Happy New Year one and all! I hope you’ve all had a pleasant Christmas period! This week’s topic is CAE. Although the demand for this is not as high right now in the UK when compared to IELTS, there are still plenty of students who want to take this challenging exam. We will look at 5 essential tips to help students succeed.
Be on top of their time-management
Just like any exam, it is important that students stay on top of their time-management. In fact, it is crucial when they are taking the CAE exam. The student needs to put a plan together so that they know exactly how much time they need to spend on each section of the exam. If they plan ahead, they will leave themselves plenty of time to check over their answers at the end. It is vital that students remember that each section of the exam carries pretty much the same number of marks, so keeping on top of their time will maximise their chances of getting the highest score.
Really focus on their reading
During the exam they will be required to read a body of text. Before they start reading though, students must make sure that they check through all the questions so that they know what to look out for. This is not always the case but usually the earlier questions will have their answers appear in the beginning of the text, with the end of the text containing the answers to the later questions.
Make sure that they learn to listen
During the listening part of the exam, it is important not to focus too much on the individual words they hear, instead they should be sure to listen to the recording as a whole. If they do notice any key words, then write them down. Whatever they do, they shouldn’t try to read through any questions while they listen as this may cause them to miss vital information. They must listen to all of the recording and then tackle the questions once it is finished.
Be clear and concise with their writing
They must remember to spend around the same amount of time on each section of the exam, as they are roughly worth the same amount in terms of marks. It is always a good idea to write down any key words, so that they remember them easier for when they want to include them in their answer. Students must be focused in their writing and not write any unrelated things just to increase their word count, as they will not increase their mark by doing this. Students should try to add as much detail as possible and only write what they can comfortably explain and remember to always give an opinion in their answer.
Stay calm when speaking
It is perfectly understandable if a student feels nervous during the speaking part of the exam, but the best thing they can do is remain calm and speak clearly. They must speak continuously for a few minutes, so there is no need to rush. Students must make sure that they talk about a topic that they know well and use the words they have had the most practice with to describe it. This part of the exam is purely designed to test their spoken English, so there’s no need to worry about expressing their opinions, as long as it is relevant.