We would like to introduce you to one of our Outstanding BlueSkyians – Nang War War Aung who has recently achieved an IELTS overall score of 8. War War joined one of our IELTS classes back in the late 2000s when she completed her matriculation exam. We are so happy to see she has grown up wiser over the years. Big congratulations, dear War War, on achieving an impressive score of 8!
The following are the messages from War War.
Hi fellow English learners and BlueSkyians!
I am Wah Wah, who recently took the computer-based academic IELTS at the British Council, Singapore about 3 weeks ago (April 2022) and achieved an overall IELTS band score of 8. Previously, I took the paper-based IELTS in Yangon in 2009, and my score at that time was 7. I hope that I could share some useful information on how I prepared for the test and my 2 different test-taking experiences for future candidates.
I took the IELTS this time as my previous result expired after 2 years, and it is needed for application to a Master’s course overseas as well as my registration as a healthcare professional in the UK. In fact, I personally believe that IELTS opens more doors for our educational pathways as well as our future plans.
Before taking the test, I would suggest looking into the purpose of taking the test, such as applying for an overseas university, searching for a job abroad or even for immigration requirements. Generally, for academic purposes, a minimum band score of 7.0 with no faction less than 6.5 is required. For certain jobs, such as registering as speech therapists in the UK, higher scores are required. In addition, your choice of either academic or general training IELTS test matters as some institutions insist on getting academic IELTS scores.
For myself, I took the computer-based test because I am more comfortable typing on the computer rather than writing things down on paper. It also offers neater essay writing in my own opinion. However, if you are more accustomed to writing on paper, please go for it.
After you have decided on what type of test you would go for, I suggest the candidates to register early as you can spare more valuable time practising the materials provided upon successful registration. I find the reading tips received from the videos very informative.
However, for writing and speaking practices, I personally believe it is tougher to do them on your own because you need someone proficient in English to actually check your work. Although you can use online tools such as Grammarly to check your work, they still can’t compete with an English language teacher.
Actual Day’s Tips
Stay calm and collected. Get well-hydrated and avoid heavy meals before the listening, reading and writing sessions. In the British Council, Singapore, flavoured beverages/opaque water bottles and wristwatches are prohibited in the exam hall. I remember it was not that strict back home in Myanmar.
If you miss something during the listening session, don’t panic and move on to the next part. You might even get some clues from the subsequent questions later.
For the reading session, the skimming method I adopted was in the British Council’s video suggestion. It is, firstly, to read the introduction paragraph, read the first line of subsequent paragraphs and then, the conclusion. After that, I would look at the questions, and then go back to the relevant paragraph(s) for the answers.
For the writing session, I prepared a list of keywords that are often used in the part 1 and run through them before entering the exam hall.
Valuable Lessons I learned from Teacher Hla Win May Oo
I find the listening sessions I did with Tr May Oo extremely useful despite having them many years back. I received tips on how to pick up information from the conversations, proper writing formats and be mindful of the distractors during the listening sessions. Moreover, I believe that practising the speaking test with her also boosted my confidence during the actual test. My only regret about the latest test is that I did not have enough time to practice my English speaking with someone experienced like Tr May Oo. Since the conversation during the speaking test is usually about something generic, I couldn’t find a chance to use more advanced terms. Thus, if I have to take the test again in the future, I would definitely consult with Tr May Oo to aim for higher scores in the writing and speaking sections.
Again, big congratulations on being able to hit a very good score in the IELTS! We truly appreciate for your time and kindness to share the tips with others. We wish you all the best in your future endeavors.
Blue Sky international Learning Academy
232, Orchid Condo, Level 8, Unit 82, Level 19, Unit 198,
Ahlone Street, Ahlone Township, Yangon, Myanmar 11121
09 254 278 273
09 787 682 164
09 886 272 475
09 504 3135
We provide quality English language courses for learners of age 5 to 55. We have proven records of success in coaching for the IELTS, TKT and other Cambridge Exam Preparation (Starters, Movers, Flyers, KET, PET, FCE, CAE, CPE) over 15 years.
Blue Sky International is founded by Ms Hla Win May Oo @ Teacher Wendy who is currently in pursuit of her doctorate through the University of Otago, New Zealand. Being a graduate of BEd, MPA, and MA in Teaching of English as a Foreign Language, she is a well-trained and well-experienced ESL Teacher, Teacher Trainer, Success Coach & Mentor, and Business & Education Consultant. She has also worked as a Social Enterprise Consultant and “Education for Entrepreneurs” Trainer with the British Council, Myanmar, and a Lecturer for the MBA program at Temasek International College, and a Research Associate with the University of Amsterdam, the Netherlands. She is passionate about teaching, training, researching, consulting and coaching.
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