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IELTS Apps Review

comprehensive review of various android/iOS apps for the IELTS

IELTS Books Reviews

dissecting various IELTS books

IELTS Speaking Topics Compilation

practice your speaking skills with these topics

IELTS Test Schedule 2014

2014 test schedules for the IELTS in the Philippines

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Cost of IELTS Review and Test in Cebu

“I am from Cebu City and I am wondering if there are any review centers for the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination here in Cebu. I hope there are some for going to Manila would be very expensive.” –Ronaldo

The demand for IELTS training has been rising every year. This is because more and more countries are accepting Filipinos in their countries – both for work and school. Unlike before where it was easier to go overseas and work, companies and academic institutions have been keener in screening their candidates through the IELTS examination. Because of this, IELTS review centers have also been growing in the Philippines.

According to statistics, Cebu is one of the cities receiving a lot of students for the IELTS. A growing number of professionals and students have been on their first step in completing requirements for their applications overseas. The question is: how much is the IELTS review in Cebu City?

In truth, there are a number of IELTS review centers in Cebu existing today. The differences amongst these centers are their course programs, class schedules and their costs. Normally, IELTS review centers have two kinds of programs – a regular program and an intensive program. Most of the time, the regular program costs about PhP5000 and the intensive program, which usually runs for two weeks, is priced at PhP 3,000. Regular programs can be an unlimited review promo wherein candidates have a very flexible time and they can attend classes as many times as they want. Conversely, the intensive program caters candidates who are in need of a fast-paced lecture and activity in class.

https://www.facebook.com/events/851978568170283/?ref=22
In these IELTS review centers, candidates are exposed to different activities that will enhance their skill for the IELTS test. Moreover, part of their program is the familiarity with the different English accents that are used in the examination: American, Australian and British. Filipinos are more accustomed to the American English accent; hence, having accent class is a big advantage for IELTS test candidates.

Not only can candidates review in these IELTS centers but also ask for help for their exam registration. They will help you fill out your forms for British Council or IDP registration. Most of the time, the test in Cebu is done in Parklane International Hotel for those who registered via the IDP and SME in Mabolo for British Council test registrants. Candidates will be informed of their test center and other test details upon complete registration for the test.


Here are the maps of the IELTS testing centers in Cebu:

For those who are registered under IDP (Parklane International Hotel):



For British Council registrants (SME Mabolo Campus):


 Cebu residents can take advantage of different IELTS test centers in the city. With this wide variety of choices, choose what program fits you best and be ready for the real IELTS examination.


Monday, August 11, 2014

Top 20 Commonly Misspelled Words in the English Language



Are you having problems spelling words? Misspelled words are a common problem in writing. Sometimes, people spell out words based on how they hear it. They syllabicate and write down how they hear it. Though this might seem to work on some words, but there are words that should be looked up in the dictionary for their correct spelling. Further, in taking the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination, spelling is as important as knowing your vocabulary. Misspelled words are automatically wrong.

Here are twenty words commonly misspelled in the English language. Now, be sure to memorize how these words are spelled to avoid future mistakes.

1. ADDRRESS - ADDRESS

· to write on an envelope or package; to speak to a person or group; to use a specific name or title to people; used to describe the location of something like buildings or houses

Examples:

  • He wrote the address at the back of the parcel.
  • The president will be addressing the speech to the House of Representatives.

2. CEILEING - CEILING

· the inside surface at the top of a room

Examples:

  • A lizard fell from the ceiling.
  • The ceiling is covered with cobwebs.

3. SEPERATE - SEPARATE

· to stop being together; not joined or connected

Examples:

  • My parents separated when I was three.
  • We stayed in separate rooms while we were on a holiday.

4. QUESTIONAIRE - QUESTIONNAIRE

· a written set of questions that are given to people to collect facts

Examples:

  • Where are the questionnaires that I printed?
  • The questionnaire given was invalid and inaccurate.

