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Exam tips from Trinity

 

FCE and CAE tips that can come in handy for FCE and CAE-aspiring students

  • The first advice is rather obvious: Practice, Practice, Practice… By this we imply that you have to cover Practice Tests to get to know the structure, general expectations and format of the exam.
  • More importantly – time yourselves. We tend to give ourselves the luxury of interruption, spreading the tasks across a few days or hours. Not anymore. If you want to deftly handle the exam, strictly time yourselves and allocate only the given time. Don’t fool, pity or pamper yourselves as it is easy to overdose on time. Spare yourselves this destiny.
  • The next point is very much laced with the previous ones. Cultivate your resilience by taking few sections of the exam at once. Indeed, the exam itself is a very tough endeavor that takes about 4 hours with small breaks. Sometimes, students find it hard to handle every part one after the other. Build your grittiness in advance. Once a week take at least 3 sections one after the other with small breaks in between.
  • Know the structural requirements for every writing section. Oftentimes students stumble as they do not structure their writings accordingly. Learn the nature of reports, information sheets, proposals and so on. Do not significantly exceed the word limit and double check. As every error in terms of grammar, spelling, word order will reflect badly on the writing of this level. 
  • When checking your writing we generally recommend the students to check first from top to the bottom and vice versa. It shifts the focus and leaves you open to noticing something that escaped you before.
  • If you suddenly lose your concentration at the exam, look for a few seconds at something green (preferably trees in the window) and then back at the task at hand. Psychologists report that it helps to get your focus back. We tried, it really works!
  • Work with our lists of difficult word formation, key word transformation and phrasal verbs religiously. They can be real exam saviors when it comes to challenging tasks.
  • Practice your speaking on pictures in the comfort of your home. Record yourselves and then go through it with the comb to improve your speech delivery at the exam. But remember that you have to keep it as natural as possible.
  • Read such high-brow magazines as the Economist, Independent, Harvard Business Review, the Observer as lots of Use of English tasks are based on articles from those sources.
  • Come to the MOCK – so called dress rehearsal before the exam. It will do you worlds of good. As one secret of the exam success lies in the fact that you will know what it takes, diagnose your inconsistencies and polish those parts which need your extra attention. 

CPE tips that can come in handy for CPE-aspiring students

  • The first advice is rather obvious: Practice, Practice, Practice… By this we imply that you have to cover Practice Tests to get to know the structure, general expectations and format of the exam.
  • More importantly – time yourselves. We tend to give ourselves the luxury of interruption, spreading the tasks across a few days or hours. Not anymore. If you want to deftly handle the exam, strictly time yourselves and allocate only the given time. Don’t fool, pity or pamper yourselves as it is easy to overdose on time. Spare yourselves this destiny.
  • The next point is very much laced with the previous ones. Cultivate your resilience by taking few sections of the exam at once. Indeed, the exam itself is a very tough endeavor that takes about 4 hours with small breaks. Sometimes, students find it hard to handle every part one after the other. Build your grittiness in advance. Once a week take at least 3 sections one after the other with small breaks in between.
  • Know the structural requirements for every writing section. Oftentimes students stumble as they do not structure their writings accordingly. Learn the nature of reports, comparative essays, proposals and so on. Do not significantly exceed the word limit and double check. As every error in terms of grammar, spelling, word order will reflect badly on the writing of this level. 
  • When checking your writing we generally recommend the students to check first from top to the bottom and vice versa. It shifts the focus and leaves you open to noticing something that escaped you before.
  • If you suddenly lose your concentration at the exam, look for a few seconds at something green (preferably trees in the window) and then back at the task at hand. Psychologists report that it helps to get your focus back. We tried, it really works!
  • Work with our lists of difficult word formation, key word transformation and phrasal verbs religiously. They can be real exam saviors when it comes to challenging tasks.
  • Practice your speaking on pictures in the comfort of your home. Record yourselves and then go through it with the comb to improve your speech delivery at the exam. But remember that you have to keep it as natural as possible.
  • Read such high-brow magazines as the Economist, Independent, Harvard Business Review, the Observer as lots of Use of English tasks are based on articles from those sources.
  • Come to the MOCK – so called dress rehearsal before the exam. It will do you worlds of good. As one secret of the exam success lies in the fact that you will know what it takes, diagnose your inconsistencies and polish those parts which need your extra attention. !!!!!

