IELTS Speaking Test #2

IELTS tips

>> Part 1

– Please come in. Why don’t you take a seat?
– First, let me have. a look at your passport. It is for security purposes.
– Good. What’s your full name?
– And you are (nationality of the candidate).
– Which part of your country do you come from?
– Describe your home town to me.
– When choosing a place to live, what do you consider most important?
– What do you like or dislike about living in your town or city?
– What changes would make your home town more appealing to people of your age?
– Would you prefer to live in a traditional house or in a modern apartment?
– Some people prefer to live in a small town. Others prefer to live in a big city. Which one do you prefer?
– Some people are always in a hurry to go to places and get things done. Other people prefer to take their time and live life at a lower pace. What do you prefer? Do you work at the moment?
– What are the best things about where you work?
– What do you dislike most about your work?

>> Part 2

– what you like or dislike about it Discuss points about life in your country. You should mention:
– what the biggest social problem of your country is
… and what you would regard as the most significant events in your country’s recent history

>> Part 3

– Do you think that people and situation have changed since you were born?
– How and in what respects?
– What are some of the main industries in your country?
– How serious is unemployment in your country?
– What do you consider as the main cause?
– What role does religion have in everyday life in your country?
– Compare the media now with how it was a generation ago.
– What kind of effects do the media have on children and young people?
– Can you tell me about your childhood?
– Can you remember a toy you were given when you were a child?
– Who gave it to you? And what was the occasion?
– What did you do with the toy?
– What do you think you can learn from your toy?
– Do you think there is a difference between toys chosen by females and males?
– This is the end of your interview. Thank you and good bye.

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The interview: section four – IELTS

IELTS tips

Task description
Using your CV as a starting point, the interviewer will ask you about your future plans. The interviewer will aim to involve you in a discussion exploring possible problems, your concerns, your expectations, your hopes and possible steps to achieving your goals.

>>  Sample questions

It is not possible to predict what questions will come up at this point in the test except that you know that the topic will be your future. The questions will be drawn from your CV, or from what the examiner has learned about you in the earlier sections of the interview, and most will arise naturally from the discussion and the information you are giving as this section progresses.

What is being tested is your ability to:

  • give in-depth answers to questions about your future
  • use the language of speculation
  • explain and defend your actions, plans, assumptions, predictions, reasons etc

Strategies for approaching the task

Carefully consider your future plans before the test. If you haven’t definitely decided what career path you will follow, then choose one plan to talk about in the interview. For example, if you haven’t decided whether you want to be an astronaut or a business man, choose one – whichever you think is the easier to talk about – and don’t bother to mention the other at the interview.

Prepare all the vocabulary you will need to discuss that career path, especially the steps you will need to take to reach your desired position and how you would overcome any possible problems.

Be prepared to use conditional sentences to discuss, for example, what you will do if you achieve your goal or you cannot achieve your goal; for example:

If I can’t go to an Australian university to study, I will have to work in my parents’ business

Be prepared to use perfect tenses to explain how you got to the situation you are in now. For example:

Interviewer: How did you decide to become an engineer?

Candidate: Well, I’d (or I’ve) always been very good at maths, so after finishing high school I …

Be prepared to speculate about the future:

I hope to …
I’m hoping to …
I’d like to …
If possible I’d like to …
I plan to …
I’ve always dreamed of …
I assume that …
I’m assuming that …
I expect that …

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The interview: section three – IELTS

IELTS tips

Task description

Section three is like a role play. The examiner will explain a situation to you and then instruct you to ask questions to find out more information. The examiner will give you a card with around six question prompts to help you make the questions. You should use the question prompts to ask all the questions on the card. Be ready to ask additional questions if the examiner invites you to, or if the examiner looks expectantly at you after you have asked all the prompted ones.

What is being tested is your ability to:

  • use a question form correctly
  • use a variety of question words
  • ask questions politely

>> Sample questions

The examiner says:
‘I have just enrolled in a new course. You want to find out about the course. Look at this card carefully and when you’re ready begin to ask your questions.’

