Đề thi đọc hiểu (Reading) B1, B2 VSTEP theo Thông tư số 01/2014/TT-BGDĐT ngày 24/01/2014 của Bộ trưởng Bộ Giáo dục và Đào tạo bao gồm 4 đoạn văn, mỗi đoạn sau khi đọc hiểu trả lời 10 câu hỏi trắc nghiệm. Bài thi đọc hiểu (Reading) B1,B2 Vstep thực hiện trong vòng 60 phút và làm hoàn toàn trên máy tính.


Directions: In this section of the test, you will read FOUR different passages, each followed by 10 questions about it. For questions 1-40, you are to choose the best answer A, B, C, or D, to each question. Then, on your answer sheet, find the number of the question and fill in the space that corresponds to the letter of the answer you have chosen. Answer all questions following a passage on the basis of what is stated or implied in that passage.

You have 60 minutes to answer all the questions, including the time to t ransfer your answers to the answer sheet.

PASSAGE 1 – Questions 1-10

Annie Oakley, an intriguing figure in American entertainment, was a markswoman who starred in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show, where she was often called “Little Sure Shot.” [A] She was born in 1860 in Darke County, Ohio, and her original name was Phoebe Ann Moses. As a child, she hunted game with such success that, according to legend, by selling it in Cincinnati, Ohio, she was able to pay off the mortgage on the family farm. When she was 15 she won a shooting match in Cincinnati with Frank E. Butler, a vaudeville marksman, and they were married a year later.

For the next ten years they toured the country and performed in theaters and circuses as “Butler and Oakley.” [B] In April 1885, Annie Oakley, now under her husband’s management, joined “Buffalo Bill” Cody’s Wild West Show. Billed as “Miss Annie Oakley, the Peerless Lady Wing-Shot,” she was one of the show’s star attractions for sixteen years.

Oakley never failed to delight her audiences, and her feats of marksmanship were truly incredible. At 30 paces she could split a playing card held edge-on, and she hit dimes tossed into the air. She shot cigarettes from her husband’s lips, and, when he threw a playing card into the air, she would shoot it full of holes before it touched the ground. She was a great success on the Wild West Show’s European trips. [C]

[D] In 1887, she was presented to Queen Victoria, and later in Berlin she performed her cigarette trick with, at his insistence, Crown Prince Wilhelm (later Kaiser Wilhelm II) holding the cigarette. A train wreck in 1901 left her partially paralyzed for a time, but she recovered and returned to the stage to amaze audiences for many more years.

1. The word “intriguing” in the passage is closest in meaning to_____.

A. Frightening            B. Fascinating             C. Fabulous             D. Funny

2. The passage implies that Oakley and Butler were married in______.

A. 1873                      B. 1874                      C. 1875                      D. 1876

3. The word “mortgage” in the passage is closest in meaning to_____.

  1. A debt left by a deceased property owner
  2. A bank-loan contract using property as security
  3. A measurement of debts owed
  4. A piece of furniture loaned to a neighbor

4. According to the passage, Frank E. Butler was all of the following EXCEPT:_____.

  1. Annie Oakley’s assistant in her act
  2. Annie Oakley’s husband
  3. Annie Oakley’s teacher
  4. Annie Oakley’s manager

5. The word “feats” in the passage is closest in meaning to______ .

  1. Jokes
  2. Accomplishments
  3. Displays
  4. Mistakes

6. The word “it” in the passage refers to _____.

A. Child                  B. Game                      C. Legend                  D. Mortgage

7. Look at the four squares [_] that indicate where the following sentence can be added to the passage.

Her story was made into a Broadway musical called Annie Get Your Gun, but the real life of Annie Oakley is just as interesting.

Where would the sentence best fit?

