Recent posts in English Language


Planning to go abroad for further studies or migrating to a country let's say Australia or Canada?

There is a requirement for the most important document which is to pass the IELTS exam.

IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System. This test helps to judge ones proficiency for the English language-for non native English language speakers who want to work or study in that country where English is a language of communication. There are four modules which is listening, reading, writing and speaking and it has 2 types, first is academic IELTS and the other is general training IELTS.

Academic IELTS is for students who wants to study in abroad while General IELTS is for the people who wants to migrate for job or for permanent basis.
  The speaking and listening tests are the same for both the models but the reading and writing patterns vary.
 Listed below are my observations on how to prepare for the IELTS exam.
Listening: It is obvious for non native speakers to face difficulty in understanding what they speak initially but after constant practice one can overcome and start understanding various accent and pronunciation. To understand pronunciation or accent, listen or watch English news channels like BBC, CNN, English movies, serials, interviews etc with subtitles first and later without subtitles. 
 Reading: There are a few strategies one needs to follow to attempt questions like true/false/not given, yes/ no/ not given, list of headings and summary writing etc. For example, if the statement gives the fact which is mentioned in the text then it is True statement and if it contradicts the statement then the answer is false and if the given statement information is not in the text then the option to be chosen is not given.  For yes, no, not given question type it shows the writers opinion. For list of headings options,read the passage quickly with fair understanding and then check for the options.
  For remaining question types like short answer question, fill in the blanks, summary completion look for the key word and then scan the paragraph then skim it for detailed understanding.  Time management is crucial for reading paper and if one finds it difficult then reading English news paper, various magazines and books help improving speed.
Writing: This paper is the most challenging for most of the applicants but this can be easily overcome by constant practice and one needs to evaluate this paper by someone who has good command of English language. Range of vocabulary with appropriate use, synonyms, grammar, and idea interpretation are the vital parts in this paper.  Simple method is to understand the question and then paraphrase (write in your words) the question with your opinion in the introduction. Then for the remaining paragraphs- write the statement and give reasons with examples and then write the precise conclusion. Refer online band 9 essays from mentor site because I have followed those and found it useful. 
Speaking: In this paper one needs to understand the section wise answer criteria.
Section 1: There are question & answer sessions where one needs to answer in one sentence. for example, where are you from? one can answer I am from Delhi;a beautiful place in northern India. 
Section 2: You will get a cue card where you will have to prepare answer in 1 minute and answer that question for about 4 to 6 minutes covering all the given points mentioned in the cue card. Here one needs to understand a wide range of vocabulary, synonyms, grammar, pronunciation and the flow of speech with minimum pauses plays an important role in this paper. 
Section 3: One has to Converse with the examiner but answer should be lengthy as compared to section 1 and those questions will be carried forward by section 2. Here question types are for general views and answer should be the same.

  •  To improve speaking one needs to speak with friends, colleagues on a daily basis in English.
  • To achieve the good band score or to pass satisfactory, descent preparation in listening, reading, writing and speaking is important by using various tools such as  watching the interviews, sitcoms, reading news, reading books  .

 Practice lots of tests with timed version and refer IELTS CAMBRIDGE SERIES 1-14 books. This is my conclusion on how to prepare and approach the IELTS EXAM.

IELTS scores are reported as band scores on a scale from 1 (the lowest) to 9 (the highest) for each section of the test – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. We also get an overall band score - average of four individual test section band scores. An overall IELTS band score of 6.5 with atleast a 6.0 in each section is required while applying to majority of the foreign universities. 

$\textbf{Overall Band Score}$

$$\begin{array}{|c|c|c|}\hline \textbf{IELTS score}&\textbf{Skill Level}\\\hline 9&\text{Expert}\\\hline  8&\text{Very Good}\\\hline  7&\text{Good}\\\hline 6&\text{Competent}\\\hline5&\text{Modest}\\\hline\end{array}$$

The tables below indicate the average number of marks required to achieve a particular band score in Listening, Academic Reading and General Training Reading.


$$\begin{array}{|c|c|c|}\hline \textbf{Band score}&\textbf{Raw score out of 40}\\\hline 5&16\\\hline  6&23\\\hline  7&30\\\hline 8&35\\\hline\end{array}$$

$\textbf{Academic Reading}$

$$\begin{array}{|c|c|c|}\hline \textbf{Band score}&\textbf{Raw score out of 40}\\\hline 5&15\\\hline  6&23\\\hline  7&30\\\hline 8&35\\\hline\end{array}$$

$\textbf{General Training Reading}$

$$\begin{array}{|c|c|c|}\hline \textbf{Band score}&\textbf{Raw score out of 40}\\\hline 4&15\\\hline  5&23\\\hline  6&30\\\hline 7&34\\\hline 8&38\\\hline\end{array}$$

Krithiga2101 posted in English Language Mar 5, 2020 edited Dec 11, 2020 by anonymous
268 points

Like Text Completion questions, Sentence Equivalence questions test the ability to reach a conclusion about how a passage should be completed on the basis of partial information, but to a greater extent they focus on the meaning of the completed whole. Sentence Equivalence questions consist of a single sentence with just one blank, and they ask you to find two choices that lead to a complete, coherent sentence while producing sentences that mean the same thing.

