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IELTS grammar: Simple past tense and its exercise.

Please ask questions in comment section. You can contact us at eltecielts@gmail.com

Simple past tense is used in two situations:

1. To talk about single past completed actions.

2. To refer to a series of actions in sequence/ order of occurance.

For instance: The burgler broke into the house, opened the safe, stole jewellery and left.

Note parallelism (will publish an article on this soon) around ‘and’: all are in sequence and in past tense – broke, opened, stole, left.

Here’s a simple exercise to test your skills.

Fill in the blanks with appropriate words given below. You can give answers in comments section:

Allow; be; be; be; invent; increase; lay; mean; own; receive; replace; ride; take; walk.

(Note: the verb ‘be’ refers to was/were.)

The pace of change in the world of technology is amazing. It ……1……. (not) long ago that the postal service ……..2…… our only way to communicate over any distance. It ……..3……. days and sometimes weeks to receive letters from  within the same country. As a result the news in the letters ……….4……. already out of date when people ……….5……… them. In the workplace this ……6…….. that business was mostly conducted locally, over relatively short distances.

When Alexander Graham Bell ……..7…… the telephone in 1876, it ………8…… the foundation for the communication system we have today. The telephpne ………9……. two people to communicate instantly across a great distance. Eventually computers ……..10……. typewriter and dramatically …….11…….. the speed of our daily work life. Nowadays the internet is an essential part of every business.

However, it is not just communications that have changed. Only 50 years ago people ………12…….. (not) a car. People …..13…….. to work or ………14…… bicycle. Change in travel as well as the increased speed of communications have led to the global business world that we have today.

Please mention the answers in comment sections and our team will check and make corrections.

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IELTS reading: Gene Editing Technology

To understand the technique of skimming visit our blog post on reading strategy here.

The passage below is derived from the Wall Street Journal, April 29th, 2017. The questions are designed by the ELTEC team. You have 20 minutes to complete the 13 questions.

Why Gene Editing Technology has Scientists Excited?

  1. A new technology for “editing” defective genes has raised hopes for a future generation of medicines treating intractable diseases like cancer, cystic fibrosis and sickle-cell anaemia. Such drugs could home in on a specific gene causing a disease, then snip it out and, if necessary, replace it with a healthy segment of DNA.
  2. Drugs of this type wouldn’t hit the mass market for years, if ever; pharmaceutical firms are only now exploring how to make drugs using gene editing technology called Crispr-Cas9. But the approach offers tremendous potential for developing new treatments for diseases caused by a mutated gene.
  3. “What if you could go right to the root cause of that disease and repair the broken gene? That’s what people are excited about” says Katrine Bosley, Chief Executive of privately held Editas Medicine. Its projects include developing a gene-editing drug treating one type of Leber congenital amaurosis, a rare disease that causes blindness in children.
  4. Crispr-Cas9 isn’t the only technology capable of editing genes, but researchers consider it easier to use than other methods, says Dana Carroll, a professor of Biochemistry at University of Utah Schoold of Medicine, who helped pioneer another gene editing technology called Zinc Finger Nucleases.
  5. Among other efforts underway using Crispr-Cas9 technology, privately held Intellia Therapeutics, in partnership with Novartis AG, is probing how to create a gene editing drug that could harness the immune system to fight certain blood cancers. The two companies are also exploring the treatment of hereditary blood disorders such as sickle-cell anaemia.
  6. Intellia CEO Nessan Birmingham says drugs based on Crispr-Cas9 promise to complement the pills and biotech drugs currently available, targetting diseases that aren’t very well treated by existing therapies. “This is a new tool to target and treat disease,” he says.
  7. Industry and academic laboratories are also using the technology for more immediate effect: to genetically engineer mice and other animals so that they have human like diseases that researchers can then readily study.
  8. Using Crispr-Cas9 to make animal models “is much quicker, easier than other methods that have been available,” says Tim Harris, senior vice president of precision medicine Biogen Inc. The company is using the technology to study Amayotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, or Lou Gehrig’s disease, which has lacked good animal models.
  9. Crispr-Cas9 attracted notoriety in April when Chinese scientists reported trying to repair the genes that cause beta thalassemia in 86 human embryos obtained from a fertilization clinic. The work raised fears that gene editing could be used to tweak babies in many ways before they were born.
  10. Drugs companies say such ethical fears do not apply to their research using Crispr-Cas9 which they are conducting in non-reproductive cells, not embryos.

