7 Tips to Pass IELTS Speaking Test

by hathbanger
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 IELTS exam contains four different sections reading, writing, listening and speaking. Out of the four sections speaking is considered as the hardest section to score especially for a non native English user. In this article I list several useful tips to pass (and of course to obtain high marks) your IELTS speaking test.



1. Do some research about the speaking test before going to the actual test.

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There are many videos and preparation courses available on the internet to help you with the speaking test. Even the IELTS official website have some guidelines and information about the IELTS speaking test. Read these guidelines carefully. There are 3 parts in the test. An interview, a small speech on a given topic and some casual discussion regarding the speech. Be ready for all these three parts. The best strategy for each part is different.



2. Be confident during your speaking test.

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The examiner may be a native English speaker or may be a local person. Yet you should be comfortable during the exam. The purpose of the speaking test is to make sure that you are capable of engaging in conversations in English. Your confidence while speaking does play a great role. Even if you made mistakes during an early part of the test do not let them affect your confidence. Most of the examiners are friendly and will help you to gain confidence while talking.



3. Take your time during the exam.

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Even though your fluency is tested you do not need to have a great word speed. A normal speed is enough. Thus take your time when giving answers to the questions. You can take time to collect your thoughts using phrases like “That’s a good question”, “Well, let me think” etc.



4. Do not be afraid to ask for clarifications if the question is not clear.

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Its perfectly okay to ask for clarifications from the interviewer regarding the questions especially in the third section of the exam. This will help you to understand the question clearly and will give you more time to arrange your answers.



5. Do not be afraid to express your opinions.

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One of the main objective of the test is to check whether you can express your ideas clearly. Thus do not be afraid to express your ideas even those ideas may look controversial or stupid. You are not judged on your ideas, but on the way you express them. 



6. Use your preparation time wisely.

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You will be given one minute of preparation time for the second part of the exam. During this time you should read the given topic and guidelines and arrange your thoughts. Make sure to arrange them in the order given in the information sheet. Some students may just read the guidelines and start describing about the topic straight away. Do not do this. Even if you are so confident about the topic, wait until the examiner ask you to start.



7. Do not use prepared answers.

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Some students prepare answers before the exam based on tentative questions that may be asked. This is not a good idea. You may be asked a question that may be slightly different than the question you practiced. Thus the answer you give may not be relevant to the question. Examiners can spot such prepared answers and they can put you in trouble by asking more challenging questions. As mentioned earlier the objective of the speaking exam is to check your ability to make a good conversation in English, not checking your ability to memorize.

Seven Mistakes That Some Online Students Make

by hathbanger
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College education no longer has to be expensive and you can dodge the hefty student loans from the high profile universities because thanks to online education, you’ll get career-based instruction that generally takes one to two years depending on your field of study. Here are some online education mistakes to avoid.



Not Taking Advantage of Financial Aid 

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You may not be charged a high price for online college education as you would for a public four-year university but it’s still not a good idea to pay for your expenses out of pocket because this could put you in unnecessary debt. Some companies offer financial assistance to their employees if they’re improving their careers through education, and there are also local nonprofit organizations that offer scholarships and grants to those who are enrolled in an online college.



Slacking Off In Studies 

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As an online student you will not have a professor in front of you who will remind students of their need to complete assignments and sign in to the computer system in order to participate in the courses. A mistake many online students make is not being as motivated as they should be and not taking the assignments and exam preparation seriously.



Failure To Look Over Curriculum And Course Requirements 

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Just like those who attend regular universities, online students sometimes do not succeed in their courses because they do not look over the course curriculum and professors’ requirements. As soon as you enroll in your courses you need to spends time reading what the course will be about then purchase the books for the class two to three weeks ahead of time so that when the classes start, you’ll know what the teachers’ expectations are.



Assuming That The Classes Are A Breeze

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Even with online classes there is no such thing as easy courses because each professor is different and you may be assigned professors who prefer to challenge their students through assignments and exams. Always be prepared by studying every night and asking questions on the courses so you’ll have clarity on how you should complete your work.



Lack of Necessary Software on Computer 

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When you are an online student you need to inquire about the necessary software and hardware that is needed in order to take classes efficiently. It’s difficult to participate in your online experience when you don’t have the required computer software. Many third party websites offer downloads of the latest software.



Failing To Communicate With Campus Career Counselor. 

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You’re getting an online education because you’re interested in a better and higher paying job so you don’t want to make the mistake of not talking with an online career counselor concerning possible career options that are within the industry you want to enter, and inquire about internships because this looks good on your resume.