Interview card

The interviewer has just enrolled in a course. Ask the interviewer some questions to find out about the course.
Title of course?
How long?
Location?
Purpose?
Cost?

Strategies for approaching the task
Before the test, you need to practise making correct questions using a variety of question words appropriate to the situation.

You also need to practise making your questions polite. There are two main ways to do this.

1. Use an introductory sentence politely, asking the interviewer to give you the information. For example:

  Marianne, I’d like to ask you some questions about your course, if that’s all right.

  (Interviewer responds by nodding agreement or saying ‘Certainly. What’s the name of the course?)

2. Use embedded questions. For example:

  Could you tell me the name of the course, please?

Notice that with embedded questions we use the statement word order, not:

  Could you tell me what is the name of the course?

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The interview: section two – IELTS

IELTS tips

Task description
In this section the interviewer will move onto one or more topics of general interest. You may need to speak longer (take longer turns) than in the first section and you may need to describe or explain.

Sample questions
It is not possible to predict what topics may be discussed at this point in the interview; however, some standard topics are:

  • Traditional or modern buildings in your country
  • Tourism and tourist sites
  • Celebrations and cultural activities
  • Family and family relationships
  • Schooling and the education system in your country
  • City and country living
  • Modern and traditional lifestyles

If the interview does not take place in your country of origin, you may be asked to compare your country’s architecture, level of tourism, culture etc with those of the country you are living in.

What is being tested is your ability to:

  • take longer turns in a conversation
  • give information involving description and explanation

Strategies for approaching the task


Carefully consider what you know about each of the topics above. Try to think of all the questions that someone who was trying to get to know you might ask, and make sure that you have all the vocabulary you need to discuss the topics in depth. Check and practise the pronunciation of any new vocabulary. Where there are contentious issues, try to develop an opinion.

You will perform better in the IELTS interview if your speech is fluent. And you’re likely to be more fluent if you have already thought about the topic and have some ideas to express. This doesn’t mean memorising or rehearsing a speech because you can never be sure exactly what the questions will be, and also the examiner will immediately ask a different question if s/he suspects that your answer is memorised.

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Online IELTS Course

IELTS tips

We are in the process of adding our online learning courses to the website to help you prepare for the academic or general module of the IELTS exam. You will be able to use the material if your level is around IELTS 4 but if your level is higher you should still find it challenging and useful.


Clearly, the overall aim of the course is to help you maximise your IELTS score, which is why you are here! However, we believe that the best way to do well in IELTS is to develop your overall ability to communicate in English: just doing practice IELTS test is not the best way to prepare for the exam.

To do well in IELTS you need to:

  • speak and write confidently, fluently, and accurately on a wide range of topics.
  • understand information quickly and accurately in different types of reading and listening texts on a wide range of topics.
  • have confident control of a wide range of grammar and vocabulary.

To achieve these goals you should:

  • read and listen to as much as English as you can in your spare time.
  • take the opportunity to speak with and write to English speakers whenever possible.
  • keep your own vocabulary records and continue to build your vocabulary both inside and outside the course.
  • pay attention to your own grammar and pronunciation: accuracy is important.

Keep an eye out as we are hoping to unveil some new courses for the coming year very soon!

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IELTS Reading

IELTS tips

The Reading test is the second part of the IELTS test, and lasts for 60 minutes. This includes the time needed to transfer your answers to an answer sheet. Students are given either an Academic Reading test, or a General Training Reading test.

Structure of the Test


There are three sections in the reading test. Each section contains a text (which is called a ‘reading passage’ in the exam). This might come from a magazine, journal, book or newspaper. Each section is a little more difficult than the one before and features authentic reading passages. The Academic module contains three long texts of an academic nature. The General Training module features a mixture of long and short texts of a more general nature, as well as texts related to work situations.

You will be asked a total of 40 questions. In order to access how much of the reading passages you understand, the questions will usually paraphrase (use different words with the same meaning) the words that are in the text.

