IELTS Speaking Part 2 With Strategy Template


The IELTS Speaking is comprised of three parts. This lesson will focus on the IELTS Speaking Part 2 with a Strategy Template. So, let’s jump in…

Part 2 is 3-4 minutes long. The main task of part two is to speak for up to 2 minutes on a topic provided to you by the examiner, which is set out on a cue card. Some students find this the scariest task as it’s so formal. But unlike the other sections, they provide a rough template of what they want you to include. We will look at some possible cue cards and show you some strategies for approaching them.

What is Part 2 of the IELTS Speaking Test 2022?

  1. Part two lasts for 3-4 minutes.
  2. Candidates must speak for at least 1 minute and up to two minutes about the topic on the cue card.
  3. Before having to speak, you are allowed 60 seconds to prepare notes
  4. You then have to speak for 1-2 minutes, and the examiner will ask you a follow-up question.

What does a cue-card look like?

Describe a place you visited when you were a child.

You should say:

  • Where it is
  • When you went there
  • What you do there
  • And the reasons you liked or didn’t like it.

As you can see, the cue cards aren’t asking you tough questions, and they even provide bullet points of what to include. You can also mention things that aren’t on the suggestions but answer the question.

How can I know the answer to all the cue cards?

You can’t memorise a script for every answer. But the topics that come up on the IELTS exam relate to your daily life and activities to prepare vocabulary based on your interests relating to the topic.

For example, can you quickly think of an answer to these questions?

  1. Describe a memorable experience you’ve had as an adult.
  2. Talk about your favourite holiday destination.
  3. Talk about a piece of news you recently heard that interested you.
  4. Were you able to provide a couple of sentences quickly for each?

We will now go over a quick method to planning your notes in 60 seconds. Don’t worry if you’re having difficulty. Remember, they provide you with 60 seconds to prepare. In the preparation stages, give yourself a bit more time but still time yourself to set yourself challenges and track your progress.

How To Plan A Cue-Card Answer in 60 Seconds #TheStrategy

Here’s the IELTS Speaking Part 2 Strategy Template. It includes what you need to do to plan a successful answer for your examiner.

You only have 60 seconds to prepare your answer before speaking in the exam. A minute isn’t enough time to write elaborate sentences or a script to read. However, if you use this method, you can easily plan for each cue card in 60 seconds to give yourself a logical outline for when you’re speaking.

Let’s look at an example below to see how we would attempt this:

Describe a place you visited when you were a child.

You should say:

  • Where it is
  • When you went there
  • What you do there
  • And the reasons you liked or didn’t like it.

You can see that just like in the Cue Cards practice blog post, the IELTS examiners are using the question words – WHAT, WHERE, WHO, WHY and HOW. To make this easier, try to write a couple of keywords, collocations, synonyms, antonyms and idioms for each bullet point like so…

  1. Where – Disneyland, Florida, USA, land of the free
  2. When – 10 years old, as a youngster, naive
  3. What – explore, adventure, theme parks, Ursula the Sea Witch, crowded
  4. Like/Didn’t like (Why) – first time abroad, boiling, sunbathing, exhilarating. If I could, I would go back.

As you can see, by only making a few notes for each bullet point, I have a library of words relating to my topic and a brief outline of what I would say. You can then move one step further by creating sentences for each one.

Remember the first sentence should answer the question directly. You can paraphrase the question by using synonyms and collocations.

High-Level answer using the strategy template from above;

I want to talk about a place I visited when I was a youngster. I had heard it being called the ‘land of the free. When I was ten years old and pretty naïve as it was my first time abroad. I visited Disneyland in Florida, the USA, for the first time. Although it was pretty crowded, it was my first time away, and it was boiling so I could sunbathe, and overall I thought the holiday was exhilarating. We had lots of fun, including visiting waterparks, theme parks and adventure playgrounds. I even met Ursula The Sea Witch in person! If I could afford to go back, I would go back tomorrow.

Try it for yourself to practice and expand your vocabulary with each cue card. You can use our Free Workbook to complete this with us.

You can adapt this method repeatedly until you’re fully comfortable and able to plan in 60 seconds and give yourself the best chance to get high marks!

If you would like to try with a past IELTS paper, check out the British Council website for further practice questions and examples to try.

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