Not Using Social Media To Network With Classmates

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You don’t want to be isolated as an online student so this is why you should create a social media page that you can email to your online classmates so that they can get to know you.

You Won’t Believe These Degrees Exist!

by hathbanger
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Are you having a hard time choosing your major? Don’t fret, it could be much worse. Here are 10 degrees (and majors other people chose) you wouldn’t believe exists!



1. Bowling Industry Management and technology

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This associate of science offered by Vincennes University will teach you how to be an expert manager at the bowling alley. Amongst other courses it offers a course in lane management and even a pinsetter lab! If you are serious about bowling, this is the place for you!

 


2. Bachelor in Puppetry and Creative Dramatics

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If you have a passion for puppeteering, you can take it to the next level with a Bachelors of Fine arts from West Virginia University. Your friends may not take your profession seriously but hey, at least you have a college degree!

 


3. Cannabis Cultivation Specialist

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This degree is, not surprisingly, found in California and is offered by Oaksterdam University (that offers nothing but various degrees in growing pot). Surely the parents of these students must be so proud that this is where their college fund is going. Do their semesters feel longer than average?

 


4. Bachelors in Pop Culture

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Who doesn’t love watching TV and listening to music? Some people love it so much they got a degree in it! Apparently this degree is so popular that Bowling Green State University dedicated a whole center to it, called the “center for Popular Culture Studies”.

 


5. Ufology degree

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Here is a degree for spacey people. The metaphysics institute offers this extra-terrestrial doctor degree. Students can even specialize in abductions! What you can achieve with this degree (other than being labeled “crazy”) remains unclear.

 


6. Circus and Physical Performance

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Here is a degree that literally let’s you “clown around” all day. Bathspa University in the UK offers this two year degree and teaches it’s students a variety of circus and physical theater moves. Who said going to school was boring?

 


7. Ethical Hacking

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Offered by national university, this degree teaches students how to (you guessed it) hack computers! Do they teach safe bank robbery or controlled grand auto theft too?

 


8. Parapsychology

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Someone must have watched ghost busters one too many times. This UK degree teaches students everything there is to know about ghosts and supernatural occurrences (which is what exactly?). This is a degree that is sure to make any CV stand out!

 


9. Race Track Industry Management

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Offered by the university of Arizona, this program gets students ready to enter the world of horse-racing. It is the only program of its kind offered in the states but hey, if you learn how to predict which horse will win on the track you could win back your tuition many times!

 


10. Degree in Decision Making

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If you are still having a hard time deciding which career is right for you, you could always get a degree in decision making (although this may not be your strong suit). Stanford University offers this degree in decision analysiss and claims to provide students with valuable tools to analyze business decisions.

 


Remember these degrees next time somebody gives you a hard time about majoring in philosophy or history! Or use them to break the news that you failed a class. “I got an F” sounds minor compared to “I’ve found my passion; growing pot!”.

10 Interesting Things Every Freshman Should Know About College

by hathbanger
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You finally made it through a senior project, finals, prom and graduation, but now it’s time to say goodbye to high school and say hello to college. As you face your freshman year, it is highly likely that you will have mixed reactions. You are about to enter the real world, where you will experience the most important time of change, personal discovery, growth and social adjustment. Here are some useful things you need to know to get you through your first year of college:

 

Take summer classes

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Your first semester will be one of the toughest. Besides learning new material, you will be trying to adjust to your new environment, making friends and becoming independent. Taking a summer class will help you get a head start, and reduce your workload for next semester.

 

Know your campus

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Arrive early, find the college map, make rounds and know where you can find what you need. The last thing you need on your first day is a group of conniving majors pulling a stupid prank on you such as directing you to the girl’s bathroom instead of the library. Can you imagine the screams!

 

Your roommate will suck

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Don’t get me wrong, you can be best of buddies with your roomy, but they will eat all your food, use up all your shampoo, make you listen to their bad music and sex, break your stuff, and may be even steal from you. Ironically, you will also be a terrible roommate at some point.

 

Drinking will be more fun

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You no longer have to sneak out of the house, or pay some washed-out geek for fake IDs. You will be able to walk to a bar and ask for a drink. Nevertheless, beware that you can be arrested for being drunk in public and for peeing in public!

 

Take up a part-time job

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You will definitely need the extra cash for drinks and shopping, but more importantly, you will be growing your work experience and building up your resume. You will also learn time management and responsibility, and acquire leadership skills.

 

Know your health policy

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Colleges offer health insurance to full-time students for on-campus medical checkups but do not cover you outside campus or if you are part-time. You will likely still be under your parent’s health policy so have a copy of the card to be covered for the medical treatment you require.

