Recent IELTS exams

Real students tell about their recent IELTS exams: IELTS questions, topics, tasks, answers.

Update from an Academic IELTS exam, London

Listening test

Section 1. An easy part about museums.
Section 2. Work application form.
Section 3. Something about human resources/economics.
Section 4. Don’t remember.

Reading test

This test was very complicated even compared to Cambridge test samples.
Passage 1. About transport.
Passage 2. Tissue reconstruction surgery.
Passage 3. Don’t remember.

Writing test

Writing Task 1 (a report)

We had a very easy table (not even a line graph) describing money donations for the reconstruction of old buildings.

Writing Task 2 (an essay)

Some people think that private medicine is better for your health. Others say that healthcare should be free of charge and government-funded. Discuss, what is your opinion?

Speaking

Interview

General questions about my name, etc.

Cue Card

A card about the place/town I recently visited. Would I like to come back there? When? Why?
I was speaking to some other people about their cards, the topics were: a national costume, shopping habits, learning a foreign language(not English).

Discussion

– Do you think it’s better to live in the county or in a town?
– What difference is there between people from cities and those who live in the country?
– How are their characters different?
– What makes a small town become a megalopolis?

This report came from Natalie – many thanks!

Update from a General IELTS exam, Kuwait

The test in Kuwait is conducted exclusively by the British Council, they ensure a thoroughly professional execution, by all means strict invigilators, but helpful and cheerful.

Listening test

Section 1. A conversation between a Music Teacher who gives private classes and an interested father. An interesting little exchange of information that discussed age-groups, instruments taught, reference books, timing, fees etc. Very simple questions!

Section 2. A detailed description of a National Park & Wildlife Research center; a slightly higher degree of difficulty as the accent wasn’t very clear initially.

Section 3. A conversation between a Marketing professor and his two students on their chosen thesis subjects. A simple conversation if you know the Marketing jargon.

Section 4. Various precious stones & reflectance. A very simple recording.

Reading test

Probably a little time consuming and irritating one of the lot, but still it was fairly simple in comparison to the reading texts found in IELTS study materials anywhere.

Passage 1. A town festival and the various celebrating groups and communities.

Passage 2. Admission to a College and the various requirements, application procedures, timings, attendance requirement, faculty, fees- questions revolved round these issues. An irritating question type was the one that involved numbering the various paragraphs.

Passage 3. An exhaustive overview of Mountain Climbing, its history, environmental issues, types of climbing and techniques. A little tricky.

Writing test

Make sure you practice writing, getting used to computer keyboards over the years can be such a pain-worse than carpal tunnel syndrome. It’s not easy to get the pen moving on the answer sheet. Practice, some general knowledge also helps. I might end up with a band 8-8.5 if all goes well.

Writing Task 1 (a letter)

You had applied to city college recently. Now the college has written back saying the course you applied for is full and they have even suggested an alternative course. Write back to them stating why you chose the first course, your views on the suggested second course and your plan of action. Minimum 150 words.

Task 2 (an essay)

Many countries host international sporting events these days. What are the positive and negative impact of hosting such events? Discuss both sides and give your opinion on this.

Speaking

At a designated time, I was called to take my speaking test. A cheerful lady-the examiner, made sure that I was comfortable while she went about her job with an almost clinical precision. I say almost because she dropped my passport, not once but twice…:)

Interview

The test started with a little introduction about myself, my origin and my job. There we moved on to the whole test as it ranged from motivation factors in my job, my future aspirations etc. She suddenly looked up and asked me ‘do you like gifts? and then followed a little question and answer session on gifts, why we need them and my interest in them.

Cue Card

My topic was about my favorite newspaper, my preferred time of reading and my favorite columns in the newspaper.

Discussion

My hunch was right as I knew what the following topic was going to be – SENSATIONALISM AND TABLOIDS. I had a ball talking on this subject. Overall I think I could have done better – I spoke too much and too fast. Keep your control on the content and the diction. I think I will score well.

We are grateful to Amar who sent us this wonderful report.