#EngTips: Preparation for IELTS

Hey ho, fellas! How’s your Sunday? Hope you get to chill and enjoy the day!

Anyway, check out what I got 2 days ago:

Yup. I will be renewing my IELTS certificate by taking a test on 22/11! Application submitted, now gearing myself up for the big day!
Which is why today I will be sharing some of the most important lessons I learnt in preparing for IELTS.
Inside the given guidebook, there are information about IELTS band score, how to prepare, and what is expected of each subtest. It’s very beneficial because it helps you arrange your study plan better.
To me, Writing is the most challenging part of taking IELTS. Esp. because I am required to use pencil.
It’s been a while since I last use pencil, and my handwriting’s terrible. Even worse, there are 2 essays to be done in 60 mins.
So I inc. writing practice in my study plan. I use a stopwatch to train myself doing it in 60 mins, also to get use to the stress.
Having a study plan is also beneficial to help you decide when to have the test. (Yes, we can pick our own test date)
There are many different reasons to take IELTS, but mostly it is for university application.
Pay careful attention to university application deadline. Decide yourself how long you’d require to study.
Of course, taking classes help. But I don’t have the luxury to do that. So I have to be self-sufficient.
Don’t have the luxury to = tidak punya waktu/uang/kesempatan melakukan sesuatu
Creating a study plan always starts with doing a try-our test. So you know which area to focus more on.

My current study plan. Writing takes a huge part because it includes many different elements.

I allocate only 4 days for Grammar Drill because I can use the Writing practice as a way to practice grammar as well.
Listening is relatively fun because you can practice by watching British movies to get use to their pronunciation or accent.
For Writing, the most valuable lesson is mastering the use of Thesis Statement. I tweeted about it before:
Understanding Thesis Statement also helped me with Reading. You can read the detail in the link in previous tweet.
The most important lesson I’ve learnt is in Speaking. I learnt that other than fluency, vocabulary, and pronunciation … (drum rolls)
Structure also matters. How you deliver your meaning. It’s very helpful to make it clear and easy to follow.

This is what you are going to meet in a Speaking test:

You’ll be given a list of topics to discuss. You can pick one, and will be given time to prepare what to say.
In high school, I was part of the English debating team, and we were taught something called ‘the AREL method’.
It’s a way to structurised your speech, and it works wonder in IELTS test!
@sourireAnida: i have tried it and it worked
The AREL method consists of Assertion-Reasoning-Evidence-Link Back.
Let’s say you picked the topic: Eliminating English from primary school curriculum.
The Assertion would be your stance (sikap) on the chosen topic.
Example: English needs to stay in the curriculum because it prepares students for a competitive job market.
Then you need to provide Reasoning: Why is it so? This is where you give a thorough explanation of your argument.
Then you give Evidence. An example to support your argument. It could be a fact or statistic.
(To be honest once I made up some numbers because I have heard of the research – but can’t remember the exact statistic.)
Then there is the Link Back: Summarise it. Make it feel more complete and rounded. Plenty of vocabs to use, too!
After that, the discussion flows naturally. This is the benefit of taking IELTS instead of TOEFL ITP: You’d talk to a real person.
If you’re lucky, you’d have an examiner who is cool and fun to talk with. But if you’re not?
Esp. if you are the nervous type. My tip: Talk to people whom you usually don’t talk to. Even better if they are foreigner.
That way, you can find the best way to deal with stage fright (demam panggung).
Compiled by @animenur for @EnglishTips4U on Sunday, 2 November 2014.

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