 

You will need help

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Asking for help does not mean admitting defeat, but rather it is the simplest and most humbling thing to do. If you will be feeling anxious, or have trouble with your workload, or adjusting socially, there will be plenty of networks in place to help you.

 

Prepare for your first classes

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Buy the required textbooks and go over the material you will be working on to know what you are getting into before the first class. Some classes might require a preexisting knowledge on a certain novel, mathematics, and computer programs.

 

Budget your cash

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Unless you want to run out of money in the middle of the semester and start begging your roommate for handouts, keep your budget in check by setting a spending limit each week.

 

Do not take shoes off in public

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No one knows why this is a thing but taking off your shoes in public is not cool in college. Serious, just don’t do it.

5 Books Better Than The Movie That You Must Read

by hathbanger
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Congratulations! You’ve battled rampaging paper monsters and toppled giant mountains of assignments, You’ve clawed your way past your exams and finals alike, and now you’re ready. Ready for a Vacation! That means you are ready to watch Netflix, eat all the food, sleep, and if you are a bookie, fit in a good amount of summer reading. To help you on your way to reading your way into a perfect summer here are some top books made into movies that you must read. 



1: The Hunger Games Series: Suzanne Collins

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By now I’m sure all of you are fairly acquainted with Katniss Everdeen and her tree-hopping, arrow-shooting, rule-breaking ways having seen Hunger Games on the big screen. But before you complain you’ve seen it already, as usual, the book was way better than the movie. While Gary Ross captures the actions scenes fairly well, the emotional side of the book isn’t visible. Character relationships are undermined or just don’t appear to be there at all. If you want the real experience, instead of dishing out twenty bucks for a movie, I can guarantee this series will be more than fulfilling when you read the paperback, or e-book for you hippies. 

 


2: The Immortal Instruments: Cassandra Clare

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The Immortal Instruments is another book on our list like all the others that has been adapted into a blockbuster film. If you enjoy hot half-angel men running around in black leather hurling lethal weapons at baddies then look no further. The story revolves around protagonist Clary who is thrust into all too real, and very dangerous world of Shadowhunters, werewolves, vampires, and a host of other mythical creatures.

It’s a good thing that she has Jace, her cocky, but charming guide to show her the way. If the fact that the book was good enough to be a movie isn’t enough to convince you, bear in mind it has been on the New York Times Best Sellers list for 100+ consecutive weeks, twice. 



3: The Inkheart Trilogy: Cornelia Funke

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Okay, we’re turning back the clock a bit here and some of the older ones among us will remember this book quite fondly. Inkheart is a story that lives out your greatest fantasy, well not quite, but it’s still pretty awesome! Our hero, if you can call him that is Dustfinger, a character inside the book Inkheart. Huh? Confusing right. Well you see, Inkheart is about a girl Meggie and her father Mo (Mortimer), Mo has the ability that whatever he reads comes alive, the characters quite literally jump out of the book.

One day he reads the book Inkheart aloud and out pops Dustfinger along with a couple of villains who are hell bent on destroying every copy of their own book, but not before they force Mo to bring out the rest of their evil friends. Lots of coffee and three books later I can guarantee you’ll be crying your eyes out as it comes to an end.


4: The Fault in Our Stars: John Green

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Who’s ready for a Feels-Trip? Just in case you aren’t a huge fantasy person then we have you covered. If you haven’t heard already The Fault in Our Stars, or TFIOS as it is commonly abbreviated, it to is one of the most touching stories ever. It’s on par with ‘The Notebook’ and “Bridge to Terabithia’ in terms of the cry-your-eyes-out scale and will definitely make you look at your life a lot differently.

The main characters are the two lovers Hazel and Augustus Walters who meet at a help group that Hazel has been forced to attend by her parents. Hazel coping with her cancer finds herself falling in love with the ex-basketball player and amputee and the beautiful tale of love begins. Numerous quotes and 318 pages later you will be crying with your best-friend, whether you are boy or girl, wondering why you’ve brought this storm of feelings upon yourself. 



5: The Outsiders: S. E. Hilton

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The Outsiders is a classic piece of literature, and probably one of the only books you’ll be glad to read in literature class. The book which is about the rag tag boys who call themselves the greasers and their fight with the stuffy uptown socs (short for socials). This coming of age novel highlights true love concurs all, that not everybody is who they seem, and that friends stay with you no matter what. They may have funny names but you are bound to fall in love with Ponyboy and his crew. 
Thanks for going through this article and Happy Reading!