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Critical Analysis and Evaluation
Comprehension and Context
Research and Reference Skills
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Reading Competencies Tested on the CBEST

The reading test covers three major skill areas with each skill area addressing a number of sub-skills. An outline showing these skill areas and their major sub-skills is shown below.

Critical Analysis and Evaluation

  • Compare/contrast ideas or information presented in different sections of a reading selection or from different sources.
  • Identify the reasons, examples, details, or facts in a reading selection that support the author's main idea.
  • Make predictions about the outcome of an event based on information from a reading selection.
  • Recognize the attitude, opinion, or viewpoint expressed by the author toward his or her subject.
  • Determine whether facts or ideas are relevant to an argument in a reading selection.
  • Recognize statements that strengthen or weaken arguments in a reading selection.
  • Recognize the various persuasive techniques used by an author in a reading selection.
  • Distinguish between facts and opinions in a reading selection.
  • Identify logical assumptions upon which the author bases the argument of a reading selection.
  • Challenge the statements and opinions presented in a reading selection.
  • Identify inconsistencies or differences in points of view within one reading selection or between two or more selections.
  • Recognize the audience that a reading selection addresses.
  • Recognize language that creates an inappropriate or inconsistent tone, given the intended audience and purpose.

Comprehension and Context

  • Identify the relationships between general and specific ideas in a reading selection.
  • Determine the sequence of events or steps in a process from a reading selection.
  • Arrange the ideas in a reading selection into an outline or another form of graphic organization.
  • Recognize the main idea or purpose of a reading selection.
  • Identify accurate paraphrases or summaries of ideas in a reading selection.
  • Identify facts and details presented in a reading selection.
  • Draw conclusions or generalizations from material presented in a reading selection.
  • Make inferences and recognize implications based on information from a reading selection.
  • Recognize implied relationships between people, ideas, or events in a reading selection.
  • Use context clues, syntax, and structural analysis (e.g., affixes, prefixes, roots) to determine the meaning of unknown words.
  • Determine the meanings of figurative or colloquial language in a reading selection.
  • Recognize and identify different interpretations that can be made of the same word, sentence, paragraph, or reading selection.
  • Recognize how the meaning of a word, sentence, or paragraph is affected by the context in which it appears.
  • Understand the function of key transition indicators in a reading selection (e.g., "however," "by contrast," "in conclusion").

Research and Reference Skills

  • Use the table of contents, section headings, index, and similar sections of a book to locate information.
  • Locate the place in a reading selection (e.g., book, chapter, paragraph, article, or report) where a specific kind of information can be found.
  • Understand how a reading selection is organized.
  • Identify logical conclusions, generalizations, or implied relationships that are supported by information in a table or graph.