"Relax! It’s just an exam.”

"Easy to say, difficult to do.”

If you are an aspiring candidate preparing to take the English Language Proficiency Test, you would surely have heard this and such similar things from your friends, family members and folks around you.

No doubt, these exams are quite challenging and can play a major role in building your future. So, you would leave no stones unturned to crack these exams. Right?

Well, the IELTS Test is no different.

IELTS tests a candidate’s proficiency in English Language through four sections – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.

Some parts of the IELTS test like writing an essay offers you the privilege to go back and revise it. Unfortunately, this is not the case with every section. Let’s take the Speaking section into consideration. Here, everything happens in a snap. And, your first response need to be your best effort as you don’t get a chance to revise it.

Proven IELTS Speaking tips

1. Be Aware of The Timing and Scoring

The Speaking section consists of three parts.

Part 1: Introductory Section

This part lasts for 4-5 minutes. The examiner will ask you to introduce yourself, tell about your hobbies, how you spend your free time, and more.

It is better to give responses in "yes” or "no” and then continue with the explanation. For example, the examiner might ask "Do you think reading a magazine can help you learn a language?”. "Yes! It helps develop one’s communication skills and also their vocabulary.”

Part 2: Speak On a Topic Given in The Cue Card

In this part, you will be given a cue card on which a topic will be written. You need to speak continuously for 1-2 minutes on that topic. This is what most of the aspirants find tough.

You will be given 1 minute for preparation. In this preparation time, pen down the points in short that crosses your mind. This will help you present your views in a natural way and enable you to frame your entire response in a proper way.

Part 3: Discussion

Again, a difficult part! Here, you are supposed to talk with the examiner for 3-4 minutes. This conversation would be based on any topic. Put your efforts to convey some personal experiences related to the topic. This will show that you are comfortable with the examiner and will make your conversation more unique.

2. Fluency vs Vocabulary

Though both of these skills carry same weight age in the score card, it is advisable to be fluent than spending your time on thinking about the best word. If you speak fluently, it will create a good impression on the examiner. Hunt only for 2-3 unique words while you speak.

3. Don’t Speak Prepared Answers

If you have prepared answers to some really tough questions just as you do in your school/college exams, then smack them down right now. Speaking is something that determines your spontaneity too. If you would speak prepared answers, the examiner will immediately come to know that you are regurgitating your response. This in turn would affect your score adversely.

4. Avoid Speaking in Monotone

Responding in monotone makes you sound less fluent than you actually are. So, be natural when you speak. Vary your pitch at certain points so as to sound more fluent and interesting.

5. Don’t Panic When You Make Mistake

It happens that you commit some mistakes while speaking. Mistakes tend to happen if you are talking too quickly or you utter a wrong word accidentally. This happens even while you are speaking in your mother-tongue. So, don’t panic if such situations occur.

If you are quick to correct your mistake, go for it. This will indicate that you are conscious of what you are speaking. But, if you don’t know how to correct your mistake, don’t worry. Just move on.

Last Minute Exam Tips

  • When you don’t understand something be honest to respond "I’m sorry. But, could you please elaborate what you mean?”
  • Use different words and phrases to express yourself. For example, "I think” can be spoken in other ways like "I prefer”, "I like”, "I feel” etc.
  • Be alert on your part when the question is asked. If the examiner asks "how was your experience?” Your answer should be "It was good…” and not "It is good.” Take care of the grammar used in the question.

Last Minute General Tips

  • On the day of your test, listen to or do something that makes you feel happy and stimulates energy to be more confident and comfortable in your skin.
  • Try to be active. Lethargy leads to nervousness.
  • Drink adequate amount of water before the exam. Avoid eating food that induces sleep or laziness. Eat or drink food items like almonds, milk, yogurt or whole grain food to avoid anxiety.
  • First impression is always the last impression. So, dress accordingly as it is a part of an interview. It is not just about the first impression. Being dressed in something comfortable will help you to be at ease and avoid distractions.
  • Try to control the urge of asking the other fellow test takers about the questions asked. The questions might not be the same for you and you might unnecessarily go in panic mode.
  • Try to have a smile on your face and greet the invigilator gracefully. Do not Grin, though.
  • Sit in a proper posture, make eye contact with the examiner and be calm and composed while conversing.

These strategies can also be implemented while undergoing IELTS Speaking Practice with your tutors or fellow mates at IELTS Coaching Classes if you have enrolled into one. Or you can even benefit from the online materials and practice tests provided by IELTS Tutorials if you are pondering to prepare for your IELTS Exam by yourself.

Remember, putting efforts in the right direction is must to achieve the dream score on your IELTS Score Card.

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