Getting ready for the IELTS exam can be a daunting experience. Whether it is to help you get into university, improve your job prospects or for visa or migration, our Academic Team has the tips you need to help you succeed. We realise that getting ready for a test can be a stressful time and we are here to help.
This is a great time to book your IELTS course, so here are ten tips to support you with your preparation:
1. Use authentic materials whenever possible
Listen to news and podcasts regularly. You can find a variety of music, culture, and current affairs shows on the BBC Sounds website. Get into the habit of taking notes on interesting stories. Read newspapers like the Economist or the Guardian every week. You’ll find they have articles of the same length and complexity as those you will be faced with in the test.
2. Use model answers
Try copying out model answers from the back of test books in order to solidify your command of vocabulary and sentence and essay structure.
3. Make ‘Fair Copies’ of your essays
Rewrite essays you’ve had corrected, following the advice and comments from your teachers. Make sure to correct all the spelling and grammar errors they have pointed out. Rewriting an essay will help you to improve your writing, and show your teachers that you have learnt from your mistakes.
4. Practice makes perfect!
Make sure you are familiar with all sections of the exam. Replicating exam conditions at home will help you with time management on the day. This is especially true for the writing exam, where it is very easy to lose track of time. You can prepare for the speaking section in class or get a friend to help you at home. It’s also important to make sure you go to class every day and ask your teachers what you need to do to improve.
5. Practice reading in English
Use graded readers (simple versions of classic fiction books) to help improve your reading speed and pick up lots of passive vocabulary. Your college will have a library of books that you can borrow – speak to your College Manager or Student Experience team to ask for help. Ask your teachers if they have any book suggestions for you. You could also join the local library, particularly if you are studying with BSC for more than four weeks.
6. Search for grammar tips online
Pick up useful grammar tips from specialist websites such as the British Council website.
7. Practice writing
Watch news videos on Youtube containing graphs and tables and practice writing descriptions of what you’ve learnt. Watch a short Ted Talk and see if you can summarise it in five sentences or fewer. Start with a topic that you are interested in, as you are more likely to remain engaged. Remember: the more you write, the more you improve!
8. Record yourself
Record yourself telling stories about your experiences. Listen to the recordings and critique your grammar, accent and pronunciation. Repeat the activity and see if you improve.
9. Learn what your common mistakes are
Take careful note of mistakes – regularly write down mistakes you keep making (both speaking and writing). Ask for regular feedback from your teachers, as they will be happy to support you with your learning.
10. Be persistent
Be consistent in your approach. Go to class every day and do your homework. Work with other students outside class. Find ways to use English in your everyday life. Make sure you regularly ask your teachers what you need to do to improve.
Pass your IELTS exam confidently
We have helped thousands of students pass their exams – BSC IELTS exam preparation course can help you get the result you want.