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Past IELTS Papers

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Past IELTS Papers

Recent IELTS Exam writing and Speaking topics

Cue Card 1

Talk about a situation when you saved some money. Please say

  •   What was the reason?
  •   How long did it take to save this money?
  •   Who helped you with saving it?

And what did you do with it?

Discussion

  •   Do you think nowadays youth believe in saving money?
  •   Are women better at saving money than men?
  •   Do you save money? Why?

Cue Card 2

Describe a situation when you forgot about an important meeting. Please say

  •   What meeting was it?
  •   When was it?
  •   What did you do about it?

and explain How did you feel later?

Discussion

  •   Is human memory important nowadays?
  •   Can electronic devices such as smart phones replace human memory?

Cue Card 3

Describe a person who taught you how to do something useful such as using computer, math etc.

Please say :

  •   Who this person was
  •   What he taught you
  •   How he taught you about it

and explain how this skill has been useful for you

Discussion

  •   Do you still do this skill?
  •   What are some of the things that young chidden team from their parents ?
  •   What are ways of teaching young children to behave well ?
  •   What is the difference in skills learned in a class and skills learned in the workplace
  •   Do you think that there are certain skills that people are born with that cannot be learned

Cue Card 4

Talk about a meal that you would like to have. Please say

  •   Where would it be?
  •   What kind of food would you choose?
  •   Who would you share it with?

Discussion

  •   Why is this meal so special to you?
  •   Do you like meals cooked at home better than at a restaurant?
  •   Do you think that meal cooked at home will be safer than one cooked outside?
  •   Do you think the quality of food depends on its price?
  •   What is the difference between children’s and adults’ choice of food?
  •   Should government have strict food safety regulations?

Cue Card 5

Describe a photo that you like. Please say

  •   Where was the photo taken?
  •   Who took the photo?
  •   What was on that photograph?

Discussion

  •   Do you like taking photos?
  •   What are the similarities between photographs and paintings?
  •   How much can we trust photographs presented by journalists?
  •   What is the role of photographs in the newspapers?

Cue Card 6

Describe a situation when people congratulated you on something you had done well. Please say:

  •   What was the situation?
  •   How they came to know about it ?
  •   What they told you ?
  •   How you felt when they congratulated you about your achievement?

Discussion

  •   What are the main types of occasion when people congratulate others ?
  •   What are the different ways in which people offer congratulations ?
  •   What do you think is the role public recognition has in motivating people to succeed ?
  •   What is the role of competition in raising levels of individual achievement ?
  •   Do you think that levels of human achievement are only raised when nations cooperate ?

Cue Card 7

Describe something kind that someone did for you. You should say :

  •   who was this person
  •   where and when it happened
  •   what they did for you
  •   How you felt about it ?

Discussion

  •   In what ways friends and colleagues could be more kind to each other
  •   In your view how useful voluntary unpaid work is to society
  •   Describe what are the responsibilities of businesses towards their local communities
  •   Do you think that businesses only sponsor social projects to get good marketing leverage ?

Cue Card 8

Describe a country that you have some information about (not your own country) Please say

  •   How did you know about it?
  •   What do you think about it?
  •   Would you enjoy living there?

Discussion

  •   What do you think about tourism?
  •   What are the advantages for the host country?
  •   Does living in a foreign country have any disadvantages?
  •   Why do people choose to live or work abroad?
  •   Compare travelling and living abroad with your home country

Cue Card 9

Describe something that you bought from a store (an item that you like a lot). Please say

  •   What was it?
  •   Where did you buy it?
  •   How did you install it?
  •   How do you use it?

Discussion

  •   How do TV and electronic devices affect our life?
  •   What makes people buy new smart phones?
  •   Is it showing their status or are they just technology fans?
  •   What were previous generations doing without electronics?
  •   Why are computers necessary at every workplace these days?
  •   What will happen if something goes wrong with the computer systems, as every company is dependent on them nowadays?

Cue Card 10

Talk about your favourite program that you always watch on TV. Please say

  •   What program is it?
  •   What is it about?
  •   What do you like or dislike about this program?

Discussion

  •   What types of programs are shown in your country on daily basis?
  •   Why do you think there is an increase of international programs on local channels nowadays?
  •   What do you think is the effect of 24 hour news like CNN and BBC on the society?

Cue Card 11

Talk about a meal or a picnic that you had recently. Please say

  •   What was the occasion?
  •   What did you drink and eat?
  •   Have you enjoyed it? Why?

Discussion

  •   Do you think we should preserve our traditional foods?
  •   Do you cook by yourself?
  •   Does media help to spread the culinary culture among us?
  •   What needs to be done for certain foods and culture to spread in the world?

