Updated Jun 25, 2011


Part 1 Topics and Questions

For The IELTS Speaking Tests, January - April, 2011

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1.  Your Work or Your Studies  C

  • Do you work or are you a student? C


1a) Your Work  C

 See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 1b. Your Work

General Description of Your Job

  • What job (or, what work) do you do? C
  • What is the nature of that work?  NC
  • (Similar to above) What do you do in that job? NC
  • Why did you choose to do that job (or, that kind of work)?
  • Is that a popular choice of career in your country?
  • What skills do you need for that job?
  • (Similar to above) What qualities do people need to have to do that job? N
  • Would you say your job (or, your work) is very important? NC  (See Note)
  • (Similar to above) Is your job (or, your work) very important in your country? N  (See Note)

Finding a Job

  • How did you get that job?
  • Was it easy to get that job?
  • Is it easy (for other people in your country) to find work doing your job? C
  • (Similar to above) Is it easy to get such a job?
  • (Similar to above) In your country, is it easy for people to find a job?
  • Where do people get information about jobs, from newspaper or from TV?
  • Are there other ways for people to get information about jobs?

Feelings about the Job

  • Do you like (or, enjoy) your job (or, your work)? C
  • (Similar to above) How do you like your current job?
  • Do you often meet new people in your job? N
  • Which do you enjoy more, communicating with people at work, or the work itself? N
  • (Perhaps the question above is this) Which is more important to you, co-operating with others at work, or the work itself? N 
  • (Similar to above) Which is more important to you, the work you do or your colleagues (the people you work with/ your workmates)? NC  (See Note)
  • Which do you enjoy more, working or studying?
  • What do you like about your work?
  • (Similar to above) What's the best thing about your job?
  • Do you think it's very important for people to do a job that they like (or, a job that they are interested in)?
  • Is your work very easy to do? C
  • What's the most difficult part of your job? N
  • Would you like to change your job?  (See Note)
  • What other job do you think you would enjoy, apart from your present job?
  • (Similar to above) If you had a choice, what would be your ideal job?
  • (Similar to above) If you had to change your career, what other job would you choose?


  • Is your work very interesting? NC
  • What's the most interesting aspect of your work? NC
  • (Possibly)  What's the most interesting thing about your work? N


1b) Your Studies  C

 See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 1a. Your Studies

Note: For high school students or recent high school graduates who have not yet started university, the word "school" or the words, "high school" or "secondary school" will be used instead of "university". If you are no longer a student now and have not yet started to work, the questions will be about the last time you were a student, either high school or university, and the questions will be asked in the past tense.

General Description of Your Studies

  • What subject(s) are you studying? (Plural for high school students) C
  • Why did you choose to study that subject? C
  • (For high school) Why did you choose those subjects?
  • Do you like ______ (your subject)? C
  • Is that a popular subject (to study) in your country? C
  • Would you say your subject is important? (How important?) NC (See Note)
  • (Similar to above) Is your subject very important in your country?  N (See Note)
  • How do you think this subject is useful? N
  • How do you think your subject will help you (or, benefit you) in the future? N
  • (Similar to above) Do you think this subject has good prospects for the future? C

Liking Your Subject

  • Do you like your subject? (Why?/Why not?) NC
  • What do you like most about it? N
  • (For High school students) What subject (or, subjects) do you like the most? NC


  • Would you say that's an easy subject to study? N


  • Is your subject interesting? (Why?/Why not?)
  • (Similar to above) What's the most interesting part of your subject?
  • (Similar to above) What's the most interesting part of your studies?
  • (Similar to above) For you, what's the most interesting part (or subject or class) of your course? C
  • (Similar to above) For you, what's the best part (or subject or class) of your course? N
  • (For high school) What's the most interesting of your subjects at school?
  • Do you think it's important to choose a subject you are interested in (or, a subject you like)? (Why?/Why not?) C

Future Work

  • What are your future work plans? (after you graduate)

  • (Similar to above) What do you plan (or, do you want) to do after you finish your course? 

  • (Similar to above) What work would you like to do after you finish your studies?

  • Do you think what you are studying now will be very useful (or, relevant or, important) for this type of work?

