IELTS Reading True False Not Given: Essential Tips

IELTS True False Not Given Tips for Reading. These are the most challenging types of questions that appear in IELTS reading. You can find them in both the Academic and GT IELTS Reading tests. The more you understand about these questions, the easier they will be. Use the strategies and techniques below to help you boost your score for reading. 

This page contains a link to FREE TFNG practice lessons, a FREE video lesson about TFNG and a summary of tips below the video. You’ll also find answers to the HOMEWORK question below the video.

Understanding IELTS Reading True False Not Given Questions

You will be given statements containing information. You must decide if the information in the statement is True, False or Not Given according to the information in the reading passage.

  1. True: You can find this information in the passage and it agrees with the statement.
  2. False: The passage and statement have different information. The passage shows that the statement is wrong – it contains a mistake which you know because the passage shows us what it should be.
  3. Not Given: This means you can’t find all the information in the passage or that the passage does not contain enough information to know if it is true or false.

TFNG Questions Practice

You need plenty of practice to understand the techniques for TFNG. You can find some practice TFNG exercises on this page: TFNG Reading Practice

Difficulties with True False & Not Given

  1. Paraphrasing. You must be prepared for the words in the statement to be paraphrased in the passage. This means you really need to know your vocabulary.
  2. You are looking for meaning. Many students just try to match words but you actually need to match meaning and check the content of the information given. Some times the same words are used but the meaning is not the same – this is one common difficulty with choosing the right answer.
  3. Not Given and False (No)
    1. Not Given means the entire statement is not given in the passage.  Maybe part of the statement is given but not the whole statement. Watch out for that!! Try to find the whole meaning in the passage.
    2. False means the passage contradicts the statement. Don’t forget you are not just looking for an opposite meaning, you are also looking for contradicting information.

IELTS Reading True False Not Given Tips

This video lesson explains how to answer IELTS TFNG questions in the reading test.  It explains the difference between the answers: True, False and Not Given. It also explains if answers come in order and if you can write T or True on your answer sheet. The TFNG homework answer is below the video. 

Homework: True, False Not Given

Decide if the following statement is true, false or not given according to the passage?

  • Passage: By the second half of the 17th century, coffee had found its way to Europe.
  • Statement: Coffee arrived in Europe after the 17th century.

Click below to reveal the answer to the TFNG homework question:

Click here: Answer

The answer is false. “second half of the 17th century” means from the middle of the 17th century to the end of the 17th century – so this is still in the 17th century. That means it contradicts the statement which says coffee arrived after the 17th century.  We can say, “the passage says that coffee did not arrive in the 17th century or before the 17th century, it arrived after the 17th century.”

TFNG Reading Practice Exercises

You can find reading practice for TFNG questions:

Summary of IELTS Reading True False Not Given Tips

Below is a list of the main Tips for IELTS True False Not Given Reading Questions. However, you should watch the video to understand them clearly for maximum benefit.

  1. Spend time analysing the statement in the question before you try to find the answer
  2. Many words will be paraphrased so watch out for that (for example, work = employment / changing = altering)
  3. Don’t match just key words, you are aiming to match meaning. Some of the key words might be the same in the passage but it doesn’t mean the answer is true or yes.
  4. The meaning of false or no is that the statement contradicts the claims or information in the passage. This means the statement gives one meaning but the passage gives another meaning – therefore the statement is FALSE.
  5. Not Given means that the whole meaning of the statement is not in the passage. Some key words might be found but not the full meaning of the statement.
  6. You can write T instead of True on your answer sheet but make sure your handwriting is clear.
  7. The answers follow the order of information in the passage for these questions. Other types of reading questions might not have answers that come in order.
  8. Learn common challenges or problems that you have in reading. Make a list of paraphrases you have struggled with.

TFNG Reading Practice Exercises

You can find reading practice for TFNG quetions in IELTS reading:


Free Subscribe to get New Posts by Email


  1. Samith Ahmedh says

    Hi, Is there any possibility that I can get T/F/NG in an Exam paper twice in the first and last passage? I did my IELTS last week and I’m kinda worried about it. Thanks

  2. Mohamed Tayea says

    Hi Liz,
    Wishing this finds you safe. Thanks a lot for your video and the beneficial reading 10 tips. When I was practicing in (Cambridge IELTS 10 Book)Test 1 READING PASSAGE 1, I was focusing on your useful tips, particularly, tips 6 and 7(Answers come in order). Although, I couldn’t find the answer of Question 8,( which should be between Q7 and 9).When I checked the answers I had found in the last paragraph. Is that reasonable?
    Thanks in advance and stay blessed.

