PTE-Reading-MCQ Multiple Answers

Multiple-Choice, Choose Multiple Answers

Multiple-choice, choose single answer questions requires candidates to choose a single correct response out of multiple options. This is one of the toughest questions in the PTE reading module

This question is very similar to the single choice multiple question. The question is laid out in the exact same manner and the procedure for choosing an option is also the same. The only major difference is that candidates have to choose more than one option.

The number of options needed depends on the wording of the question, but it can be up to four options. Once you select an option it will be highlighted in yellow. If you wish to make an alternative option, you can always deselect your previous choice.

The texts are usually quite long and can be up to ----- words. This means that you have more than enough time to read in detail and choose the correct option. You should a maximum of 3 to 4 minutes on this question. There are usually two to three questions of this type in a single test.

How Is This Question Displayed?

You will find a set of instructions at the top of the screen, followed by a reading text.

The text will be displayed on the left of the screen, with the options on the right-hand side.

You will see a prompt with about 5 to 7 options. You need to simply click on the correct option to select it.

To select a response, click on the corresponding button or the response itself. Your response will be highlighted in yellow. To deselect your response, click on the button next to the response or the response again. If you want to change your selection, click on an alternative option.

Once you are satisfied with your choice, you can select the ‘next’ button to move onto the next question. Remember that reading tasks are not individually timed, so the timer will continue to countdown on the screen.

Here is how this question will appear on test day:

How Is This Question Scored?

If you get all options correct, you will receive maximum points. However, if some of your options are incorrect, you will receive a partial score.

There is negative marking for this particular question type, meaning that you can lose points if you choose any incorrect options. For any wrong options chosen 1 point is deducted, whilst correct options are given 1 point. Make sure that you are confident about your choices. If you are unsure about a certain answer, do not choose it, An incorrect answer will deduct the points you obtained for your correct answers.

 is the minimum score you can get?

Skills Assessed:

Here’s a detailed list of the skills you will be expected to perform for this question:

  • Main idea or gist: Read for and identify the main idea or theme of the text.
  • Detailed information: Read for and identify specific details, facts, opinions, definitions or sequences of events.
  • Writer's purpose: Read for and understand the function of what the writer says or identify the reasons why the writer mentions specific pieces of information. 
  • Organization: Read for and identify the overall organization and connections between pieces of information. This evaluates your ability to link different parts of the text together.
  • Inference: Read a text and infer meanings, form, generalizations, make predictions, find relationships or draw conclusions.
  • Textual value: Read for and assess the quality and usefulness of the text.
  • Stylistics: Read for and identify the writer's attitude, feelings or degree of certainty on an issue

Strategy To Solving Multiple-Choice, Choose Single Answer Questions

  • Carefully read the question in order to understand the instruction, and what exactly is required of you. Make sure that you understand exactly how many options you need to choose.
  • Take sure that you first read the main questions and skim through the options keeping the question prompt in mind, before reading the passage. In this way, you will have a general idea of what you should look for when reading the passage.
  • Pronunciation – can produce speech that is easily understood with correct intonation and stress
  • Look at the options and make a note of the keywords in the options.
  • Remember that the answer options will not appear in the same order as in the text.
  • Read the whole text carefully. Read the text to understand the general meaning of the passage. Identify the main idea and supporting points. Do not focus too much on unfamiliar words. Try to infer the meaning of these words from the context.
  • Take a look at the options and try to eliminate ones that are obviously incorrect.
  • Now take a look at the remaining options. Try to think of the difference in meaning of these options. Now, that you know precisely about the questions and the answering options, you can try to find the right answers.
  • You should try to find corresponding keywords in the text but avoid merely matching keywords from the options to parts of the test. Examiners usually trick students by adding options that match the text exactly but are actually incorrect. Focus more on the meaning of each option rather than its key words. The keywords might also be paraphrased within the text. Always focus on the meaning of the answer options and the statements in the text. Make sure that their meanings match.
  • Once you have chosen an option, double check to make sure it is correct.

Tips For This Question

Always Recheck Your Answers

Make sure you go back and check whether certain parts of the text also match up with options that you have excluded.

Practice Skimming And Scanning.