Cue Card 12

Explain something you did that helped you to learn another language. Please say :

  •   What you did
  •   Where you did it
  •   Who you did it with
  •   Explain how it helped you to learn another language

Discussion

  •   What are the benefits of learning a foreign language
  •   Do you think speaking other languages is more important today than it used to be in the past
  •   Why particular languages becomes dominant ?
  •   What is the impact of having dominant global language

Cue Card 13

Describe an outdoor activity that you would like to try for the first time. Please say

  •   What is it?
  •   When and where would you do it?
  •   What preparations and equipment would you need?

Discussion

  •   What do you think about extreme sports like skydiving?
  •   Would you encourage youth to do extreme sports?
  •   What are the advantages of physical activities?
  •   How would you encourage people to be physically active?

Cue card 14

Talk about an important person you know. You should say

  •   What they do
  •   Where they are
  •   How they help people
  •   Why you consider them important.

Discussion

  •   Does everyone agree with you about that person being important?
  •   Is there any profession which is more important than others?
  •   Should people receive the same salary when they do different jobs?
  •   Do you think some people are in the wrong profession, or in a profession they dislike?
  •   What are some of the reasons why people dislike their professions?
  •   How much writing do you do in a day and why?
  •   Would you be able to write a book?

Cue Card 15

Talk about your neighbor or roommate. Please say

  •   Who is he/she?
  •   When did you meet?
  •   Do you see each other a lot?

Discussion

  •   What is the difference between neighborhood and neighbors?
  •   What are the characteristics of a good neighbor?
  •   What is the difference between a real neighborhood and the one shown on TV?

Cue Card 16

Describe a house or apartment - not your home that you know and like. Please say :

  •   how you know this house or apartment
  •   where it Is
  •   what it looks like

and explain why you like this house or apartment.

Discussion :

  •   Is the appearance of buildings is in a town very important?
  •   Do you think there is need for controls on the design of buildings?
  •   Is maintaining historic buildings not a good idea because it is a waste of public money?
  •   What is the importance of the outdoor spaces in towns such as parks etc?
  •   In your view to what extent urban design solves or creates problems?

Cue Card 17

Describe a job you would like to have. Please say

  •   why you would like to have this job,
  •   what skills you need to do this job, and
  •   Where you think you will be able to get this job.

Discussion

  •   Do you think this job is popular today?
  •   What do people usually pay attention to when they choose a job?
  •   Is it important to achieve work and life balance?
  •   How can this be achieved?
  •   Do you think teamwork is important? Why?
  •   Describe some of the advantages and disadvantages of teamwork

Cue Card 18

Describe a cafe you’ve been to. You should say :

  •   Where this cafe is and what it looks like
  •   Why you went there
  •   What you drank or ate there
  •   What you liked or disliked about this cafe.

Discussion :

  •   What kinds of social events people like to organise in their homes ?
  •   Do you think that you don’t know someone properly till you have visited their home ?
  •   Explain what is the value to an individual nowadays of spending time by himself ?
  •   In your view does technology unites or separates people ?

Cue Card 19

Describe your idea of a perfect vacation away from home. You should say :

  •   Who would you go with
  •   Where will you go
  •   What would you like to do there
  •   Why this will be your perfect vacation

Discussion

  •   Do you think that a good holiday is always expensive
  •   What are the factors people consider when choosing a place for holiday
  •   Is it important to be prepared before travelling in a different culture
  •   Why businesses offer holiday entitlements to its employees
  •   Why some people do not like to take time away from work

Cue Card 20

Describe a foreign culture that you like. Please say

  •   What culture is it?
  •   How did you get to know about this culture?
  •   What do you like in it?

Discussion

  •   What are the advantages of knowing a foreign culture?
  •   Do you think it is necessary to know the language of that culture?
  •   Is it easy to learn a foreign language?
  •   Does learning the language help? How ?
  •   How do you think foreign culture reminds you of your own culture?

Cue Card 21

Describe a toy that you often played with as a Child ?

Please say :

  •   What type of toy it was
  •   How old were you when you had it
  •   Did you play with the toy by yourself or with other kids
  •   Explain how you felt about this particular toy

Discussion

  •   In your view what is the difference in toys which are popular now and that were popular in the past ?
  •   Do you think that children enjoy playing with ordinary household things ?
  •   What people should consider when choosing a toy for a child ?
  •   What is the relationship between the toy industry and children’s films or TV shows
  •   Do you think that toy manufacturers have a responsibility to make their toys educational
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