5. CONSCIENSE - CONSCIENCE

· a feeling that something you have done is morally wrong

Examples:

  • The suspect surrendered because his conscience was bugging him.
  • Our conscience tells us whether we did the right thing or not.

6. REFERED - REFERRED

· to send something or someone to a particular person or place for treatment, advice or help, etc.

Examples:

  • I was referred by Dr. Kim to this clinic.
  • I do not think that the rules refer to the same rules as basketball.

7. ENTERPRENEUR - ENTREPRENEUR

· a person who starts a business

Examples:

  • Entrepreneurs need to understand that businesses do not gain high profits at early stage.
  • He wants to be an entrepreneur so he is studying business management.

8. OCCURENCE - OCCURRENCE

· The fact of happening or occurring

Examples:

  • The occurrence of the epidemic alarmed the local government.
  • With the occurrence of this problem, matters should be solved right away.

9. DEFENITELY - DEFINITELY

· clearly; without doubt

Examples:

  • He was definitely here when the murder happen.
  • Definitely, the children should be given more time playing outside.

10. EMBARAS - EMBARRASS

· to make someone feel confused or foolish in front of other people

Examples:

  • I was so embarrassed when I tripped in the mall.
  • Embarrassing someone does not make you a better person.

11. UNECESSARY - UNNECESSARY

· not needed or necessary

Examples:

  • The judges were giving unnecessary comments that made him uncomfortable.
  • It was unnecessary for you to pick us up at the airport.

12. ACCOMODATE - ACCOMMODATE

· to provide a place to stay and sleep for someone

Examples:

  • They were kind enough to accommodate us despite the storm.
  • The hotel cannot accommodate us so we needed to sleep on the street.

13. PARTICULARLLY - PARTICULARLY

· more than usually

Examples:

  • The guest complained particularly with the hotel’s food menu.
  • Particularly, the boys needed to fix their beds before leaving.

14. DILEMA - DILEMMA

· a situation in which you have to make a difficult choice

Examples:

  • The results were given; they were in a big dilemma.
  • We could have avoided this dilemma if we had not overlooked the minor details.

15. CONVEINIENCE - CONVENIENCE

· a quality or condition that makes something easy

Examples:

  • The convenience of having new technology makes life comfortable.
  • Smart phones bring convenience to anyone using it.

16. BEGINING - BEGINNING

· a starting point

Examples:

  • I really do not like her since the beginning of the semester.
  • In the beginning, there was nothing but vast darkness.

17. KNOWLEGE - KNOWLEDGE

· awareness of something; understanding or skill you get from an experience

Examples:

  • The job requires knowledge in French language.
  • Your knowledge needs updating.

18. MAINTAINANCE - MAINTENANCE

· the state of being maintained

Examples:

  • His medical maintenance cost the family an arm and a leg.
  • The air conditioner needs maintenance. It is not blowing any cold air.

19. FEIRY - FIERY

· having or showing a lot of strong and angry emotion; having or producing fire

Examples:

  • The boss is often described as egoistic and fiery.
  • We had to cross a fiery desert to retrieve the lost treasure.

20. JUDGELEMENT - JUDGMENT

· an opinion or decision that is based on careful thought

Examples:

  • He has good judgment on things and issues concerning his family.
  • The judgment has been given; he is not guilty.

Be careful with your spelling in the IELTS test. If you cannot remember how the word is spelled, think of its synonym or other expression that has the same meaning with it. Always play safe and be cautious in the IELTS test.

Source: http://oupeltglobalblog.com/2010/09/30/20-most-commonly-misspelt-words-in-english/ and http://grammar.about.com/od/words/a/misspelled200.htm

Definitions: Merriam-Webster mobile app and thefreedictionary.com

Thursday, August 7, 2014

IELTS Listening Strategy

Why do some people want to learn a new language?