Question Types


In each section, you have to do several different tasks. These include:

  • Answering multiple choice questions
  • Writing short answer to questions
  • Completing sentences, notes, a summary, a flow chart or a table
  • Labelling a diagram
  • Classifying ideas into different categories
  • Matching (e.g. headings to paragraphs or people to ideas)
  • Deciding if ideas or opinions are correct, incorrect or not given

The questions test a variety of reading skills including your ability to do the following:

  • Identify the writer’s overall purpose.
  • Follow key arguments in a text.
  • Identify opinions and attitudes.
  • Locate specific information.
  • Distinguish main ideas from supporting details.
  • Extract information from a text to complete a diagram, summary, table or set of notes.

Academic Reading Module


The IELTS Reading module consists of three reading passages taken from books, magazines, journals or newspapers. The passages cover academic topics from scientific to historical interests, though the material will be targeted at a general, non-specialist audience. You don’t need to have specialised knowledge of the topics, as any specialised vocabulary needed for the task will be explained in the text or in a glossary.

The first two reading passages have 13 questions each, and the last one has 14 questions. The text will include titles and sometimes captions, photos and illustrations, which can help you to grasp the general meaning of the text. If a text contains technical terms, a simple glossary is provided. The total word length of all the texts can vary between 2000 and 7500 words. At least one passage contains arguments and/or views. This is usually Section 3.

General Training Reading


The texts are about more general topics or related to work. The General Training Reading paper has three sections, each of increasing difficulty.

Section 1: contains two or three short factual texts, one of which may be composite (consisting of 6-8 short texts related by topic, e.g. hotel advertisements). Topics are relevant to everyday life in an English-speaking country.

Section 2: contains two short factual texts focusing on work-related issues (e.g. applying for jobs, company policies, pay and conditions, workplace facilities, staff development and training).

Section 3: contains one longer, more complex text on a topic of general interest.

You’ll be reading real passages taken from notices, advertisements, company handbooks, official documents, books, magazines and newspapers.

Marking and Assessment

The Reading test contains 40 questions and each correct answer is given one mark. The Academic and General Training Reading Tests are graded to the same level. However, because the texts in the Academic Reading Test are more challenging overall than those in the General Training Test, more questions need to be answered correctly on a General Training Test to receive the same grade.

Any answer which is above the word limit specified for the task will not receive a mark, so it is important to read the instructions carefully. For questions where you have to write letters or Roman numbers, write only the number of answers required. For questions where you have to complete a gap, write only the missing word(s) on the answer sheet. Spelling and grammar must be correct. The final score is converted to a whole or half band on the IELTS band scale.

What can I do to improve my performance at the Reading test?

  • Make sure you answer the questions asked. It might help to read the questions before you read the passage.
  • Manage your time. Do not spend too much time on a question you find difficult. Answer the others and then come back to it.
  • Look at visuals and subtitles to get a general idea of what the passage is about.
  • Identify the topic sentence in each paragraph. This will give you a clue to the answers.
  • Use reading strategies such as skimming and scanning to help you find the answers. Don’t worry if you do not know the meaning of every single word in the text. Try to guess the meaning of the words you don’t know from the context.
  • Correct grammar and spelling are important.
  • Make sure you go through your answers to check if they are relevant to the questions asked and if the language used is correct.
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IELTS Speaking Tips – Part 1

IELTS tips

The questions in Part 1 are on general topics about your life. Your answers are from your life and experience. There is no right or wrong answer.

  • About you
  • Study
  • Work
  • Your town
  • Free time
  • Holidays
  • Places to go in your free time
  • Transport
  • Shopping
  • Your neighbourhood
  • Reading
  • Sports and games

About you


  • What is your (full) name?
  • Can I have your name please?
  • Could you tell me your full name please?
  • What shall I call you?
  • How can I address you?
  • Does your name have any special meaning?
  • Is your name important to you?
  • Do Korean people like changing their name? Why?
  • Have you ever changed your name? Why or why not?
  • Why do so many people change their name?
  • Do you work or study?

Study


  • What are you studying?
  • What’s your major?
  • Why did you choose that subject?
  • What do you find most interesting about your course?
  • What is your favorite subject?
  • What do you dislike about your study?
  • What do you hope to do after your graduation?
  • What are your ambitions for the future?
  • Do you hope to gain any qualifications?
  • What are the advantages of studying instead of working?

