IELTS Syllabus

Speaking

  1. Vocabulary – Common topics (Parts 2 and 3)

Holidays

Success

Gadgets

Cars

Improvements

Museums

Jobs

Celebrities

Books

Films

Important conversations

Good news

Parks

Music

School / education

Tourism

TV Shows

Adverts

Advice

Surprise

Buildings / urban planning

Friends

Parents / parenting

Wildlife / the environment

 

 

  1. Vocabulary – Common Part 1 topics

House / apartment

Colours

The weekend

Sleep

Lateness

Clothes

Sports

Social media

Traffic / transport

Grammar for Speaking Part 2

  1. Telling anecdotes about the past

Setting the scene -> Past perfect simple and continuous

Tell the story -> narrative tenses

Consequences -> Present perfect / 3rd Conditional / Mixed Conditional

 

  1. Telling anecdotes about desires (“Something you would like to buy”)

Set the scene -> Present perfect “I’ve always wanted to…”

Anecdote -> Narrative tenses “I associate ___  with _____.” “I remember when…”

Consequences for the future -> 2nd conditional “If I bought a ______, I’d _______.”

 

  1. Grammar / vocabulary for Part 3 Question types

Categories ->Listing language

Changes -> Present Perfect / “used to” / “would”

Comparison -> comparative / superlative related structures / hedging “tend to”

Policy -> the language of legislation (“subsidise” etc)

Speculation -> modals of probability

‘Deep’ questions ->Language of root causes / general statements “Ultimately..”

 

  1. Fluency

Discourse markers -> stalling, formality, agreement (total, partial, polite disagreement), clarification

Anti-hesitation exercises

 

  1. Pronunciation

Word stress

Linking

Rhythm

Intonation

Weak forms

Listening

  1. Listening for discourse markers – contradiction, clarification, emphasis – to disregard distractors in multiple choice questions
  2. Prediction during preparation time
  3. Spoken alphabet training – for taking names and addresses in Part 1
  4. Exam technique – consistency of alphabetisation during gapfill exercises
  5. Regular testing
  6. Text types – Part 1 – transactional conversation, Part 2 – practical monologue, Part 3 – university life dialogue, Part 4 – academic lecture / seminar / field trip preparation

Reading

  1. Question types and the skills associated with them

Assigning headings, author’s intention – reading for gist

Matching authors and statements– reading for specific information

True / false / not given, use words / numbers from the text, multiple choice – read for detailed information

  1. Paraphrase – prediction, awareness of multiple ways to express one meaning, disguised contradiction (e.g. “a lack of…”)
  2. Exam technique – Initial skim read to locate information easily later; question timings – abandoning unanswered questions
  3. Learner strategies – encouraging independent reading as a habit

Writing

Task 1

  1. Identifying key features for the overview
  2. Task 1 text organisation, paragraph formation, parameters of Task 1 (description not commentary)
  3. Introduction – paraphrasing the question
  4. Maps – present perfect (passive), “used to”, language of construction and conversion
  5. Processes – Present perfect passive, sequencing
  6. Graphs with a trend – trend vocabulary as noun and verb phrases, subordinate clauses for adding detail
  7. Graphs of comparison – complex comparative structures

 

Task 2

Task Achievement

  1. Understanding the question – avoiding generic lines of argument
  2. Alternative structures – balanced, opinionated, problems and solutions, 2 questions / 2 paragraphs, 2 questions / 1st question split and 2nd question answered in conclusion
  3. Conclusion language and expressing an opinion
  4. Introduction language – general statements, signposting
  5. Presenting a dissenting viewpoint

Coherence and cohesion

  1. Body paragraph formation – ‘open’ topic sentences, conventions of English writing v L1
  2. Discourse markers – contradiction, addition, concession
  3. Avoiding repetition through referencing / pronouns

Vocabulary

  1. Topic specific vocabulary –the environment, crime and punishment, employment, media, tourism, education
  2. Collocation / idiomatic language
  3. Formal vocabulary

Grammar

  1. Focus on accuracy – eliminating fossilised errors, subject-verb agreement, and incorrect past participles.
  2. Punctuation – overuse of commas, run on sentences, controllable sentence structures
  3. Focus on range – encouragement of longer sentence structures, with various types of subordinate clauses
  4. Focus on formality – preference of abstract noun phrases, passives