As one of the most spoken languages in the world, more and more foreign nationals are studying English. English has been used for different purposes; most of these are related to business and education. Many believe that learning the language puts a one step forward to a promising career and education all over the world. Indeed, one has an edge over another person who does not know how to speak English.

IELTS listening

 
For many years now, a lot of people have been taking English proficiency examinations. More companies and academic institutions trust these examinations as they gauge an individual’s fluency with the English language through a series of tasks from the four core skills in English – reading, listening, speaking and writing. One of the trusted names in this industry is the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination.


The IELTS is one test where one should improve their skills to be able to get an outstanding score. Among the sections of the test, the listening section needs a good strategy to achieve a good score. It is known that there are two listening processes that one must know and even discover: the top-down and bottom-up listening.


Top-down Listening

A top-down listening relies on the person’s natural knowledge on things. This can cover his or her background knowledge on the topic or the situation or even with the language used. The knowledge that the person have naturally creates an expectation to what is heard which results to anticipation.

For example:

A student hears this, “I really want to visit the museum on Saturday; the problem is I have to attend a lecture for one of my major subjects in school.”

Using the person’s prior knowledge, he or she anticipates that the speaker will not be going to the museum on Saturday. This prediction is based on the fact that the speaker has to attend a school lecture. In top-down listening, the listener puts emphasis on the background knowledge he or she has to understand a message. He or she could use his prior experience or knowledge to come up with this assumption.

Bottom-up listening

Conversely, the bottom-up listening is dependent on the information presented to get the meaning – the person has to strip each word to get the meaning in the context. It is technical as knowledge is drawn upon the effective usage of words and grammar in the sentence. This skill is more evident on new learners of English language as they are particular with the sentence construction to understand.

For example:

A person hears this, "The Maori value genealogy highly."

Since some words in this sentence are new to the listener, he or she breaks down the sentence to understand the context. It is possible that the person will look up the meaning of the words Maori and genealogy in the dictionary to understand what the sentence means.

In IELTS, these two listening process are needed to understand listening passages. Candidates have to understand the context based on what they have experienced in their lives and apply their knowledge on vocabulary to understand the whole message of the passage. Through these, candidates can respond correctly to the questions.

Building skills for these takes practice. Hence, as early as today, learners of the English language, particularly those who want to take the IELTS, should know more on top-down and bottom-up listening.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Sample Letter and Data Interpretation in the IELTS Writing Task 1 (General Training and Academic)

Any candidate for the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination (IELTS) knows the two modules in the test – the Academic and the General Training modules. The Academic module is usually taken by individuals who are to be enrolled in academic program overseas for more than six months and those individuals who are applying for an employment. Conversely, the General Training module candidates are those who are also enrolled in an academic program but in less than six months, individuals whose job requires the General Training module and for those applying for immigration. Since we have two different modules, some parts of the exam are also different for both. One section which is different from the other is the writing task

The first task of the IELTS writing is entirely different from each other. In the Academic Writing, candidates are asked to write an essay based on a given graph. The candidates need to interpret the remarkable peaks, changes and differences in the graph. Here is a sample question:

Below is a pie chart that shows what type of access the British use in accessing the Internet in the year 2010.



Sample Response:

The chart demonstrates how the British population gained access to the Internet in the year 2010.

According to the chart, a huge percentage of the British population had access to the internet through cable connections in 2010. At 47%, the chart suggests that almost half of the entire population were using cable internet connections in the said year. Furthermore, the use of the internet was also made possible through mobile devices. The chart suggests that 22% of the population were using mobile internet connectivity. The minority, at 12%, was able to use the internet through a dial up connection. Surprisingly, almost ten-fifth of the British population had no access to the internet. This percentage could comprise people from remote areas where cables and mobile internet are not available.

Generally, cables and mobile devices are the primary ways how the British population gained access to the internet in the year 2010.

SAMPLE LETTER ---------------------------------------------------------------------

Now, here is a sample task for the General Training and its sample answer.

Question:

You are unhappy about a plan to make your local airport bigger and increase the number of flights. You live near the airport.

