How do I prepare for the IELTS speaking test?

by | Feb 27, 2020 | 0 comments

Well dear IELTS candidates, there are so many tips I can give you! For today though, I’ll just share one or two with you. But do check back for more tips.

The biggest tip of all is to practice with sample questions. Be sure to research the topics so you have some general knowledge on the topic and be prepared to answer questions asking you to compare or predict what the issue will be like in the future. Let’s take a look at a sample question.

  • Describe a piece of music that has had a big effect on you. Possible related topics may be:
  • Music in society
  • Cultural aspects of music
  • Commercialization of music

After you have talked about this, the interviewer may ask you to compare the importance of music now with how it was when your grandparents were young; and then may even go on to ask what you think will be the effects of music on future societies.

Expose yourself to everyday and current news topics. Read and listen to the news. Watch documentaries in English.  BBC World News, National Geographic, Discovery are all good channels or websites to follow.

Not only does this give you some excellent listening practice, but it will build your background knowledge for the issues that may come up in both the Speaking and the Writing tests. Choose an issue. Record all the vocabulary you will need to discuss that issue – note words raised in the news article or program (TV, radio, newspapers). Try to do one of these every day. When you consider an issue, decide what would be your position on the issue, especially the steps you will need to take to reach your desired position and how you would overcome any possible problems in discussing it. Be prepared to use descriptive and comparative language, for example, in respect to the Music in society example given earlier:“In my country, traditional music plays a more important role in society than it seems to here, in Australia. It is played at important events like festivals and official ceremonies, as well as at special occasions such as weddings and funerals.”Practice using conditional sentences to discuss, for instance, hypothetical issues from a broad or world view; for example:“If the world economy becomes more global, all nations will lose their cultural independence.”or “If the leaders of the world were to spend more money on the poor,many of the problems of global conflict would be resolved.”

Be ready to use a good range of tenses and a variety of grammar, for instance, to speculate on what may be possible in the future. For example:Interviewer: What future role do you see for music in society?Candidate: Well, I’d (or I’ve) always hoped that all the peoples of the world could benefit by sharing their common experience of music. In the past, there have been many examples of musicians joining forces to raise awareness of global issues that result from famine or human rights abuses.or Candidate: If different cultures could see the common features of music in other countries, they may be less fearful of each other and understand one another’s cultures better.

Be prepared to speculate about the future:

  • I hope that …
  • It’s possible that…
  • I can see that …
  • If possible, I’d like to see …
  • We should plan to …
  • It might be that …
  • We can assume that …
  • Probably, …
  • I expect that …
Isabella the IELTS cat


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