IELTS Speaking: Advanced Strategies for Difficult Questions


If you don’t understand find out the answer to this question and more in this IELTS speaking advanced strategies for difficult questions

First, let’s take a look at some…

Common Speaking Problems

A common speaking problem that IELTS candidates have…

1. You don’t understand the que.
2. You need more time to think of an answer.
3. You understand the question but can’t think of an answer.

This three big problems but no problem anymore.

IELTS Speaking: Advanced Strategies

Can you guess what it is I’ll tell you what it is?

The IELTS speaking advanced strategies is to answer the question. If you can answer the question you don’t need to use any of these strategies. So whenever possible be ready to answer the question. However, sometimes life is not that easy the IELTS speaking exams are not that easy and for these times this advanced strategies will help you.

If You Don’t Understand the Que…

What should you say in…

Speaking Part 1

The examiner can’t rephrase the question, but they can repeat it. so you could say “sorry, could you repeat that question please?”, or…

  • “Sorry, could you say that again?”, or…
  • “Sorry, I missed that part. Could you repeat the question?” (for long questions).

Speaking Part 2

The examiner can’t help you. But you should be able to understand the questions for speaking part 2 – and you have the card with the questions.

Speaking Part 3

The examiner can rephrase the question.

  • so you could say “Sorry, would you be able to rephrase that question?” or
  • “Sorry, would you be able to say that question in a different way?”.

All right but my advice you know in all three parts, don’t get stuck on any questions. If you still don’t understand what the question is just try your best to answer the question and get ready for the next one.

You don’t want to lose your focus or get nervous just because you don’t understand a little bit. So, If you don’t understand try your best and then get ready for the next question.

If you need more time to think some of these questions are difficult some of them you can’t answer instantly. Even, I can’t answer every question instantly but is true some of these questions are pretty difficult.

However, there are some strategies you can use first for…

Speaking Part 1

These questions are usually easier, so repeating the question and using short hesitation markers is probably your best strategy. Of course, it’s best to answer these without hesitation if you can.

Now a hesitation marker is something that you say when you’re not quite sure.

For example, we have

“What kind of work am I doing? Actually, … “, or…
“My family? Well, …”, or…
“Let’s see, …”

and then you give your answer you don’t want to pause too long especially for these part one questions but a small pause or rephrasing the question is repeating the question is very very common even for native speakers don’t do it every question but you can definitely use it sometimes.

Speaking Part 2

You have one minute to prepare and you can write some notes if you want to and good that’s the only advice I have for this.

Speaking Part 3

These questions are longer and more difficult, so you can use different hesitation markers. Repeat the question yourself is also a good strategy.

For example: If the examiner asks you what are some of the ways that people commute in your country. You can Say…
“Hmmm, some ways that people commute in my country, well…”
“Then you can give your answer or you could say that’s a really interesting question…”

Now some IELTS teachers will say oh don’t say this he everybody says this okay. If it’s a really interesting question and some of them are in speaking part one. Usually, there aren’t any really interesting questions. There like so do you study or do you work. No, it’s not an interesting question that’s a normal question but for speaking part three there are some really interesting questions. So, it’s okay to use this phrase for speaking part three.

and then the last one I’ve never thought about this before but I think and then you can give your answer sometimes I really haven’t thought about a question before and you probably haven’t either so you can use this phrase for those kinds of questions and again you don’t want to use these after every question but they’re definitely ok sometimes and finally.

If You Understand But Can’t Answer the Question…

Speaking Part 1

You should be able to answer the questions. If you need to make something up, do it.

For example: What’s your favourite movie? “My favourite movie? Well, I really liked the ‘Titanic’. It was such a moving film.”

It was the first movie that I thought of when I was answering or making this presentation. So, you can just make something up it’s not that difficult try not to choose something crazy but if you can’t really think of anything then just make something up that means to create your own idea and your own answer.

Speaking Part 2

Sometimes you may need to make something up now this is a little bit more difficult than speaking part one. Try to choose an area or a thing that’s easy for you to talk about perhaps you can think of something that’s very closely related.

For example:
Favourite Smartphone App: “Actually I don’t have a smartphone, but I know Facebook is available on smartphones so I probably say that on Facebook…”

You can do this and then you can talk for two minutes about Facebook and what it probably is on a smartphone I’m sure anyone can think of something slightly related YouTube you’re watching YouTube you could talk about YouTube that’s another good idea.

Body of Water: “to be honest, I haven’t been to the ocean since I was five so my memory of the time isn’t too great, but…”

and then you could talk a little bit about what you remember about your trip to the ocean or whatever. You think the ocean will be like you’re just kind of making up a story. If you say you haven’t been there since you are five then I think the examiner will understand you know you don’t have a super good memory of it and if you can still give the story or give this talk in fluent English. You’ll still get a great score for your IELTS speaking. The key is to remain relaxed and try to give the best answer you can.

Speaking Part 3

First, try to have the examiner rephrase the question. If you still don’t know, where you still can’t answer do your best to answer anyway or answer something very closely related.

For example: “How easy is it to find a home in your country? I’ve actually lived in five different countries but I can talk about this one.”

If they ask you which do you think are more interesting reading novels or factual books you could say “Honestly I don’t like reading novels or factual books, but if I had to choose, I suppose novels because…”

Now it doesn’t matter if you don’t like reading or if you like reading. You just have to choose something they just want to hear. You’re fluent speech you don’t have to be a genius or super smart to get a good score on IELTS speaking.

You have to be a fluent speaker. You have to have strong grammar good pronunciation and accurate and precise vocabulary with good collocations that are more important than having super-intelligent amazing answers.

So, these are the three strategies that you can use and finally my advice sometimes there will be questions that you can’t answer directly. Try to find a way to answer these questions that’s as close to the original as possible but don’t worry. If you can’t answer everything correctly keeping calm is super important.

We’ve learned today for responding number one If you don’t understand the question. Number two, If you need more time to think and number three, If you understand but can’t answer directly.


Read More:

IELTS Speaking Test Sample with Answers