Course Material and Supplements

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Course Material and

For Academic and General
Training Candidates
Ebrahim Tahasoni
Cert TESOL, Academic IELTS 9.0

 Version 2.0 (14.40-7.11.2012)
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Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 1
What’s the test like
The speaking test will take about 11 to 14 minutes to complete. There are three sections in total. These areas follows

Part 1 – Introduction and interview. This lasts for about 4 to 5 minutes. In this section, the Examiner will introduce him/herself and ask you questions about yourself.

Part 2 – Individual long turn. Part 2 lasts for about three to four minutes. In this section, you will be asked to prepare and give a short talk for about one to two minutes on a given subject.

Part 3 – Two-way discussion. Part 3 lasts for 4 to 5 minutes. In this section, you will be asked to have a short discussion linked to the subject you spoke about in part 2.
Overall, you will be assessed on your fluency and coherence vocabulary range of grammar and accuracy pronunciation. This means that all of your preparation must concentrate on these areas. Check the IELTS speaking band descriptor fora more detailed description of the criteria the examiner will use to assess your speaking.

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 2
Part1 - Introduction and interview
During Part 1, the Examiner will introduce him/herself and ask you some questions about yourself. This is the start of the test, and it will set the scene for the remainder. Think of the Examiner as being just like your teacher. In fact, most examiners are usually teachers, so they’ll understand how you feel, because some of their own students will feel the same.
They’re not thereto catch you out. Indeed, they’ll want you to do well and will do everything that they canto make you feel comfortable. The Examiner has a set of questions. When you’re asked a question, try to answer it without repeating the whole question in your answer. For example
If you are asked ‘What's the most interesting thing about your hometown
Don't reply The most interesting thing about my hometown is
Just say Its
Then, you can expand on your answer, if possible, by adding something like: Most people find this interesting because
You can then add a synonym of the words used by the Examiner. So, instead of interesting say
something like: Most people find this fascinating because So, don't try to fill up your answer by repeating the question back to the Examiner and try to add a little extra to showoff your English. Remember, it's a conversation with the Examiner. He/she will want to see if you are fluent and coherent. They can't do this if you just repeat back large chunks of a question Examiners are looking for your own ideas. The topics are usually very familiar and the Examiner normally asks you about yourself. Try to give examples and create ideas, willingly. Never say, I don't know

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 3
Giving Full Answers
Impress the examiner with your ability to give full answers to his or her questions. To avoid simple yes or no answers or short responses generally, try using the REDS method to add detail to your initial response
• Give a Reason Offer an Example Give Details Speculate
REDS in Action
Question: What job would you like to dob Answer (Reason
I've always wanted to be a vet. I love animals and I think it would be a very rewarding job.
Question: What skills do you need for this job
Answer (Example): I think you need to be sensitive to people's feelings. If you're dealing with their sick or injured pets, you need to be honest but also appreciate how they might be feeling.
Question: Where do you come from
Answer (Detail): I come from Mashad in Iran. It's well known as a religious centre and is really crowded most of the year.
Question: Do you often go out to restaurants
Answer (Speculate): Unfortunately, since I had my baby, no. If I had the chance I'd really like to eat out more often, especially in Chinese or Italian restaurants.

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 4
Sample Part One Questions

Do you have a large family or a small family?

Can you tell me something about them?

How much time do you manage to spend with members of your family?

What sorts of things do you like to do together?

Did/Do you get on well with your family [Why?]

What kind of accommodation do you live in Whatsit like Have you always lived there What are the main advantages of this accommodation What changes would you like to make to improve it Would it be easy for you to move to another accommodation Do many people in your country live in such accommodation

Which part of town do you live in Whatsit like What kind of shops are therein your neighbourhood Do you get along well with your neighbours Whats difficult about living there
Education (students)

What do you study What is special about this subject Is there anything you find difficult about it Where do you study What’s your university/college like
Education (graduates)

Do you have higher education What have you studied at university What did you like about your studies Was there anything you found difficult

What’s your job Is it a common job in your country What are your working hours like Do you get a lot of vacation and off time Are you thinking of changing your job

Master IELTS Speaking
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Cold weather

Have you ever been in very cold weather [When?]

