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IELTS speaking test grammar

Grammar is a huge area with tons of books dedicated to it. If you are taking an IELTS exam in the near future you may not have a lot of time to work on grammar. The best ways to improve your grammar score are to reduce the number of errors you make and also use a variety of sentence types. Looking below at the grading criteria for grammar makes this clear.

 

Criteria for grammar

                          7

                    8

flexibly uses a range of complex structures uses a wide range of structures
frequently produces error-free sentences, most sentences are error-free with only very occasional inappropriacies that are not repeated

 

This section focuses on some ways to use complex sentence structures and then on explaining a few of the types of grammatical errors that commonly occur when people speak.

 

Develop ways of using complex sentences:

Complex sentences are sentences that include an independent and dependent clause. Two excellent ways to form these are to use conditionals [phrases] and relative clauses [who, which, that, where]. To read about the rules and do some quizzes go here:

http://www.ieltsanswers.com/IELTS-Grammar.html

 

Conditional sentences:

A conditional sentence is a complex sentence structure used to talk about something that occurs only if something else happens. The condition may be something real or imagined, and the result could be a definite result, or just a possible result. Conditionals are a useful way of forming complex sentences, which can boost your grammar score. Another reason why I teach candidates to use them is because they can be easily noticed by an examiner, due to the word if. If sends a signal to the examiner that a conditional is being used.

 

There are two clauses to a conditional sentence:

One part is the if clause. This is the event that needs to occur. It is a dependent clause because it is not a complete sentence and is dependent on the other part of the sentence.

The second part is the result or main clause, or what happens when the event in theif clause occurs. The result clause is an independent clause because it can stand on its own as a sentence. The dependent and independent clauses can be spoken in any order, as shown below:

If I have holidays, I go to Australia. [A comma as needed when the dependent clause comes first]

I go to Australia if I have holidays. [No comma]

 

Summary of conditions;

 

            Usage

                              Example

0

facts and opinions

If I have holidays,                   I go to the UK.

 present tense,                      present tense

1

likely outcomes

If I have enough days off,    I will go to the UK.

present tense                         future tense

2

unlikely outcomes or imagined situations

If I won the lottery,              I would go to the UK.

 past tense                               would

3

past situations that didn’t occur

If I had had enough time,    I would have gone the UK.

 past perfect tense                   would have

Note: To read more about the rules about conditionals and do some quizzes go here:http://www.ieltsanswers.com/grammar-ielts.html

 

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