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IELTS English Speaking Tips 4

In my previous articles, I discussed tips for Part 1 of the IELTS English speaking test.

In Part 2 of the IELTS Speaking Test, you have to speak for 1-2 minutes by yourself without stopping on a topic the examiner will give you. You have 1 minute to get ready and make some notes. Speaking for this amount of time uninterrupted is quite a challenge as in real life, you don’t normally get to speak on a topic for this long when you are having a conversation. The only way to improve in this section is to practice speaking on a range of topics for the maximum allocated time. It simply takes continual practice and you will soon be able to talk for 2 minutes without stopping. Remember you are not expected to speak fast or without stopping. Pausing or recollecting your thoughts is fine. You need to speak normally, fluently and naturally. Speak at a normal speed and pause to take breaths. You can also refer to your notes to give yourself ideas as you speak. Here are some helpful hints:

1. Read the information you are given carefully and ensure that you use the full one minute to make brief notes. Don’t write full sentences as you will run out of time. Make brief notes that will remind you of an idea. In fact if you can draw quickly it is sometimes more beneficial to draw quick sketches as this will remind you of what you want to say more quickly than words.
2. Make sure you put down keywords that will remind you of the idea you want to speak about and that the keywords relate directly to the information you have been given.
3. Lastly, make a note of something from your own experience connected to the talking theme. When you are talking about something from your own experience, it is easier to remember and talk about. Look at the example below:

Describe a famous person from your country that you admire. You should say who the person is,what they are famous for and why you admire them.

Note that there is a main question (describe a famous person) and 3 minor questions to help you answer the main question (Who, What and Why). Your notes may look like this:

Who: Barak Obama, USA, President, wife and family, academic background
What: First black President, big change, multicultural, empathy
Why: High achiever, one of a kind, against all odds
Personal: surprised, walking home, people celebrating (how you heard and what you felt when you heard he had been elected, what other people were doing).

In the next article, we will look at a sample answer for Part 2 of the IELTS speaking test!