Aiton English

Learning Languages for Life

Month: October 2017 (page 1 of 2)

10 Step Exam Speaking: How often (generalizing, contrasting)

Step 1: Listening practice

Listen once, twice or three times to the audio below to get the ideas

 

Step 2: Learn from listening

Listen again, pausing an repeating where necessary to make a note of useful expressions.

 

Step 3 “a” : Focus on structures for saying “how often” (or “not”)  you do something

Looking at the table below, listen again and mark which  “how often” (or “not”) structures are used.

IELTS speaking - How often

 

Note:

Once / Twice a week (NOT “in a week”)

Three / four / ten / 15 times a year / month

fortnight = two weeks – Once a fortnight = once every two weeks

If the number is not “a” month / year, then use every:

3 times every 2 weeks

5 times every 4 months

but

3 times a week

5 times a month

 

Step 3  “b” : Focus on structures for “generalizing” and “contrasting” 

Perhaps you noticed some of these structures in  “Step 2: Learn from listening” . In any case, looking at the tables below, listen again and mark which  “generalizing” and “contrasting” structures are used.

IELTS speaking: generalizing

IELTS Speaking: Contrasting

 

 

Step 4: Improve your pronunciation

Listen again to the structures,  make a note of stress and intonation.

 

Step 5: Moving from passive to active

Listen on repeat for a period of time. As you listen…

a – repeat the structures you hear from the tables, copying the stress and intonation

b – when you feel comfortage (still with the audio on repeat), repeat the structures and “finish”

 

Step 7: Linguistic choice

Think about your ideas to answer one of the questions. Choose the structure(s)  that best match(es) your opinion

 

Step 8: Fluency = 100%, Pronunciation = 100%

Without fully answering the question, practice again and again the structure until you feel that your “active use” of the structure is 100% fluent with 100% suitable intonation / stress.

 

Step 9: Fully active answer

Record yourself answering the question.

 

Step 10: Review and repeat

Listen to your answer, if you feel it needs to be done again, do it again. (Note, although practice makes perfect, it is a good idea to not repeat it too many times. As you move through the different questions you will get better.)

Business LC Gapfill: Invertment in metals

From mobe.com

 

What choice of words can you think of for each gap?
note:

_______= one word

______(1/2) = think of one or two word combinations

WTD = what’s the difference between these underlined items

(TENSE) = what tenses are possible / what’s the difference

 

Investing your money into gold, silver, platinum, palladium and other industrial metals can be a very smart way to 1)__________ your money, but before you buy into the first opportunity you see, take the time to learn the basics of the market.

Here is the most 2)________ information you should understand before choosing how to invest in metals:

1. Not all metals are categorized the same way.

Gold and silver are among the most popular metal investments but did you know you can also invest in other metal 3)______________? Metals used in manufacturing, like rare earth and base metals, are now becoming increasingly important due to high industrial demand. Therefore, they could 4)__________ good potential for asset diversification 5)__________ a variety of trading 6)________ including stocks, futures, options and exchange-traded funds.

2. There are various ways to invest in metals.

You can buy stock of the metals themselves, invest in mining companies or even invest in security companies that store precious metals like gold and silver. You can also purchase an Exchange-Trade-Fund, which is similar to buying a share of stock 7)________ that you’re actually buying a share of a fund. That fund contains various stocks, bonds, options and futures (WTD?).

3. Precious metals need to be stored securely.

This probably sounds obvious, but are you prepared to keep your gold or silver safe at home? If not, you can usually buy storage from the company that sold you the physical metal, but costs are 8)_______. Mike Clarke, President of Diamond State Depository, says that an account valued at $50,000 would generally be charged an annual storage fee of $375.

4. Physical metals come in two forms.

When you buy physical stock of precious metals, you can choose between bullion or coins. Bullion is precisely-weighed bars, stamped with information about the weight, purity and source of the metal. Coins, on the other hand, are collector’s items that may differ in value according to rarity and popularity.

5. Experts disagree on whether to safeguard your wealth with industrial or precious metals.

History shows that gold and silver 9) (always + be – TENSE) valuable, even in times of war or recession. 10)_________ (½ words) this information, there is a school of classic economics that insists, “If disaster strikes, gold is the metal we will 11) ______ (½ words) if paper-money, and the system that supports it, no longer exists.” The modern approach 12)_______ that industrial metals such as platinum and palladium will be more valuable in an economic breakdown because they are used to manufacture high-tech devices and machines.