Question: Match the paragraphs with suitable sentences.

1. Ethical and moral issues related to Gene Editing Technology.

2. A targeted approach to cure diseases.

3. Developing animal models

4. Crispr-Cas9 technology is more convenient than other gene editing technologies.

Question: Yes/No/Not Given

5. Gene Editing Technology will be a permanent solution to all diseases.

6. Medicines for curing diseases by replacing genes will hit the market by 2020.

7. According to Katrine Bosley, the excitement about gene editing is due to the fact that it will replace all possibly mutated genes.

8. Caspr-Cas9 is the only way to replace broken genes.

9. Crispr-Cas9 technology will eliminate the need for drugs being used today for treating hereditary blood disorders such as Sickle Cell Anaemia.

10. Gene Editing Technology is being used to create organisms that have diseases similar to those of human beings.

Answer in not more than 2 words:

Gene editing technology is more successful in treating diseases like cancer than traditional medicine because it …..11……… the mutated gene. However, this technology is still under development. It is being used to …….12……… animal models. However, it is much easier to create animal models using one particular gene editing technology called …….13……. than others.

Please mention your answers in the comments section.

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IELTS reading: skimming the paragraph for heading – Part 1.

IELTS exam gives only 20 minutes to complete a passage and its related questions (usually 13). If you fix 1 minute 10 seconds to complete a question, that leaves only 4 minutes 50 seconds.

If a passage has 10 paragraphs, you have only 29 seconds to skim each paragraph. Can you read the following passage in 29 seconds? Use a stop clock to measure time.

Some art takes its subject from literature. It is far more unusual for literature to take its inspiration from art. But that is exactly what 15 writers – many of them prize winners or best sellers – have done for the new exhibition. Each has focused on one of the 15 paintings in Linden Fredrick’s show at New York’s forum gallery, opening May 11th. Visitors to “Linden Fredrick: Night Stories” can read the short stories – which average a few thousand words on electronic tablets as they view the new paintings. Many of the pictures are moody, photorealistic images of downtrodden New England towns at dusk.

(Source: Wall Street Journal; April 29, 2017)

Here’s the thing. You do not have to read everything in 29 seconds. It’s simply not possible. You just have to focus on 2 things:

1. The overall theme in the paragraph (that is, a suitable heading). This is usually found in first two lines of the passage.

2. Terms and names (of people and organizations).

Let me present the given paragraph again.

Some art takes its subject from literature. It is far more unusual for literature to take its inspiration from art. But that is exactly what 15 writers – many of them prize winners or best sellers – have done for the new exhibition. Each has focused on one of the 15 paintings in Linden Fredrick’s show at New York’s forum gallery, opening May 11th. Visitors to “Linden Fredrick: Night Stories” can read the short stories – which average a few thousand words on electronic tablets as they view the new paintings. Many of the pictures are moody, photorealistic images of downtrodden New England towns at dusk.

Theme: Art inspires literature

Terms and Names: Use short forms to save time. LF, NY, Stories, New Eng town, etc.

Let me present more paragraph and then ask questions.

  1. The exhibition, seven years in making, features works by Pulitzer Prize winners Anthony Doerr (“All the light we can not see”), Richard Russo (“Empire Falls”), Elizabeth Strout (“Olive Kitteridge”). Other contributors include Dennis Lehane (“Mystic River”), Ann Patchett (“Bel Canto”), and the screen writer Lawrence Kasden (“The Big Chill” and several “Star Wars” films). 
  2. “The mandate for the show is not necessarily to write about the picture but just to be inspired by the picture,” said Mr. Fredrick, 64, who splits time between Maine cities of Portland and Belfast. “I see it as a kind of triggar.” A book of the stories and paintings, on sale at the gallery, will be widely available this fall.
  3. The project took off after Mr. Fredrick told his friend Mr. Russo about the idea at dinner one night. Mr. Russo started reaching out to his writer friends about the venture and word spread to other authors. 
  4. Mr. Fredrick and Mr. Russo, both upstate New York natives knew of each other long before they met in Maine about eight years ago. “I kept hearing stories about this painter up in Belfast. People would say ‘he paints like you write,'” Mr. Russo said. “Linden’s paintings, beside the fact that there are never any people in them, they’re all narrative. You’ve got that beautiful wonderful image. It’s easy to come up with a story once you get that image in your brain.”

