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April 29, 2011


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Hi Simon,

I am wondering if the IELTS examiners remove points over spelling mistakes in Writing, Reading, and listening tests.

I bought your eBook to support your work, Keep it up.


Describe an important conversation you had.
Two years ago , there was a dispute with our next door in the area which I used to live. Therefore I had to be in the council to discuss the matter. It was stressful moments because I was interviewed by professional people in the council and I have to support my statements with evidences.. it was an informative conversation because I learnt basic principles about the law . however, I was disappointed because the council took a serious decision against my neighbour . My next door family were evicted from the area, anti social behaviour of their households was approved legally and their staying in the area is harmful to the community at that area

What are the differences between men's and women's conversations?
What do you think are the characteristics of a good speaker?
What are the differences between men's and women's conversations?
I think it depends on which circumstances they are . But generally speaking men are more serious than women in their topics because they choose to speak about currently going on issues in life such as politics, transport system and sports. That does not mean women are not in keen on discussing certain vital topics , but most women are likely interested in chatting with fashion , luxurious houses and classical cars .For example, keep up John’s ,persuading her husband to buy certain device her next door has by keeping on discussing the advantages of that particular device which is essential to be bought , not to mention the long discussion with her partner about the disadvantages the family might face in the future ,if they don’t buy it. So men are more realistic than women in their conservations.

note:pleases do not offend me if you think i was a bit bias.

What do you think are the characteristics of a good speaker?
Good speaker should have a good background about the subject which he wants to talk about. Personality of the speaker is important factor in attracting people to attend his talk . . His topics in his talk should be according to the level of the education of his audience, for example , it is illogical to use sophicated language in a talk given to the public in social area. .one more thing, although good speaker should dress properly, that does not mean to wear very expensive suit and shirt. Reasonable and clean clothes give the speaker more respect from the audience.

Hello Simon,
Its it okay if I add some politics talk and I want to talk about the conversation with an activist which influenced me alot. Please help me. Thank you.

dear Simon

how many time did you see/ read / listen example of recording /video/ paper of speaking and writing band 9 from official IELTS resources during your trainig/ retraining time for 2 years ?

Hi Joseph,

Yes, spelling can affect your score in all parts of the test.

Thanks for your support!


Great ideas Sulaiman.


Hi Jams,

Yes, you can talk about political issues - your conversation with an activist would be a good topic (I've deleted the issue you mentioned so that it doesn't cause debate here on the site, but it would be fine to discuss it in the test).


Hi Horeboi,

I can't remember, maybe 10 times.

Hi simon

I wonder if saying hmmm for once or maybe twice just to think about the answer will cost me to lose marks. Also making grammatical mistakes in speaking is a big problem to me but I tend to realize them after less than a second. Do you think I should correct myself or just forget about it and continue speaking?

and how about eye contact is it really crucial in the speaking test?

You've been very helpful. THANK YOU SO MUCH.

Hi Arwa,

It's completely normal to say hmmm or errr, so don't worry too much about it. It's only a problem if you hesitate for long periods of time.

Correcting yourself is a good skill, so try to do it. It's only a problem if you correct yourself too often - then it starts to affect fluency.

It's normal to lose eye contact when you are nervous, so don't worry too much. It won't affect your score.

Thank you Simon for clearing my doubt. Sorry for specifying some names. No intention of any offense.

Hi Simon!

Your website really helped me with speaking topics!! THANH YOU VERY MUCH!!!!!

I passed IELTS 2 weeks ago.And I got my results only this morning.My score is 6.5 where listening,speaking,writing are 6.5 and reading is 7. Is this score good enough for prestige universities in America or European countries?

P.S. I'm just 15 years old. Next year at the age of 16 I'll graduate from high school.

No problem Jams.


Hi Diana,

Well done! Those are excellent scores. They would be good enough for many courses at top universities (some courses require a 7, but 6.5 is often good enough).

At your age you have plenty of time to improve your score if you want to!!

Best of luck!

Hi Simon!
Last week,I took the IELTS test and then in the speaking part i was asked the questions of number by examiner!I think it's more difficult than other questions.

Could you give me some examples about number or how to answer those questions.


Hi Jesse,

Can you remember what the questions were exactly?

Hi Simon
I can't remember questions in detail, perhaps do you know what's meaningful number in your country ? which number do you like ? number or name which one is easy to remember?

Thank you!

Hi Jesse,

These are part 1 questions, so just give short, easy answers. For example:

1. The number 13 is supposed to be an unlucky number in my country.
2. I like the number ... because I was born on that day and I always think it's my lucky number.

Hope this helps

An important conversation

i had a really important conversation with my best friend relating to take a serious decision in my life.before i talking to her actually i was staddling the fence.that conversation we had over 2 to 3 hours because i could not concentrated my mind .my boy friend and me have been known each other for 4 years.but at last i realised he has cheated on me. at the beggining i felt that i am in the heaven . my words are failure to express about our feelings on real love.i believed that Romeo and Juliet are far below our relationship.when time passing he stood me up all the time and he didnot drop me a line. so many times i thought to break up with him to never make up again.he went back on his promises. actually my friend tried to reassure me by giving sound advices for me. she told me if your life give you a lament try to make lemonade and try to see the bright side .when he left me my heart went blue. i believe it would take lot of nerve to return to my previous situation of my life.at last i decided to get over with him . now i feel it was the one of important conversation i had ever in my life

Hi Deepika,

Again, great ideas, but you just need to check the accuracy (you make some grammar and vocabulary mistakes). Try to find a teacher who can help.

my question is about speaking.
in speaking test what should i say if i asked to speak about "a practical skill that i learnt"

my question is about speaking.
in speaking test what should i say if i asked to speak about "a practical skill that i learnt"

Hi Satwant,

Click on the link below to see a lesson about that.


Hi everyone,
Here is my important conversation with my parents.

1. What is it about?
I had an important conversation with my parents few days ago that I wanted to study abroad.
2. What happened?
Because my parents are quiet old, so it seemed that my idea was unthinkable to them. Therefore, at first they thought I was kidding but still were patient to listen to me about my plan. I said to them that it was my dream and there were a lot of advantages of studying abroad that could provide me greater opportunities. Foreign universities had better facilities, courses and teachers who were experts in my field. As a result, I could expand my knowledge and qualifications that would open the door to better job opportunities in the future. Period of studying abroad also could broaden my horizons as I would live and work with many other students in various nationalities. Thus, I would be exposed many different cultures, customs and points of view which helped me grown up and more responsible for my lives. However, those reasons were not enough to persuade my parents. They told me about the backward sides of studying abroad that I would not able to overcome such as homesickness, different cultures and language, security, weathers and money which was the most important concern. Indeed, I knew that they would mention about those consequences, but I prepared to face it. Although we had a long discussion, after all I could urge them that at least let me try to gain my goal. Fortunately, they agreed.
3. So now I am preparing for IETLS to obtain a scholarship of a university in Finland in the next year. Hopefully, with my effort and ambitious, I can persuade my parents and my dream will come true.
Please give my comments. Everyone is welcome!!

Nice argument............go a head

hi , simon
i have problem with writing task can you give some tips for this.

this was on 25th of october 2015(today)
i did not do well ..
the examiner kept asking questions and i got nervous because i thought that i did not do well with the previous questions

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