Study S1 English English - Comprehension Skills - Referencing Questions - Geniebook

Comprehension Skills - Referencing Questions

In this article, we will be learning about referencing questions in comprehension passages. Let’s first understand what annotation is and the importance of annotating a passage. Annotation refers to making notes about a given text. When you read a comprehension passage, it is important that you make relevant notes as they could come in handy when tackling the questions later on. 

 

How are such referencing questions phrased?

 

Example:

The writer’s sister says, “I bet you don’t have the courage to leap off that one.” What is the writer's sister referring to when she mentions “that one”?

"It looked as if he was flaunting its contents"

What does the emboldened word "its" refer to?

 

Answer:

In the above text, it is stated that "without the presence of a figure of authority, a lot of mishaps could have happened..."

Who does the writer refer to as being a "figure of authority"?

 

In the given excerpt, what does the emboldened word "us" refer to?

 

Practice Questions

Question 1:

In the text below, the writer’s sister is daring him to jump off a waterfall.

 

The three waterfalls at Togitogiga, Samoa, are, in a word, breathtaking. Each seems to have its own unique personality. The lowest one is gentle and sluggish, with a small drop into a wide cerulean pool. It is a heavenly paradise for adventurous youths, with scores of thrill-seekers queueing up all year round to catapult themselves into the great unknown. The second waterfall, rapid but still steady flowing, falls from a considerably greater height than the first, plunging into brown, scoured out lava rock. The third is a boisterous white water beast, crashing over similar lava rock into a sparkling, crystalline pool. Tiny silver fish gleam like specks of mica in a granite rock.

“I bet you don’t have the courage to leap off that one.”

I wheel around. My sister stands there, sniggering at me. I frown.

“Just watch me.”

The writer’s sister says, “I bet you don’t have the courage to leap off that one.” What is the writer's sister referring to when she mentions “that one”?

 

What does “that one” refer to?

 

  1. First waterfall
  2. Second waterfall
  3. Third waterfall
  4. Lowest waterfall

 

Answer:

(C) - third waterfall

Explanation:

She is referring to the third waterfall. So, the correct answer to this question is option (C) - “third waterfall”.

Hint: 

the preceding two sentences describe the third waterfall.

Furthermore, it is portrayed as being the most formidable of the three waterfalls - "boisterous white water beast".

Hence, the logical implication is that the writer's sister is referring to the third waterfall when she questions the writer's courage.

 

Question 2:

The text below describes an incident of snatch theft.

 

It was with an utmost sense of security that Ava set out for the town. It was a sleepy seaside town and every face encountered was always a familiar one. The one-mile walk she took revived her senses that had been dulled by staying indoors for far too long. As she turned into the dimly lit side street leading to her home, her pleasant musings were abruptly interrupted by an unusual sight. Standing before her, a portly man who resembled a Roman emperor, had dramatically extracted his wallet from his pocket. It looked as if he was flaunting its contents. As if by sorcery, a scrawny, predatory man appeared out of thin air and snatched the wallet from his grasp. Changing course, he sped towards Ava at breakneck speed.

 

Without flinching, she stuck out the umbrella she was holding. It caught him between his flying legs, causing him to trip and fall. The wallet arced through the air and landed on a grass patch a distance away.

 

"It looked as if he was flaunting its contents"
 

What does the emboldened word "its" refer to?

 

  1. Ava’s umbrella
  2. Sorcery
  3. Victim’s wallet
  4. Roman emperor

 

Answer:

(C) - victim’s wallet

Explanation:

"Its" refers to the portly man's / victim's wallet. So, the correct answer to this question is option (C) - “victim’s wallet”.

Hint:

The preceding sentence "extracted his wallet from his pocket" and began to show off what was inside (money) is a clear indication that the object that is being referred to is his wallet.

Your answer does not need to start with [The word is] or [The phrase is]. Simply quote the word/ phrase correctly and you will get your marks. However, including that would not incur a penalty either.

Note: Although a full sentence is not required, there must be mention of the wallet's owner - the portly man's wallet. Leaving that information out makes for an ambiguous answer. Simply answering "wallet" will result in a penalty.
 

Question 3:

The text below describes the writer's career as a teacher.

 

I began my teaching career in 1988 after a year-long training stint at the National Institute of Education (NIE). Teaching is in my blood. Being teachers, my parents and siblings might have all influenced me to become one as well. After taking my A' Levels, I did some relief teaching in the school that my mother was teaching at. I relished the experience, especially the authority that the post gave me. Unfortunately, my parents’ love for Mandarin did not rub off on us. My siblings are all English teachers.

 

In the given excerpt, what does the emboldened word "us" refer to?

 

  1. Writer
  2. Teachers
  3. Writer and his/her siblings
  4. Siblings

 

Answer:

(C) - writer and his/ her siblings

Explanation:

It refers to the writer and his/her siblings. The correct answer to this question is option (C) - “writer and his/ her siblings”.

Hint:

Such referencing questions test the skill of understanding links within a sentence and between parts of a text.

Read the entire sentence carefully and if need be, the sentences before and after as well to ascertain that your initial interpretation is correct.

Clue: "siblings are all ..."

 

Question 4:

The text below is a recount of a writer’s visit to an Elephant Festival in Thailand.

 

It was still early in the morning, but we were already on the move from our hotel. We reached the gates to Si Narong Stadium, awaiting the grand opening ceremonies of the much anticipated Surin Elephant Festival. We were amongst the roaring crowds that were gathering on both sides of the road. At times, a policeman, not in his full uniform, would stride into the middle of them, waving his hands and blowing a whistle as if his life depended on it. Without the presence of a figure of authority, a lot of mishaps could have happened as foreigners, who thronged the area, were easy targets for pickpockets there.

