Updated Sep. 18, 2010


Part 1 Topics and Questions

For The IELTS Speaking Tests in Mainland China, May - August, 2010




0The four I.D. checking questions.  (Not really part of Part 1)

1.  Your Work or Your Studies

2.  Your Home (Your Accommodation) 

3.  Your Hometown   

One of the three topics above is a compulsory topic and you will be asked about 4 questions on this topic. You will then be asked questions on two of the topics from below. (Again, about 4 questions per topic).   (There's a 50% chance of getting Topic 1 and a 25% change of getting Topic 2 or Topic 3.)

4.  Sounds (Noises)  

5.  Collecting 

6.  Languages

7.  Flowers

8.  Time 

9.  Weather & Seasons

10.  Films

11.  Neighbours

12.  Magazines and Newspapers

13.  Travelling 

14.  Cooking 

15.  Clothes and Fashion

16.  Shopping 

17.  Reading 

18.  Animals  N

19 Colours  N

20.  Food  N

21.  Mobile Phones  N

22.  Leisure Time  N

23.  Sport  N


1. Your Work or Your Studies  C

1a) Your Work  C

 See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 1b. Your Work

General Description of Your Job

Work Training  C  See Notes on this sub-topic

Feelings about the Job


Your First Day at Work  C


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

Family Support for Your Choice


Specific Course Content   

For University Students

  • How do students in your course learn this subject?  See Note

  • (Similar to above) How do you learn this subject?

  • What (specific things) do you learn in your course (in your studies)?

  • (Similar to above) What subjects (classes) do you have in your course (in your studies)?

  • How do you study ________ ? (The examiner chooses one of the subjects in your course)

  • Do you think (all of) those subjects are useful to you?

For High School Students

Liking/Disliking Your Studies     

Easy and Difficult    



Future Work

Further Studies

Your First Day at University (or high school) C

(The word, "university" is probably replaced by the words, "high school" or "secondary school" if you have not been to university yet.)


2.  Your Home (Your Accommodation)  C

 See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 2. Your Home (Your Accommodation)

General Information

Preference: Flat or House        

Surroundings / Neighbourhood / The Location of your Home     


3.  Your 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.

– 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

Your Family


Size / Countryside or City

Your Feelings about the Place

Future Plans


4.  Sounds (Noises)  C

     Also see All Part 1 Questions 26. Noise

     See Note on the meaning and usage of the word, "noise".


5.  Collecting  C

     See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 7. Collecting


6.  Languages C

    See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 20. Languages

    See Notes


7. Flowers  C

    See also All Part 1 Questions 14. Flowers

    See Note on the word, "send"


8.  Time  C    

    See some vocabulary

    See also these Part 3 questions


9.  Weather & Seasons  C

      See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 41. Weather

      See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 46. Seasons


10. Films  C

     See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 13. Films


11.  Neighbours  C

      See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS - Your Neighbours

      See Note


12.  Magazines (and Newspapers)  C

        See also 'All Part 1 Questions' 25. Newspapers


13.  Travelling  C

See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 40. Travel

Almost certainly, this means long distance travelling, not travelling (commuting) to work or school in your city or town. 

The emphasis of this topic seems to be on tourism, although the word "travel" can apply to simply going somewhere, not necessarily as a tourist. For example, you might sometimes make long trips to go from your hometown to another city where you attend university.   


14.   Cooking  C

See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 15. Food and Cooking


15.   Clothes and Fashion  C

See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 6. Clothes

Shopping for Clothes

Wearing Clothes



16.   Shopping  C

See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 34. Shopping


17.   Reading  C

    See Also 'All Part 1 Questions' 32. Reading


18.  Animals  NC

         "Do you like me?"


19.  Colours  NC

        See also All Part 1 Questions: The Colour of Clothes


20.  Food  NC 

    See also ALL_PART_1_QUESTIONS 15. Food and Cooking


21.  Mobile Phones  N

    See also All Part 1 Questions 37. Telephones


22.  Leisure Time  NC

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


23.   Sport  N

        See also All Part 1 Questions 35. Sport/Exercise