  • Do you think you will be able to easily find work in the future after studying _______ (your subject)? NC

  • How will you (or, how do you plan to) get the job you want?

  • Do you think it will be easy to find that kind of work?

  • (Similar to above) Do you think it will be easy to find that kind of work (without help)?

  • (Similar to above) Do you think it will be easy to find work (or, find a job) after you graduate?

  • (Similar to above)  Is it easy to find a job with this major?

Being a Student

First Day


2Your Hometown  C

  See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 3. Your Hometown  


– Your 'hometown' is the place where you grew up, not necessarily the place where you were born or your ancestral family location.

– Don’t say your hometown is “Henan” or some other province. That is your home province, not your home town.

– Sometimes the questions below are used not for your hometown but for the place where you are living now, even if the word, "hometown" is used in a question below.

      – Several questions here are similar because there is more than one set of questions for the topic, "Your Hometown".

The Place


The History of Your Hometown


House or Flat

Free Time Activities in Your Hometown

Your Feelings about the Place


3.  Your Home (Your Accommodation)  

No questions yet. The topic has not been reported yet.


4.  Flying  C (= 坐飞机,乘飞机) = "Air Travel"

  • Have you ever traveled by (= flown in a) plane? (If yes, when, where did you go?) C

  • (Similar to above) Do you often travel by aeroplane? C

  • (Similar to above) Do you often travel by air? (To where?) C

  • When was the last time you traveled by air? N

  • Did you like it (like flying)? C  (Possibly "Do you like it?" if you say you often fly.)

  • (Similar to above) Do you think it's a good way to travel? N

  • (Similar to above) What are the advantages of traveling by air? NC

  • How does flying compare to other forms of transport?

  • Would you like to travel by plane again?

  • Do people travel by air more today than in the past? N

  • Do you think there will be more people traveling by air in the future?

  • (Similar to above) Do you think air travel will become more popular in the future? C

  • Do you think you will fly (or, be flying) less, or more, in the future? N

  • Do you have any plans to travel by air in the future? (If yes: Where will you be going?) N  (See Note)

  • If you travel by plane again, where do you think you will go (or, you will be going)?

  • (Similar to above) In the future, where would you like to travel to by plane? C


5.  Museums  C


6.  News  C

        See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 55. News


7.  Dancing  C

        See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 10. Dance



8.  Books & Reading  C

        See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 32. Reading


9.  The Ocean  (大海)  C


10.  Meeting People  C

        See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 16. Friends

Note 1: The word, "meet" can mean "meet someone for the first time" or alternatively, "get together with someone such as a friend or congregate with a group". It is possible that both of these different meanings are used here, in different questions. For example, "Where did you meet your friends?" means "Where and how did you first meet them?" but "Where do you meet your friends?" means, "Where do you usually (or habitually) get together with your friends?" So, some of the questions here might be wrong. For example, "Where do you go to meet (or make) new friends?" does not seem correct because most people don't habitually or frequently go somewhere in order to find new friends. (If they did, it would mean that they can't find or can't keep friends!) But if the emphasis is just on meeting people, not on making new friends, then the question, "Where do you meet new people?" (= "Where do you come across new people?) is logical.

It is not too clear what some of these questions are, so pay close attention to the exact words of the examiner.

Note 2: Just because most of these questions here do not have a C after them does not mean that these questions are no good. It just means that almost everyone who reports these questions on the internet is confused! I believe the questions below are the most likely real questions for this topic. My full collection of (sometimes confused) reported questions for this topic is HERE.

In the questions below, "meet" means, "come together with". Sometimes we say, "meet with someone" = "meet someone". The second question here, "Where do young people in your country meet (= meet with each other)?" includes the idea that these places provide an opportunity for young people to make friends if many young people go to these places, but the question is not specifically asking about making new friends.


11.  Your Daily Routine  C

        See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 9. Daily Routine


12.  Emails and Letters  C

        See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 22. Letters and Emails


13.  Animals  C

Although the topic of "Animals" was used before January 2011, it seems that several of the questions being used now were new after January.



Farm Animals and Wild Animals


14.  Leisure Time  C

    See also All Part 1 Questions 21. Leisure Time & Relaxing


15.  Sport  C

        See also All Part 1 Questions 35. Sport/Exercise


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