Work


  • Can you describe your job to me?
  • What do you do for a living?
  • How long have you been doing it?
  • Can you describe one of your typical working days?
  • What’s your daily routine on a working day?
  • Why did you choose to do that job?
  • What things do you enjoy about your work? Why?
  • What do you think is the attraction of your work?
  • What is your ideal job?
  • Do you want to change your current job? Why or why not?
  • Are you willing to keep your job permanently?
  • What are your plans for the future?

Your town


  • Can you describe your town or village to me?
  • Tell me something about your hometown.
  • Where are you from?
  • Where is your hometown?
  • Where do you come from?
  • What is the name of the street you live on?
  • What kind of street do you live on?
  • What do you like about your town?
  • What is the weather like in your town?
  • What building is considered famous in your town?
  • What jobs do people in your town do?
  • How has your town changed over the last twenty years?
  • What changes have taken place in your city in recent years?
  • Do you think it is better to live in the center of town or outside in the country? Why?

Free time


  • What do you enjoy doing in your free time?
  • How much time do you have each week for doing these things?
  • Why do you like doing these activities?
  • How did you start doing this activity at first?
  • Is there some other hobby or sport you would like to try? Why?
  • How has the way people spend their free time changed over the years?

Holidays


  • What do you do when you have a holiday?
  • Who do you usually spend holiday with?
  • Where do you like to spend your holidays? Why?
  • Can you describe a typical day in your holidays?
  • Why are holidays and important to you?
  • If you could take a holiday anywhere in the world, where would you go? Why?
  • What do people usually do during holidays and in your town?

Places to go in your free time


  • What do people do in your town in their free time?
  • Where can they go out for entertainment, or to enjoy themselves?
  • Which do you prefer: eating in restaurants or eating at home?
  • Which are the best places to eat out?

Transport


  • How did you come here today?
  • What is public transport like in your town?
  • How do you think it could be improved?
  • Do you think people should use public transport more? Why (not)?

Shopping


  • How much time do you spend shopping every week?
  • Do you enjoy going shopping? Why (not)?
  • What is your favourite shop and why do you like it?
  • What problems are there with shopping in your area?

Your neighbourhood


  • Can you describe the house where you live to me?
  • What is there to do in the area where you live?
  • What do you like about the area where you live?
  • How do you think it could be improved?
  • Do you think it is better to live in the centre of town or outside in the country? Why?

Reading


  • Do you enjoy reading? Why?
  • What sort of things do you read?
  • Tell me something about your favourite book.
  • What are the advantages of reading instead of watching television or going to the cinema?

Sports and games


  • What sports are most popular in your country?
  • What sports and games did you most enjoy playing
  • when you were a child?
  • Do people take as much exercise as in the past?
  • Why is exercise good for you?
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Which IELTS Books are the Best?

IELTS tips

Cambridge IELTS 11


IELTS

Cambridge IELTS 11 provides students with an excellent opportunity to familiarise themselves with IELTS and to practise examination techniques using authentic test material. You can choose an edition containing either four complete tests for Academic or for General Training module. An introduction to these different modules is included in each book, together with with an explanation of the scoring system used by Cambridge English Language Assessment. A comprehensive section of answers and tapescripts makes the material ideal for students working partly or entirely on their own.

Cambridge IELTS 10 Student’s Book with Answers


IELTS

Cambridge IELTS 10 provides students with an excellent opportunity to familiarise themselves with IELTS and to practise examination techniques using authentic test material prepared by Cambridge English Language Assessment. It contains four complete tests for Academic module candidates, plus extra Reading and Writing modules for General Training module candidates. An introduction to these different modules is included in each book, together with with an explanation of the scoring system used by Cambridge English Language Assessment. A comprehensive section of answers and tapescripts makes the material ideal for students working partly or entirely on their own.

Cambridge Grammar for IELTS Student’s Book with Answers and Audio CD


IELTS

Cambridge Grammar for IELTS provides complete coverage of the grammar needed for the IELTS test, and develops listening skills at the same time. It includes a wide range of IELTS tasks from the Academic and General Training Reading, Writing and Listening modules, and contains helpful grammar explanations and a grammar glossary. A Student’s Book ‘without answers’ is also available.

