What did I do wrong?
Have you ever asked yourself that question? What made you lose this one point necessary to pass your exam in speaking?
There are a few things that may go wrong during the exam. Read on to check out what you can do to prevent it!
Here we go.
HOW NOT TO FAIL YOUR SPEAKING AGAIN
1. Stick to the topic – follow closely the topic from the instruction, don’t change it to suit your interests or knowledge.
2. Don’t read from your notes – try to maintain eye contact with your interlocutor at all times.
3. Stick to the time limit provided – you can use your wrist watch. If you speak shorter, it may mean you haven’t provided enough information. If you exceed the time limit, you may be stopped and your task won’t be achieved – as you may not be able to sum up, for example.
4. Structure your statements well. Don’t make lengthy introductions with little content – the parts that have been memorised and recited are not evaluated well in the exam. Make sure to have time to mention all necessary elements, develop all ideas and sum up.
5. Work on your fluency. You can do it by practising how to structure your arguments on any topic – for example, start with a topic sentence, give an example, justify your point of view and conclude. You can read more here on HOW TO COME UP WITH ARGUMENTS and HOW TO STRUCTURE YOUR STATEMENTS .
6. Ensure high quality of your argumentation. Develop each idea, justify and exemplify. Avoid adding unnecessary information or isolated statements not connected with the topic. Speak precisely, logically and to the point.
7. Ensure the grammatical correctness and natural use of more advanced language. Make sure to present a wide range of vocabulary and grammatical structures.
Avoid the following:
– frequent grammatical mistakes,
– loan translation from your native language (calque),
– copying word order from your native language,
– the inappropriate use of words and phrases,
– using too many “sophisticated” words and phrases unnaturally,
– using parts of speech wrongly (e.g. using a verb instead of a noun).
8. Avoid simplistic language and vocabulary by:
– using a variety of tenses and grammatical forms, if necessary,
– exchanging common nouns, verbs or adjectives with their “more advanced” synonyms, e.g. big > large, enormous; bad > negative; buy > purchase; people > individuals.