Read on a daily basis. Try skimming through certain paragraphs and try to determine the overall theme of the passage. This is a good activity to practice skimming. For scanning, take timed tests in which you have to find certain pieces of information within a text.

Be Careful Of Negative Marking.

If you are sure of only one option, then just select that option. However, If you are sure about one option, but are not so confident about another option, then you should only select the option you are sure of. This to avoid unnecessary deductions of marks.

Time Management

Remember that the reading module is times as a whole, so time management is crucial. Do not spend too much time on one particular question. For this question type in particular I recommend spending on average 2 minutes per task, with a maximum of 3 minutes. This will ensure that you have sufficient time for all the other questions.

Practice Multiple Choice, Choose Multiple Answers Question

Let’s take a look at the following Sample Question:

There is a part of Spain's sun-baked Andalucía that is extraordinary not only because of its unspoiled terrain and authentic Spanish traditions but also because of its caves. These are not dark, damp holes, with dripping water and evil smells. They are residences, ancient Bronze Age dwellings now being refurbished for hundreds of 21st century Spaniards. In Galera, the region's most important village, it's estimated that there are at least 1, such habitations carved into its hillsides. "We take old caves, renovate them, then sell them on," says Rob Oakley, office manager of leading developer Galera Enterprises. "Our company was set up by someone who discovered the area of Galera when it was just a tourist attraction 15 years ago and saw its potential" The ancient abodes are transformed from rough caves into relatively luxurious homes, equipped out with amenities like electricity and sewage, phone lines, running hot water, even Internet connections.

Which of the following words have the same meaning in the passage as "residences"?

  • abodes
  • amenities
  • connections
  • dwellings
  • habitations
  • hillsides
  • terrain



This response is correct because "abodes" is a synonym for "residences." "Abodes" is described as "ancient," and since the residences were previously described as "ancient Bronze Age dwellings:' it can be inferred that they are the same thing.

This response is incorrect because "amenities" are things that the residences are "equipped out with" such as running water and electricity


This response is incorrect because "connections" is listed as one of the amenities provided by the residences.


This response is correct because "dwellings" is a synonym for "residences." In the text, "dwellings" is used to further explain "residences.


This response is correct because "habitations" is a synonym for "residences." Also, the word "such" modifies "habitations," and links it to the "residences" mentioned in the previous sentence.


This response is incorrect because "hillsides" refers to the location of the residences, not the residences themselves.


This response is incorrect because "terrain" is a type of landscape. Also, Spain's "unspoiled terrain" is contrasted in the passage with the "caves" that are used as residences.


Example 2

When he was awarded an Honorary Degree by the University of Newcastle, even John Robertson himself must surely have looked back in wonder at his astonishing rise to success.
The year was 1910, and those assembled were to hear not only of his generosity to the University, which enabled it to contribute to the pioneering research into tropical diseases being carried out at that time, but also of his humanitarian work in southern Africa, where he was ahead of his time in improving the working conditions of local mine workers.
To those who knew John in his youth, it will have come as no surprise to hear of his success. He was now enjoying the rewards of the fierce determination, desire to succeed and extraordinary ability to acquire knowledge, which they had noticed in the young man.

What does the reader of this text learn about John Robertson?

  • He was born in Africa.
  • His abilities were evident at a young age.
  • He studied medicine.
  • He completed his degree in 1910. 
  • He achieved success rapidly.


He was born in Africa.

He refers to John Robertson. We learn from the text that he worked in Southern Africa. However, the text never mentions his birthplace. This response is incorrect.

His abilities were evident at a young age. 

This is a correct option. We learn from the text that Robertson had  an “extraordinary ability to acquire knowledge, which they had noticed in the young man’ Here the word ‘noticed’ is a paraphrase of the ‘evident’ from the question.

He studied medicine. 

The focus of his studies is never actually mentioned in the text. This response is incorrect

He completed his degree in 1910. 

This answer is correct, we know this because of the phrases ‘The year was 1910,’ and ‘ When he was awarded an Honorary Degree’

He achieved success rapidly

The text mentions that his success was astonishing and remarkable but it does not mention if it was quick. This response is incorrect