Question Structure

Consists of:

a single sentence

one blank

six answer choices

Requires you to select two of the answer choices; no credit for partially correct answers.

Tips for Answering

Do not simply look among the answer choices for two words that mean the same thing. This can be misleading for two reasons. First, the answer choices may contain pairs of words that mean the same thing but do not fit coherently into the sentence. Second, the pair of words that do constitute the correct answer may not mean exactly the same thing, since all that matters is that the resultant sentences mean the same thing.

Read the sentence to get an overall sense of it.

Identify words or phrases that seem particularly significant, either because they emphasize the structure of the sentence (words like although or moreover) or because they are central to understanding what the sentence is about.

Try to fill in the blank with a word that seems appropriate to you and then see if two similar words are offered among the answer choices. If you find some word that is similar to what you are expecting but cannot find a second one, do not become fixated on your interpretation; instead, see whether there are other words among the answer choices that can be used to fill the blank coherently.

When you have selected your pair of answer choices, check to make sure that each one produces a sentence that is logically, grammatically and stylistically coherent, and that the two sentences mean the same thing. See belowthe link:


posted in English Language Aug 4, 2016

Skilled readers do not simply absorb the information presented on the page; instead, they maintain a constant attitude of interpretation and evaluation, reasoning from what they have read so far to create a picture of the whole and revising that picture as they go. Text Completion questions test this ability by omitting crucial words from short passages and asking the test taker to use the remaining information in the passage as a basis for selecting words or short phrases to fill the blanks and create a coherent, meaningful whole.

These questions consist of a short passage that contains one, two, or three blanks; each blank represents a word or short phrase that is missing from the passage. Students must select exactly one correct answer choice from among the three to five provided for each blank. A student does not receive credit for a Text Completion question unless he or she selects the correct answer choice for every blank in the passage.

Students must use contextual clues within the passage to determine which answer choice contains the word or words that most logically complete each blank. This question category tests the ability to recognize an author’s overall meaning or tone from the syntax of the written material. Success on these questions requires an understanding of the subtle shades of meaning that differentiate similar words.

Question Structure

Passage composed of one to five sentences

One to three blanks

Three answer choices per blank (five answer choices in the case of a single blank)

The answer choices for different blanks function independently; i.e., selecting one answer choice for one blank does not affect what answer choices you can select for another blank

Single correct answer, consisting of one choice for each blank; no credit for partially correct answers

Tips for Answering

Do not merely try to consider each possible combination of answers; doing so will take too long and is open to error. Instead, try to analyze the passage in the following way:

Read through the passage to get an overall sense of it.

Identify words or phrases that seem particularly significant, either because they emphasize the structure of the passage (words like although or moreover) or because they are central to understanding what the passage is about.

Try to fill in the blanks with words or phrases that seem to complete the sentence, then see if similar words are offered among the answer choices.

Do not assume that the first blank is the one that should be filled first; perhaps one of the other blanks is easier to fill first. Select your choice for that blank, and then see whether you can complete another blank. If none of the choices for the other blank seem to make sense, go back and reconsider your first selection.

When you have made your selection for each blank, check to make sure the passage is logically, grammatically and stylistically coherent.


posted in English Language Aug 3, 2016
Reading Comprehension questions are designed to test a wide range of abilities that are required in order to read and understand the kinds of prose commonly encountered in graduate school. Those abilities include:

understanding the meaning of individual words and sentences

understanding the meaning of paragraphs and larger bodies of text

distinguishing between minor and major points

summarizing a passage

drawing conclusions from the information provided

reasoning from incomplete data to infer missing information

understanding the structure of a text in terms of how the parts relate to one another

identifying the author's assumptions and perspective

analyzing a text and reaching conclusions about it

identifying strengths and weaknesses of a position

developing and considering alternative explanations

As this list implies, reading and understanding a piece of text requires far more than a passive understanding of the words and sentences it contains; it requires active engagement with the text, asking questions, formulating and evaluating hypotheses and reflecting on the relationship of the particular text to other texts and information.

Each Reading Comprehension question is based on a passage that may range in length from one paragraph to several paragraphs. The test contains approximately 10 passages, the majority of which are one paragraph in length and only one or two of which are several paragraphs long. Passages are drawn from the physical sciences, biological sciences, social sciences, business, arts and humanities and everyday topics and are based on material found in books and periodicals, both academic and nonacademic.

Typically, about half of the questions on the test will be based on passages, and the number of questions based on a given passage can range from one to six. Questions can cover any of the topics listed above, from the meaning of a particular word to assessing evidence that might support or weaken points made in the passage. Many, but not all, of the questions are standard multiple-choice questions, in which you are required to select a single correct answer; others ask you to select multiple correct answers; and still others ask you to select a sentence from the passage.
posted in English Language Aug 2, 2016
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