Question 1: Who among the following says that purpose of the exhibition is to use art to inspire literature:

A. Lawrence Kasden

B. Anthony Doerr

C. Dennis Lehane

D. Linden Fredrick

Now, while reading really fast, we have to skip quotes. The idea is to cature theme and names/terms only. You can either try to find the statement in the paragraph OR read the names in the answer and try to find out “who said what”.

If we move backward – from names to statements – we know that the answer is D.

Question 2: D Give suitable headings to each paragraph.

Paragraph 1

Paragraph 2

Paragraph 3

Paragraph 4

Options

A. Mr. Fredrick’s and Mr. Russo’s conversation.

B. Begining of the idea to use art to inspire literature.

C. Various authors inspired from art.

D. The purpose of the exhibition.

E. One artist talking about another artist.

F. Book of stories and paintings.

You can give an answer to this question in the comments section.

In this blog post, I have explained the basics of reading exercise. From next post onwards, you will face only questions. Please keep referring to this post.

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Essay task 2: Help developing countries in advise and skills rather than financial aid

You can submit your answers at eltecielts@gmail.com.

Nowadays most developing countries receive financial aid from international organizations. However many people believe that help in the form of advice and skills is more important and useful than money. Discuss both views and give your opinion.

(250 words, 40 minutes)

Strategy:

Introduction: Do not repeat the language of the question in your answer. Use synonyms and rephrasing to restructure the sentence. Let me give you an example of my introduction.

Example: Developing a nation involves working in several areas ranging from infrastructure to human resource and from energy to clean water. Though finance plays a crucial role in implementing these projects, right skill set and advice play an equally important role.

OK. Now you have an idea. Please attempt your own introduction. Your introduction ………

Now that we are done with the introduction, let us move to the body of the essay.

The body of this essay should consist of reasons and examples of each of the views. Why? Coz the question states “Discuss both views“.

Now, state at least 2 reasons with appropriate examples for each of the views. Let me try supporting both views for the same reason.

Reason 1: In infrastructure projects financing is required to purchase raw material, pay salaries to staff and pay contractors and sub-contractors. However, equally important is the availability of vendors providing raw material, skilled engineers, and capable contractors.

Example 1: Several clean energy power plants have been established in isolated villages of India using funds provided by the World Bank. In one such program in Punjab, my home state, the World Bank granted aid of more than USD 5 million to set up a 5 MW solar power plant. However, these projects have been executed by internationally and domestically trained workforce that understands such projects inside out. Without trained workforce to execute and monitor the project, the aid of World Bank would have been useless.

Reason 2: Let me give you a hint. Governments run various welfare programs to support poor citizens. For instance hospitals.

Example 2. An example of such welfare programs.

Finally, time to conclude the essay. Write a powerful conclusion by using elements of FUTURE and SUMMARY. Write a conclusion that presents a bright future using both approaches to development.

Example: To conclude, developing countries need global finance as well as right skill set and advice from international experts to execute projects aimed at the welfare of its citizens. Clearly, the cooperation of various countries, international institutions, global corporations and non-government organizations is required to improve the position of billions of people living in developing countries.

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IELTS grammar: If – Then construction

Please ask questions in comment section. You can contact us at eltecielts@gmail.com

“If India can somehow capture this territory, then India-Afghanistan border will become a ground reality” stated a recent opinion article in The Tribune, an English daily in India.

So, where do we use If-Then construction in the English language? How do we use it? Most importantly, will it fetch us marks in IELTS exam?

If-then clause is a conditional construction that refers to hypothetical situations and their consequences. That is “if a certain X is true, then Y will be the consequence”.

