below are some tips and vocabulary for writing and especially for getting through the IELTS exam
Everyone talks about grammar. At least they do in Russia!
I think this is maybe to miss the real problem in learning English.
One of the most difficult things for english learners is to master vocabulary. Most text-books focus on grammar, because that is something that can be tested and taught in a very formalistic way, but, actually, there is very little grammar in modern English.
The hard work comes from learning and using synonyms correctly. In terms of listening, that mastery of vocab is expressed in a knowledge of collocations- how words stick together. This means that we can anticipate the sort of things we hear because we are used to the way one word naturally attaches to another. Instead of listening to every single word, we listen to the sense of what is being said and anticipate which words will be used.
In terms of the two essays, the graph essay (1) needs to be clear and precise. The second essay needs similar clarity but evidence of development. Idiomatic vocabulary throughout as well as “linking words”
Here are some valuable
at the moment
in the past
at that time
when I was younger
I think one important thing is
I guess one difference is
I suppose the main difference between A & B is
Causes and Solutions
I imagine it’s because
it appears to be
I guess it’s because
the main reason is
it is caused by
I suppose the best way to deal with this problem is
I reckon the only answer is
the best way to solve this is
**there are three important points: firstly (A), secondly (B and thirdly, finally, (C) (this is my preferred option always- the tricolon) This can often come across as very formal so be careful!
like (use in speaking, not so much in writing. Do not over-use this word)
Being clear and precise
What I mean is
What I want to say is
As I was saying
contrasts and concessions
on the one hand (remember two hands) on the other hand
in spite of
another option could be/ might be
Linking words for writing
not only… but also
as well as
in that case
under these circumstances
Because of this,
thus, therefore, so
in that case
this implies that
if so, / not
in other words,
in the same way that
not only… but also
obviously (be careful- if something is obvious, there is no point in saying it, and if it is not obvious, then you have the wrong word!)
on the whole,
as a rule
Here is a rough speaking test:
– What is your full name?
– Can I see your ID?
– Where are you from?
– Do you work or study?
– Where are you studying or working?
– Do you like your school or your company?
– Do you want to change your school/company?
– Do you usually drink water?
– Do you prefer to drink bottled or tap water?
– Is bottled water expensive in your country?
– Why is that?
– Do you like shoes?
– How often do you buy new shoes?
– Have you ever bought shoes online? Why / why not?
Describe a part of your country that you find interesting. Please say
– What and where is it?
– How do you know about it?
– What activities do people usually do there?
– Why do you think this place is interesting?
– Why do people love to visit some parts of the country?
– Why do people want to settle in certain places?
– What are the main differences between places to visit and to live in?
– Why are people different in different parts of the same country?
Next time: vocabulary for Pie charts and graphs (Essay 1)