    • I am a but confused about your question. When I checked Cambridge 10 Reading Test 1, I found that questions 7, 8 and 9 were not TFNG. This video and the tips contained in the video are for TFNG. Don’t confuse the question types. Each type of question is different with different strategies, different rules and therefore different advice.

      Furthermore, question 7 and 8 are short answer questions. Question 9 is part of a table completion. Each time the question types changes, the rules change. You start at the beginning of the passage for each type of question. If you look on the question paper, they each have different instructions given by IELTS to differentiate them.

      I hope this helps. Please be careful to make sure you follow advice properly on this website. Tips for TFNG are for TFNG – not for tables or short answer questions.

  3. Rajesh Tavhare says

    Hi Liz,

    Just finished with your advance writing course material that I had purchased for almost half of the price (during the sale period) & let me tell you, it was totally worth it !
    Would recommend everyone to invest their money even if it is at its full price.

    This video is very informative as well…

    Thank you, Liz !

  4. Hung Tony says

    Hi, I am a candidate who took the IELTS exam several days ago. And now I am so worried that in the Reading test, I wrote the letter Y, N, NG instead of Yes, No, Not Given, as well as T, F, NG instead of the full words. I have searched every website to find out whether my answer will be marked wrong or not, but now I am totally confused as some websites say yes, but others say no. I desperately need your help. Thank you!

  5. Hello Liz,
    Hope you are doing well. I want to ask that in reading particularly in T, F, NG we supposed to read whole passage or we read the statement first ?

    • I think you’ve got confused between skimming and scanning. Skimming is when you read in brief (2 mins tops) and focus mainly on the first sentences of paragraphs to get an idea of the layout and general content. This is not for deep knowledge of the passage. Scanning is when you move your eyes over the passage to quickly locate information. Once you locate that information, you read the whole paragraphs deeply. Some questions only require skimming and scanning. Some questions require must deeper reading of the whole passage. Do some full authentic practice tests and start learning for yourself – develop awareness through practice.

  6. Hi Liz! hope you are doing good.
    Wanted to clarify one thing, for True False, if a question asks about ‘many’, and the passage talks about ‘some’, will the answer be False or true? According to my understanding, many means more part and some means less part. Please guide me if possible. Thank you so much in advance.

    • “some” and “many” are both not quantified. They both refer to a number of people that we do not know about. The word “all” means 100% – this is quantified. The word “no” means 0%. As you can see, “all” and “no” are opposites, while “some” and “many” are not opposites. If the passage says “some people” and the statement says “all people” – this is also opposite because “some” and “many” means above 0% and 100% – they do not mean exactly “all”.

      • It is a great explanation, thank for so much for taking time to reply to the comment. I have another similar confusion, are “most of them” and “all” same or opposite? (Sorry to bother you with another question).

        • This is completely the same as the previous question. “most” = there is no fixed number attached to this word. All has a fixed number attached and means 100%.
          Stop thinking about individual words and rules of opposites – that isn’t what TFNG are about. It is about understanding the deeper meaning of what is being explained and see if it contradicts or not. This is more than a single word vocabulary exercise – it is about context and meaning.

  7. Longman Olamide says

    Hello everyone,

    Please I need information on the IELTS Indicator. I am planning to write an IELTS indicator exam by the end of this month, Any useful information will be appreciated.

    Thank you,


    • Go to the RED MENU BAR at the top of the site and select “TEST INFO” – you’ll get a drop down menu with “IELTS Indicator” as an option.

  8. Hi. I think when Nobel writes his will in 1985(and he is alive) this instituation will be put into effect at least the year after his death(1986 or after). so the answer is false.

  9. I really got the answer Ma’am following your method. Thanks alot!

  10. Sireesha says

    Hi Liz,

    I have already given my IELTS and have achieved the desired score except for reading. Till today I have difficulty in reading section. While practising I am able to answer the questions if the passage is given in smaller bits, but when the whole passage is given I am unable to find the accurate answer. Can you give me any tips for easy understanding?