A. [A]                   B. [B]                         C. [C]                         D. [D]

8. What was Oakley often called while performing in Buffalo Bill’s Wild West Show?

  1. Little Orphan Annie
  2. Little Phoebe Ann
  3. Little Sure Shot
  4. Little Phoebe Butler

9. Which of the following can be inferred from the passage?

  1. Annie Oakley was a talented and popular entertainer.
  2. Frank E. Butler was jealous of his wife’s talent and popularity.
  3. Queen Victoria was brave when she held a cigarette for Annie Oakley.
  4. Buffalo Bill Cody was not as good a marksman as Annie Oakley.

10. According to the passage, who performed the cigarette trick with her in Europe?

  1. Queen Victoria
  2. Crown Prince Wilhelm
  3. Buffalo Bill Cody
  4. Princess Anne

PASSAGE 2 – Questions 11-20

Mount Rushmore is a well-known monument in the Black Hills of South Dakota that features the countenances of four United States presidents: Washington, Jefferson, Roosevelt, and Lincoln. What is not so well known is that the process of creating this national treasure was not exactly an uneventful one.

Mount Rushmore was the project of the visionary sculptor John Gutzen de la Mothe Borglum, who was born in Idaho but studied sculpture in Paris in his youth and befriended the famous French sculptor Auguste Rodin. In 1927 Borglum was granted a commission by the federal government to create the sculpture on Mount Rushmore. Though he was nearly sixty years old when he started, he was undaunted by the enormity of the project and the obstacles that it engendered. He optimistically asserted that the project would be completed within five years, not caring to recognize the potential problems that such a massive project would involve, the problems of dealing with financing, with government bureaucracy, and with Mother Nature herself. An example of what Mother Nature had to throw at the project was the fissure – or large crack – that developed in the granite where Jefferson was being carved. Jefferson had to be moved to the other side of Washington, next to Roosevelt because of the break in the stone. The work that had been started on the first Jefferson had to be dynamited away.

Mount Rushmore was not completed within the five years predicted by Borglum and was in fact not actually completed within Borglum's lifetime, although it was almost finished. Borglum died on March 6. 1941, at the age of seventy' four, after fourteen years of work on the presidents. His son, Lincoln Borglum, who had worked with his father throughout the project, completed the monument within eight months of his father's death.

11. Which of the following best expresses the main idea of the passage?

  1. Mount Rushmore is a famous American monument.
  2. Mount Rushmore was a huge project filled with numerous obstacles.
  3. John Gutzen de la Mothe Borglum created Mount Rushmore.
  4. Mount Rushmore has sculptures of four United States presidents on it.

12. Which of the following is NOT true about Borglum?

  1. Mount Rushmore was finished when Borglum predicted it would be.
  2. He predicted that Mount Rushmore would be finished around 1932.
  3. Borglum worked on Mount Rushmore for more than a decade.
  4. He began Mount Rushmore around the age of sixty.

13. The word "fissure" is closest in meaning to _____.

A. softness            B. break                   C. discoloration                  D. unevenness

14. Which of the following best describes the relationship between Borglum and Rodin in Borglum's early years?

  1. Borglum was far more famous than Rodin as a sculptor.
  2. Borglum and Rodin were born and raised in the same place.
  3. Borglum and Rodin were friends.
  4. Borglum studied about Rodin in Paris.

15. Why does the author mention the fact that the carving of Thomas Jefferson was moved?

  1. It demonstrates Borglum's artistic style.
  2. It shows what a perfectionist Borglum was.
  3. It is an example of a problem caused by nature.
  4. It gives insight into Jefferson's character.

16. Which of the following is closest in meaning to the expression "within eight months of his father’s death"?

  1. Less than eight months before his father's death.
  2. More than eight months after his father's death.
  3. More than eight months before his father's death.
  4. Less than eight months after his father's death.

