Useful technique when presented with a cue card in IELTS speaking part 2.
In the IELTS speaking test part 2 you are given a cue card and have to give a 2 minute talk where you must ‘Describe’ something or some situation.
Often this can be stressful for people in the heat of the exam, many people just go blank and cannot think of ideas or may have no experience of the the topic presented to them. There are 2 ways to deal with this.
There are 2 approaches:
1. Just lie and make up a story or situation.
2. Use a conditional sentence to change it while still keeping on topic.
Let me explain what I mean by example number 2 above. Let’s imagine you are presented with a cue card like this one.
So maybe you just cannot remember a time you visited a museum or Art gallery. What you could say is:
“I can’t remember a museum or art gallery I have visited, however, if I had a chance I would love to go to the V & A museum in London. I heard that they have an exhibition at the moment about…… etc etc”
I have changed the structure from ‘I would like to talk about….’ to ‘I can’t remember a museum or art gallery I have visited, however, if I had a chance I would love to go to….. ‘
Conditional Sentence: If +past tense+ would (this shows a hypothetical situation)
Using this technique you don’t have to lie and it also shows that you can use a conditional sentence to your advantage, the examiner will like this and it is also still on topic. Remember that you do not need to talk about every point on the cue card, you can add your own ideas as long as you can demonstrate fluency and keep the talk going for at least 2 minutes.
You can try now
How would you use this technique to reply to these cue card topics below.?
Remember that there is no right or wrong way to answer this and you should never just memorise scripts or sentences in IELTS. It has to be your own idea.
1. Describe something you got for free..
2. Describe a car journey that you took…
3. Describe a garden you visited as a child…
4. Describe a gift that made you happy…
5. Describe your favourite plant….
Click on this button to see my ideas.
If you feel that this technique is too difficult you can always just make up a story. The content of your talk does not actually matter. IELTS is an English test and what you decide to talk about is not being marked.
Your biggest enemies in IELTS speaking part 2 are hesitancy and too much self correction, if you worry too much about making mistakes then your confidence will suffer which will then cause your fluency to suffer.