How often is the weather cold where you come from?

Are some parts of your country colder than others Which parts?]

Would you prefer to live in a hot place or a cold place [Why?]

What kinds of things make you laugh Do you like making other people laugh [Why/Why not Do you think it’s important for people to laugh *Why/Why not+ Is laughing the same as feeling happy, do you think [Why/Why not
Keeping in contact with people

How do you usually contact your friends [Why?]

Do you prefer to contact different people indifferent ways [Why?]

Do you find it easy to keep in contact with friends and family [Why/Why not?]

In your country, did people in the past keep in contact in the same ways as they do today
[Why/Why not?]
Daily Routine

What would you like to change in your daily routine?

Are all your days the same?

Tell me about your typical weekday and your typical weekend.

What is the balance of work/study and free time in your normal day?

What would you suggest a visitor should see and do in your country?

Are there any traditional arts or music you would recommend?

Tell me about the kind of foreign visitors or tourists who go to your country.

In what ways has tourism changed your country?

Tell me about the most important festival in your country.

What special food and activities are connected with this festival?

What do you most enjoy about it?

Do you think festivals are important fora country [Why?]

Do you enjoy dancing [Why/Why not?]

Has anyone ever taught you to dance [Why/Why not?]

Tell me about any traditional dancing in your country.

Do you think that traditional dancing will be popular in the future [Why/Why not?]

Master IELTS Speaking
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Musical instruments

Which instrument do you like listening to most [Why?]

Have you ever learned to play a musical instrument Which one?]

Do you think children should learn to play a musical instrument at school [Why/Why not?]

How easy would it be to learn to play an instrument without a teacher [Why?]
Traffic where you live

How do most people travel to work where you live?

What traffic problems are therein your area [Why?]

How do traffic problems affect you?

How would you reduce the traffic problems in your area?
Your friends

Do you prefer to have one particular friend or a group of friends [Why?]

Are your friends mostly your age or different ages [Why?]

What do you like doing most with your friend/s?

The last time you saw your friends, what did you do together?

What makes a friend into a good friend?

Do you think it’s important to keep in contact with friends you knew as a child *Why/Why not?+
Food and cooking

What kinds of food do you like to eat?

What kind of new food would you like to try [Why?]

Do you like cooking [Why/Why not What was the last meal you cooked?

Do you prefer home-cooked food or food from restaurants Why

Do you have any hobbies or interests What are they?]

How did you become interested in (whatever hobby/interest the candidate mentions)?

What is thereto do in your free time in (candidate’s hometown/village)?

How do you usually spend your holidays?

Is there anywhere you would particularly like to visit [Why?]
Your favourite place

What place do you most like to visit?

How often do you visit this place Why do you like it so much?

Is it popular with many other people?

Has it changed very much since you first went there In what way?]
Your country

Which part of your country do most people live in?

Tell me about the main industries there.

How easy is it to travel around your country?

Has your country changed much since you were a child?

Master IELTS Speaking
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What’s your favourite colour *Why?+

Do you like the same colours now as you did when you were younger [Why/Why not?]

What can you learn about a person from the colours they like?

Do any colours have a special meaning in your culture?

Do you prefer relaxing at home or going out in the evening [Why?]

When you go out for an evening, what do you like to do?

How popular is this with other people in your country?

Is there any kind of entertainment you do not like [Why/Why not?]

How important are clothes and fashion to you [Why/Why not?]

What kind of clothes do you dislike [Why?]

How different are the clothes you wear now from those you wore 10 years ago?

What do you think the clothes we wear say about us?

