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Pay attention to these things, and your IELTS score will go up

Band 9 in IELTSWe had a chance to ask Shivangi and Pouya, our recent winners in IELTS results competition, what is important to focus on, to get a higher IELTS score. They came up with quite a few great tips! For example, Pouya noticed that working on your reading will help you in the Listening test as well, and Shivangi reminded us that some Speaking examiners may appear less friendly, but your confidence should not depend on their positive response. Hopefully this advice will help you achieve great results in your own IELTS exam.

Shivangi (a native Hindi speaker, who received Band 7.5 in IELTS), said:

“The best strategy for cracking IELTS is time management and practice. The techniques given in books are worth trying out a number of times before appearing for the exam.

  • Try practicing on photocopies of the real answer sheet to familiarise yourself with the test format.
  • Handwriting needs to legible, so if needed, work on yours to improve it.
  • In Listening try to anticipate the answer needed before the audio starts.
  • In Reading I attempted the True/False/Not given questions first in each section, as I found them the most difficult.
  • In Writing think of the whole answer, then start writing. Also, give put emphasis on task 2 (it’s worth more marks).
  • In Speaking maintain the flow while speaking and do not forget to use linkers. The examiners may not show any expressions while you speak, so remember to maintain your confidence regardless of their response.”

    Pouya (a native Farsi speaker, who received Band 8 in IELTS), said:

    “Well, I believe that everyone here is trying hard to achieve a good mark in IELTS, so I will show you just some tricks that helped me.

    In the Reading test you really don’t need to know the meanings of all words to get a good mark, the most important thing is to understand what you are being asked. You should understand the meaning of the question.

    Be careful with the keywords. The keywords in the question shouldn’t have the exact meaning of the related words in the text. It’s just enough to see a connection between those words and answer the question with the help of that.

    Another helpful tip is to write a brief note (about 3 or 4 words), maybe even in your own language, so you can keep the questions in mind and while you are reading the text, by a glance at your notes you can answer questions much easier.

    Moving on to the Listening test, I still insist on writing those brief notes besides the questions, so you don’t need to keep your eyes on the questions and you are able to focus on the voice. It is extremely important to keep your focus on the voice while the recording is playing. Try not to lose track of it even for a second, but if you did, don’t worry, keep calm and listen to the rest of the track. Losing one mark is better than losing them all.

    Reading and listening are extremely intertwined in my view. Improving your reading skills will bring on significant changes in you listening skills. The least it will do is help you read the questions faster and understand them much easier.”

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