If + Present Tense, Then + Will

If you rest, then you will feel better.

If you rest, you will feel better.

Usually ‘then’ is omitted and it is presumed to exist in the sentence but not written.

If you work hard, you will score 7 bands in IELTS eventually.

If + Past Tense, Then + Would/Should/Could/Might

If I were rich, I would pay you a million dollars.

If our company made a profit last year, I might let everyone take a Vegas trip.

If + Past Perfect, Then + Would Have

If I had worked hard, I would have scored 7 bands.

If I had completed the report, I would have gone home by now.

Here’s a small exercise to test your if-then clause usage.

1. If I had cleaned the house, I ………. (go) to watch the movie.

2. If I get a headache, I ……… (take) rest.

3. If I were sick, I ………. (take) medicine.

Let us switch to the most important question. Will such construction fetch us marks in IELTS exam? Well, as Jessica Beck points out in her blog www.ielts-blog.com, IELTS examiners pay close attention to sentence structure. Not only that, they expect you to keep changing sentence structures. So, if-then construction will fetch you, bands.

I’ll soon publish an article on different sentence structures that you can use in IELTS exam and their usage.

To learn if-then clause in greater detail visit grammarly.com here. Alternately, you can contact us at eltecielts@gmail.com

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IELTS Speaking task: nice place for relaxation

You can email your answers at eltecielts@gmail.com .

Talk about a nice place for relaxation that you know and use. Please say

1. Where and what is this place?

2. Why do you go there?

3. Who do you go there with?

Please note: This answer is for demonstration only. Please use this as a hint to create your own answer.

Introduction: After working for more than 10 hours a day as an IELTS trainer, I need a place to relax and rejuvenate.

Body: At my home, I have developed a small study room exactly for this purpose. Since reading books relaxes me, I use this room for reading and relaxing for at least 1 hour every weekday and several hours every weekend. Usually, my younger brother, who is also an avid reader of books, accompanies me to this room. We spend valuable time discussing and evaluating books on various topics ranging from politics to economics.

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Corrections to an IELTS Essay. How we work to improve your IELTS writing.


Here’s how our team works in improving your IELTS writing.


Many criminals after serving their time behind bars usually commit crimes again. Why do you think this is so? Give causes and solutions to it.
(250 words, 40 minutes)

It is generally believed that culprits who do crimes, tend to repeat them crimes after completing their punishment period in the jail. Hence, In this essay, will discuss in detail about the causes and solutions to of this problem.

Culprits are defined as those who are guilty of a crime. Can’t write “culprits who do crimes.

Who/what is “them”. A pronoun must have a noun it refers to. “Them” in your case can refer to both culprits and crimes.

“The” is not needed before ‘jail’. Learn its usage.

There are some criminals who suffer from psychological illnesses. They are more prone to do illegal activities, then than people with a healthy and sound mind. (Sorry buddy, can’t compare “criminals” to “people”. Better compare them to “other criminals”.) Can’t end a sentence with that. Link that with the essay topic “crimes after being released”.

Rephrase: Some criminals, who suffer from psychological illness, are more prone to commit illegal activities than others. Since most of these criminals are released from jails without any psychiatric treatment, they tend to commit crimes after they have been released.

However, apart from psychological illnesses, Another major factor of repeating the crime is due to the lack of adequate punishment given awarded to inhabitants of the lock-up the criminals. Punishment for a crime should be so strong that it acts as a deterrent to any future crime.

For example, if a prisoner commits a crime, he/she must be dealt with a heavy fine and punishment. as deserved by that particular criminal.

Here I have cut many words to follow the principle of “BREVITY” that is central to correct English writing. Why write 4 words when you can do with 2? Without losing the sense, of course.

According to me, solution to this issue is vital to prevent crimes from the society.