TOEFL TIPS

  • TOEFL is an academic American exam which is generally a check of a student’s knowledge in English and the main thing here is to be aware of the format of TOEFL, so the whole process of preparation lies within the format tasks.
  • The next point one should know is to be time-efficient. This exam is strictly limited in terms of timing, so to gain good results one should practice all parts with timing.
  • Some students experience the disturbance of other students taking the exam at the same time in the same room, so it is vital to practice exam tasks with some noise while you are at home (eg blurring TV, radio). Talk shows are especially helpful)))
  • Some questions from speaking and writing sections are typical and standard for example the question of a role model in life or what historic personality inspires you, thus  having some standard answers at your sleeve will undoubtedly come in handy. The list of typical topics is available at the official website http://www.ets.org/toefl or at our school.
  • The majority of TOEFL students come across the problem of lack of English speaking practice ,especially when a student has to meet a deadline and is short of time, in this case we advise to follow the below listed links to find speaking partners throughout the world and take advantage of this free service
  • Above all it is of importance to have a systematic approach to your practice; once you have a break some skills can be lost.
  • Since TOEFL is an academic exam one’s vocabulary should be of the same level, vocabulary practice must take place on a daily basis.
  • One’s perfect grammar is an indispensable part of success here, so when a teacher gives you some grammatical material or exercises don’t think that since it is not the part of the exam it is unnecessary, vise versa it will polish one’s skills and will bear a fruit eventually.
  • If a student’s level is not that high and listening skills leave much to be desired one should start with easy steps, listen to your favorite English songs with lyrics then without and over and over again until you hear  words distinctly and clearly
  • To tackle reading it is significant to firstly understand the format of each type of questions, for that a student is to practice a lot on their own in order to come up with one’s individual approach to reading.
  • And the final tip, one should know that TOEFL is challenging and complicated but quite plausible! Even if you feel that it is too much you should know that it is just a matter of familiarity and once you get it you will love it!

BEC Higher/Vantage tips that can come in handy for BEC-aspiring students

  • In order to get an A in this particular exam you don’t really need to be a shrewd economist or an expert in finance.  You can breathe the sigh of relief because it only takes good command of English and basic terminology in business spheres.  Your task is to nourish these two domains by learning and practicing as much as possible. 
  • First, vocabulary. Taking a preparation course can do you a world of good. In this way you enhance your knowledge of business terminology, boost your general vocabulary and polish your skills not only in speaking, but also in writing, listening and reading. 
  • Second, practice tests. Don’t spare yourself the pleasure and challenge of cracking a lot of practice tests. This will help you to understand the exam structure, uncover the tricky moments that one can come across and, most importantly, tap into the pace of the exam by constantly timing yourself during the sections. Taking our MOCK exam can help you to get the drift of BEC exam system as a whole. 
  • Now let’s dip into more details and speak about each part on its own.  When it comes to ‘reading’, you may find reviewing some business magazines as the Economist, Independent and Harvard Business Review extremely useful.  An article, for example, from Financial Times could delightfully appear in your exam reading section. 
  • Concerning listening skills, BBC, CNN or any other English speaking news channel may help you to tune in to the British accent and intonation, let alone the vocabulary. This will help you to quickly and easily identify the key words during your listening section.
  • To craft a better writing, you need to be fully aware of the structure requirements for each type of tasks, such as report, proposal, letter etc.  Also, a special attention must be given to grammar, vocabulary and time limit. As every error in terms of grammar, spelling, word order will reflect badly on the writing of this level. It’s highly recommended to read some writing samples and the examiners comment that you can usually find at the end of each practice test.
  • For many students speaking comes as the most frightening part. The only reason for this reluctance is the fear of making mistakes. Well, during your preparation please make sure you make as many mistakes as possible. Since this is a well trodden path to learn. Speak out, develop self confidence and make sure that you are armed with needed structure and vocabulary, be yourself and you are ready to enchant the examiner with your speech.
  • Finally, if you aim, aim high. Set your mind and heart on getting the best result and reaping the benefits from your learning. Thus, don’t let a day pass without indulging in one of the business English parts. Let your list of vocabulary be the last thing you read before you sleep and the first thing you look at when you wake up. In this way, the information is stored in your subconscious too. And above all, keep your spirit high and belief firm.
  • You can receive a consultation from one of our experts at Trinity education Group who can share their insights and experience applicable to your own case.

 

Useful tips for students taking IELTS

  • Understanding the format is your key to success. Make sure you know which IELTS you need – ACADEMIC or GENERAL, because there is a differenceJ Academic is usually taken for higher educational establishments, while general is your ticket to immigration. And find out the necessary band, because it matters as well. The higher the desired band is, the more practice you will need.
  • Never leave empty spaces in the answer sheet during your exam! It is your motto, credo and so on and so forth when it comes to IELTS, because even if you have doubts or hesitation, you have to make an effort. As the experience of my students and mine shows, your guess can bring you a point. It’s just like one of the life’s principles – it’s always better to try something than to regret not trying.
  • Always remember about timing! Unfortunately you don’t have a whale of a time, when it comes to IELTS. That is why work on your 1 hour – 3 texts set and 1 hour – 2 writings one, because as the research of the British Council shows – the majority of the mistakes and losses in points are due to the poor time management.
  • Watch your spelling, because in IELTS it’s a deal-breaker. Even if you heard the right word, spelling it in a wrong way will bring you zero points when it comes to listening. Both reading and writing also have CORRECT spelling on the check-list of the top band.
  • Remember to trust common sense and logics. A lot of IELTS takers make mistakes in the sections because they don’t reread the whole sentences after choosing the answer.
  • When it comes to speaking and writing, remember to be diplomatic. Being categorical will get you nowhere and you can lose your temper and precious points on that way as well.
  • And the last but not the least – PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT –and this Is not just a saying. In IELTS it’s a drill to follow if you see yourself studying or living abroad.  

