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Sunday, July 09, 2017


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Hi simon , I have a question one of my IELTS teacher told me to write reading and listening answers in ALL CAPITALS. Is this right to do???

Hi Simon
Thank you for this motivation posting which contributes to make me to keep going.

I took ielts yesterday where the topic for ielts writing is: Everybody should stay in school until the age of 18. To what extent do you agree/disagree?

After google about this topic, I just realised that it was probably I made the wrong answer.
I responded this questions with : I disagree because leaving school earlier (under 18 yo) has many benefits. Some Students who leave school earlier (under 18 yo)through acceleration programme could survive in university degree and finish their study earlier so that they are be able to earn money faster .........

After searching through google , I found that this question should be responded that everybody who leave school at age under 18 are more likely difficult to getting job....

So, how do you think about this question SImon?. Am I wrong to respons this question like that?

Thank you

Hi Ritika

As far as I am concerned, capital letter really matters on IELTS, for example for name of day, name of Country etc.

However, you are likely to spend much time to write on capital letters to all the answers.

My suggestion is if you find the answers which is dubious whether it should be capitalized or not, then write them on all capital. However,for the answers that are obviously do not need capital letter, so you can write them with small letter.

Thanks, Simon

Yes, I CAN. I do believe that I CAN DO IT even I feel stressful :)


Using all capitals in the listening and readings tests is probably a good idea, because it usually makes your writing clearer and easier to read for the markers. You are unlikely to write many words in the listening and reading tests so it won't really take much more time.

Thanks for your advices

Simon and SJM

Regarding my previous comment, is it okey if I responded where we should not stay in school until 18 if we could pass the school earlier ( age under 18) , whilst the question means we should not leave the school before 18 .

is "school" different with university?

How much score will be lost if we answer the question unexpectedly?



Examiners don't judge your opinion, so it doesn't matter what your opinion is as long as can provide relevant and logical reasons for it.

In your case however, it is possible that examiners don't really understand what you mean by 'acceleration programs'. Also, in most countries you need to complete school (stay until your are 17 or 18) to get direct entry into university, so it might not be logical to say that leaving school early helps you get into university.

'School' in this case means 'high school'. Americans sometimes use 'school' to mean university, but if there is any ambiguity they use 'college' to make it clear.

To be honest, I don't really understand what you are saying, so you might confuse the examiner as well.

Thank you for your quick response. It means alot for me.

Acceleration programme means that when a student has a privilege to pass the high school earlier. For example, In my country , normally, it needs 3 years to pass the high school (after pass junior high school). However, for the students who are smart they have a chance to attend the acceleration programme so that they could pass only in 1 years. As a result, they graduate from high school earlier than others (under 18 yo).

When they enroll university age under 18, it is likely they will graduate earlier and get a job faster.

That what I mean with the acceleration programme.

Is it a big mistake to answer the question like I did?

Thanks SJM


You have misunderstood the question: in English, if you leave school (you do not stay until you are 18), it does not mean that you go to an acceleration program. It usually means that you start working.

Only a very very small percentage of people who leave school early, are 'smart' enough to attend a special program.


Yes, i realized my mistake after googling.
In your view, is it impossible to achieve band score 6 if we are misunderstood the question?

Yes it is.

Dear Simon/SJM,

Is it ok to write below introduction for DIDI's essay topic?

It is true that school education play an important role in everyone's lives. I completely agree that the idea that everybody should attend school and complete their basic education during teenage years.



Unfortunately I can't give feedback in comments on individual writing, but I will say that this is a reasonably good introduction, despite three basic errors.




Finally always check the ending of each verb !

Dear SJM and Ficko,

Thank you very much for your valuable comments.
I found 02 basic errors in my introduction.
01. agree that --> agree with
02. during teenage years --> during the teenage years or during their teenage years

And i suspect that 3rd one may be "everyone's lives".

Can anyone tell me which is correct? "everyone's lives or life".


Dear SJM and Ficko,

Found 3rd one also.

education play --> education plays

Jeff and SJM

1. School education play should be "plays'
2. should attend school should be " should attend a school"


@ Jeff





Thank you very much.
According to google Ngram Viewer majority use "everyone's life" rather than "everyone's lives". Therefor better to use "everyone's life". Isn't it?


"Should attend school" is correct

Hi Simon
Can i play and listen mutiple times in recording during listening test ?Because i want to check if i listen correctly.
Thank you

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