Write a letter to your local newspaper. In your letter

  • · Explain where you live
  • · Describe the problem
  • · Give reasons why you do not want this development

Write at least 150 words.

Begin your letter as follows:

Dear Sir/Madam,

Sample Response

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am writing this letter to express my opinion on an article written on the paper last September 2nd. I live about 30 kilometers away from the airport. With the news of its expansion, I want to emphasize the possible problems it could cause to people living near the area.

First and foremost, low-flying airplanes are already causing too much distraction. Doing housework and even relaxing have been quiet impossible with this noise. What makes the matter even worse is the noise we hear from early morning flights where everybody is still asleep.

Another thing I want to point out is that the said expansion can affect the local park nearby. The said expansion can possibly get an amount of space from the local park. With this, people will lose some place to hang out and children to play.

Hence, I am strongly showing my disagreement with this plan. I would highly appreciate if the paper could publish what residents think of about this issue.


Sincerely,

Jo Mazel



Writing is possibly very easy once you are guided. There are a lot of writing exercises to practice on and be sure to have someone check your essays. Better yet, enrol in IELTS writing classes for more detailed and better improvement in your essays.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

IELTS Grammar Lesson on Reflexive Pronouns

Should we say, I cut me or I cut myself?

Generally speaking, pronouns avoid redundancy of mentioning the same nouns in the sentence. They are used to substitute to names of nouns in constructing a sentence. In the English language, there are different kinds of pronouns and one of the most intriguing pronouns is the reflexive pronouns.

 
 
Reflexive pronouns get their name because they are identical with the subject. Meaning to say, reflexive pronouns are commonly used when the object and the subject of the sentence pertains to same noun. Reflexive pronouns are easily identified as they have the suffix –self.­ This basically shows that the doer’s action affects the doer too. Here are some reflexive pronouns and their sample sentence.

- Himself

  • The president cut himself while shaving.
  • He hated himself so much.

- Herself

  • She has not been herself for the past few days since the accident happened.
  • Mrs. Kim wrote herself a note.

- Myself

  • I lost myself in reading the manual.
  • I forgave myself for my mistake.

- Yourself/yourselves

  • You help yourselves with the buffet.
  • You find yourself searching for answers

- Themselves

  • The guests hurt themselves during the performance.
  • The children cannot look after themselves.

- Ourselves

  • We blame ourselves for the accident.
  • We saw ourselves in the mirror.

- Itself

  • The dog hurt itself while eating the bone.
  • The monkey poured itself a glass of milk.

Reflexive pronouns can also be mistaken as intensive pronouns. This is because their forms are the same; however, their uses are totally different. Intensive pronouns are used to give more emphasis to the subject of the sentence.

Examples:

  • - I can do it myself.
  • - The CEO, himself, discussed the problems with the board.
  • - You, yourself, have to find solutions to your problems.
  • - Anna, herself, cooked dinner for all of us.
  • - We, ourselves, cooked the cake that was served during her engagement party.
  • - The monkey itself poured the milk into the glass.
  • - The boys, themselves, headed the meeting..

Compare:

  • Anna cut herself while cooking.
  • Anna, herself, cooked the chicken.

In the first sentence, removing herself changes the meaning of the sentence or the sentence’s meaning is incomplete. However, in the second sentence, the removal of herself does not affect the meaning of the sentence. Hence, intensive pronouns are indeed used to show emphasis on the subject of the sentence.

Reflexive pronouns are easy to understand and use. However, make sure you use it properly to avoid committing a grammatical error.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Grammar Practice Quiz for the IELTS (Are You Ready?)

Take the quiz below and know how good you are with your grammar skills.






Thursday, July 24, 2014

List of Words That Are Useful When Interpreting Data in the IELTS Test







A sneak peek of the words in the slide:

Majority
Minority
Half
Quarter
Peak
Upward
Recover
Lead/Leading
Significant
Doubled