6. Precious metals aren’t just for jewelry.

Just because gold, silver and platinum are popular for creating jewelry doesn’t mean they have no other purpose. All the so-called precious metals are used inside of computers, which in turn are used for everything from cellphones to space travel. This functionality boosts the current value of gold, silver and other metals.

7. Some precious metals may be subject to taxation.

If you purchase bullion or coins, you might need to pay tax if and when you sell them for a profit. If you trade often, the government may classify your investments and sales as a business, and tax you based on business tax. Check with your local tax office to find out exactly how national laws affect your physical stock.

8. Not every vendor is trustworthy.

Under no circumstances should you put your trust and money in the hands of anyone out there selling gold coins or stocks in platinum mining companies. Read reviews, talk to professionals, and ask family members for advice about reputable vendors that you can check out for yourself. If anything seems suspicious, run far away!

9. Physical stock needs to be insured.

At least, that is if you don’t want to risk losing your entire investment. You may be able to buy insurance through the vendor or the storage company; otherwise, you can look for good rates through other non-affiliated companies.

10. Even historically valuable metals can suffer in the short term.

Most metals are meant to be long-term investments that protect the investor’s money from short-term dips in other markets. That doesn’t mean, however, that gold, silver or palladium is going to retain the same value day in, day out. It will rise and fall just like anything else you invest in—the difference is that over the course of a lifetime, these metals should more or less retain their original value.

 

Finish reading the text and check your answers here

 

IELTS Writing 2 analysis: Task achievement for “Discuss Both Sides”

Some people say that violence shown in movies and on the news should be restricted since it can increase crime rates, whereas others believe that this is not the case, and such restictions are not necessary to reduce crime.

Discuss both sides and give your opinion

 

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own experience or knowledge.

a) Read the answer, do not worry about language, focus on ideas and answer the questions:

Does the candidate when writing their ideas address (focus on / talk about) all parts of the task above?

When supporting the ideas with reasons and examples, does the candidate focus on the the parts in the task?

Nowadays the violence shown in movies and on the news is an issue of big concern. Many people claim that it should be restricted, for it is the reason of increasing crime rates. However, others believe that in order to reduce crime such measure is not necessary.

Many people claim that showing violence on the Tv has to be curbed, since it has a direct relevance on the increased crime rates in society. From this perspective, anything can be easily promoted when shown on the screen to the masses of people, for instance, in the movies or on the news, and the society is guided by what is presented to them foremost. In addition to that, children spend a lot of time watching TV and they are exposed to a great amount of negative information. Given that child psychology is not fully mature, this sort of propaganda can have a detrimental effect on their development.

However, other people state that such restriction is by far not necessary and will not contribute to decreasing crime rates. From this point of view, when violence, which is already existent, is represented frankly and openly, people see an explicit picture of the actual problems their social environment faces daily. Besides that, having a distant view on the essence and consequences of violence in general and in particular, one has a chance to grow aware of what is unacceptable in the society where he or she belongs as well as in the whole world.

To sum up, the issue of violence openly demonstrated on the television is extensively discussed. In my personal opinion, even though the abundance of such adverse information on the screens may have a negative impact on human psychology, and most significantly, on children’s mentality, placing a tight restrictions on broadcasts would not be an effective solution for crime prevention. I believe, that to a certain extent, such kind of content can bear a value as a distinct image of existent social problems and a demonstrative example of unlawful behavior.

Answer:

Let’s analyse this in detail…………………………………….

In order to see how well the candidate’s writing answers the parts in both sides of the argument, we need to establish what the parts are. The first argument has the following parts:

  1. violence shown in movies and on the news should be restricted

  2. the reason is such violence can increase crime rates

Therefore, in the paragraph connected with this side, the exam candidate should present reasons why people believe the above are true.

b) Read the topic sentence of the candidates’ first body paragraph again. Does it address (talk about) these specific parts of the task (violence / in movies and on the news / should be restricted / violence can increase / crime rates)?

