Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

Today we respond to a comment challenging 3 Keys’ strategies.

Everyone gets negative comments from time to time.

We are no different and so when we get a negative comment, we want to address it.

We feel very strongly about this and so we want to back it up to show why our strategies are successful.

We guarantee our course improves your scores, so we stand behind this.

Negative Feedback Can Make You Stronger

We want to share these comments so that you can understand why our course works so well.

We’re open to discussion and we want to address any comments, even the negative ones like this.

The comment was made about a video that we posted.

It’s about how to use fake research in how to prepare for the IELTS exam.

It’s one way to include something specific in your writing.

Here’s the breakdown of the comments:

This is ridiculous. I worked as an IELS trainer for nearly a decade. You are giving bad advice. It might not hurt your score, but it certainly won’t help. Examiners laugh when they read this because they are fake. 

When you say there is nothing in the descriptors, you are showing your ignorance. These are not supposed to be based on ideas and experiences and not research. This could be considered inappropriate format. 

Bottom line while it’s unlikely to have a really negative effect on the score. These tricks don’t help. Examiners view this as a lazy way to support your position. 


Breaking Down This Negative Feedback


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  1. It might not hurt your score: There is nothing in there about made up information. It has to be believable, logical, and possible in the real world. The “fake research” still has to fit these criteria to still get that higher score. The issue seems to be around the word “fake” when really this is a strategy that will help your score.
  2. It’s not in the descriptors: This is referring to the task descriptor, and here you need to use proper format. You are using 4 paragraphs, not using bullet points or numbered lists. That’s all inappropriate format–has to do with how it is physically organized and not to look like an outline. There are very specific criteria for the examiners to score the exams. There is no gray area in this at all! He’s showing a personal reaction, but in the end none of this will hurt your score. The spirit of this strategy is to encourage students to include very specific information.
  3. It’s unlikely to negatively effect your score: That’s the whole point here! For all of these strategies, we have a reason behind it and how it can help your score. Everything is directly linked to the scoring system. Focus on what’s in the scoring system such as we do–that’s what really matters. It sounds like this examiner had previous experience and things change all the time with the IELTS exam.

We Work At Constant Improvement

We have updated our course to speak to this fact that personal experiences are more important than fake research.

Going to the “fake information” is Plan C in the big picture.

You don’t want to be like every other student and getting a reaction from the examiners is perfectly fine.

It’s all about the score, and you will not have that negatively impacted through this tactic.

If you have any questions, please leave them below in the comments section.

We’ll get back with you as soon as we can. 


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