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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

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IELTS Test Schedule 2015

2014 test schedules for the IELTS in the Philippines

IELTS and IELTS UKVI Comparison

Differences between IELTS and IELTS UKVI

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Best Tongue Twisters for the IELTS Speaking Exam

source:clementdampal.wordpress.com

Speaking is one of the sub-tests in the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) that requires preparation from all the candidates. The IELTS Speaking examination requires the candidate to sit on a one-on-one interview as an evaluation. Most Filipinos are good English speakers; however, they lack the confidence when speaking in front of a native English speaker. Thus, a lot of Filipinos take time to practice speaking English not only to improve their confidence in using the language but also develop their English skills.

There are lots of activities that one can do to be more comfortable in speaking the English language. One of these many ways is doing tongue twisters. Tongue twisters are phrases or sentences in the English language that are created to be difficult properly. They are a good practice in one’s pronunciation, stress, and even enunciation when speaking. Tongue twisters are fun and probably one of the best ways to improve one’s clarity when speaking.


To help you with your preparation for the IELTS test, here are some of the best tongue twisters in the English language.

1. I saw Susie sitting in a shoe shine shop.
       Where she sits she shines, and where she shines she sits.

2. Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers.
        A peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked.
        If Peter Piper picked a peck of pickled peppers,
        Where's the peck of pickled peppers Peter Piper picked?

3. Denise sees the fleece,
        Denise sees the fleas.
        At least Denise could sneeze
        and feed and freeze the fleas.

4. Something in a thirty-acre thermal thicket of thorns and thistles thumped and thundered                       threatening the three-D thoughts of Matthew the thug - although, theatrically, it was only the               thirteen-thousand thistles and thorns through the underneath of his thigh that the thirty year old           thug thought of that morning.

5. There was a fisherman named Fisher
        who fished for some fish in a fissure.
        Till a fish with a grin,
        pulled the fisherman in.
        Now they're fishing the fissure for Fisher.

6. If Pickford's packers packed a packet of crisps would the packet of crisps that Pickford's packers         packed survive for two and a half years?

7. How much wood could Chuck Woods' woodchuck chuck, if Chuck Woods' woodchuck could             and would chuck wood? If Chuck Woods' woodchuck could and would chuck wood, how much         wood could and would Chuck Woods' woodchuck chuck? Chuck Woods' woodchuck would               chuck, he would, as much as he could, and chuck as much wood as any woodchuck would, if a           woodchuck could and would chuck wood.

8. Through three cheese trees three free fleas flew.
        While these fleas flew, freezy breeze blew.
        Freezy breeze made these three trees freeze.
        Freezy trees made these trees' cheese freeze.
        That's what made these three free fleas sneeze.

Aside from tongue twisters, it is also helpful for examiners to follow these tips:

Always find an opportunity to speak the English language. 
Find a speaking partner who can help you improve English. 
Improve your vocabulary.
Enroll in an IELTS speaking workshop to improve both skill and confidence. 

With constant practice with these tips and tongue twisters, being a good English speaker is very possible. 

Thursday, November 5, 2015

Words to Avoid in IELTS Speaking and Writing

The writing and speaking sub-tests of the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination deals with evaluating a candidate’s English skill in both oral and written. Some candidates cannot get a good score in these sub-tests because of the lack of knowledge on what other skills are needed. Vocabulary is one aspect candidates have to improve for these tests.

No matter how wide your vocabulary is, there are some words that should be avoided in the test. These words make your speaking and writing confusing, out of the topic, or in other words incorrect. Some words are not suitable to be used in both tests since they give off a different definition or it lacks a formal tone for the test. Here are some words candidates have to avoid in speaking and writing.

Writing



Personally
Using this in the Academic writing’s first stack is a big mistake. The essay is based on graphs, charts or diagrams. Facts are already laid out, so all you have to do is to write a summary based on the given data. The word “personally” makes writing personal. 

Example:
Personally, I think that the increase of tourists in Greenland lasted for 7 years.

In conclusion
You are not making any conclusions as you are interpreting facts in a data. This phrase is better used in opinion-based essays such as the second task of the writing. 

Example:
In conclusion, cars that were manufactured in 1990 boosted the profits of the company. 

But and And
These make the writing very informal. IELTS writing uses the formal tone in writing. Instead of these words, you can use the words however, in contrast, on the contrary, additionally, and further.

Example:
CCTVs’ footage can be used as proof for some crimes. But, they can be altered. 

In the modern era
This phrase is overused as an introduction. IELTS questions mostly asked about current issues so putting a time frame is totally unnecessary. 

Example:
In this modern era, a lot of children are getting obese.

In a nut shell
This shows conclusion in your writing, yet this idiom is informal. Phrases such as in conclusion and in summary are already enough for your conclusion.

Example:
In a nut shell, advertising has brought good influence to the public. 

Speaking



Yes and No
If you want to agree or disagree with a statement, avoid saying YES and NO only. Elaborate or use other phrases to show agreement or disagreement.

Example:
Examiner: Do you live with your parents?
Examinee: Yes. (X)
Examinee: Yes, I do. We live in an apartment.

I don’t understand
Avoid saying this. It is better to say What do you mean by..?

Example:
I am sorry, but I don’t understand what you said. (X)
I am sorry, but what do you mean when you said obsolete?

I think…
This is overused, and some use this even though the question is not asking about their opinion. You can use I believe or In my opinion. 

Example:
I think that I am very cheerful. (X)
In my opinion, I can describe myself to be cheerful.

What do you think?
You should avoid asking your examiner this question. If you do not have any idea about the topic, then tell them I am afraid I know nothing about the topic.

Example:
I don’t have any idea, what do you think? (X)
I am really sorry but I do not know anything about this topic. 

These words will serve as your guide to avoid getting deductions in your IELTS writing and speaking tests. Think of other ways in expressing your ideas for the IELTS speaking and writing tests.