17. It can be inferred from the passage that Borglum was someone who ____.

  1. set realistic goals
  2. expected the best to happen
  3. was always afraid that bad things were going to happen
  4. never tried anything too challenging

18. The pronoun "it" refers to which of the following?

  1. The first Jefferson             
  2. Mount Rushmore
  3. Fourteen years of work               
  4. Borglum's lifetime

19. This passage would most likely be assigned reading in a course on _____.

  1. management       
  2. art history                 
  3. geography             
  4. government

20. The word “nearly” could best be replaced by which of the following?

A. Almost                 B. Barely                   C. Closely                     D. Over

PASSAGE 3 – Questions 21-30


Make-up, along with tattooing, body piercing, and jewelry, is a form of body decoration practiced all around the world. In ancient times, make-up played a significant role in all cultures and countries. The ancient Egyptians used different shades of make-up to complement the strong desert light. Mummies were often buried with make-up for the afterlife, including tattoos of the God's. Eye make-up was worn by men and women. It consisted of green copper and black kohl made from lead.

Middle Eastern women used henna to paint designs on their hands and feet. Kohl was also used on the rim of the eyes to reduce the glare of the sun. South Pacific islanders painted their faces. Hair dyeing using orange, blue and green, was also common in most cultures. Many people believed that dramatic face painting or masks scared away harmful evil spirits and that certain patterns or colors similar to astral figures might bestow good luck. These are all ancient ceremonial beliefs. However, henna is still used today in many countries, particularly at weddings.

In Greek theater, the dramas rarely had more than three actors who each played different roles using masks. A chorus would usually sing songs on stage. Each drama was played just once at a traditional drama contest. Contests like this were always held in the background of major religious festivals, most notably those in honor of the gods.

The actors in Greek theater wore large masks which were extremely colorful. These masks depicted two things, the mood and the age of the character. Actors also wore thick, padded clothing and shoes with very thick soles. This made the characters seem larger, so the audience was able to see them when seated on the higher rows. Roman theater was largely influenced by Greek theater. However, the Romans were less influenced by religion. Roman theater was visually more appealing. War was commonly shown and acted out, whereas in Greek theater it was more commonly spoken about.

The audiences were often loud and rude, so the plays were repetitive and mimed. A code was developed which would tell the audience about the characters just by looking at them. For example, a black wig indicated the character was a young man, a gray wig meant he was old. A white robe denoted an old man, whereas a purple robe indicated that it was a young man. Plays usually lasted for approximately two hours and were mostly comedies.

Kathakali, which originated from India in the 17th century, is still in existence. This uses elaborate face masks and make-up to depict cosmic battles between good and evil. It is coded, similar to the Greek system, where the audience knows, for instance, that green make- up and dress indicate a 'noble and good person,' and black represents 'evil.'

The most obvious function for stage make-up is to change the performer's appearance and mold it into the character that he or she is playing. Overall, make-up is quite necessary, even just for lighting. In the Edwardian period, strong lighting was focused on the character which made the actual face disappear on stage. Due to the glare from the lighting, make-up was repainted over and over to make the features look larger and brighter, resulting in it being quite heavy on the face.

The greasepaint was oil-based and came in a variety of colors. It was a new innovation to the Edwardian theater. Previously, make-up contained amounts of lead oxide, which, when absorbed, caused hair loss and led eventually to poisoning. The introduction of greasepaints was a significant step forward as it was relatively free of toxic compounds. Greasepaints were applied in streaks and blended onto the skin. Foundation would be applied to keep the colors from running, followed by blush to highlight cheeks. Rouges came in shiny and dull varieties and in many shades of colors.

[A] Other materials used included spirit gum which was used to attach false beards, moustaches and artificial noses to the skin. [B] Nose putty was used to modify the shape and size of the nose, and to also create facial effects such as warts and scars. [C] All these materials were used in excess, as make-up on stage had to be necessarily heavy in order to be seen. [D]

21. According to paragraph 1, why did the Egyptians use lots of make-up?

  1. It highlighted pale skin with freckles.
  2. It helped as a primitive form of sun block.
  3. It was as an antiseptic against the many diseases.
  4. It was used as tools for beauty.

22. According to paragraph 5, what would wigs be used for?

  1. To identify a character as old or young.
  2. To identify a character as evil or good.
  3. To keep actors warm during cold performances.
  4. To cover up a bald man's head.

