Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Today you learn how to pivot in IELTS Speaking Part 2.

Congratulations to our 3 Keys student Ramesh, who finally got the scores he needed on IELTS!

In IELTS Speaking Part 2, you MUST talk for the whole two minutes, or you are not showing a 7+ for Fluency.

We got this question on our IELTS Energy TV channel on YouTube:

Please help with this cue card: Describe a TV documentary you watched that was interesting.

I haven’t seen any… no idea about what this is.

What is a TV documentary?

Often, it is an opinionated, or biased, look at a particular issue. It could be about a time period, a place, a person, anything!

We could actually define this is nearly anything that is non-fiction, or anything that is analyzing an aspect of the real world.

This is confusing because usually, when we think of documentaries, it will be in a film-format.

Tough questions like this will require you to pivot!

Here are two more resources to learn about pivoting in Speaking:

Remember, you won’t be marked down for pivoting, or talking about the wrong thing, as long as you have a clear transition into another idea.

Pivoting is better than trying to talk about something you can’t, or trying to make something up and being unclear.

Don’t pivot in Writing, though!

For this particular cue card, you could say, ‘You know what, to be honest, I haven’t see a bunch of TV documentaries because I don’t actually think they’re that common. However, I have seen some great film documentaries.’

Pivoting rules:

  • establish the fact that you understand the question
  • explain why you won’t talk about that exactly
  • transition into what you will discuss

Notes from Jessica’s sample Part 2 answer:

  • I don’t relate that to TV
  • our culture turned on a dime
  • wholesome, white picket fences
  • the civil rights movement, hippies and Vietnam
  • 20 Feet from Stardom
  • called upon to do for these tracks

Click here for documentaries you should watch in English!

How would you answer today’s Speaking Part 2 question?

Share your ideas in the comments section below!

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