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IELTS preparation tips from winners

IELTS high achievers share their secrets

Mastering IELTS: Insider Advice from a Top Scorer (Band 8)

IELTS High Scorer's Advice Band 8 Tips October 2023

Achieving a high score in the IELTS exam is a significant milestone, and for those of you aiming for Band 8, it often seems like a daunting challenge. That’s exactly why we keep gathering valuable insights from successful candidates who know first-hand what it takes.

One such achiever is Laura Fernandez from Spain, who scored an impressive Overall Band 8.0 in the IELTS test. Laura’s story is truly inspiring, because it proves that with the right preparation materials and dedication, you can conquer the IELTS exam and achieve your desired score.

Laura’s superpower was her comprehensive approach to exam preparation. When asked about her advice for fellow candidates, she emphasised the importance of a well-rounded preparation focusing on all four skills: listening, reading, writing, and speaking.

Best IELTS test result October 2023

Laura said,

“To be honest, I would recommend all candidates taking the IELTS test to prepare themselves very well in all four skills. It is true that grammar and vocabulary are important, but many tend to focus a lot on these aspects and not so much on reading and listening comprehension, for example”.

Another piece of advice Laura shared resonates deeply with IELTS test takers: the value of mock tests. She stressed the importance of practicing with a variety of mock tests, perfecting your skills and time management in real exam conditions.

“They should do as many mock tests as they can because they will never be enough,”Laura said, adding a touch of humour to her earnest recommendation.

Laura credited her success to the resources she used during her preparation. She mentioned relying on High Scorer’s Choice practice test books, which evidently played a pivotal role in helping her achieve her remarkable Band 8.0 score. The right study materials can make a significant difference, because nothing can replace targeted practice and valuable insights into the exam format and question types.

As you’re about to hit the books, remember Laura’s advice: focus on all four skills, don’t neglect reading and listening comprehension, and practice with a variety of mock tests. And last but not least – get in touch if you feel stuck and need help! That’s what we’re here for.

Dorottya prepared by herself and passed IELTS with a Band 8 – COPY her method

IELTS High Scorer's Advice Band 8 Tips September 2023

Meet Dorottya, an ambitious learner from Budapest whose native language is Hungarian. She set her sights on a remarkable goal: achieving a Band 8 score in the IELTS exam. You might be wondering, how did she do it? Well, her journey is a testament to grit, resourcefulness, and a dash of inspiration for anyone looking to conquer the IELTS challenge. Let’s dive into her story!


We met Dorottya when she joined the VIP Club in July, to get some help with her IELTS preparation. She was preparing on her own – but she had an ambitious goal, so she needed support and preparation materials to get her over the finish line.

Preparation Strategies

About 10 days into her preparation, Dorottya bought the self-study book ‘Target Band 7 – How to Maximize your score’ and really put it to test. She was definitely not one of those people who think that by simply buying IELTS materials they will somehow magically pass the test – she was actually using every single resource she got. Learning strategies from the book, applying them in practice, solving practice tests, analysing her answers, and improving day by day – this is what her self-study days looked like.

Dorottya was also using her VIP Club content daily. Instead of taking a passive approach and simply reading the model answers for Speaking and Writing that we sent her daily, she did something different. She took an active approach, and it paid off big time! She kept a notebook handy and copied all the new words she came across in our model answers. She wrote the words’ meanings next to them and then used these new words when she practiced in writing and speaking. The result? Band 7.5 in Writing and Band 8 in Speaking.

Active learning approach helped Dorottya expand her active vocabulary by adding new, higher-level words to it. Writing the words and their meanings in a notebook helped her remember them, and using them in her writing and speaking practice ensured they remained in her active vocabulary.

Active vocabulary consists of the words that you use frequently and confidently, whereas passive vocabulary consists of words whose meanings you know, but don’t really use in your speaking and writing. This makes active vocabulary very important in IELTS.

Dorottya didn’t relax until IELTS was behind her, she kept using her VIP subscription up until the very last day before the test. When it was time to take her exam, she went in a hopeful candidate and came out a champion!


She passed the test on her first attempt and got a Band 8 overall, with Listening 8.5, Reading 7.5, Writing 7.5 and Speaking 8.0.

Dorottya’s Testimonial

Reflecting on her preparation experience with us, Dorottya said:

I got a lot of help from I read a couple of band 8/9 example essays every day and also checked writing task 1 examples. I used a copy book to write the new words and their meaning in it. Even 5-10 words a day or every second day adds up. Then I did a lot of reading practice and used ‘Target Band 7’ book and it strategies. I am very thankful for all your help, I got a band 8!

Congratulations on your amazing Band 8, Dorottya!

Best IELTS test result September 2023