A cloze test is a sentence completion test where you are presented with a passage with some blanks and you got to fill these blanks with words provided in the options. A cloze test assesses you on your understanding of the passage, your Vocabulary and Grammatical skills. Many standardized examinations like CLAT, SBI-PO, IBPS-PO and Clerk use cloze test to test the examinees in English Language.

Cloze test is a highly scoring part of English Language section and if it is mastered with lots of practice can help you in fetching 10 marks straight. Acing the cloze test would help you to clear the sectional cut off of English section of any Bank-PO exam.

Other name of cloze test is Fill in the blanks in the passage or comprehension.


Various tips to ace or master the Cloze test questions:

1. Review the options first

The answer gives you four choices. Usually there is confusion between 2 options. One of the choices is the answer and one option is almost close to the answer.

The third and fourth options are usually not related to context of the paragraph and are off the point. The fifth option will most probably be opposite of the perfect answer.

Avoid answering questions where you are unaware of the meanings of words used in the options.

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2. Read through the given paragraph thoroughly

The best way to tackle a cloze test is to read the passage thoroughly before attempting to fill in the blanks. This would give you a reasonable idea of the message/ main idea of the passage. Keeping this message in the background of your mind, choosing the best possible word from the set of given answer choices becomes easier.

3. Think like the author

Understand the tone of the passage and answer the questions based on the opinion of the author. Don’t enforce your own opinion while filling the blanks. You might end up choosing the antonym of the word that was actually the answer.

4. Sentences are interconnected in a cloze test

Always link the sentences together. If you fill in the blanks by treating the sentence as an individual sentence there are high chances that you will make mistakes. Logically link up the sentences together and you will be able to insert perfect words in the blanks.

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5. Eliminate the improbable answers one by one

There are times when one can easily spot an answer. But, if you are not able to spot the answer easily then eliminate the doubtful option one by one and reach at the correct answer.

6. Fill blanks on the basis of commonly used phrases

It is possible at times that you are not able to decide between two close words. Here, if you see a word in the options that is more often used with the words just around the blanks, in this case pick up that option.

Check out an example:

Tens of thousands of demonstrators in Malaysia defied police orders on Saturday, massing in the capital in a ________of anger at the government of Prime Minister Najib Razak, who has been accused of corruption involving hundreds of millions of dollars.

  1. Show
  2. Display
  3. Expression
  4. Plainness

 How should we decide as to which one fits the blank most suitably?

Explanation: Answer is display. We use some words more frequently with some others. For example ‘hardly ever’ etc. Similarly ‘display’ fits in the sentence most appropriately. You cannot use the word ‘expression’ here as E is a vowel and you have to insert ‘an’ before a vowel. ‘Plainness’ is inappropriate here. ‘Show of anger’ is not incorrect but ‘display of anger’ is commonly used. Thus the answer is display.

The more you read the more you will come across such frequently used phrases.

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7. Type of word suitable to fill in the blank

Read the sentences carefully and assess as to what type of words need to be filled in. It could be a noun, a verb, an adverb, an article, conjunction or a preposition. You will know this if the base of your Grammar is strong. This will help you quickly eliminate unsuitable options.

Let’s take an example:

Finance minister Arun Jaitley said on Tuesday that India will be ______ the lesser impacted economies because of the global economic turmoil.

(1) in

(2) among

(3) known as

(4) for

By looking at the given sentence, it is clear that the blank will be filled by a preposition.  This will eliminate ‘known as’ and ‘for’. Answer is ‘among’.

8. Reading helps develop linguistic skills

Reading helps in building language skills. We recommend you to read as much as possible as it will hone your overall English language skills. This way you will be better able to answer vocabulary questions. It will inculcate in you the judgment of what word will go where. Linguistic skills can also be strengthened when you put in effort to build your Grammar. A person who learns basic grammar minutely will never fail in answering a cloze test question accurately.

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Now try a practice question

Indian culture is rich and ___1___ and as a result unique in its very own way. Our manners, way of communicating with one another, etc are one of the important components of our culture. Even though we have accepted modern means of living, improved our lifestyle, our values and beliefs still remain unchanged. A person can change his way of clothing, way of eating and living but the rich values in a person always ___2___ unchanged because they are deeply rooted within our hearts, mind, body and soul which we receive from our culture.

Indian culture ___3___ guests as god and serves them and takes care of them as if they are a part and parcel of the family itself.

Even though we don’t have anything to eat, the guests are never left hungry and are always looked after by the members of the family. Elders and the respect for elders is a major component in Indian culture. Elders are the ___4___ force for any family and hence the love and respect for elders comes from ___5___ and is not artificial.


Replacement for (1)

1) diverse

2) averse

3) poor

4) reconciliatory

5) reverse


Replacement for (2)

1) remains

2) remain

3) remaining

4) reverent

5) reformed


Replacement for (3)

1) ill-treat

2) deals in

3) treats

4) treated

5) behave


Replacement for (4)

1) diversive

2) driven

3) devastating

4) deriving

5) driving


Replacement for (5)

1) within

2) surrounding

3) proximity

4) outside

5) outsourcing


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