Several solutions come to my mind to prevent any such criminal activity. Firstly, prisoners must be regularly checked by consultant psychiatrists and psychologists to identify any psychological mental health issues. If someone is suffering from psychiatric disorder, suitable medication or psychological and counseling should be offered to that particular criminal. Secondly, there must be some healthy and constructive activities in the jail to divert the minds of the criminals from negativity to positivity.  like cricket,football,volley ball and tennis. Sports activities such as cricket, football, and tennis, in turn, reduce the stress and remove certain criminal thoughts from their brain. Thirdly, inmates should be offered vocational training or skill in collaboration with modern industry to enhance opportunities so that they chances of finding a suitable job after their tenure of imprisonment has finished.

Please note: ‘like’ or ‘such as’ are used with exact words to which they refer. You used like with criminals. So, cricket, football, volleyball, and tennis refer to “criminals” and not “games”. On the other hand, I have used these with “sports”. Let me know if you need more explanation.

To conclude, if crime rate has to be reduced in order to prevent prisoners from relapsing into criminal activities, there should be strict and deterrents rules when it comes to punishment and , compulsory psychological counselling of the inmates, mandatory participation in sports and exercise should be compulsory for everyone in the prison.there should be, and vocational and marketable training for every prisoner to secure a respectable job post imprisonment period. who is good at something like sports or in academic activities.

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IELTS Speaking task: Moment that made you laugh

​You can send your answers to eltecielts@gmail.com.

 

Talk about a moment that made you laugh a lot and you can not forget it. Please say

1. What happened

2. When and where did it take place

3. Why was it so funny

Please note: This answer is for demonstration only. Please use this as a hint to create your own answer.

There are many complex and perfect answers available on the internet. However, it is difficult for students to answer in such perfect form. I recommend simple 7 band answers. For instance:

Introduction: Well, I have a huge circle of friends and a large joint family. In such a scenario there are numerous occasions to share laughter.

Body: I vividly remember the occasion of my cousin brother’s marriage. At the ribbon cutting ceremony, the bride’s friends negotiate with the groom a monetary price for allowing the groom to cut the ribbon and enter the marriage hall. So on one side were girls negotiating for the bride and on other side were us, groom’s friends and family. It was an occasion to banter about and tease each other over price. For instance, while the girls were demanding $ 5000, we were not ready to pay more than $ 1. Basically, it was fun and we all laughed a lot.

Followup questions

1. Let us talk about comedy. Who is funnier: men or women?

Well, in my family and friends, everyone is funny irrespective of gender.

2. Why do you think so?

We all usually love being happy and keeping others happy. For instance, my mom and dad keep cracking jokes on each other as well as on other family members.

3. Can you name a few famous comedians in your country?

Certainly. The most famous comedian in India was Mehmood. These days Kapil Sharma is a well-known comedian.

4. What is better – reading a funny story or watching a comedy movie? Why?

In my case, comedy movies are the best. After a long day and sometimes stressful day at the office, all I ask for is a cup of coffee and an hour of effortless laughter. Comedy movies, unlike books, are effortless.

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IELTS Essay Task 2: Schools should select students ……..

You can submit your written essays at eltecielts@gmail.com.

Some people think that schools should select students according to their academic abilities, while others believe that it is better to have students with different abilities studying together. Discuss both views and state your opinion.
(250 words, 40 minutes)

Strategy:

Introduction: Do not repeat the language of the question in your answer. Use synonyms and rephrasing to restructure the sentence.

Example: Modern education system follows two approaches to teach students. On one hand are schools where students are selected on the basis of their academic scores. On the other hand are those where pupils of varying abilities study together in same class. Though most schools prefer the former system of education over the latter, I believe both systems have advantages as well as disadvantages.

Write your introduction ……….

After introduction let me present 2 reasons along with examples for each of the views.

Reasons supporting former view:

Reason 1: Selecting and sorting students on the basis of competitive scores helps institutions meet separate needs of each student group. For instance, while an academically intelligent group may be ready to compete internationally for NASA competition, an academically poor group may need support for learning basic stuff.

Reason 2.

Reasons and examples supporting latter view:

Reason 1.

Reason 2.

Use conclusion to support the view you personally prefer.

In conclusion, both views have strong advantages and equally strong disadvantages. However, in my view …………….

PS: We do not provide complete IELTS answers but structure and strategy to write effective essays. To learn more about IELTS and ELTEC visit our Facebook page.