Cambridge Vocabulary for IELTS Advanced Band 6.5+ with Answers and Audio CD


IELTS

The book covers all the vocabulary needed by students aiming for band 6.5 and above in the IELTS tests and provides students with practice of exam tasks from each paper. Cambridge Vocabulary for IELTS Advanced focuses on moving students to 6.5 and beyond by working on vocabulary-building strategies necessary for success at advanced levels. It includes useful tips on how to approach IELTS exam tasks and covers especially tricky areas such as paraphrase and collocation. It is informed by the Cambridge English Corpus to ensure that the vocabulary is presented in genuine contexts and includes real learner errors. The Audio CD contains the listening and pronunciation exercises from each unit. The material is suitable for self-study or homework tasks, and may also be used in class with the teacher.

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IELTS Preparation tips which can help you…

IELTS tips

What are the key components of IELTS exam preparation? How should you prepare separate sections of IELTS to boost your overall score in the exam? How can you crack IELTS exam to enter different countries for your studies and work? Accepted over 140 countries worldwide, IELTS is one of the most popular English proficiency tests to study abroad. Divided into two versions- Academic and General, the test is a basic yardstick for admission to many universities globally. So, the big question is what does it take to crack IELTS? Before we bring you IELTS preparation tips, let us have a look at the exam pattern:

IELTS Test Component Duration Brief Description
Listening 30 minutes 4 sections, 40 items
Reading 60 minutes 3 sections, 40 items
Writing 60 minutes 2 tasks
Speaking 11-14 minutes 3 part one-on-one conversation

One of the interesting factors of IELTS preparation is that you can seamlessly incorporate your IELTS practice in your daily routine. Whether you are reading your favourite book, chatting with friends or even watching television, you can prepare for IELTS on the go!

Candidates can check IELTS pattern and IELTS preparation tips for all sections.

1. IELTS Preparation Tips – Listening Section

IELTS Listening pattern:

The Listening section is the most important part of the IELTS test. This section of IELTS has 4 sections and includes 40 items. In terms of IELTS preparation, it is best to take each section separately.

Here are the IELTS preparation tips for the Listening section:

  1. One-on-one interaction: As the name suggests, the one-on-one section is an interaction between two people. It could be a telephonic conversation or a general one and you will be asked to note down specific information from the conversation. The best way to prepare for this IELTS test is by listening to as many as conversations possible. A very easy way is to practice listening to English bulletins. One of the difficulties that a non-native English listener faces is to comprehend the fluency of native English speakers. However, this obstacle can be easily overcome with regular practice involving listening and noting it down on paper.
  2. Speech: In this section, the test-taker is made to listen to a speech. You listen to a speech in a social or academic context and answer a series of questions. The test will measure how well you can grasp the core idea of the speech and understand highlighted issues.
  3. Monologue: Similar to speech, this section involves a monologue. The best IELTS preparation tips to prepare for this is by mainly listening to discussions on television.
  4. Group discussion: This involves interaction between a maximum of four people. So, it is important that you make yourself comfortable catching up with more than one speech flow. Again, attending and listening to discussions are the best way to prepare for this test.

Some other IELTS preparation tips for listening section

  • In the listening IELTS section, make sure you read the first example at the beginning of the first section to acquaint yourself with the sound, the speaker and the situation.
  • Make sure you continue to listen to the audio while you write down the answers.
  • You have to practise listening to both an individual talking and more than one person speaking simultaneously.
  • Be smart with spellings, many lose easy marks because of spelling mistakes.
  • Practice short hand writing style, as it will save you lot of time. For instance, instead of writing approximately write approx.

2. IELTS Preparation Tips – Reading Section

This section evaluates your reading skills. Basically, you are given a long article to read which is followed by a set of questions like multiple choice, sentence completion, summary writing, matching information, short-answers. The reading section for both IELTS Academic and General test are different. Since, you are required to sit for the Academic test for the purpose of admission the content of the test is generally heavier and tougher.

