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The story behind Pradeep’s IELTS Band 8

Pradeep was born in India and has spoken Tamil from birth. His dream was to immigrate to Australia, and to get there he needed a very good IELTS score. His first score was lower than required – because of Band 6.5 in writing he didn’t get the additional 10 points that would have helped his visa application. But Pradeep didn’t give up, he decided to work harder, and one month later we received this delightful email from him:

Band 8 in IELTS“I would like to convey my gratitude for all your support in helping me achieve this big milestone. I received my IELTS result and I feel proud to let you know that I achieved the Overall Band Score of 8. My scores in individual modules are as below:

Listening – 8.0
Reading – 8.0
Writing – 7.5
Speaking – 8.0

I can say without any hesitation that it was only with your help that I was able to achieve this score and I now have enough points to apply for the Australian immigration. I am happy to have chosen the right material and partner in nurturing my skills and preparing me for the exam with confidence.”

Yet another victory for Pradeep was winning in our monthly IELTS results competition, and in his winner’s interview he told us how he prepared for the exam:

Reading and Listening

Practice makes perfect !!! The only way to succeed in these two modules is to train our ears to listen and identify answers, and our mind – to read, skim and process data in a short time span.

There is no substitute for practice and I did all the question papers that came with “ACE THE IELTS” plus tried various exercises from different websites.

Scoring a Band 8 in these modules should be easy once you get your brain and ears tuned up for the format and the content of these two modules.

Writing

Personally, this was the most difficult part of the IELTS exam and something that can easily be overlooked by people, particularly when they think they are good at writing. Unfortunately, there is a catch: IELTS essays are marked based on various aspects such as Cohesion, Coherence, Grammatical range, accuracy, structures and Lexical resources. Therefore, it is important to understand what they really mean and practice different essays by meeting all these criteria to achieve a better band score. I was able to push my score up by a whole band just because I started using the appropriate structures relevant to each essay type and I got great help from the IELTS blog’s essay correction team who gave great feedback after they reviewed my essays.”

Simple yet effective things that helped Karan get Band 8 in IELTS

When we asked Karan S, one of our IELTS results competition winners, what contributed to his high IELTS score, he named a few things. They might seem pretty straight forward to you because they are simple enough, but make no mistake – a technique doesn’t have to be difficult or complicated to be effective, and it’s a fact that Karan got Band 8 as a result. Here is what he suggests:

Band 8 in IELTS“My advice to all the IELTS candidates would to be to practice mock tests several times, which would give them the actual feeling of how the examination is conducted.

Also, some specific tips for individual IELTS sub-tests:

Reading

One must develop the speed of reading paragraphs/comprehension and answer the question only after reading, rather than trying to find the answers based on the given questions. Watch out for spelling mistakes!

Writing

To write good essays or reports it is important to be aware of the format for both task types because it will help you score better. For an essay one must identify clearly, what kind of essay it is i.e. question based, discussion, advantage/disadvantage etc. The first paragraph should include the paraphrased task prompt, it must introduce the essay topic and hint at your response! The following paragraphs must have coherence and cohesion to the main idea/view. Try and give examples supporting the idea and have a concluding statement. Also vocabulary and grammar must be kept in check throughout.

Similarly, in a report the first paragraph should paraphrase the question and state what the chart/report/graph depicts or illustrates. The following paragraphs must state the main differences, common trends, overview, etc.

Listening

For this section people believe there aren’t many tricks, but it is important to anticipate what the speaker is saying or about to say, by paying attention to the tone of the speaker. Also use more time for the difficult sections where there are chances of making mistakes.

Speaking

For this section it is important to practice as much as you can and cover as many topics as possible. This will ensure that you are not taken by surprise by the topic in the final speaking test. One must have a good range of vocabulary and be confident while speaking. For the introduction questions speak in 2-3 lines only (shorter answers), and for discussion questions answer in 3-4 lines (longer answers).

Also the most important thing is to be relaxed on the day of the exam, as it is the day which matters the most and accounts for all the hard work and practice that you have put in.

Hope my views may be of some help to candidates in their forthcoming exams, wish them all the very best!”

 

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