IELTS Speaking task: Gift you gave someone

​You can send your answers to eltecielts@gmail.com.

 

Talk about a gift that you gave to someone and the occasion. Please say

What was the gift and the occasion?

Why did you choose this gift?

Where did you buy it?

How did the person feel after receiving it?

Answering a speaking cue card question involves combining various elements. The student has one minute to think and write down points.

Sample answer for demonstration only. Please make your own answer.

Introduction: Gifts are a token of love and affection. Though I’ve given numerous gifts to various people in my life, I vividly remember a special gift I gave to my best friend Prakash.

Body: It was Prakash’s birthday in 2016. I knew that he always wanted an electric guitar since he was a member of a locally famous rock band. However, he could not afford the costly guitar. So I purchased it on his 20th birthday from a famous music store in Connaught Place, New Delhi. Prakash’s happiness was evident not only from a huge smile on his face but also from tears in his eyes. He hugs me tight and said two priceless words “Thank You”.

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IELTS Essay task 2: Development of technology causes traditional ways of life to die out. Agree or disagree

Traditional Skills IELTS PTE.jpg

Image Courtesy: Pxhere.

When a country develops its technology, the traditional skills and way of life die out. It is pointless to keep them alive. To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement?

(250 words, 40 minutes)

Strategy:

Introduction: Do not repeat the language of the question in your answer. Use synonyms and rephrasing to restructure the sentence.

Example: Rapid advancements in technology in the 21st century have adversely impacted the traditional skills and way of life in every country. While some people believe that these skills and lifestyles should be allowed to die, I think our society needs to keep them alive.

Now, let me present Three reasons, with examples, why we should NOT let traditional skills and way of life die.

Reason 1: Traditional skills often complement modern ways of living influenced by modern technology. (About 15 words)

Example 1: Traditional tasty Punjabi food is served at modern restaurants such as Haveli not only in North India but also in Canada and United States. The food is cooked by chefs trained in traditional dishes. However, it is cooked in modern instruments. (About 40 words)

Reason 2. (About 15 words)

Example 2. (About 40 words)

Reason 3. (About 15 words)

Example 3. (About 40 words)

Finally, it’s time to write down the conclusion. A crucial element of the conclusion is FUTURE. Write a conclusion that creates a bright future for traditional skills and ways of life.

To conclude, traditional lifestyles are being integrated into a modern lifestyle. Advancements in technology will certainly replace certain skills and lifestyles but will complement others and rapidly expand still others.

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IELTS Essay task 2: Criminals commit crimes once their sentence is over. Why?

criminals IELTS PTE

Image Courtesy: Pixabay.

Many criminals after serving their time behind bars usually commit crimes again. Why do you think this is so? Give causes and solutions to it.
(250 words, 40 minutes)

Strategy:

Introduction: Do not repeat the language of the question in your answer. Use synonyms and rephrasing to restructure the sentence.

Example: Many criminals after completing their term of imprisonment often resort to illegal activities. This can be due to several reasons and corrective measures need to be taken to solve this issue.

As you can see, I have not used the words given in the essay topic. Now, please take 7 minutes to write an introduction in your own words.

Introduction in your words ……… (about 30 to 40 words)

Our next step is to think about reasons for this phenomenon. Please enlist at least 3 reasons. Let me help you with first one.

1. Prisoners are not taught marketable skills that they can use to support themselves after they have been released. (About 20 to 30 words)

2. Reason 2 (About 20 to 30 words)

3. Reason 3 (About 20 to 30 words)

Now that you have 3 reasons, it is time to give at least one example of each reason. Remember, the example must include data and facts. That is, it should be concrete and not absurd. Moreover, the examples may not be real or actual. You are free to create them.

1. Home Ministry of India has recently conducted survey of prisoners released from Tihar jail during past 2 years. The results prove that a whopping 78 percent of these prisoners got involved in criminal activities because they did not possess any skill to secure job. (About 40 words)

2. Example 2 (About 40 words)

3. Example 3 (About 40 words)

Let us switch to solutions to the problem. Please mention 3 solutions – one for each reason.

