Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

When you are practicing IELTS Listening, do you have trouble keeping track of what they say? Do you sometimes lose track, and, therefore, miss answers?

In today’s lesson, we talk about the most important strategy to help you solve this problem!

The Listening Secret to Keeping Track: KEY WORDS!

What is the secret to  following along? Key words of course!

Key words are the special words in a question or statement. They are the words that carry the most meaning and the most information.

Key words are usually nouns and verbs, and always names and numbers.

How to Use This Listening Strategy

  • First, underline the key words in the questions, before you listen.
  • Then, using your pencil, point to every key word that you hear the speaker say, and be ready for the answer. The answer is always next to the key words!
  • Don’t get distracted by words you don’t know. Remember, if you are of an intermediate, or above level, of English, the key words (and matching parallel expressions) will be vocabulary you know.
  • If you do get lost, and miss an answer, don’t panic. Remember that all the questions on the Listening exam are in order. So, simply skip to the next question and focus on hearing those key words.

Last Minutes Listening Tips

  • Sometimes, the key words in the question are exactly the same as what the speaker says. However, sometimes the key words will be given in parallel expressions..

For example, if the question says, “How many times did Lisa attend class?”

The speaker on the CD might say, “Lisa was present in the lecture 5 times.”

  • Also, it is important to know that you must not take notes on the IELTS Listening exam. It’s not like the TOEFL. If you do this on IELTS, you will miss answers.

In our online IELTS course, 3 Keys IELTS, we give you all the strategies you need to score highly on all parts of the IELTS Exam.

What do you think of today’s lesson?

Leave us a note in the comments section below!

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