How to prepare for the speaking test?

The IELTS speaking questions often repeat and hence it is a good idea to go through the question papers of recent IELTS tests. That will help you get a basic idea about the kind of questions asked. And if you are lucky you might be asked the same set of questions. You can find sample answers for speaking questions at many websites including this one. However, while preparing for the test don’t memorise long answers. Remember that the examiners are trained to distinguish learned answers from spontaneous ones. If they suspect that you are saying answers that have been memorized, you will not get any marks.

No right or wrong answers

The IELTS speaking test is not an assessment of your general knowledge. The examiner is only interested in testing your English speaking skills. That means there are no right or wrong answers for the questions. All answers will earn marks as long as they are in good English.

Use varied and advanced vocabulary

While discussing non-personal topics, you should demonstrate your range of vocabulary by using a variety of words. The examiners are specifically interested in knowing if you can use complex sentences. Even if you make a few mistakes, you will get credit for your attempts.

You can pause, but not for so long

If you can’t answer a question right away, say a filler phrase such as the ones given below.

  • That’s a good question!
  • Well, actually, I have never thought about this before.
  • Well, let me see…
  • Let me think about it.

The advantage of using a filler phrase is that it will give you a few seconds to think about an answer. However, don’t wait too long. If you do that, you will get fewer marks for fluency.

Speak aloud

You should speak loudly enough so that the examiner can hear you properly. While speaking, pronounce your words as clearly and correctly as possible.

Manjusha Nambiar

Hi, I'm Manjusha. This is my blog where I give IELTS preparation tips.