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

Are you worried that you will “lose it” on the map completion questions on the IELTS Listening test?

This kind of question is rare but it does happen and it can be tough.

However, today you’ll find out what happened to one student in this part of the IELTS test and learn how you can make sure this doesn’t happen to you too.

What happened to this student?

The student got lost and didn’t know where he was on the test.

He didn’t know where on the test the speaker was referencing.

He skipped the initial step of looking at the question before he listened.

He didn’t use his prediction strategy to see what would come next.

The skill you need to succeed on this type of question:

Prediction strategies: On a map completion question all of the answers are in order so all you have to do is follow along in order.

What should you do to follow along? Before you listen find question #1 right away. Circle it and then circle all of the questions in order so that you see where all of the questions are.

You need to start predicting direction words in your head.

Look at where things are on the map and describe it to yourself in your head before you listen.

These are the signal words.

Read more about prediction when it comes to IELTS Listening and Reading.

You can get maps online to practice this.

Also get more tips on this in the IELTS Brain box episode here.

How can you practice this?

Go to a tourist office in your city and get maps in English.

Highlight all direction words on the map.

Go back and describe the map in your own words.

You could extend this into speaking test practice by engaging in conversation with the person who works at the tourist center by asking them some questions about the map.

What questions do you have about this strategy?

Let us know in the comments below.

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