23. According to paragraph 8, all of the following were used as make-up EXCEPT _____.

A. Mascara              B. Foundation               C. Greasepaint                D. Rouge

24. According to the passage, what was an original belief of the value in make-up?

  1. That it helped you to dance with more skill.
  2. That it would attract a more handsome mate.
  3. That it would scare away evil spirits and might bring good luck.
  4. That it would show you to be more powerful than others.

25. The word “it” in the passage refers to _____.

A. War            B. Greek theater              C. Religion               D. Roman theater

26. The word “wore” in the passage is closest in meaning to___ .

A. Acted               B. Flaunted                 C. Designed            D. Donned

27. The word “ceremonial” in the passage is closest in meaning to_____.

A. Matrimonial            B. Prevalent               C. Ritual                D. Superstitious

28. Which of the following best expresses the essential information in the underlined sentence?

  1. A colorful make-up would be created to minimize the effects of light.
  2. Lots of make-up would be used to combat the light and emphasize the features.
  3. The light on stage would reduce the need for make-up by providing a clear visual for the audience.
  4. Excessive make-up would be repainted to aid beauty and play a big part in helping to develop a character.

29. Look at the four squares [_] that indicate where the following sentence can be added to the passage.

Consequently, make-up has been used for many different purposes but all with the intent of improving the theatrical experience.

Where would the sentence best fit?

A. [A]                     B. [B]                         C. [C]                        D. [D]

30. The word “modify” in the passage is closest in meaning to

A. Change                 B. Maintain                   C. Enlarge                   D. Shrink

 PASSAGE 4 – Questions 31-40


The deserts, which already occupy approximately a fourth of the Earth’s land surface, have in recent decades been increasing at an alarming pace. The expansion of desert-like conditions into areas where they did not previously exist is called desertification. It has been estimated that an additional one-fourth of the Earth’s land surface is threatened by this process.

Desertification is accomplished primarily through the loss of stabilizing natural vegetation and the subsequent accelerated erosion of the soil by wind and water. In some cases the loose soil is blown completely away, leaving a stony surface. In other cases, the finer particles may be removed, while the sand-sized particles are accumulated to form mobile hills or ridges of sand.

Even in the areas that retain a soil cover, the reduction of vegetation typically results in the loss of the soil’s ability to absorb substantial quantities of water. The impact of raindrops on the loose soil tends to transfer fine clay particles into the tiniest soil spaces, sealing them and producing a surface that allows very little water penetration. Water absorption is greatly reduced, consequently runoff is increased, resulting in accelerated erosion rates. The gradual drying of the soil caused by its diminished ability to absorb water results in the further loss of vegetation, so that a cycle of progressive surface deterioration is established.

In some regions, the increase in desert areas is occurring largely as the result of a trend toward drier climatic conditions. Continued gradual global warming has produced an increase in aridity for some areas over the past few thousand years. The process may be accelerated in subsequent decades if global warming resulting from air pollution seriously increases.

There is little doubt, however, that desertification in most areas results primarily from human activities rather than natural processes. The semiarid lands bordering the deserts exist in a delicate ecological balance and are limited in their potential to adjust to increased environmental pressures. Expanding populations are subjecting the land to increasing pressures to provide them with food and fuel. In wet periods, the land may be able to respond to these stresses. During the dry periods that are common phenomena along the desert margins, though, the pressure on the land is often far in excess of its diminished capacity, and desertification results.

Four specific activities have been identified as major contributors to the desertification processes: over-cultivation, over-grazing, firewood gathering, and over-irrigation. The cultivation of crops has expanded into progressively drier regions as population densities have grown. These regions are especially likely to have periods of severe dryness, so that crop failures are common. Since the raising of most crops necessitates the prior removal of the natural vegetation, crop failures leave extensive tracts of land devoid of a plant cover and susceptible to wind and water erosion.