Many people claim that showing violence on the Tv has to be curbed, since it has a direct relevance on the increased crime rates in society.

Answer:

Yes, it focuses on them.

This means that the candidate is directly addressing the parts in the exam task, so can get a 7,8,9 if they continue to address (talk about) these specific points.

c) Below is the first point after the topic sentence. Does it continue to develop the ideas of “such violence should be restricted” or “such violence can increase crime rates”?

From this perspective, anything can be easily promoted when shown on the screen to the masses of people, for instance, in the movies or on the news, and the society is guided by what is presented to them foremost.”

Answer:

To some extent they indirectly continue to address the parts of the exam task, but not directly. It talks about how “anything” can be promoted. “Anything” includes violence, so it is ok, but perhaps the candidate is starting to “lose” the specific topic. Perhaps not…… . The author then talks about how “society” is guided, again this is possible, but for this specific task there needs to be an argument about “how this can increase crime rates”. The candidate, however, does not make a conclusion about whether or not this”guidance” affects crime rates. This is a typical situation, where the connection is clear in the writer’s mind, and the examiner can guess “he / she probably wanted to say ‘and some people believe such guidance can result in people commiting crimes, thereby increasing the crime rate.”

According to the IELTS criteria,

conclusions become unclear” = 6

So make if you make the examiner guess your conclusions in the main body, you will probably get a maximum of 6.

Read the next part of the first body paragraph, again does it talk about ….

    1. violence shown in movies and on the news should be restricted

    2. the reason is such violence can increase crime rates

In addition to that, children spend a lot of time watching TV and they are exposed to a great amount of negative information.”

Answer:

No, it is starting to overgeneralize. It introduces a fact “children spend a lo t of time watching about TV”, it then introduces a second fact that the children see “a lot of negative information”. Is this negative information violence, or bad language, or pessimism, or sexual content? talks about

Perhaps in the next part, the author will clarify that part of this negative information is violence, and that it can increase crime rates. Does it?

Given that child psychology is not fully mature, this sort of propaganda can have a detrimental effect on their development.”

Answer:

No. “negative information” is paraphrased as “propaganda”, but we still have to guess what it means. The reader is given a fact that this propaganda can………negatively effect development. But the reader / examiner has to guess if the author believes thi negative development is connected with crime.

How can we improve this body paragraph?

  1. Make the conclusions clearer

  2. refer to key words more

  3. take out “general” information

For example:

Many people claim that showing violence on the Tv has to be curbed, since it has a direct relevance on the increased crime rates in society. From this perspective, not just violence but anything can be easily promoted when shown on the screen to the masses of people, for instance, in the movies or on the news. If it is violence, then the society may follow suit, possibly lifting the rate of crime. In addition to that, children spend a lot of time watching TV and they are exposed to a great amount of negative information, including violence. Some people believe that children in particular may be led into crime by seeing this violence given that child psychology is not fully mature.”

The second “argument” in the exam task has these specific parts:

  1. it is not true that violence (shown on the news and in movies) can increase crime rates.

  2. restrictions are not necessary to reduce crime

Read the paragraph topic sentence. Does it match the key actor / action / actees of the second side?

However, other people state that such restriction is by far not necessary and will not contribute to decreasing crime rates.”

Answer:

Yes, very clearly connected.

Read the rest of the paragraph. Does it develop the points in bold:

  1. it is not true that violence (shown on the news and in movies) can increase crime rates.

  2. restrictions are not necessary to reduce crime

From this point of view, when violence, which is already existent, is represented frankly and openly, people see an explicit picture of the actual problems their social environment faces daily. Besides that, having a distant view on the essence and consequences of violence in general and in particular, one has a chance to grow aware of what is unacceptable in the society where he or she belongs as well as in the whole world.

Answer:

No. The paragraph overgeneralizes. It addresses (talks about) a different task:

Can you write an exam task that the above paragraph would address (talk about)?

Possible Answer:

Some people believe violence on TV is OK because seeing violence on the news and in movies help people understand society and what is acceptable or not.”

As this paragraph is so over-generalized, it cannot be improved by small adding or changing. IT needs to be re-written with a greater focus on

  1. it is not true that violence (shown on the news and in movies) can increase crime rates.