    Please reply

    • Sounds like you need to work on your scanning ability. This means locating specific information in a test by looking for keywords or paraphrases of keywords.

  11. OMG!!! you are too good .. 🙂 I am soo happy to have found you liz.. many many thanks to your explanation..God Bless you for all the hard work you have put to teach us 🙂 🙂

  12. Hi Liz,

    where can we get the real iets papers for practise with all the sections?

    • You can purchase them in the IELTS Cambridge Test books – there are 14 books in total. Book 14 is the most recent. You can also find a free practice test on the BC IELTS website.

  13. Hi Liz,

    I can only start off by thanking you for everything that you do. I can’t say enough how much your website has subsequently helped me improve on my IELTS test abilities as a whole. That being said, I have a question encountered while practicing the T,F, Not given from the Cambridge Official prep material 13(General Training).

    The statement reads as “The Australian in Sasha’s apartment is a musician”. The portion of the text related to that statement is: **The third room is occupied by Simon, who is from Australia. He works part-time in a music shop downtown and is a great drummer**

    My answer was Not given because I considered musician more as a profession. The article mentioned his work as a part-time worker in a music shop. The answer key however, says it’s TRUE. Can you help me with the logic behind that answer? Thanks and I look forward to your reply as that will help me get straight the few confusions I still have regarding T,F, NG

    • A follow up on this question will be a statement that reads* Sasha thinks her apartment is in the best part of Toronto*. The text related to the statement ” We love having people from other countries as it’s really fun having the opportunity to show them around the neighborhood( it’s a great neighborhood-lots of character and plenty to do).

      my answer was True but the answer key said Not Given. Doesn’t the last part of the text in bracket(it’s a great……) implies it’s in one of the best place in Toronto?

      Thanks Liz in advance. From all my practices from the official IELTS Cambridge so far, my reading score is ranging from 32 to 35 out of 40 and that’s under 1hour(real exam condition). My aim is to obtain a 36-37 at the minimum and I believe getting the T,F and Not given portion right will definitely set me up to achieve my goal.

      • “a great neighbourhood” doesn’t mean that the neighbourhood is in the best part of Toronto. It just means it’s a great neighbourhood – we don’t know which part of Toronto it is in and she makes no claims that it is in the best part of the city. We only know it is a great neighbourhood. So … a) we don’t know which part of the city it is in b) Sasha does not give her opinion about her part of the the city compared to the other parts – she doesn’t say it is the greatest – note that a superlative is needed (best / greatest = better than all others). Always pay attention to grammar in the statements given. I hope this helps 🙂

    • The key here is to understand that being a musician doesn’t mean they have to be a professional. If it had stated “a professional musician”, the answer would have been different. But in this case, he is a great drummer = he’s a musician. Whether he is professional or amateur, he is still a musician. The word “musician” can be applied to someone who is musically talented whether they are professional or not.

      So, the problem here isn’t your technique. You are thinking along the right lines. The problem is that you put a very fixed definition of the word “musician”.

  14. God bless you for this teaching, it is a lot clearer now.

  15. Hope you are fine Ma’am . Your IELTS lessons are Superb !

  16. Thanks ma for the knowledge impacted to these generation.
    I’ll like to ask if the question can be read before going through the passage.

    • There are no fixed rules if you read the questions or the passage first. There are also no fixed rules about whether you do passage 1 first or passage 3 first. You have 1 hour to tackle three passages in the order you wish.

      • Yes Liz, this is the reason why reading to understand the passage is a tough one because it is time consuming. Concerning the homework you gave, I still can understand why the answer is False and not NG. If the only difference between the two passages was ‘its way’ and arrived, then, it’s clear. But there is another difference in the passages. One says ‘second half of the 17th century’ the other says after the 17th century. This is where I’m lost.

        • Don’t try matching words. Think about meaning. “after the 17th century” – do you think the 18th century is after the 17th? Do you think in the middle of the 17th century is after the 17th century? What is your understand of “after the 17th century”. Once you have this meaning clear in your mind, check the passage.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

error: Content is protected !!