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Aditya Ramchandran's IELTS Experience

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[Aditya Ramchandran' experience]

I'm sharing my IELTS experience.I have also tried to answer the questions put to me to the best of my ability .I hope this helps .

Before I start I'd like to make 3 important points :

  1. Despite what anyone will tell you , the ielts is not an exam to be taken lightly .You need to take it seriously and prepare for it .
  2. .Different people have varying levels of command over English .Therefore the time required for preparation can vary considerably .So don't blindly follow what people say.
  3. Each person is different , and a strategy that works for me need not work for others .

With that out of the way, let me share my experience .

Exam :

I took my ielts for ukvi on the 17th of June this year .Many people have a doubt regarding which exam they need to take.I'd like to say that both ielts ukvi and the regular academic ielts are exactly the same in terms of difficulty.I don't buy rumors that say ukvi is harder .I would suggest that people take the ukvi for the following reasons :

  • You need to take the exam only once(no need to take a separate exam for UK visa .
  • You save money by not applying for 2 exams .

Disadvantages of ukvi are :

  • Held only in a limited number of places with limited slots and dates .You need to book early .
  • you need a valid passport to apply for it .
  • Your results cannot be previewed online and will be delayed by 3 or 4 days .This is for those who want to apply for plab 1 asap.
  • You need to apply for a UK visa within 2 years .

You can book the exam by visiting the ielts for ukvi website. Book the academic ukvi exam .

Place:

I took my exam in Bangalore ,India .I personally don't feel that place of exam affects scores .

Time for preparation :Although English is not my mother tongue , I have conversed in english all my life (including at home ).This really helped me prepare quick for the exam .I studied for about 4 weeks(4 hours a day ).

Materials used :

My main study material was ieltsonlinetests.com .Its an excellent resource for listening and reading , since it has all the cambridge books .However , I would not recommend the sample answers for writing as they are submitted by users and aren't great ..

Ielts Liz was another source that I used , especially for writing .

Emma's videos and ielts Liz videos on YouTube provide step by step guidelines on how to structure essays for both task 1 and 2.

You can also go through the sample essays on road to ielts and the book you receive when you register for the test .

Now to specific areas

Listening :

There are 3 things to do - focus ,focus and more focus .For those 30 minutes , nothing else should be on your mind .Practice this way and you 'll ace listening .I found putting my head down and staring at the questions an effective way to focus .For those of you who find it difficult to pick up accents , watch American sitcoms , BBC and channel 9 for Australian accents .I personally found the Australian accent a bit tough .

Reading :Remember that the questions asked will not have the same words as the passages .Learn synonyms .Use a thesaurus if required .Underline important dates ,names and events and learn to summarize paragraphs by understanding what the main theme is .This will come with practise .

Writing :

This is the part that most people are nervous about .I will be honest -I was too .Practice at least 1 essay a day (either task 1 or 2) and time yourself such that you have 5 minutes remaining for checking because there will be spelling and grammatical errors you would have made.

Get your essays checked by someone proficient in english .You can do this by submitting it on a fb group for ielts or by using a professional correction service (they will charge you a fee).you could even get it checked by your school or college English teacher .

Speaking :This is an area in which it's a little harder to assess yourself .Try conversing in English as much as possible in your daily life .Again , speaking to someone proficient in English will give you feedback on areas where you can improve .There are people you can Skype with on FB ielts groups .

Well this is my 2 cents on the whole process.Hope it helped :)Good luck to everyone.You can do it !

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