IELTS Speaking Test
The speaking test in IELTS consists of three parts.
Duration 11-14 minutes
One examiner + one candidate
Part 1 (4-5 minutes): The examiner asks a number of questions about familiar topics such as the candidate’s studies/work, hobbies, interests etc. Normally 8-9 questions are asked in this part.
Part 2 (3-4 minutes): The examiner gives you a topic to talk about. The topic is written down and includes some bullet points to guide you. After a minute’s preparation, the candidate speaks for two minutes on the topic provided by the examiner.
Part 3 (5-6 minutes): The examiner and the candidate discuss some general questions based on the theme of the Part 2 topic.
In this post I will focus on Part 2 and Part 3.
Part2 Cue Card
Describe a skill (for example, driving, speed reading etc.) you have learned successfully
You should say:
- what skill you have learned!
- why you learned it!
- who helped you learn it!
and explain what helped you to become good at the skill.
Skills play a defining role in our life. They make us more efficient and productive. Today, I am going to talk about a skill that I learnt successfully.
Two years ago, I learnt how to drive a car. I live in the countryside and my workplace is about 20 km away from my home. When I started working, either my father or my sister used to drop and pick me up at the office every day. But, after a while, this daily duty became an unnecessary burden for them as they have their own jobs. In general, I am a confident person but this dependency on others affected my self-esteem. So, I immediately decided to take driving lessons.
There is a well-known driving school near my home. I contacted the school and took two months’ training. The trainer was very friendly. He always gave clear instructions and prepared me really well for the driving test. Later, I successfully passed the driving test and obtained my driving license.
Driving is a skill which takes a lot of time to master. But, once you overcome the fear of driving on crowded roads, it gives you immense satisfaction and pleasure. The same thing applies to me. To improve my car driving skills, I drove daily to my office and to other nearby locations. I used to make mistakes at the beginning but I always took a note of them and tried not to repeat them.
In short, my commitment, perseverance and dedication helped me become a skilled driver.
Part2 Part 3 Follow-up questions
Skills and everyday life
Q. 1 Can you compare the skills that are important nowadays with the skills that were important 20 or 30 years ago?
Sample answer: Twenty/thirty years ago, traditional skills like weaving, knitting, sewing and earthenware pottery making were an integral part of people’s lives. But, nowadays, computer, management, language, and data analysis skills are given more importance.
Q. 2 What skills are valued most in your country?
Sample answer: My country is a developing nation and there are many sectors such as banking, manufacturing, information technology and tourism etc. In almost every sector, basic computer skills and communication skills are of utmost significance.
Q. 3 What kind of skills might be important in the future?
Sample answer: This is an interesting question. Considering the amount of data generated every day, I think that in the future the demand for research and data analysis skills will rise considerably.
Skills and training
Q. 4 What qualities does a good trainer need to have?
Sample answer: In my opinion, a professional trainer should have a wide range of skills. Firstly, he/she should possess an in-depth knowledge of his field. Secondly, he/she must be friendly, punctual and impartial. Thirdly and most importantly, he/she should lead by example.
Q. 5 Why should companies invest a lot of money in training?
Sample answer: Training programs are vital for the growth of a company. A company with the trained staff is more likely to outperform its competitors. Regular training sessions upgrade the knowledge and skills of employees which in turn leads to higher productivity and profitability. For this reason, many companies spend a major part of their annual budget on different types of trainings.
Q. 6 Do you think schools and universities prepare young people well for the future employment?
Sample answer: Not really. I think that secondary schools and universities in most parts of the world focus too much on conventional academic subjects like mathematics, science and history etc. Professional skills are often neglected. This imbalance between theoretical and practical knowledge has a negative impact on the future job prospects of young people.