Do you eat fruits How often do you eat fruits Where do you buy your fruits from Do you think it’s important for people to eat fruits *Why/Why not

Do you like reading books What kind of books do you like to read Why Where do you like to read Why Do others in your family read books too Do you usually buy your books from a special place Where
Telephone calls

How often are you on the phone Do you like calling friends or family more often Why Did you call your friends a lot when you were a child Do you think children should have to pay their own telephone bills [Why/Why not
Technology at home/office

How often do you use electric appliances at home/office? How do you think they help you with your chores Are there any other advantages Are there any drawbacks to using these appliances Do you think people should use electric appliances more often or less often than they do now
[Why/Why not

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 8
Part 2 - Individual long turn
During Part 2, you’ll be given a topic on a task card which you will NOT be able to change. You’ll be given about one minute to prepare. Then you’ll be required to speak for about two minutes on the topic, by yourself. During this time, the Examiner won’t interrupt you and won’t ask you any questions. Use the time to plan what you’re going to say A lot of candidates don’t plan what they’re going to say. You won't impress the Examiner if you start speaking immediately without planning, whatever your level of English. Always make a brief written plan, as this will help to keep you on the subject. By following the plan, you won't wander away from the points you’re being asked about. The point is, if your talk isn't organised, you’ll lose marks. Remember, you’re being tested on your fluency and coherence. Coherence means that you must follow a logical and clear argument when you speak.
Don't worry if you have to makeup what you are going to say. You’re not been tested on the factual content of what you say, but more on how you say it in English. Keep to the point, and make what you say relevant. Being relevant is just as important as being fluent. In fact, you won't be able to say more than about 200 to 250 words in the two minutes you have available. So, never worry that you won't be able to fill the time Two minutes will go really quickly if you have a plan. Also, don’t worry if you don’t get around to covering all the details mentioned in the task card. In other words, if your speech is cut short by the examiner at the end of the two minutes when you are still talking about, say, the third point on the card and have not yet addressed the last question, you would not be penalised for this. The prompts on the task card are to give you ideas to help you sustain the long turn. You are assessed on the sample of language you give rather than on whether you use all the prompts. The task card usually asks you to describe something and then give reasons for your choice. So, for each point, write only one or two words for each prompt. In total, you should only write about 20 words in your plan. During your planning, try the following Write notes and don't write whole sentences. Write the points in a list and in order. Make a gap between, or draw a line between, words relating to description and explanation. Use nouns, verbs, adverbs and adjectives for your notes.

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 9 As you speak, look at the list that you’ve made so that you can organise your answer. This will ensure that you answer all parts of the task. Think about connecting words and phrases that will guide you as you speak. However, don't try to write these down in the notes you won't have enough time. Try to practise your organisation as much as you can before taking the test. Practise making notes and then using them to help you speak. Learn how to build what you say, around your brief notes.
Don't try to learn set phrases before taking the test, as this will just sound false. But, do learn words and phrases that will prompt and guide you when planning your talk. One good way to practise is to record yourself. By making a plan, and then recording yourself for two minutes, you can see how much you need to write down to fill two minutes. Remember, only use headings in your planning notes. Don't try to write full sentences you simply won't have the time.
Here’s a list of prompt words that you can use to help you prepare Introductory phrases - when you start your talk
 I’m going to talk about
 I’d like to talk about
I want to talk about
 What I'm going to talk about is
 I'm going to describe Developing phrases - when you want to expand your argument
 First of all
 Secondly
 Additionally
 Another thing
 Another reason why
 What’s more Background phrases - when you want to add some detail
 It's near
 It happened
 It took place
 It’s been going on for/since…
 At that time

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 10 Impression phrases - when you want to say something that made an impression on you
 … impressed me
 … motivated me
 … moved me
 … disturbed me
 … touched me deeply
 … had an effect on me
 … affected me
 ... influenced me. Things you like phrases - when you want to describe or talk about things you like
 I like most of all
 I enjoy
 I love doing.
 I’m a big/great fan of
 I’m really keen on
 I’m so much into
 … really appeals tome because You can also use synonyms of words which appear on the task card given to you by the Examiner. For example, if you seethe word benefits, think of synonyms such as payback, profit, advantages, positive aspects and soon. By using synonyms in this way, you’ll show the Examiner that you’re fluent in your use of English and that you’re capable of using extra words. Try to prepare your own examples of synonyms for common words. A good method of doing this is making a list of common words and then, using a word processing package on a PC, making an equivalent list of synonyms.

