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Tuesday, February 28, 2017


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this strategy is definitely helpful. I did it during my exam.

Hi Simon,

It has been about 8 months that I am listening to many English talks, videos, news, etc regularly. and I still have problem getting an IELTS score of 8 or more in Listening. and do not understand the whole talks fully. What a long process is to make the listening skill improved! any other recommendations please?

Thanks to simon for giving valuable suggestion to improve listening section and getting good band score in listening.

Thank you Simon! I have been doing exactly what you have adviced above ^^
Dear Tina,
These methods below work really well on me, because I can understand and hear almost every word in every Ielts recording now. So I want to share it with you.
I used to listen to CNN, It's okay to be smart,... and interpret whatever they said, I mean I tried to figure out every single word they used, but I found I couldn't boost my Ielts score.
Then I stopped listenning to those taps, and stopped interpreting what they said. I listened to Ielts recordings instead. Simply because we are going to take a test with Ielts Listening Recording, so why wont we practice listening to them? There are scores of Ielts listening recordings on The Internet. And I practice listening one or two sections everyday. Below are the benefits:
1. I can get used to a wide variety of accents used in Ielts Listening Test: British, Australian,...
2. I can get used to THE LANGUAGE used in different academic subjects: Art, Environment, Advertising,... ( we find these a lot in SECTION 4 when speakers discuss very academic issues). I am very keen on Biology, that maybe why I was only sensitive, I mean I could only understand topics on genes, animals, plants, clones,... After several weeks practicing this method, I have found it much easier to listen and understand other unfamiliar topics like Marketing, Architecture,... which are usually discussed in Section 4
3. Try to visualize what they say in your mind and hear the words they use at the same time, dont just try to interpret every word speakers use, because I have tried that and I found I focused too much on the words without understanding the main idea of what they had said. A good way to do this is that I usually imagine that I'm in their conversation too, I am standing right by their side, or I am one of the lecturer's audience. I imagine the background, the hall they are in, the gallery they are in with lots of tourists ot students around,...
These methods work very well on me. I hope you can achieve 8 and even above. Good luck for you and for me^^

Thank you Teacher Simon so much!
I used to struggle with the time to read all questions before speakers began, since I applied your methods, I have read all questions in time and felt much more confident before each section begins!

No problem Anh, and thanks for sharing your advice with other students!

Thank you for you advice Simon,
I has helped me make time to read ahead, which I've never been able to do before.

May I ask a question please?

In listening test, is it acceptable if I answer a question "brother in law" (without hyphen), where the answer key says "brother-in-law" (with hyphen), and for proper nouns, if I answer "New Town", where the answer key says "Newtown"?

Many thanks.

Hi Simon.
there is a question which was so confusing for me:
Sport stars are paid too much for what they do?Discuss.
while there are not two opinion,the question asks us to discuss it.
please give us an advice.

Thank you Nam Anh for your useful advice. I will follow your advice and hopefully all IELTS students can get their favourite score.


They don't care about hyphens, so don't worry. Here's my advice about the "Newtown / New Town" issue:




That isn't a real IELTS question - you won't get a question that looks like that. It's best to stick to real / official questions when preparing.

Thanks a lot

Thank you, Simon.

Hello Simon,

if the question says 'no more than two words' and the answer is 'bookshop' can i write book shop ?

Hi Simon,
I have a few doubts pertaining to the listening module of IELTS academic. I would be extremely grateful if you could answer them at your earliest.

1) Can the recording be paused for a few seconds?
2) While listening to the recording, can I rewind it a little?
3) Will there be a particular time clock on the computer that reveals the time left for that particular section?

Thank you.

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