3 IELTS Tricks to Instantly Improve Your Listening, Reading and Overall Exam Performance

If you need some help with IELTS Listening, Reading or you’re looking for a way to improve your IELTS score, this post is for you.

Quite often on IELTS-Blog.com we publish advice from successful test takers, and many of them mention podcasts as a useful tool to improve their Listening skills.

So here is an opportunity for you to work on Listening and learn new IELTS tricks at the same time.

Your homework for today is to listen to this IELTS podcast episode.

We recorded it with Lindsay McMahon from IELTS Energy – she and Jessica Beck are hosting this very popular IELTS podcast, and it’s available on iTunes (Episode 73) and on their blog as well.

You can listen on your smartphone, tablet or computer, it only takes about 15 minutes, and you will learn

1. How to use the IELTS structure to your advantage
2. How to do things in the right order to save time
3. How to turn your weaknesses into your strengths (this is especially important for people doing self-study)

Happy listening!

IELTS advice from a married couple how to get Band 7.5+ in IELTS

Today’s post is dedicated to Pratik and Shruti, a husband and wife from India.

Band 7.5 in IELTSWe got to know this lovely couple through our monthly IELTS results competition. They both took the IELTS test and achieved great scores: Shruti received Band 7.5 and Pratik – Band 8.

Here are some tips from Pratik and Shruti that helped both of them, and can help YOU do a great job in your upcoming IELTS exam:


  • You can use headphones while practicing, but make sure to do a few practice tests without the headphones, to be prepared to listen to the recording through a loudspeaker.
  • Doing many practice tests within time limits helps a lot in the real exam.
  • Non-English-speaking candidates should resort to watching Hollywood movies, documentaries or TV series to improve their listening or even speaking.
  • Attention to intrinsic detail does help.
  • Proper hand-eye-ear coordination can work miracles in the Listening test.


  • The strategy of glancing at the questions prior to reading the passages really helps.
  • Read the passage carefully, where the answers to the questions could be hidden.
  • Be witty enough not to waste too much time on the irrelevant paragraphs.
  • Concentration and patience are very important in the Reading test.


  • Reading editorial articles in English newspapers will help with your writing.
  • Always check your word count to make sure you are over 150 words in Task 1 and over 250 words in Task 2.
  • Writing grammatically correct, simpler sentences is better than trying to impress the examiner with advanced English words/sentences that you’re not sure how to use.
  • Keep in mind that you need to describe a Task 1 chart to someone who doesn’t see it.
  • For the essay (Task 2), there should be an introduction, content (the body) and a well-framed conclusion to set a benchmark or make a point.


  • Listen to podcasts of authentic news channels like CNN and BBC and get acquainted with the accent.
  • The habit of reading in English daily always helps to develop new vocabulary.
  • Greet the examiner warmly. Such attitude portrays the candidate’s energy and fosters interest in the mind of the examiner at the same time.
  • Speak on the topic, because beating around the bush does not help. Don’t concentrate just on your pronunciation – your speech should have ideas, facts, clarity and coherence.
  • Ask the examiner to repeat his/her question, if you did not understand what he/she means.
  • Quoting examples, case studies or experiences will make your speech more interesting.
  • Leave your nervousness outside the examination room – take the test with confidence.

Good luck!



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