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Practising your speaking skills

Advice on how to practise and improve your speaking skills during and after the course.
© British Council

You’ve now reached the end of Week One of the course and have learned a lot about what to expect in your Speaking test and how the examiner will assess your fluency and coherence. Before we move on to Week 2, let’s take a look at some other ways you can practise during and after this course.

Speaking is an area that you can practise anytime, anywhere using the tools and techniques we discuss during the course. For example, each week, as in Step 1.11, we’ll look at how recording yourself and listening back can help you improve in lots of areas. When you apply the assessment criteria we look at throughout the course, like Fluency and Coherence, and compare your recordings to model answers, then you can start to see where you are doing well and where you need to improve.

But of course, the best way to practise speaking is by having real conversations with other people where you can genuinely communicate with each other on a range of topics. One way to do this is by joining a class with others, either face-to face in your country or online, like our English Online IELTS Coach. Not only do you have an opportunity to speak directly with other people on the same IELTS journey as you, but you also get useful feedback and advice from the teacher.

Sometimes it’s not possible to join either face-to-face or online classes, but don’t worry – that doesn’t mean you can’t still practise with other people. As you work through this course, you can practise the different tasks with friends, family, or colleagues at home, socially or online through Skype, WhatsApp, Messenger, Zoom etc. You don’t even both need to be preparing for IELTS – practising speaking together in English will be useful for anyone who wants to improve. Watch Neeraj’s review of the week for more tips.

This is an additional video, hosted on YouTube.

  • Think about how you plan to practise speaking during and after this course, and tell us about it in comments.
  • Read more about our online IELTS Coach here.

Next week, we’ll look at Part 2 of the Speaking test – giving a longer talk, and you’ll have a chance to record yourself. We’ll discuss how to plan a successful talk, and look at the examiner’s assessment criteria for grammar and pronunciation. If you want to get started straight away, go to the To do list for Week 2.

© British Council
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Understanding IELTS: Speaking

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