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  1. 1. How to excel at exams Shaun Wilden January 2010
  2. 2. OXFORD Exam Excellence <ul><li>all-in-one exam preparation course </li></ul><ul><li>for classroom use or self-study </li></ul><ul><li>with preparation, practice and test tasks on </li></ul><ul><li>two levels: B1 and B2 (C.E.F.) </li></ul><ul><li>on exam topics </li></ul><ul><li>in all exam papers: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Reading, Listening, Use of English, Writing and Speaking </li></ul></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Meeting exam expectations <ul><li>coverage of all exam topics </li></ul><ul><li>familiarity with testing tasks featured in the exam </li></ul><ul><li>study strategies, useful tips for exam preparation </li></ul><ul><li>developing problem-solving skills </li></ul><ul><li>building confidence </li></ul><ul><li>providing opportunities to rehearse </li></ul>
  4. 4. How to use the book? <ul><li>Decide what you want to focus on practising: topics, skills or task types? </li></ul><ul><li>Plan your time: time estimates for practice, time suggestions for tasks </li></ul><ul><li>Practise and check your answers </li></ul><ul><li>Complete the exam task (check your answers and mark your score) </li></ul><ul><li>Keep track of your progress </li></ul>
  5. 6. Exam Tip 1: Before you listen / read for the first time, make sure you read the instructions and questions carefully. Look at the statements below and answer this question. How many legs does a dog have? A dog has two legs and two tails.   A dog has three legs   A dog has four legs and a tail   A dog has four legs.
  6. 7. Paying attention to detail L’Australie –c’est chic: One of the most surprising business success stories in Paris these days is the Australian Bookshop. Since the shop opened two years ago. French interest in Australian literature has grown. Located in the heart of the city’s literary district…. Exam Excellence page 30 Choose ‘T’ or ‘S’ Read this passage and count how many times that letter occurs:
  7. 8. L’Aus t ralie –c’es t chic: One of t he mos t surprising business success s t ories in Paris t hese days is t he Aus t ralian Bookshop. Since t he shop opened t wo years ago. French in t eres t in Aus t ralian li t era t ure has grown. Loca t ed in t he hear t of t he ci t y’s li t erary dis t ric t …. L’Au s tralie –c’e s t chic: One of the most s urpri s ing bu s ine ss s ucce ss s torie s in Pari s the s e day s i s the Au s tralian Book s hop. S ince the s hop opened two year s ago. French intere s t in Au s tralian literature ha s grown. Located in the heart of the city’ s literary di s trict…. 23 26 Exam Excellence page 30
  8. 9. Across Europe On 1 May 1997, 27-year-old Londoner Andrew Terrill began a 7,000-mile walk from the south of Italy to the northernmost tip of Norway. The aim of the walk was to raise £100,000 for homeless people in England’s capital. Here he reports on his experiences at the start of his adventures. Exam Tip 2: Before you mark choice, read the text again quickly to check it’s really the best answer. There is only one correct answer here. Exam Excellence page 114
  9. 10. Across Europe On 1 May 1997, 27-year-old Londoner Andrew Terrill began a 7,000-mile walk from the south of Italy to the northernmost tip of Norway. The aim of the walk was to raise £100,000 for homeless people in England’s capital. Here he reports on his experiences at the start of his adventures. Andrew Terrill started the expedition with <ul><li>with enough food for the whole trip. </li></ul><ul><li>in London, the capital of England. </li></ul><ul><li>on a Mediterranean beach. </li></ul><ul><li>well aware of what lay ahead </li></ul>
  10. 11. Exam Tip 3: We often use skimming in everyday life, for example when we skim through a newspaper and article to check, we only focus on key words and phrases to get a general idea. Practice this as often as possible. Pedal Power TV TO UPROOT THE COUCH POTATO
  11. 12. Exam Tip 4: Sentences in a text are connected by cross-referencing Exam Excellence page 93
  12. 13. Exam Excellence page 108
  13. 14. Exam Excellence page 108
  14. 15. Don’t worry if there are some words in a cloze text you don’t understand, the gaps are usually grammar words (prepositions modal verbs, pronouns etc, it is not a test of vocabulary) Exam Tip 5: Write down ten prepositions (you can write the same one more than once if you want)
  15. 16. Exam Excellence page 116
  16. 17. Global Warming Hits UK Tea Sales Global warming has been blamed for the hole layer, higher pollution and melting ice caps – now it is being blamed in the ozone for declining sales of the British National Beverage. In 2002, the average Brit drank of tea. This may sound a 1,000 cups – or 2.2 kilograms 2.6 kilograms in 1997. Apart from the fact that temperatures are lot but sales were down from rising globally, more and more tea drinkers are turning to coffee when they fancy a hot beverage.
  17. 19. Exam Tip 6: Remember that what you hear and what you read often use different words and phrases with the same meanings
  18. 21. Exam Excellence page 119
  19. 22. Exam tip 7: Dictation is a useful tool Unit 12. Science and technology. Recording 25. Alexander Graham Bell As a young boy, the telephone inventor Alexander Graham Bell liked mathematics, and science, but he was easily bored at school. He was much more interested in experimenting and discovering things on his own. One of his first inventions was a simple machine imitating the human voice. Alexander built it with his brother Melville when they were still children. As a teenager, Bell wanted to become an actor or a sailor. Instead, he worked, like his father, as a speech therapist, and taught deaf people. Bell’s studies of the human ear and voice vibrations, and years of experiments resulted in 1876 in the first telephone conversation between Bell and his assistant Tomas Watson. Alexander Bell’s lifelong interest in nature and science also led to a variety of other invention ideas, including experiments with flight and designing aeroplanes.
  20. 23. <ul><li>Family life </li></ul><ul><li>People and society </li></ul><ul><li>Shops and services </li></ul><ul><li>Home </li></ul><ul><li>Nature </li></ul><ul><li>School </li></ul><ul><li>Work </li></ul><ul><li>Health </li></ul><ul><li>Sport </li></ul><ul><li>Free time and culture </li></ul><ul><li>Travel </li></ul><ul><li>Science and technology </li></ul>Exam topics
  21. 25. adolescence genealogist paunch thigh accessories referendum courgette delicatessen
  22. 26. Exam Tip 8 -9 : If you don’t know the exact word for something, try to use words to explain what you mean. Talking about what you don’t know, guessing is all part of communication and therefore ok in an exam In the speaking exam it’s very important to keep talking, remember that you can express opinions that are not your own
  23. 27. Blue-collar worker Go on strike Low fat food Boarding card Exam Excellence Picture bank
  24. 28. Exam tip 10: Always remember the ‘why’ and ‘because’
  25. 29. Want more tips? 108 tips in the book (though I may have miscounted  ) Plus: Study tips Language tips
  26. 30. Achieve Excellence in your Exam with Oxford ! Thank you for listening slides and references on my blog shaunwilden.com Email: shaunwilden@gmail.com