Here are the IELTS preparation tips for the IELTS Reading test:

  1. Read as much as possible: This might seem tedious in the beginning. Therefore, the easier way to do that is by reading whatever is interesting to you in the beginning. It might be a short paragraph, an Ad, newspaper briefs. Once that phase is over, shift to heavier material like long essays, editorials, short stories.
  2. Make Notes: Always make notes while reading. This will sharpen your ability to look for details. Highlight and note down whatever seems important.
  3. Repeat the exercise: Do not stop after reading a note once. Sometimes it helps to go through the whole process of reading the text as it helps you to keep updated and remember what you had earlier taken note of. Also, you could find new vital points in the same text when you re-read it.
  4. Practice comprehension: Practicing comprehensions help a lot in the preparation process. Since the questions in the test are based on the style of comprehension, it always helps to sharpen your skills in comprehension.

Some other IELTS preparation tips for reading section

  • Read the entire passage carefully and take an overview of the crux of the passage.
  • Be careful of the time limits, you will not be given any extra seconds.
  • Do not leave any question unanswered even if you are not sure of the answer, as there is no negative marking.
  • To save few seconds, write the responses directly on sheets since you will not be given extra time to write it again.

3. IELTS Preparation Tips – Writing Section

The writing section in each version of IELTS has two sub sections. In the academic test, you are required to describe a chart, graph or diagram and in addition write an essay expressing your point of view or argument.

In the general test, the test-taker is presented with a situation and asked to write a letter explaining the situation along with the essay.

Here are the IELTS preparation tips for the IELTS writing test:

1. Read sample essays: It is always helpful to read as many sample essays as possible. Study the essays carefully and note down the points. There are few points to consider here:
Bring clarity on what is the essay about.

  1. Does the first paragraph make the topic clear?
  2. Does the headline reflect the subject of the essay?
  3. Observe how the writer flows the vital points of the essay.

2. Write essays: It is important to write sample essays as part of the preparation. Keep the following points in mind before writing the essay:

Note all the points that come to mind on the topic.

  1. Once that is done, filter the necessary points from the same list.
  2. Bring clarity on which direction you want your essay to take.
  3. While presenting an argument, it is important that you stick to your point. Never present more than one point of view in an argument. It will reflect confusion on the invigilator’s part.

3. Grammar practice: Practicing grammar will help you in making your essays and summaries free of any mistakes. Since it is an English level exam, grammar is one of the vital areas that will be checked. Hence, it is important that your articles are grammatically correct.

Some other IELTS Preparation tips for writing section
  • Begin with Task 2 first as it is worth more marks and is more easier.
  • Make sure you complete both the tasks on time. To get familiar with IELTS writing section time limits, it is necessary you practise writing.
  • Avoid informal language as much as you can, for instance, no abbreviations, no 1st or 2ndpronouns or possessive, apart from the concluding paragraph where you support your response.
  • Underline important words in the task to focus on what you have to do when you start answering. It works as a reminder.
  • Stick to the topic, do not write unnecesarry responses.

4. IELTS Preparation Tips – Speaking Section

One of the interesting sections of the IELTS test, the speaking section involves a one-on-one live interaction with an invigilator. This test analyses your use of spoken English, and takes between 11 and 14 minutes.

The speaking test requires you to be spontaneous as it is a human interaction as opposed to a computerized one. The test is divided into three parts.

First part: In the first part, the examiner asks some general questions to the test taker like his/her interests, what are you studying etc. Here are the tips to crack this section:

  1. Add value to your replies: It is good to be specific with your replies but you can always add some interesting facts in your answers. Eg: If you are asked where are you from? Besides answering the usual you can also add some detail about the place you are from.
  2. Be responsive: Do not take too long to answer questions. Be quick and responsive.

Second part: In this part, you are given a topic and asked to speak uninterrupted on the topic for at least 2 to 3 minutes. The examiner tests both your speaking skills and knowledge in this test.

  1. Think before you speak: It is best to take at least a minute before you start speaking. Bring clarity on the points you are going to make and most importantly how you are going to start.
  2. Knowledge: Make sure you have knowledge about what you are speaking. You should be able to communicate the key points of the topic to the invigilator.

