It may sound silly, but it is true. Only those students who follow the instructions correctly succeed in the IELTS test. Here are some common mistakes to avoid.
Stick to the suggested word length
Your answers must be within the required word limit. If you are asked to give your answer in ‘not more than 3 words’, you should do just that. Answering in 4 or more words will cost you marks.
The prescribed word length is also crucial when it comes to the written task. The essay has to be answered in not less than 250 words and the report or letter has to be answered in not less than 150 words. Any work shorter than these word lengths will be penalized. Also avoid writing essays that are longer than necessary. Writing a really long essay requires a great deal of time. Your chances of making mistakes also increase with the number of words and sentences.
Write your essay on the topic given, even if you don’t understand it. Sometimes you are asked to write an essay on a topic you don’t understand. Remember that you still have to write your essay on that topic. You are not allowed to write on a slightly or entirely different subject. It is also important not to omit parts of the given topic. Every point mentioned in the question needs to be covered in the essay.
Write only on the given topic
Essay topics can sometimes repeat, but you are not supposed to give a memorized answer. Examiners are trained to look for memorized essays and are instructed to disqualify them.
In the speaking module, words must be pronounced correctly. You won’t be penalized for speaking with a certain accent, but you are not allowed to mispronounce words.
Don’t use words unnecessarily
Don’t use connective words unnecessarily. It is true that coherence and cohesion is one of the four criteria used to evaluate your essay, but that doesn’t mean that you have to use numerous connective words. A connective word must be used only when it is necessary. Using words unnecessarily will cost you marks.
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