Master IELTS Speaking
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Sample Topic One
Useful Vocabulary
Useful vocabulary and expressions turning point crucial (adj) decisive (adj) important (adj) graduation (n) marriage (n) marry (v) getting married divorce (n) divorce (v) birth (n) promotion (n) death (n) die (v) give up (n) I guess my second year at high school was a crucial year for me.
1999 was a turning point in my life.
2001 marked the beginning of my professional career. I was hired by a large company. I was accepted in university fora course in metallurgy. I got married in the summer and I moved to Tehran with my wife in September. I was promoted to sales manager in late November that year. In May, my first child was born and we named her Anahita.
2008 was a great year for me because I gave up smoking and started anew job. My father-in-law passed away in the winter and left us a sizable fortune My father was diagnosed with cancer and we had to move into my parents house to look after him. I think the events of this year made me stronger emotionally. At the end of that year, I was on the road to success in my career. The financial accomplishments I had in 1998 helped me develop a better life for my family.

Talk about an important year in your life.
You should say how old you were what important things you remember from that year where these things happened and say why you think that year was important.
Exam Remedy Preparing Notes
In the second section you will have one minute to prepare. Use this time to prepare notes to support yourself during the talk. These notes must be very brief and only contain the main points of your answer. You can use bullet lists to organise your ideas


1. Driving certificate-Eslami Institute
2. Started university-Birjand

1. Could drive
2. University is important Met my closest friend there started to live independently
Note: Avoid writing full sentences in your notes. Write keywords or phrases only.

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 12
Sample Topic Two
Useful Vocabulary
ancient (adj) historical (adj) prehistoric (adj) antique (adj) palace (n) castle (n) fort (n) amazing (adj) breathtaking (adj) impressive (adj) tomb (n) burial place ruins (n) statue (n) inscription (n) monument (n) west/east/south/north of Iran western/eastern/southern/northern parts of Iran It is located in the western province of Ilam. It is situated 20 kilometres to the west of Mashad, a major city in the northeast of Iran. It is in Naghshe Jahan square in the city of Isfahan. Its historical value is undeniable.
Pasargad is definitely one of the most interesting historical sites in the region. Persepolis is a symbol of Iranian historical and cultural heritage. These inscriptions are remnants of the ancient Maad civilisation.
Describe an interesting historic place.
You should say what it is where it is located what you can see there now and explain why this place is interesting

Part 3 (Discussion) Questions
How do people in your country feel about protecting historic buildings Do you think an area can benefit from having an interesting historic place locally In what way What do you think will happen to historic places or buildings in the future Why How were you taught history when you were at school Are there other ways people can learn about history, apart from at school How Do you think history will still be a school subject in the future Why
Sample Answer Notes

Burial place of King Cyrus km from Shiraz, S-Iran

1. Cyrus’s tomb
2. Castle remains

1. Symbol of Iranian heritage
2. Great king, yet very simple tomb

Master IELTS Speaking
Ebrahim Tahasoni Page 13
Sample Topic Three
Useful Vocabulary
visit (v) located (pp) situated (pp) famous (adj) climate (n) weather (n) cuisine (n) countryside (n) downtown (n) suburb (n) public transportation Shiraz is located in south-central Iran, about 920 kilometres south of Tehran. I went there last summer to visit my uncle. My trip to Tehran was of business nature. I went thereon business. Isfahan is famous for Zayanderood, a beautiful river that runs through the city. Shiraz is host to millions of visitors and tourists every year. There are many museums to visit. The people are very hospitable and friendly. The restaurants are fantastic and the local cuisine is excellent. What interested me most about this city was that it was very clean and orderly despite all the traffic. I guess what I liked most about Tabriz was the weather. Getting around was quite easy. The city had a fantastic countryside with a river and many farms.

Describe a city you have visited which has impressed you.
You should say where it is located why you visited it what is thereto see and what you liked about it.

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