You can download or listen to the audio version here:
In this tutorial you will learn:
- New successful systems, goals and habits
- Practical strategies for passing the IELTS exam
- What to do before every study session (this improves your focus dramatically).
In this tutorial, we’ll look at some very practical strategies for your IELTS preparation. These are especially good for the IELTS writing section but the systems and habits apply to the other sections too. Most importantly we’re going to look at goal-setting for 2020.
Let’s first look at the systems and habits that you can adopt to achieve your SMART goals. What are SMART goals? SMART is an acronym and it stands for specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. So, for example, there is a small problem if your goal is “I want to get better IELTS results”. The goal is not very specific. It’s definitely not measurable. It’s probably achievable. It’s realistic I guess and timely. Well, it’s not very timely because there’s no deadline.
However, if you say “I would like to improve my grammar in the next 30 days” or “I would like to improve my grammar to band 7” or “I would like to get full control of articles”. We know exactly what it is that we have set out to achieve. You may, however, want to define what full control means so that your goal is really SMART.
2.SYSTEMS AND HABITS
Now, let’s have a look at possible systems and habits that you can adopt for preparing for IELTS. So, you’ve got practice blocked out in your diary. Ideally, you would have something like “do IELTS listening test” or “prepare for IELTS writing”. You want to take away the friction to make the achievement of the goal as easy as possible. You are much more likely to complete the task of it is imminently achievable.
So, set yourself a goal something like the following; “I’m going to write out five English phrases from the C2 template every single day.” Now, you know exactly what to do when you sit down to practice.
Now, you’ve created one habit that you can adopt. This is one daily routine that will not only help you with your language skills but also your exam skills. Here are some other strategies. You could listen to a podcast every single day. If you want to take it to the next level, you could transcribe a single podcast every single day. If you do this, make sure that you can compare it to a transcript afterwards just to check for accuracy. This exercise will not only help you to improve your vocabulary you’ll improve your grammar, but you’ll also improve your pronunciation, and you’ll improve your listening ability too. So, this is a very powerful way to improve your language skills. Just make sure that you use authentic native English-speaking material.
If you don’t have the time to transcribe the whole podcast you could summarize one or two that cover C2 topics in the manner of the IELTS essay exam instead. This will help you by filling your brain with ideas.
3.WORK ON YOUR WEAK SPOTS
You must start working on your weak spots. To find these you should do practice tests with feedback. The feedback will offer you valuable information on your English strengths and weaknesses.
The next step is to get organized and get a system in place. The key here is to aim for small wins, to begin with. You should also review what works for you. This is really important. You have to assess if what you do works for you. If you don’t think that you are improving, trust your gut and change course.
4.GET RID OF DISTRACTIONS
When you study, put your phone into flight mode and keep it out of sight. Put headphones on and you’ll find it much easier to make meaningful progress, and do deep work as I call it.
Start each practice session with three questions. What am I trying to accomplish in this session? How will I start? Are there any hazards present, meaning possible interruptions?
To summarise: to reach your goals, first make them SMART i.e. specific, measurable, achievable, realistic, and timely. Try to create a system rather than just goals. If you have a system, then the goals will fall into place.
There are different types of systems: memorize five phrases a day, transcribe a podcast, summarize a podcast, learn about a new topic. Also, find your weak spots by getting feedback. A hint about the system, it’s better to start small and then build it up.
Finally, use technology. Use tools like Google Calendar, any online calendar, focusmate.com and make sure that each session is effective. How do you do that? Well, you answer these three questions. What am I trying to accomplish here? How will I get started? Are there any hazards present?
So, that’s everything from me. Hope you have an amazing 2020 planned and that it’s your year for passing IELTS. We’re here to help you do this. So, let’s do this. Let’s pass IELTS.