Reading Comprehension Practice Questions

Downloadable Sample Questions

Effective Reading strategies
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In modern teaching, educators must ensure that their students have excellent reading comprehension skills. Because academics today are predominantly interdisciplinary, a student cannot master core content with anything less than excellent reading comprehension. This is a tall order for teachers.

Sometimes, teachers feel so overwhelmed by checkpoints that must be reached in core content areas that reading falls by the wayside. Don't let this happen. Instead, since reading goes hand-in-hand with every other topic of study, utilize resources for practicing reading comprehension within other subject areas so that your students get used to multitasking.

Reading Comprehension Worksheets

Exercises like the ones found on these free reading comprehension worksheets—complete with multiple-choice and essay questions—are perfect for growing reading comprehension skills. Before long, your students will be prepared for any standardized testing (like the SAT, PSAT, and GRE) or real-world reading scenario.

These worksheets can stand in for homework, in-class handouts, or extended practice. However you choose to use them, get ready to see results in your students' reading.

Main Idea

The following worksheets focus specifically on finding the main idea, an important aspect of reading comprehension. You'll find worksheets filled with multiple-choice questions, where students will need to eliminate distractors to find the correct main idea, and open-ended questions, where students will need to compose the main idea themselves.


Each of the worksheets in this link features a story or nonfiction snippet that is followed by multiple-choice questions asking students to determine the meaning of a vocabulary word using context clues. Students must be able to discern the meaning of unfamiliar words to have strong comprehension. Match these exercises to your students based on their current ability levels until they are ready for more of a challenge. 


These inference-based worksheets will target your students' ability to read between the lines and reason with what they've read. When completing these exercises, students will study pictures and makes inferences about their meaning using evidence to support their conclusions. This crucial skill takes time to master, so have your students start practicing it now.

Author's Purpose and Tone

These worksheets present paragraphs followed by author's purpose questions similar to those on standardized tests. For each paragraph, students will need to select the choice that best represents the author's purpose for writing the passage, thinking beyond what is stated in the text to why the text was written.

Determining an author's purpose for writing something is a very different concept from identifying the main idea of a piece because it requires much more abstract thinking. Have your students use author's tone to guide their thinking.

Overall Reading Comprehension

This link will take you to a slew of reading comprehension worksheets that are centered around nonfiction passages. The passages range from 500 to over 2,000 words and content includes famous speeches, biographies, art, so you'll definitely be able to find what you need.

Use the worksheets and accompanying multiple-choice questions to test your students' overall comprehension, including their ability to find the main idea, assess the author's purpose, make inferences, understand vocabulary in context, and more!

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Your Citation
Roell, Kelly. "Reading Comprehension Practice Questions." ThoughtCo, Apr. 5, 2023, Roell, Kelly. (2023, April 5). Reading Comprehension Practice Questions. Retrieved from Roell, Kelly. "Reading Comprehension Practice Questions." ThoughtCo. (accessed June 7, 2023).