The following are some IELTS tips shared by one of our Outstanding BlueSkyians – Dr. Win Min Htun (IELTS band score 7.5 achiever, with individual scores being 7 and above).
First and foremost, I would like to admit that being systematic and organized are definitely not my strongest traits. So, how did a person like that achieve the desired IELTS score on the first attempt?
The answer is simple and yet quite effective.
It is exposure.
I may not have well organized notes, study materials or plans, but I do have exposure to English in every possible way almost every day. I read a lot of stuff in English on a daily basis. It does not have to be something related to the IELTS lessons. I just read whatever I find interesting, from tech reviews, international news to gossip columns and tabloids. If you read enough, information extracted from passages becomes your second nature and that is what matters most in the reading part of the IELTS.
What do I do when I don’t want to read? I watch or listen. I often spent several hours a day on YouTube watching videos and listening to podcasts. I can even do that when I am doing something else, I just put on my earphones, and I can finish doing some other chores while I am listening to them. It is a really effective and convenient way to get used to listening. Among those videos, my favorites are presidential speeches and TED talks. They are very powerful; they do not usually contain slangs and are beautifully written or spoken so that I can learn not only new phrases but also new vocabularies which I cannot use by myself normally. However, in those videos, please be warned that they speak in a way so that the audience can follow easily. In the IELTS listening, people can and will talk faster and in various accents. Therefore, I still had to listen to IELTS study materials in order to get used to those challenges.
If you have read up to this point, you might have figured out that my exposure is actually a disguise. Can I bear reading IELTS study materials all day long? Of course not. No one would find fancy reading those notes for more than a few hours. That’s why I learn English in a way that would not bore me easily. Find whatever you find interesting in English. They can be anything, cosmetic reviews, tech reviews, celebrities’ gossips, or international news. Read it, watch it, or listen to it, whatever interests you. Disguise your study so that it is relaxing for you, and you are learning at the same time.
Speaking and writing in the IELTS requires, at least, in my opinion, an entirely different learning approach. We can speak and write as much as we want but we will only progress so far as we may not be able to mark or evaluate ourselves in the absence of a certified teacher. That is where capable and caring teachers like Teacher Wendy come in. It is a good idea to find a partner to speak with. The most important things are to speak naturally and not to make mistakes. And a little bit of facial expression will do the job.
If you are aiming for a score of 7 or more in writing, I think we cannot be very conservative with our writing styles. The task response needs to be on point, arguments must be valid, and we are to write several complex sentences. That is why I listen to presidential speeches and TED talks, the sentences and choice of words in those talks are very beautiful. They will definitely come in handy. Last but not least, mentorship from Teacher Wendy had a critical impact on the outcome of my IELTS journey. To put it simply, she nurtures us.
To sum up, all we need is exposure to English in our daily life. It will definitely make things easier. We can be doing whatever we want, (like reading something, watching a short video), and we can still be learning English, laying the foundation for our IELTS journey.
Our congratulations, Dr Win Min Htun, on achieving the targeted score on your first try!
And our big appreciation to you for choosing us to be part of your IELTS journey and taking the time to share the tips!
Blue Sky International Learning Academy
No. E-2, Unit 1 & 5, Dhamma Darna Street,
Nat Chaung Ward, Tamwe Township, Yangon.
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) over 14 years.
Blue Sky International is founded by Ms Hla Win May Oo @ Tr. 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.
Learn more about our other Outstanding BlueSkyians in the following links: