Introduction to the list of current Part 1 topics and questions
topics and questions were found by searching the internet, especially the
bulletin boards at 51ielts.com, cnielts.com and 3gielts.com.
most of the information from these bulletin boards is in Chinese, and since
some candidates report their questions in poor English, I cannot always be
sure of the exact English wording of the questions. But I can make a
reasonably good guess at the wording of the questions because I am a former
topics and questions will almost certainly remain the same until the final
test of this 4-month period. HOWEVER, in the period September
2 to December 16, 2006 the test administrators in China sometimes suddenly
used one of the old sets of Part 1 questions (sets of
questions used earlier in 2006) for a test weekend at some test centres.
This happened at Guangzhou on two test weekends, and at Shenzhen, Xiamen and
Changsha once each. (The reason for this was probably because the British
Council feels that too many candidates are giving answers that are obviously
completely memorized.) Therefore, even though you have over a 90% chance of
getting some of the questions that are listed as the current Part 1
questions, it is still a good idea to take a look at all of the Part 1
questions that were used throughout 2006. We don't know when, and at which
exam centre the British Council might decide to suddenly use an old set of
Part 1 questions. These old Part 1 questions can be found HERE.
four introductory questions at the beginning of Part 1 are standard, that
is, they are the same for every candidate and they continue to be the same
questions even when the topics and questions for Part 1 change every four
months. (But this situation could change in the future.)
Part 1, the examiner reads the questions from a
question book (or speaks them from memory). In Part 1, the examiners cannot
make their own questions nor can they change the words of the questions
although they are allowed to make minor changes to suit the particular
circumstances of a candidate.
questions are written in British English so even an American or Canadian
examiner must ask the questions using these words. (But you may answer using
American English words and expressions.)
the four introductory questions, the examiner has to choose 3 topics, out of
10 topics in his or her question book and should ask you about 4 questions
for each topic.
topic in the examiner’s question book has a choice of about 6 questions,
which are not really related to each other except that they fall under the
same topic. Some of these questions are harder than the others – in fact,
the hardest ones are usually similar to Part 3 questions. The examiner has
freedom to choose which questions to ask you; usually he or she will only
ask you one of the harder questions if the examiner feels you might be a
Band 6 or above.
my list of questions, you will find that there are many more than 6
different questions for some topics. This is because people who post on the
internet bulletin boards are not always exact in the way they report the
questions and I sometimes include several different questions in the list
that are quite similar. If you get one of these questions, you will almost
certainly not get another question that is very close in meaning to that
one. The list of questions also has more than 6 questions per
topic because I include almost everything that people post on the internet
as one of their Part 1 questions (as long as it is not an obvious Part 2 or
In addition, I sometimes include questions that I guess might be in the
test. This is because, as a former examiner, I have a pretty good idea of
the kind of questions that the IELTS test makers like to use. These guesses
are marked with an asterisk (*). I especially make these guesses when I know
one of the topics but have not been able to find many questions on the internet.
If candidates report their questions very
unclearly on the internet and I am confused about what they mean, I also use
an * to show that this question, as it is written, might be in the test.
- Obviously, I can only include questions in the list that I
find on the internet and, of course, only some candidates report their questions
on the internet. On top of that, some examiners might rarely or never choose
some of the questions in their question book. Therefore, a
rarely used question might not appear in my list of current Part 1 questions
until many weeks after the beginning of this 4-month period.
further general information about Part 1, go to the Summary
of the Speaking Test.