 

ЗНО советы:

  • Вам нужно тренировать аудирование. Для этого необходимо как можно больше слушать английскую речь и привыкать к разным вариантам произношения. Вы можете смотреть любимые сериалы и фильмы, слушать  песни, смотреть разные интересные видео, но только НА АНГЛИЙСКОМ.
  • Учите устойчивые словосочетания (collocations).Например,  “make some tea” , а не “do some tea”. Эти знания пригодятся вам в части, которая называется Use of English.
  • Лучшее – враг  хорошего. Это коротко о том, что вам нужно избегать в части Writing.Теперь поподробнее. Вам нужно научиться писать и правильно оформлять письма на английском  языке, при этом выполнив требования экзаменационного задания. Как только вы это освоите, может появиться желание использовать более сложные слова и грамматические структуры. Но помните, ваша задача именно на этом этапе уже не заработать баллы, а не потерять их. Поэтому на экзамене лучше использовать только те обороты и структуры, в которых вы уверены на 100 процентов.
  • Постарайтесь поместить ваше письмо на одной странице. Вы же хотите быть уверены, что вашу работу прочтут полностью. Так образом вы не будете переживать, что часть вашего письма может остаться непроверенной. Человеческий фактор никто не отменял.

SAT/ACT

  • Never leave the task unanswered. Even if you have absolutely no idea how to solve the assignment – take a guess! There is at least 25% chance to get lucky. On the other hand, do not overuse it. Guessing is your last resort option, not the main strategy.
  • Elimination is always an option. If you cannot choose the right variant – take out the wrong ones! Even if you do not reduce the number of possible answers to one, the probability to guess the correct answer would be higher.
  • In reading section, always pay attention to context. Your understanding of the text as a whole is necessary to succeed. Without it, you risk falling into one of the traps, carefully placed by the authors among the answer choices.
  • Read the passage first. There is a number of guides that tell you to look through the text, or jump straight to the questions, but that is one of the most dangerous things to do. If you skip a sentence while reading, there is always a possibility that exactly this one sentence will be critically important to answer the question correctly. In the test where each question can give you 10-20 points, such risk is unnecessary.
  • In writing and language section sometimes you will see tasks with two grammatically correct answer choices. In such situation, pick the shorter one.
  • Be prepared for math sections. SAT and ACT use a set of topics to form the questions. For anyone interested in getting a high score, there is no other way but to study every single one of those topics. Only when you are done with the basics, you can continue preparation with the more advanced materials. 

GRE

  • Vocabulary is your best friend forever here.  Seriously, if you wish to pass this test with excellent results, you should learn the words while you work, eat, sleep or pray. Some of the words you will learn are useful, some are cool and some you will never ever use outside of GRE test center – but I can guarantee you the exercise for your brain it will not forget very soon.
  • Learn the mathematical terminology. Even if you have a degree in math, until you know the necessary words and expressions in English, you will not be able to solve most of them.
  • Practice your timing. Even the best students sometimes take some time to solve GRE tasks – yes, it is that hard. To answer everything on time, train your time management in advance.
  • Practice a full-length test at least once. While you may be familiar with the tasks and the timings, a complete GRE test lasts almost 4 hours – and that is a challenging length both physically and mentally. Preparing yourself for this pressure in advance is a great idea, especially if you tend to get nervous before the exams.

GMAT

  • Unlike GRE, GMAT focuses on your comprehension of the text or paragraph as a whole, instead of vocabulary. One of the best ways of preparation for the verbal part is reading sci-pop literature or certain press titles, such as The New Yorker, The New York Times, etc.
  • Research the information diligently. GMAT is one of the most mythologized tests out there – you can find theories that 10 first questions are vitally important, that your math score does not matter much, that the Essay and Integrated reasoning sections are useless – all of them are born from misconceptions, as GMAT scoring mechanism is even more obscure than those of other similar exams. Do your research carefully and trust only the official GMAC sources.
  • Practice a lot. GMAT is complicated, but the tasks are, overall, typical. As soon as you memorise the pattern, the exam becomes much easier and quicker to ace.

 

 


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You can receive a consultation from one of our experts who can share their insights and experience applicable to your own case.