none,” and “only”; they generally indicate a false answer.

Negatives can be confusing. If the question contains negatives such as “no, not, cannot,” drop the negative and read what remains. Decide whether that sentence is true or false. If it is true, its opposite (or negative) is usually false.

Qualifiers are words that restrict or open up general statements. Words like “sometimes, often, frequently, ordinarily, generally,” open up the possibilities of making accurate statements. They make more modest claims, are more likely to reflect reality, and usually indicate “true” answers.

Absolute words restrict possibilities. “No, never, none, always, every, entirely, only” imply the statement must be true 100 percent of the time and usually indicate “false” answers

Long sentences often include groups of words set off by punctuation. Pay attention to the “truth” of each of these phrases. If one is false, it usually indicates a “false” answer.

Often true/false tests contain more true answers than false answers. You have more than a 50 percent chance of being right with “true.” However, your teacher may be the opposite. Review past tests for patterns.

Never leave a blank – a guess has a 50-50 chance of being right.

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