  2. restrictions are not necessary to reduce crime

Highlight in bold the parts of the conclusion that address the specific task, and underline the parts that overgeneralize.

To sum up, the issue of violence openly demonstrated on the television is extensively discussed*. In my personal opinion, even though the abundance of such adverse information on the screens may have a negative impact on human psychology, and most significantly, on children’s mentality**, placing a tight restrictions on broadcasts would not be an effective solution for crime prevention. I believe, that to a certain extent, such kind of content can bear a value as a distinct image of existent social problems and a demonstrative example of unlawful behavior.

* Although this is relevant, it does not need to be put in the conclusion. Not putting this in the conclusion would make it shorter and fit the expected IELTS balance more.

** this part of the sentence is fine as it supports the second, main part.

We can see that the over-generalized, underlined part, is again connected with the “different” task from before

Some people believe violence on TV is OK because seeing violence on the news and in movies help people understand society and what is acceptable or not.”

a) Last question, for task achievement or “how well does the candidate answer and support the specific parts of the exam task”, which body paragraph was better, the first or the second?

Answer:

The first was better, as the examiner can at least guess the connection between the ideas in the paragraph and the specific parts of the exam task. It is maybe even a bit better than the TA 6 “conclusions are unclear”. We could create criteria and say “conclusions can be guessed” . The second body paragraph is a 5 “addresses the task only partially” (the candidate did talk about the effect of violence, but not in relation to increases in crime / or what it is if not violence on TV that increases crime. The examiner may even believe that it is a 5, in the criteria for a 5 it says “presents some ideas but they are irrelevant”.

IELTS Writing Task 2: Advantages and Disadvantages

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IELTS Writing Task Two - Advantages and Disadvantages

IELTS Writing Task 2: Two Questions Essay

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IELTS Writing Task two - Two Questions essay

IELTS Writing Task 2: To what extent do you agree?

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IELTS Writing 2 To what extent do you agree

Business LC Gap Fill: Online Gambling

1 – Read through the article and test your flexibility by thinking of as many “fillers” as possible, even if you’re just guessing. In some cases many are possible, in some only a few, in some only one.

2 – When you’ve finished, make a note of gambling topic-related, business topic-related and general expressions you like.

6 Reasons to Launch an Online Gambling Business Today

The online gambling industry has been on the move for the last years and the present ongoing development is an 1)______________fact of the major success this domain enjoys these days.

But just how much has the market grown over the last years? Will the growth continue? How much capital is available? And which countries have 2)____________an online gaming regulation? These are just a few questions new operators, investors and stakeholders ask themselves before launching a new gambling website.

Check the following insights, facts and figures we collected for you and make sure you are fully prepared to launch an online sportsbook or a casino right about now.

1. Total market value of online gambling is expected to increase

The online gambling market is generally 3)_____________________ solid numbers and the market has enjoyed a 4)_______________growth rate for a long period of time.

From 2009 to 2013 the average CAGR of the online gambling market was nearly an impressive 10 percent at 9.4 percent and it is expected to reach a two figure growth rate averaging 10.6 percent from 2014 to 2018.

Why not grab your share of this growth?

The steady CAGR has resulted in the total online gambling market value 5)________________ to an impressive £23.7bn in 2013. In 2018 the market value is expected to hit a 6)__________________________£37.4bn.

 

2. A huge amount of funds is awaiting allocation

The performance of the increasingly 7)_____________________online gambling market attracts the attention of many investors. This is 8)________________________in the huge amount of funds waiting to be 9)_______________into the market.

If we continue to analyze Tim Stocks’s paper, we notice that during the past 10 years, PE funds 10)___________________ on the US gaming market have raised a total of £18.9bn, while Europe and UK focused funds have raised £13.8bn and £11.6bn 11)________________.

 

Click here to check your answers and continue reading

 

 

 

IELTS Writing Task 2: Conclusion

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IELTS Writing task 2 - Conclusion

IELTS Writing Task 2: Topic Sentence

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IELTS Writing Task 2 - Topic Sentence

IELTS writing 2: Task Achievement and introduction

Click on the image below to download the PDF FileIELTS Writing Task 2

 

 

IELTS Writing – 2 – introduction – TA

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