Prepare for your IELTS Exam
In this article I want to give you 3 vocabulary strategies that you can use really easily to improve your vocabulary for IELTS.
This first strategy will work better if you are living in an English-speaking country however with globalisation there will be chances even in your own country to take advantage of it.
To be honest there are no real secrets or ‘tricks’ to IELTS reading just good skill and common sense. However under the pressure of the exam (and in practice too) common sense seems to go out of the window and panic takes over. People look for short cuts or quick fixes to get it done fast and what happens is that the quick fix method becomes so overwhelming that the text and questions often fade into the background as students grab the first word they see or search endlessly inside a paragraph which cannot possibly contain the information. The answer is to step back and focus on the text and questions rather than the tricks.
Today’s topic is a thorny one and one which many students flag up as being an issue. Sometimes a little bit of thinking needs to go into these questions to weigh up the merits of each but generally if you have the right approach you can get them all correct.
I don’t know if these are really secrets or not. In fact most of them are really just common sense but I am often surprised how many students seem to make life more difficult for themselves in terms of IELTS than it needs to be. By taking this route it not only costs more (how many exams do you want to take before getting your score?) but it can also take more time to actually achieve your score.
I have been an IELTS teacher for over 20 years and in all that time I have mostly taught students who need band 7 and 8. In fact I specialise in teaching bands 7 and 8 and of the hundreds of students that I have taught and prepared for IELTS over the years I have seen most pass their exam and move on with their lives and I can see among these successful students the reasons why they were successful and also perhaps why others are not. So here are some of the most important things to consider when deciding to take the IELTS exam.
I meet students every day who need IELTS for various reasons; higher education, immigration to get jobs, to keep jobs or for promotions. One thing that strikes me often about some students is how they will just book a test without giving any thought to, firstly, whether they are ready to achieve the band they require and, secondly, to the amount of preparation that they may need in order to be ready for the exam.
The Ultimate IELTS Study Plan for Band 7 and 8
It’s important to remember that a language is a skill (like driving a car or playing the piano). The more you practise the better you will become and if you don’t practise then you won’t be able to do these things well at all. There are some techniques and strategies for IELTS which you can learn but these are really exam techniques and unless your English language level is where you need it for your band, they will not help you a lot.
Every so often, I like to blog a case study. I like to do these blogs because it shows you firsthand what it looks like to work with me and how I can help you achieve your goals, and it also highlights the success and victories of my extremely hardworking students! This case study illustrates a journey we both took to reach a particular language goal. Like the other case studies I have done, the benefit gained was mutual, but unlike the others this case study was a very scary journey. Continue reading
One of the fun things about learning any language is expanding the number of words with which you can express yourself! Each language has many, many words to choose from all with their own shades and nuances of meaning. Widening your vocabulary in every language that you speak is always a fantastic goal to have. If you have decided that it is time to stretch your linguistic wings a little, then this post is exactly what you need!
In this post, I suggest 10 things you can do to expand your vocabulary. I also recommend two things that I normally tell you NEVER to do!! Continue reading
I have had many students over the years tell me that the writing portion of the IELTS is very intimidating. Well I am here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be! In fact, the writing section can be a section of the IELTS that you feel very confident in, and yes, even enjoy! Follow my tips below and turn your struggles into confidence. Continue reading
I have spent decades teaching students English. Over the years, I have learned just as much from them as they have from me. One thing that has always fascinated me is how they approach the process of language learning. I was recently thinking of a group of students that I was privileged to work with one summer many years ago. All of these particular students worked hard and made progress and were delightful to teach and work with. Later on, I spent some time analysing their preparedness and study methods which gave me some insights into what sort of things seem to work well. Continue reading