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Tips for Answering Ontario Secondary School Literacy Test (OSSLT) Questions

Prepared by The Tutor Scholar Administration Team

Before reading selections…

· Before reading selections, expect that multiple choice questions will follow. Make sure that as you read, you understand what the selection is describing. Have someone read it out loud for you, if that helps you understand clearer.

Before answering Multiple Choice questions…

· Before answering multiple choice questions, re-read the question very carefully. See if the question refers to a specific line or paragraph, then go back there in the selection.

· Re-read that specific line or paragraph as well as the sentences before and after it to gain a clearer understanding. Choose the answer that makes the most sense.

Before answering Open-Response Questions…

· Before answering open-response questions, read the question very carefully.

· Write small in order to fit in all of your supporting details and use quotations from the selection.

· A tip to starting your answer to an open-response question is to rephrase the question in the form of an answer. Remember to begin sentences with capital letters and end them with periods.

· Here is an example of an open-response question: “What is the main idea of this selection? Give one specific detail that supports your answer.”

· Here is an example of the beginning of an answer to the above mentioned open-response question: “The main idea of this selection is…”

· If the question asks to provide “one specific detail that supports your answer,” give only one answer. Include quotations from the selection that help support your answer.

· If the question says “use specific details from the selection to explain your answer,” give at least two or more details.

· Include quotations from the selection which help to reinforce your supporting details and help to strengthen your answer.

Before Writing a News Report…

· Make rough notes in the space provided or on the back of the paper of the questions: Who? What? Where? Why? When? and How? 

· Write small.

· Include quotations of commentary of people at the event of your news report.

· Make sure to fill in all the lines with relevant information describing the events of your news report.

· Do not cut your news report short by providing too little information.

· Do not write more than the lines permit.

The Tutor Scholar Administration Team

The Tutor Scholar Administration Team posts articles like this to help students successfully navigate the Ontario curriculum.

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