How to Improve Spoken English for the IELTS Exam

how to improve spoken english
how to improve spoken English for IELTS Exam

You have a dream to pursue a career in a foreign country or work in a company abroad & that is the reason you’re appearing for the IELTS. Maybe it’s your first attempt or maybe it’s your 2nd – this article will give you the methods which will surely improve your chances to ace the test ( if applied correctly).

If you’re new to the IELTs program and want to learn about the test pattern & the efforts required to achieve your target ielts score, read this article – IELTS Exam – Everything you need to know.

The IELTS exam consists of 4 sections – Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening.

For some students, the Listening section is difficult while for others, the most difficult part is Writing. But according to surveys on IELTS tests and its modules, Speaking test turns out to be the most challenging part of IELTS for many students. 

And it’s obvious as well because most of us did not get the environment to practice speaking in English during our school days. We always took English as a subject of study and have feared speaking in English because of mistakes.

So since the speaking test is the most challenging part – let’s try to understand how you can improve yourself in that arena.

The score of speaking test depend on following parameters :

  1.  Grammar
  2.  Vocabulary
  3.  Fluency
  4.  Pronunciation

The examiner will check whether you can comprehend the question and answer accurately. Here accuracy doesn’t mean having subject knowledge instead how fluently you can speak without making mistakes & breaking a sweat.

The topics of the IELTS Exams are based mostly on your family, interest, career, education, culture, or country – these are the topics that you are generally familiar with – so all you need is practice to express yourself effortlessly.

Now let’s look at the tips on how to prepare for the speaking test of the IELTS exam or how to increase your IELTS speaking score.

TIP 1 :  Become an Implicit leaner of the English language

Let us first apprehend what Implicit learning is. The main goal of Implicit learning is understanding practically instead of mugging it up and bore yourself with information.

Let me ask you a question, how did you learn following skills:

  1. Your native language
  2. Eating, walking
  3. Using a mobile phone.

Did you go through any formal training for these skills – like reading a rule book and then following that? 

Nope! Right? 

You learnt these skills just by observing and trying yourself. And you weren’t great in the beginning however you embraced the failures and made it your mission to master these skills and look – how easily you can perform these tasks now.

Studies have shown that people learned fast when they followed the implicit method of learning English. Here are some real life examples to backup what I am saying : 

[Jhanvi panwar a girl from a village in Haryana who mastered English fluency at the age of just 9 in 3 different accents ] Watch her video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QoLvWtJ0-xo 

Jhanvi had parents who pushed her to do better in her life but now let’s look at another extraordinary example of women from Rajasthan who had no education but she is able to understand and speak in English. Watch the video to know more about her story.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PV4SqJGmdG8  

Learn – How can Implicit Learning help you improve your Spoken English for IELTS?

In Part 2 of the speaking test, you will have a face to face conversation with the examiner. In this interaction the examiner will ask you to speak on a given topic for 1 to 2 mins.

Let me tell you that there are a majority of people who feel nervous while talking to other people in English. If you also feel the same, here are some efficient and easy tips to improve your English communication skills and confidence.

TIP 2: Use FlashCards

Learning and memorizing vocabulary can be an uphill battle for some. 

It is for me !

And our purpose is to make life easier for you. 

Flashcard is a go-to option if you hate memorizing vocabulary.

So, this activity-based learning can help you to learn vocabulary and use them in your daily English conversation.

The method is very simple.  All you need to do is write the word on one side of the paper and the meaning on the other side. You can also use pictures to have a better understanding of the word. 

In case, If you find it difficult to choose words on a daily basis. You – 

Subscribe to EngVarta vocabulary series for learning new words each day. This series will help you discover new words on a daily basis with weekly revision and activities. 

There are many free websites and mobile applications where you can learn new words using Flashcard and improve your English speaking skills for IELTS. 

Free IELTS Vocabulary Flashcards – This website will provide you with 200 IELTS vocabulary for making a better impression during your speaking test.

Vocabulary Flashcards – This website will provide you flashcards in alphabetical order. You will be able to learn the meaning of the word along with the synonyms and antonyms.

TIP 3 : Practice Speaking English with live English trainers

IELTS Speaking exam is an intense one on one interview between you and the examiner. The 11 – 16 minutes of conversation will check how accurate & comfortable you are in speaking English.

 It is important that while doing your preparations, you get a mentor who can help you in preparing and speaking effortlessly. 

Since you will be asked questions based on your life and profession – a natural tone and an effortless way of answering is important to clear the test. A mentor who has prior experience on IELTS or someone who has already cleared the test is the best person to guide you during this phase.

While doing your practice, it is important that someone points your grammatical error and gives you constructive feedback.

If you wish to practice with live English experts sitting at the comfort of your home – Go for EngVarta app. It is a platform where live English experts focus on your English speaking skills, correct your mistakes, guides you and motivates you. 

Checkout this video to know more about how EngVarta English Practice session works.

TIP 4 : Master Speech Shadowing 

It’s all about copying what you like – the way you copy a good style from someone the same way it’s time to copy & learn speaking style from others.

Just like babies do – whatever they see they copy it. They will copy the way you act, talk or walk everything…

Sounds familiar right?… 

The same thing happens when you start watching a lot of English movies and shows. For instance, I used to watch F.R.I.E.N.D.S and started speaking like Joey ( my fav. Character from the show ). No kidding!

Speech shadowing is rarely used but it’s a very effective technique to gain fluency in any language. To do this you simply need to listen to an English content and then repeat it in your words in the exact way that person did. When I say the exact way, try to match the tone, pronunciation and energy level. This is a very existing exercise.

English Learners at EngVarta do this on a daily basis – after their conversation with a Live expert – they are advised to listen to their call recording imagining that they are the expert in that call. They repeat what the experts are saying how they are saying it; this helps them improve their sentence structure, pronunciation & accent. Next day they sound a little more like their experts. 

Try it and let me know if you experience the same.

If you ask me what are the benefits of doing Speech shadowing. This is what I have to say : 

  • It helps you deal with fumbling while talking.
  • It will help you in improving your fluency, sentence structure and pronunciation. 
  • It will also bring clarity to your speech.

TIP 5 : FILLER WORDS

There is always a confusion among the candidates whether they should use or avoid filler words while giving the IELTS speaking test. However, if you have heard a native English speaker, you must have realized that they often use filler words which actually makes it sound like a conversation rather than a monotonous speech.

To not make the article longer, we have crafted a separate article for Filler words where we have thoroughly written about What are fillers words & Is it good to use them?

CONCLUSION

So, these are some methods that you can use to help yourself practice for the speaking test and ace it. Even if you speak English at a beginner level, you can adapt all these methods to improve English for the IELTS exam.

Speaking in English may seem difficult or you may hesitate when you start to do it. But with consistent practice, it will soon become a habit. Even if you speak English at a beginner level, you can adapt all these methods to improve English for the IELTS exam.

IELTs exam is just to ensure you are comfortable with the language and you’re able to express yourself without any hiccups. In simple words English comes easily to you.

If you start sweating while speaking in English –  try to relax and think of it as a tool of communication to express yourself – that’s all. And embrace mistakes and learn from them. Don’t let the mistakes bring you down instead you turn them into stepping stones to raise your English speaking level.

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