Finding the Main Idea of the Passage

We have all read passages and stories that tell us about some thought or topic.

This thought is the main idea of the passage. It is the author's message about the topic and is often expressed directly or it can be implied.

If you find it difficult to focus on a passage, try to find the main idea first.

Reading and understanding the passage becomes much simpler when you have the main idea of the passage.

The main idea is the whole point that the paragraph or passage is trying to convey.

The main idea is generally found at the beginning or end of the passage.

Let’s look at an example.

Read this passage and then we'll try to figure out its main idea.

In the given passage, the main idea can be found in the first sentence itself. “The rules of conduct during an examination.”

The rest of the passage tells us more about the main idea that If you do not follow the rules, you will automatically fail the test.

The main idea need not always be directly stated.

The main idea could also be inferred or implied from the passage. But there is a way to find it!

Several sentences can imply the main idea by introducing facts about the topic before actually stating the topic.

Look out for facts, reasons, or suggestions about the main idea.

Let’s understand this better with an example.

Read this passage carefully.

The passage talks about the use of different currencies but doesn’t say “This passage is about different currencies in different countries.”

While the main idea “Different countries have different names for currency” was not directly stated, you could identify it by the clues.

There are ways to determine if the selected main idea is the correct one.

If we try to summarize the information, we will reach the main idea!

Let’s look at an example.

Take a look at this passage and try to summarize it.

If we summarize the passage in a line: ‘Gandhiji was the most important figure in the Indian freedom struggle’, we have the main idea.

Let’s revise!

The main idea of a paragraph is the author's message about the topic.

It can be expressed directly or it can be implied through suggestions or facts.

The End!