EF SET reading

The EF SET reading section takes 25 minutes on the EF SET English Certificate test. Individual tasks on the reading section are not timed, so test takers have as much time as they need to read each text and answer questions, but the entire reading section is limited to 25 minutes.

Test structure

The EF SET reading section is composed of a series of written texts with one or more comprehension questions about each text. The questions are displayed at the same time that the text is displayed. The average number of questions about each text is 6, but it can be anywhere from 1 to 12 questions. EF SET reading section texts are between 1 and 5 paragraphs long. Each test taker will answer approximately 50 questions in total in the EF SET reading section, but the number of reading prompts presented will vary.

Because the EF SET reading section is adaptive, the lengths of the texts and the difficulty of the questions asked will depend on how well the test taker is doing on the reading test so far. The first EF SET reading prompt is of intermediate difficulty then the following prompt will be harder or easier depending on the test taker’s success answering the first prompt correctly.


The test taker can take as much time as needed to read the text and answer the questions before going on to the next text. Because each task is not timed but the entire reading section is timed, it is important for test takers to pace themselves and not spend too much time on a single text. Otherwise they will not have enough time to complete all the tasks. Also, test takers cannot move backwards while taking the EF SET, so it is important to finish with each reading prompt completely before going on to the next one.


The EF SET reading section is equally weighted with the listening section in calculating the total EF SET score. You will receive an EF SET reading score on a scale of 0 to 100 upon completion of the test.