en English

Category «IELTS blog»

 Common mistake – On the other hand

On the other hand

另一方面 (Cantonese: ling6 jat1 fong1 min6; Mandarin: Lìng yī fāngmiàn) directly translates to “On the other hand”. But be careful when saying “On the other hand” in English because the meaning is very different! In Chinese, 另一方面 means “Additionally” or “Not only that, (but) …”. You use it to add another point to support your earlier comment(s) or …

“My friend(s) and I” or “me and my friend(s)” ?

My friend and I or me and my friend

Both are correct. But it depends on the sentence. Use ‘my friends and I’ where you would use “I” (i.e. as the subject): My friends and I went bungee jumping last weekend. And, use ‘me and my friends’ where you would use “me” (i.e. as the object): My little sister was upset that she wasn’t …

 Common mistake – would like

Hong Kong misunderstanding - would like = want

“Would like” is a polite way of saying “want” (either in a question or in a statement). I’ve noticed that some Hong Kong Chinese people misunderstand the meaning of “would like”. They think “would like” means “used to like” because they know that “would” can mean the past tense of ‘will’. However, “would” means “used …

常見錯誤 Common mistake – habit vs hobbit

Common mistake - habit vs hobbit

I sometimes hear people say hobbit when they mean habit. The mistake is more common with those who score below band 6. Habits are behaviours or actions that you do automatically from doing them repeatedly. I usually sleep late due to my bad habit of playing on my mobile phone at night. I’m trying to …

How to quickly lift your reading score?

IELTS reading - how to improve my band score

Reading authentic texts can help, and so too can doing practice reading tests, but trying to boost your reading score this way takes many months, if not years. The quickest way to improve your IELTS reading band score is to learn the many hundreds of difficult words that are found in IELTS reading tests. Luckily, …

常見錯誤 Common mistake – borrow vs lend

Common mistake in Hong Kong - borrow versus lend

Many Hong Kong people say ‘borrow’ when they mean ‘lend’. Wrong: I often borrow money to my friend because she always pays me back quickly. Right: I often lend money to my friend because she always pays me back quickly. Borrow means take temporarily. Lend means give temporarily. Why is this mistake so common? Because, …

Writing task 2 tip – don’t use signposting!

Get to the point; avoid unnecessary signposting in IELTS essays

Read the following essay question for writing task 2, and then read the sample essay introduction and see if you can find the unnecessary signposting in it… ESSAY QUESTION: As most people spend a major part of their life at work, job satisfaction is an important element of individual well-being. What factors contribute to job …

How to start your letter (Task 1 general training)?

In IELTS (GT), when writing to someone you don’t know (such as when writing to a company), the question tells you to start your letter with: Dear Sir or Madam, Otherwise, when writing to a specific imaginary person (such as your neighbour, your boss, your colleague etc), the question tells you to start with: Dear …

英文串字 混淆 奇怪 How can we learn spelling?

In English, pronunciation alone does not always let you know how to spell a word. For example: two, too, to bye, buy, by Even worse, spelling alone may not always tell you how to pronounce a word: read (as present simple, sounds like “reed” — a long vowel sound) read (as past simple, sounds like “red” — …