 

In the above text, it is stated that "Without the presence of a figure of authority, a lot of mishaps could have happened..."

 

Who does the writer refer to as being a "figure of authority"?

 

  1. Pickpocket
  2. Foreigners
  3. Policeman
  4. Elephant

 

Answer:

(C) - policeman

Explanation:

The writer refers to the policeman as the figure of authority. So, the correct answer to this question is option (C) - “policeman”.

Hint:

"A figure of authority" refers to someone with power granted to them by the law.

The preceding sentence makes reference to the policeman.

 

Question 5:

The text below depicts the preparation required for the National Day performance.

 

Prior to National Day, the platoon was still marching in staggered synchronisation. Unsatisfied with their progress, the soldiers were required to diligently commit to rehearsals that took months to perfect, often marching under the hot sun. It took a toll on their health, resulting in some experiencing symptoms of dehydration and heatstroke.

 

"It took a toll on their health"

 

What does "it" refer to?

 

  1. National Day
  2. Marching
  3. Dehydration
  4. Rehearsals under the hot sun

 

Answer:

(D) - rehearsals under the hot sun

Explanation:

"It" refers to their rehearsals under the hot sun. The correct answer to this question is option (D) - “rehearsals under the hot sun”.

Hint:

The preceding phrase "the soldiers were required to diligently commit to rehearsals that took months to perfect, often marching under the hot sun" is a clear indication of the answer.

Your answer does not need to start with [The word is] or [The phrase is]. Simply quote the word/ phrase correctly and you will get your marks. However, including such phrases will not incur a penalty either.


 

Test Your Concepts

Answer the following questions based on the concepts we’ve covered in this article. If you get stuck, revisit the relevant section to revise the concepts.

 

Question 1:

The text below depicts a wise storyteller and his captive audience.

 

The candle flickered. In the small room, the children huddled closely together, their eyes fixated on the animated figure in front of them. Words flowed melodiously from the wise and acclaimed storyteller. Storytelling sessions in the night were hugely anticipated by the villagers, for no one denied the great gift of imagination this legendary figure had. Their ears latched onto every single word spoken, thoroughly savouring the story in its entirety.

 

“no one denied the great gift of imagination this legendary figure had”

 

Who does the writer refer to as being a “legendary figure”?

 

  1. Children
  2. Storyteller
  3. Mysterious Villager
  4. Medicine Man


 

Question 2:

The text below depicts the writer standing in front of the mirror and observing her reflection.

 

My feet grudgingly carried me to the mirror and I looked on with dejection at my reflection. Critical eyes scanned for every inch of imperfection. The longer I stared at it, the more I failed to recognise the person in the mirror. A dark-haired, ghostly figure stood in front of me. Doubts began to flow through my unbridled mind, powerful and effortless, like the current of a meandering river passing through.

 

"The longer I stared at it, the more I failed to recognise the person in the mirror."

 

What does "it" refer to?

 

  1. Feet
  2. Ghostly Figure
  3. Writer’s Reflection
  4. Meandering river


 

Question 3:

The text below depicts the writer's struggles in getting around a new surrounding.

 

I felt like an alien. Upon my arrival, the unknown territory greeted me with an air of hostility. It was hard to get to my hotel as the signs were written in a language not known to me. I spent close to forty minutes walking around in circles aimlessly, until a kind stranger offered her help. Pointing me in the right direction, I trudged up the rocky paths while lugging my heavy suitcase behind me. To make matters worse, the alleyways resembled a maze. Before long I lost my bearings once more, and felt a gnawing anxiety. It crept up from my stomach, slowly and steadily.

 

"It crept up from my stomach, slowly and steadily."

 

What does the emboldened word "It" refer to?

 

  1. An alien
  2. Heavy suitcase
  3. Maze
  4. Anxiety
Continue Learning
Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) Comprehension Skills (Inferential Questions)
Continuous Writing: Personal Recount Continuous Writing - Expository
Comprehension Skills (IYOW Questions) Comprehension Skills (Non-narrative Text) - Dialogue Questions
Comprehension Skills (Non-narrative Text) - Summary Writing Skills Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) - Flowchart Questions
Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) Unusual & Effective Questions Comprehension Skills (Non-narrative Text) Direct Questions
Editing Comprehension Skills - Referencing Questions
Comprehension Skills - Direct Recall Of Relevant Material, Paraphrasing Text 2 Skills: Literacy Devices
Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) Literary Devices Irony
Summary Writing Situational Writing - Formal Letter of Complaint
Comprehension Skills - Language Arts Comprehension Skills - Vocabulary-based Questions
Comprehension Skills - Identifying Relevant Linguistic Expression Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) Technique-Based Questions
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Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text)
Comprehension Skills (Inferential Questions)
Continuous Writing: Personal Recount
Continuous Writing - Expository
Comprehension Skills (IYOW Questions)
Comprehension Skills (Non-narrative Text) - Dialogue Questions
Comprehension Skills (Non-narrative Text) - Summary Writing Skills
Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) - Flowchart Questions
Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) Unusual & Effective Questions
Comprehension Skills (Non-narrative Text) Direct Questions
Editing
Comprehension Skills - Referencing Questions
Comprehension Skills - Direct Recall Of Relevant Material, Paraphrasing
Text 2 Skills: Literacy Devices
Comprehension Skills (Narrative Text) Literary Devices
Irony
Summary Writing
Situational Writing - Formal Letter of Complaint
Comprehension Skills - Language Arts
Comprehension Skills - Vocabulary-based Questions
Comprehension Skills - Identifying Relevant Linguistic Expression
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