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I don’t know that word

How to improve your English vocabulary before your IELTS exam.

Some English language students don’t seem to realise that the responsibility for learning is theirs. It is the student who has to commit to learning and make the effort to improve. Too many students complain that they don’t understand all the vocabulary in a reading but then do nothing about it. Sometimes, you simply have to get your dictionary out and look up the meaning of each word. This system really works. Do you do it or do you give up?

Look at these words. I’ll bet that you don’t know the meaning of most of them.

waive
rouse
obscure
breach
rectify
ratify
mollify
nullify
ensure

question mark

A serious IELTS candidate would now take out their dictionary and find out the meaning of each of these words. What kind of words are they? Verbs? Nouns? Adjectives? Can we use them to make other words e.g. a verb to noun transformation : ratify > ratification? What about opposites and synonyms? How do we pronounce each of the words? A serious IELTS student would try to use each of these words in a sentence – in both written and spoken form.

You can hear words said here or you can read this post.

You can also simply type “define nullify” in the Google search bar to see a definition and hear the pronunciation. Google is your IELTS friend.

Why not challenge yourself to use a word or phrase?

I wonder whether you do all of these things. I wonder whether you are really making an effort to improve your own vocabulary. Carlos and Jia Chen certainly weren’t (oh no! I mentioned their names 😉 ) but hopefully they will start making an effort after today.

Serious students have to take responsibility for their learning outside the classroom as well as inside it.

Are you looking for a teacher to help you to get the grade you need in your IELTS exam? Do you want someone to push you so that you make fantastic progress? There are discounts available at English Only for IELTS students from IELTS Only. If you are looking for online IELTS classes with a qualified and experienced teacher, use this contact form. You’ll get a 10% discount.


Skim reading a text

Many IELTS students fall in to the trap of trying to understand every word in a reading text and their reading speed suffers. Many students seem to be trained to start reading at the first word of the reading text and continue word by word until the end is reached. These students set themselves the target of understanding every word and every sentence of the reading text – they are not satisfied unless they can reach this level of understanding. (more…)