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IELTS Speaking – what to expect (Interview)

I’ve neglected the Speaking tips for a long time, so this post is about how to do well in the IELTS Speaking test. It doesn’t matter what module of IELTS you are taking, General or Academic – the Speaking part is the same in both.

As you know, there are 3 parts in the Speaking sub-test: the Interview, Speech (cue card) and Discussion, read the details about it here in one of my previous posts.

Now to the Interview: you can and should be prepared to questions they will ask you.
The questions are predictable, you can go through the recent exams to have a look click here and note navigation links at the bottom.

If you speak well, just go over the questions and prepare an answer in your head for every question. If you have someone to practice with – do it, if you don’t – I suggest that you record yourself. You can do that using your computer, a voice recorder, one of those MP3 players that can record voice as well or even your mobile phone.

To get the feeling of a real IELTS Speaking test you can listen to the sample of test here, look at the questions here and the transcript of the recording is here.

Best advice to those who speak not so well:

1) Write your answers on a piece of paper.

2) Memorize them.

3) Speak to yourself – ask questions and answer according to whatever you wrote. It will improve your pronunciation and make you more confident. This is how you overcome the initial shock of speaking English.

4) Practice a lot with your wife/husband/boyfriend/girlfriend, at first you may look at your paper, but after a while stop doing that – test your memory.

I prepared my students this way and it helped them a lot.

A little clarification – memorizing can help you in the beginning while you’re developing your Speaking skills, but don’t rely on it in the real exam. The examiners are trained to spot people who speak in memorized sentences. The good news is if you practice enough, you won’t have to use memorized answers to pass the Speaking test.

One more important thing – in Speaking you can also receive half-bands, such as 5.5 or 6.5.

I will continue and prepare more Reading tips for you in my next post.

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