IELTS Reading True False Not Given: Essential Tips

Learn important IELTS True False Not Given Tips. Once you understand the IELTS TFNG questions, you will find them easier to answer. This page has a great video lesson to explain TFNG questions – see below.

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.
  3. Not Given: This means you can’t find all the information in the passage.

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:


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:

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  1. How much of true false and not given answers contains true answers

  2. Dear Liz,

    Am new to IELTS and if you don’t mind would you please send me some links about reading test, which will help me a lot to practice.


  3. Anastasia says:

    I have been speaking English for 18 years from age 13 as my first language, my mother tongue is very basic and only spoken to my children. I have finished high school and gained Bachelor of teaching. However, I found this test super hard((( why? I failed miserably academic level. timed test are the worst(

    • Having good English does not mean you have exam skills. This is an specific test, with specific requirements which are tested by an examiner. Unless you take time to understand the test FULLY, you won’t get the score that you need. You need to focus on learning about IELTS and developing the right skills.

  4. Aditya Bisht says:

    Hi Liz,
    One quick question, Can we write our Reading Answers in CAPITALS, just like you have suggested for the listening part?


  5. Hi Liz,

    I did a reading test from the British Council and had a question.
    passage three:
    the text: the Helium can be used as a coolant for superconducting magnets in hospital MRI scanners.

    the question (33): Helium is a very cold substance.

    The answer is NG. BUT I think it can be True.
    Could you explain it to me? Many thanks.

    • It does not say if it is a cold or hot substance. The words “used as a coolant” indicate how it is used – they do not indicate the temperature of the substance. So, in this case, it is a problem with your understanding of the English language used.

  6. SICILIA says:

    Hi Liz,
    I am new to the particularities of IELTS. I would be quite grateful if you could clear my doubts regarding a TFNG question I recently encountered in class.The question is…..
    -to be eligible to take part in the special Olympics,the athlete has to be not only less than intellectually capable,but must also be lacking in a number of other functions.

    The paragraph corresponding to the question goes on like this…
    Special olympics was created and developed to give individuals with an intellectual disability the opportunity to train and compete in sport activities. No person shall,on the grounds of gender,race,religion,colour,national origin or financial constraint be excluded from participation in,or be denied the benefits of,or otherwise be subjected to discrimination under any programme or activity of special Olympics. Flexibility is left to the Local,Region/Zone,Chapter and National special Olympics organisations for determining the eligibility of the participants because of the variety of situations and needs that exist in the many localities where Special Olympics programmes have been and will be instituted.Inclusion is preferred to exclusion when eligibility is in question. Individuals who have both an intellectual disability and multiple disabilities may participate in Special Olympics programmes and competitions.

    I marked it as a false statement but the answer was the true. Iwould have agreed if not for the first sentence which says that Special Olympics was created for individuals with intellectual disability.Although the last sentence does confirm the statement in question,would it be ok to think that the Special Olympics which as per the passage was specially made to encourage individuals with intellectual disability in sport activities,will not let them participate as they have no other disability? Thank you in advance for your reply.

    • The passage shows that the Special Olympics was created for people with intellectual disability, but the criteria for participation MUST include another disability as well – being only intellectually disabled is NOT enough to take part. The first sentence shows who it was aimed at, the last paragraph shows the criteria for taking part. Your question is about taking part.

  7. Hi, Liz. Thank you so much for your such a wonderful help. I have some confusion. May I write Roman numbers I, II, III, IV,V, X just like this only in capital. Or do I need to line on and under the numbers? In Outweigh essay, in my class taught me to just conclude, but as per your advice i must be write opinion. I am worried about the IELTS examination center and assessment from where I want to take my IELTS, can they assess wrong as examiners are local and their understanding for outweigh essay is just to give conclusion?

    • You don’t need to write a line under them. The instructions are asking for your opinion – are the advs more than the disadv OR vice versa – you need to decide – you need to present your answer. All my advice is based on my IELTS examiner training – all examiners are trained in the exactly the same way with the same marking criteria.

  8. Thank you for your great service in sharing IELTS tips.
    Quick question please? In the homework below:
    Passage: By the second half of 17th century, coffee had found its way to Europe”
    Statement: Coffee arrived in Europe after the 17th century.

    Passage suggest its ‘way to Europe’ but not talking anything about ‘arrived’ in Europe. Should the answer be ‘not given’ ?? Please explain the difference of ‘way to Europe’ and ‘arrived in Europe’. Thanks again.

    • It does not say “way to Europe”. It says “it FOUND it’s way to Europe” and this means it arrived.

  9. Thank you.

  10. Thanks a lot.

  11. Hi Liz,
    Thank you so much for your support. TFNG questions were one of the main obstacles in my reading part. Now, I feel very confident to take the exam and get good score.

  12. You are a real teacher… keep it up (y)
    thanks a lot

  13. I am very happy – going through the tips for True/False/Not Given, you have explained very nicely . If we apply same logic ,It’s very easy to crack the answer. I have solved your 3 examples almost 95% correctly answered. I have to spend more time on vocabulary.

    Thank you

  14. Hi Liz,

    I got a question from one of the general reading tests.

    Text in the passage: “Just park you car and buy your ticket from the bus driver, with the correct money if possible.”

    Question: Bus drivers do not give change so you must have the correct money for a ticket.

    My answer was NOT GIVEN as the statement does not say that “Bus drivers do to give change”. However, the correct answer was FALSE. Could you explain me this?

    • The passage shows that you need to use the correct money if possible. The meaning is that you should use the correct money, but if you don’t have it, you can use the incorrect money (and this means you will get change). Look at the meaning – not the words.

  15. Hi Liz,

    I am an Chinese IELTS candidate, planning to take IELTS ACADEMIC on 3 March in Hunan Province, China. I was wondering for Reading Part, if they say write TRUE/ FALSE/ NOT GIVEN or write YES/ NO/ NOT GIVEN, and I wrote my answers as abbreviations in the form of T/F/NG in my answer sheet for both of these aforementioned question types, will they still score fully without penalty?

    Xue Yuan

  16. Hi Liz,
    Thanks for wonderful lectures, i ranked them # 1 among all available on internet. No doubt in it at all.
    i had a question in reading mentioning “the restaurant opens daily 9am and closes at 5pm, however it also opens on saturday for cleaning” then the question was
    Restaurant is opened during weekdays?
    is it true or false?
    i think statement is correct but i can see they are opening on weekend as well. what would you say here?

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