Third part: This part is important as here the examiner asks you questions about the topic from the second part. He can put forward some arguments from your speech or he could ask you to elaborate on a specific point of view you have previously shared.

  1. Remember your arguments: Always remember your arguments from the previous test part. You should not look surprised or taken off guard when asked a question.
  2. Do not sound confused: Do not let your answer reflect confusion. Be confident and show your willingness.

Some other IELTS Preparation tips for Speaking

  • This is the section where you can enjoy speaking English, thus be confident and talk as fluently as you want.
  • You can do so by practising recording on a tape at home and listen to it. Focus on your mistakes and pronunciation.
  • Make sure you don’t go with prepared answer, as the examiner may spot it.
  • The best way to respond is to present your opinion, as that will help them assess your communication skills.
  • Remember there is no single answer and there is no right or wrong answer. However, make sure you present your idea.
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Listening, Reading, Writing & Speaking – IELTS Test Format

IELTS tips

The IELTS test is used to assess the abilities of the student like listening, reading, writing and speaking in less than three hours of time. It is a widely accepted test and has two types one is the IELTS Academic and the other is IELTS General training. The listening and speaking sections of both the tests are the same but the subject matter of the reading and writing components differ depending on the type of test you appear for. The listening reading and writing are completed on the same day without any breaks in between them. However, the speaking component can be completed up to a week before or after the other tests which will be informed to you by your test center. The duration of the test is 2 hours and 45 minutes. The test format of all the four sections is described as below.

Listening Section:

The listening section is for 30 minutes and you have to listen to four recordings of native English speakers after which you need to write your answers to a series of questions. In the first recording, you have to listen to a conversation between two people which is set in an everyday social context. In the second one, there will be a monologue which will be set in an everyday social context like a speech about local facilities. The third recording will be a conversation between up to four people in a training or educational contexts like maybe a tutor and a student discussing an assignment. In the fourth recording, you have to listen to a monologue which will be given on an academic subject like a university lecture.

The evaluators look for the evidence of your ability to understand the main ideas and the detailed information along with the attitudes and opinions of speakers, the purpose of an utterance and how well can you follow the development of ideas.

Reading Section

The reading section consists of 60 minutes and has 40 questions which test a wide range of reading skills. You will be expected to read for gist, for main ideas, for details, for skimming, understanding the logical argument and understanding the opinion, attitude, and purpose of the writer.

In the IELTS Academic test of IELTS there will be three long texts which will have descriptive, factual discursive and analytical texts. These would be taken from books, magazines, journals and newspapers. The IELTS General Training test has extracts from books, newspapers, magazines, notices, company handbooks, advertisements, and guidelines. These are the materials which you are likely to encounter on a daily basis in an English speaking environment.

Writing Section

The writing section is for 60 minutes and the topics for the same of general interest and suitable for the test takers entering the undergraduate and postgraduate studies or seeking the professional registration.

IELTS Academic Test:

In the first task you will be given a graph, chart, table or diagram and you will be asked to describe, explain or summarize the information in your own words. You might have to describe and explain data, describe the stages of a process or describe an event. In the second task, you will be asked to write an essay responding to a point of view, an argument or a problem. Both the responses should be in a formal style.

IELTS General Training:

In the first task you will be given a situation and you will have to write a letter requesting the information or explaining the situation. The letter can be personal, formal or semi-formal in style. In the second task you will have to write an essay responding to a point of view, problem or an argument. The essay can be personal.

Speaking Section

The speaking section is of 11-14 minutes and it is used to assess the use of spoken English. In the first part, the examiner will ask you the general questions about yourself and a range of familiar topics such as family, work, home, studies and other interests. This lasts for 4 to 5 minutes. In the second part, you are given a card which asks you to talk about a given topic. You have to speak for two minutes before which you are given a one minute time to prepare. You are then asked one or two questions on the same topic. The third part includes further questions about the topic in part 2 in which you get to discuss more abstract ideas and issues. This again lasts for four to five minutes.

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