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How Sujish got Band 8 in IELTS (and you can, too!)

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Sujish is a 31 year-old native Malayalam speaker from India. He got an overall Band 8 in IELTS (with an amazing 9 in Listening) and became one of the winners in our IELTS results competition in March. Here are a few things that Sujish did and recommends that you do to gain a higher score in IELTS:

ListeningBand 8 in IELTS

Listening was never a problem, except for handling the tension in the first few minutes of the test. I am a regular viewer of English movies and English TV series. However, I practiced for the test before the exam to gain experience with the kind of questions that may be given.

While watching the movies, sometimes I used to switch on the subtitles in order to clearly understand the conversation. I never felt any difficulties with understanding the monologues on TV (for example the Discovery channel and National Geographic).

Reading

I am a regular reader of English newspapers. This helped me to complete the reading test before the allowed time. During the exam, I read the questions first and then went to read the paragraphs; this helped me identify the area where the answers to the questions reside.

Speaking

The only difficult part in this sub-test was handling the tension during the interview. I was able to achieve this by having a friendly talk with my IELTS examiner for a few minutes before starting the exam.

I used the tips from the textbook “Ace the IELTS” and deliberately used some phrases that I learned after registering for the exam. Moreover, I got a friend to interview me at least once every two days through Skype. He used Speaking questions from www.IELTS-blog.com website.

Writing

Writing is the difficult part of the test for me since I am a software engineer and I have not written anything on the paper after my graduation. My handwriting is the worst I have ever seen. I was expecting a higher mark for Writing and I confirmed it by sending the same answer to the IELTS-Blog writing correction service, where I got Band 7.5. Hence I have given this section for revaluation.

IELTS-blog helped me a lot in writing. I have subscribed to this site and used to practice almost all the questions for writing and speaking which they sent to my personal email. I also read all the band 8 essays from this site and used their paid essay correction service a few times. In addition to that I referred to the textbook “Ace the IELTS”.

IELTS Speaking test in Ghana – March 2014

These Speaking questions were shared by J who took the IELTS test in Ghana:

Speaking testIELTS test in Ghana

Interview

- What is your full name?
- Can I see your ID?
- Where are you from?
- Do you work or study?
- Is there anything you don’t like about your hometown?
- Why are movie actors/actresses popular?
- Do you think they are paid well?
- Are you a punctual person?
- How do people regard time in your culture?
- How do you feel when you are running late?

Cue Card

Describe a popular comedy artist in your country. Please say

- Where did you first see the person?
- Why do you like this person?
- How long have you known him/her?

Discussion

- Are there any other comedy artists in your country?
- Why do you think children like going to circus?
- What kind of games do children enjoy the most?
- Should children’s games be always educational?

 

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