IELTS Speaking: some Tips in Part 1
Here are some tips for IELTS Speaking Part 1 from one of my colleagues.
Giving full, relevant answers to the examiner’s questions will help get the interview off to a good start.
1) Avoid giving short, uncommunicative replies. Below are some examples to give you an idea.
Q: Where are you from?
A: I’m from Beijing. (Don’t stop there!) It’s located in northern china with a population of approximately 20 million. It’s a modern city but with a lot of history and definitely a lovely place to live in.
2) Avoid short, ‘yes’, ‘no’ answers to closed questions. (These are questions beginning ‘Have you …’, ‘Do you …’, ‘Is it …’ etc which can be answered simply with a yes or no answer).
Q: Have you visited any English speaking countries?
A: Yes. (Don’t stop there!) I went to England last year and spent two weeks seeing the sights. A couple of years ago I went to New Zealand with my parents and had a great time.
Q: Do you play any sports?
A: No. (Don’t stop there!) I’m not really interested in playing sports. I like watching sport on TV and I really enjoyed keeping up with the Olympics recently.
3) Offer examples to help you explain a statement.
Q: Why are you preparing for the IELTS exam?
A: Because I need it for my studies. (Don’t stop there!) I’ve been offered a place at Melbourne university to study MBA but I need to show my level of English is good enough.
4) Watch out for different tenses. If your question is in present tense, you should provide an answer in present tense answer as well. If your question is in past tense, you must use past tense to answer the question. You could mix up tenses to give answers but do so only if you have already achieved a band sore of at least 7.5. Unfortunately a lot of students lose marks simply because they mess up the tenses. This is a dangerous mistake and can significantly lower your band.
5) If you make a mistake, correct yourself and move on. No need to apologize to your examiner. If you don’t understand the question, you can ask the examiner for help. Use one of the following sentences in case you don’t understand the examiner. Do not panic and do not act nervous. It’s ok to ask the examiner to repeat or explain the question as long as this doesn’t happen more than once or twice.
- Could you please clarify the question a little bit more?
-Excuse me, what exactly do you mean by that?
-Would you mind repeating your question please?
One simple question in IELTS Speaking Part 1: What job do you do?
Answer 1) I started working as a full-time Mechanical Engineer a few months ago at a consulting firm in Victoria. It’s a challenging position and involves plenty of calculations and computer modeling but I enjoy it very much.
Answer 2) I work at a private hospital in Melbourne as a Nurse on a part-time basis. I’m mostly responsible for making basic preparations for surgeons and GP’s to treat patients. My night shifts can be quite tiring although this is something I’m pretty much used to.