1. The government, in collaboration with various multinational and domestic companies, should launch programs to train jail inmates in various employable skills. (About 20 words)

2. Solution 2 (About 20 words)

3. Solution 3 (About 20 words)

The solutions should serve as conclusion to your essay.

Total length = 270 to 320 words

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IELTS Speaking Task: Proud of a family member

proud of a family member IELTS speaking

Describe a situation when you were proud of your family member. Please say

1. Who is he/she?

2. What did he/she do?

3. How did you feel about it? Why?

Please note: This answer is for demonstration only. Please use this as a hint to create your own answer.

The acts of selflessness have always been close to my heart. I vividly remember such incident in the year 2015 when our neighbors met with a fatal accident. (Introductory statement)

All those involved in the accident were severely injured and were hospitalized. One of the patients needed O+ blood, which is rarely available, and my father, who has the same blood type, voluntarily donated it. What made that act special was that he was about 500 kilometers away from the hospital. He immediately booked a flight and headed back home to save a life. (What he did.)

That was an act of greatness. Saving someone’s life is the greatest act of selflessness. I felt proud of him. (Feeling)

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IELTS Speaking Task April 2017: piece of equipment

piece of equipment IELTS speaking.jpg

Describe a piece of equipment that has been in your home for years and you still use it. Please say

1. What is it?

2. How often do you use it?

3. Do your family members use this equipment too?

Answering an IELTS speaking cue card question involves combining various elements. The student has one minute to think and write down the points.

Sample answer for demonstration only. Please make your own answer.

There are various pieces of equipment ranging from a hair dryer to an air conditioner that my family uses to serve its daily needs. (Introductory sentence)

However, for the past five years, we’ve been using a LG refrigerator. (What is it?)

This refrigerator is used daily for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and snacks. It is used to preserve perishable commodities such as milk, cream, vegetables, dough, and fruits. (How often used?)

Since I’m not a good cook, I use it only for getting milk to make some tea or coffee. My mother, on the other hand, uses it for storing various food items that are used to cook family meals. (Do family members use?)

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Rephrasing Sentences in IELTS and PTE – Part 1

 

Rephrasing is a powerful tool to improve your written and spoken English and score high in IELTS/ PTE exam. Years of our experience in IELTS coaching has enabled us to offer umpteen examples of mistakes students make and how to correct them using the technique of rephrasing.

Here is a sentence one of our students wrote on online shopping.

1. With the advancement of technology, people want to stay at home and enjoy online shopping.

The problem with this sentence is that the student has used very simple words. IELTS wants you to make things a bit complex. Not too complex, of course. Let me rephrase.

The advancement of technology has made shopping a convenient experience.

The use of wordsconvenientandexperiencehas made the sentence look sharper and well structured.

Now let us look at another sentence on online shopping.

2. People think that shops provide them fewer number of products which they don’t like.

The student has not only written a very simple sentence but also failed to express his ideas clearly. The student wants to compare traditional shops with online platforms but failed to put his ideas in right words. IELTS and PTE examiners do not like such construction.

A better construction could be:

The variety of products at traditional shops and stores is very limited as compared to online platforms.

The use of words liketraditional,”limited,”as compared to,andplatforms,adds value to our sentence.

Similarly, in an essay on pollution, one of our students wrote a very simple sentence:

3. There is a crisis of pollution, and it would be foolish to ignore it.

We restructured it as:

Extreme pollution and its related problems cannot be ignored.

No need to usethere isanda crisis of pollution.” These can be replaced withextreme pollution.”Related problems,adds value to the sentence.

Let us take a closer look at another sentence on pollution. The student has clearly failed at following the principles of brevity.

4. These days, air pollution affects the environment most and this is mainly due to vehicles and industries.

A simple restructuring can make this sentence powerful.

Vehicular and industrial pollution is adversely affecting our environment.

The usage of wordsvehicularandindustrialcut a lot of useless fat from the sentence. Wordsadversely affecting,add value to the sentence.

So, by practicing rephrasing and restructuring you can convert simple but long sentences to powerful yet precise ones. Keep in touch with ELTEC to learn more.

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