The raising of livestock is a major economic activity in semiarid lands, where grasses are generally the dominant type of natural vegetation. The consequences of an excessive number of livestock grazing in an area are the reduction of the vegetation cover and the trampling and pulverization of the soil. This is usually followed by the drying of the soil and accelerated erosion.

Firewood is the chief fuel used for cooking and heating in many countries. The increased pressures of expanding populations have led to the removal of woody plants so that many cities and towns are surrounded by large areas completely lacking in trees and shrubs. The increasing use of dried animal waste as a substitute fuel has also hurt the soil because this valuable soil conditioner and source of plant nutrients is no longer being returned to the land.

The final major human cause of desertification is soil salinization resulting from over- irrigation. Excess water from irrigation sinks down into the water table. If no drainage system exists, the water table rises, bringing dissolved salts to the surface. The water evaporates and the salts are left behind, creating a white crustal layer that prevents air and water from reaching the underlying soil.

The extreme seriousness of desertification results from the vast areas of land and the tremendous numbers of people affected, as well as from the great difficulty of reversing or even slowing the process. Once the soil has been removed by erosion, only the passage of centuries or millennia will enable new soil to form. In areas where considerable soil still remains, though, a rigorously enforced program of land protection and cover-crop planting may make it possible to reverse the present deterioration of the surface.

31. It can be inferred from the passage that the author most likely believes which of the following about the future of desertification?

  1. Desertification will continue to increase.
  2. Desertification will soon occur in all areas of the world.
  3. Governments will act quickly to control further desertification.
  4. The factors influencing desertification occur in cycles and will change in the future.

32. According to paragraph 5, in dry periods, border areas have difficulty _____.

  1. adjusting to stresses created by settlement
  2. providing water for irrigating crops
  3. retaining their fertility after desertification
  4. attracting populations in search of food and fuel

33. The word “progressively” in the passage is closest in meaning to _____.

A. Impressively           B. Openly                 C. Objectively             D. Increasingly

34. The word “threatened” in the passage is closest in meaning to _____.

A. restricted            B. endangered                  C. prevented                 D. rejected

35. All of the following are mentioned in the passage as contributing to desertification EXCEPT _____ .

  1. soil erosion 
  2. insufficient irrigation
  3. global warming           
  4. the raising of livestock

36. The word “delicate” in the passage is closest in meaning to _____.

A. predictable              B. fragile                 C. complex                  D. valuable

37. According to paragraph 9, the ground’s absorption of excess water is a factor in desertification because it can _____ .

  1. limit the evaporation of water
  2. interfere with the irrigation of land
  3. bring salts to the surface
  4. require more absorption of air by the soil

38. Which of the sentences below best expresses the essential information in the underlined sentence in the passage?

  1. The spread of deserts is considered a very serious problem that can be solved only if large numbers of people in various countries are involved in the effort.
  2. Slowing down the process of desertification is difficult because of population growth that has spread over large areas of land.
  3. Desertification is a significant problem because it is so hard to reverse and affects large areas of land and great numbers of people.
  4. Desertification is extremely hard to reverse unless the population is reduced in the vast areas affected.

39. According to paragraph 3, the loss of natural vegetation has which of the following consequences for soil?

  1. Reduced water absorption.
  2. Increased numbers of spaces in the soil.
  3. Increased stony content.
  4. Reduced water runoff.

40. According to paragraph 6, which of the following is often associated with raising crops?

  1. Failure to plant crops suited to the particular area.
  2. Excessive use of dried animal waste.
  3. Lack of proper irrigation techniques.
  4. Removal of the original vegetation.





1. B

11. B

21. B

31. A

2. D

12. A

22. A

32. A

3. B

13. B

23. A

33. D

4. C

14. C

24. C

34. B

5. A

15. C

25. A

35. B

6. B

16. D

26. D

36. B

7. A

17. B

27. C

37. C

8. C

18. B

28. B

38. C

9. A

19. B

29. D

39. A

10. B

20. A

30. A

40. D


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