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Exam recommendatios

  1. 1. Dos & Don’ts
  2. 2. DOs Read the sources, titles and subtitles of the texts if they are given; they are there to help you. Read through each text before you answer the questions to get an overall impression and understanding of it. This includes the gapped-text task. Remember, the missing word(s) may be part of an idiom, fixed phrase or collocation, so always check the words around the gap carefully. Remember, the missing sentence has to fit the context and the development of the text, so always check that the completed paragraph makes sense in the text as a whole. Read the questions carefully and check each option against the text before rejecting it.
  3. 3. DONTs Dont try to answer any questions without referring carefully to the text. Dont spend too much time on any one part of the paper. Dont assume that you have found the correct answer if the same word appears in the text as well as in an option.
  4. 4. DOs Read the whole question thoroughly and underline important parts. Make a plan for each answer, including ALL points. Write in paragraphs, whenever appropriate. Use a range of vocabulary. Check tense endings, plural forms and word order in sentences. Check irregular past tenses and question formation. Use language that is appropriately formal or informal for the task, depending on the reader and the purpose/type of text. Write clearly, so that the examiner can read your answer.
  5. 5. DONTs Dont misspell key words which appear on the question paper. Dont copy too many words and phrases from the question paper - try to use your own words. Use synonyms. Dont mix formal and informal language. Dont use formal linkers in an informal letter. Dont worry if you run slightly over the word limit.
  6. 6. DOs Listen to and read the instructions throughout the test. Make sure you understand what you are listening for and what you have to do. Use the preparation time before each recording is played to read through the question and think about the context. Use the information on the page to help you follow the text. Look carefully at what is printed before and after the gap and think about the kind of information that you are listening for. Write your answers as clearly as possible. Check that your idea of what the correct answer is when you first hear the recording is confirmed when you hear it for the second time. Answer all the questions - even if youre not sure. Make sure you have marked the answers accurately in the answer sheet.
  7. 7. DONTs Dont complicate your answer by writing extra, irrelevant information. Dont spend too much time on a question you are having difficulty with as you may miss the next question. Dont rush to choose an answer based on an isolated word or phrase - concentrate on the overall meaning.
  8. 8. DOs. Practise speaking English as much as possible in groups and in pairs, both inside and outside the classroom. Read the instructions carefully and respond appropriately. (If the instructions don’t say “you greet a friend on the street”, then there’s no need to say “Hi, how’s it going?” Speak clearly, so that both the interlocutor and assessor can hear you. Use all the opportunities youre given in the test to speak, and extend your responses whenever possible. Ask for clarification of a question if youre not sure. Be prepared to initiate discussion as well as responding to what your partner says. Make full use of the time so that the examiner who is listening hears plenty of your English.
  9. 9. DONTs Dont prepare long answers in advance, or learn speeches by heart. Dont try to dominate your partner or interrupt them abruptly during the Speaking test. Dont leave long or frequent pauses. Dont worry about being interrupted by the examiner. This shows you have spoken enough. The tests have to keep to the time limit for administrative reasons. Don’t panic when the examiner writes something down; s/he may be writing the good things you’re doing in order to remember you.
  10. 10.  Breathe in and relax Remind yourself that you can do it!