Hello, everyone, I am IYO, a student reporter.
In this article, I would like to talk about my achievement in taking the IELTS course in Monol.
I have spent seven weeks already and taken six mock tests, which are done every Friday. Here, I will explain how I got a higher score for each subject (Reading, Listening, Writing task 1 and 2, and Speaking) and share some useful tips from my experience.
Reading (mock test score: highest 6.5/ lowest 4.5)
Since I began to study the reading part of IELTS, I have continuously been aware of my lack of vocabulary. When I answer mark type questions, I cannot help being confused with the words which I have never encountered before.
“Does this adverb mean positive or negative…?”
Even though I think my answer sentence is almost right, it is incorrect if the adverb only does not match. Eventually, I understood that learning English is getting a rich vocabulary step by step.
Therefore, I started learning new words with the basic method I have been taught when I was a high school student. It is to write new words on a separate sheet and search meanings and add example sentences by myself, instead of using a dictionary. At that time, I was just curious why I had to do such a pain in the neck but now I know, finally…
Actually, I do not have enough time to search example sentences because I read 2-3 long articles every day in Monol so I am trying to remember complete sentences that include the words I have never seen. It is easier and faster to remember a story than to memorize the irrelevant example sentences.
During these 2 months, I grasped which topic and section of the reading subject are very difficult for me. I will bring the textbooks back home in Japan and review again and again. In Japan, you cannot find a great guide for IELTS same as the textbook that Monol provides.
Listening (mock test score: highest 5.5/ lowest 4.0)
My listening score is still unstable. Although my listening skill during conversation is getting better since I am staying in a 3+1 room, it is a totally different skill for me to answer mark and description type questions. However, I have a problem with the review. IELTS course students can get audio files of listening textbooks only AFTER the term in Monol.
It is a fact that all curriculum that Monol made focus not only on the class but also on self-study. In the IELTS course, the students also need to review what they learned in the class. Because of this, I also got used to doing self-study well. I’m considering to review and practice with the whole listening textbooks again after getting the audio files and go back to Japan
Now, I strongly would like to mention that you should not find the end of learning English in Monol. Studying in abroad is not just about having more opportunities to make your enthusiasm for learning English stronger. You also do not need to achieve your goal and do not need to pressure yourself too much until the time you leave. The important thing is to get rid of your aversion to English and control your stress. If you feel you do not have enough time to read and listen a lot while in here, you can still do your best even after graduation.
Writing (mock test score: Task 1 highest 6.75/ lowest 4.5, Task 2 highest 7.0/ lowest 4.5)
All IELTS course students in Monol easily improve their writing skill right after taking the lecture class. I am also one of those who got a dramatic progress.
First of all, I would like to state that it is not certain that you will get a higher score if you use more words.
I expected a high score during my first mock test because I was able to write more than the specified number of letters (Task 1: 150 / Task 2: 250). Nonetheless, I saw many corrections in the contents of my essay and the paper was almost red. According to the teacher, the paragraph composition was so terrible and both task 1 and 2 score was 4.5.
After this experience, I followed all the things my teachers have taught me and studied hard. From the next mock test, I have gotten over 6.0 every time and 7.0 recently. This is an obvious benefit of taking the IELTS course in Monol.
Speaking (mock test score: highest 6.0/ lowest 5.0)
Compared to the first week, I can tell my opinion much more freely and feel even excited now. Nevertheless, I have to be careful of speaking theory and logic thinking in the real examination so there are still noticeable mistakes especially when trying to say long sentences. In my case, I tend to use incorrect grammar, for example; “more greater” and “less shorter”.
I guess that studying abroad is the most effective way to improve speaking skill. It is clear that students should not hesitate to express themselves without being afraid of mistakes.
One day, we discussed culture festivals in each country during my group class. I talked about Japanese girls’ festival on Mar 3rd and how the Japanese celebrate the growth of young girls. Suddenly, one of my classmates sent me the picture above and said, “This is the festival you mentioned during our class!!”
In the IELTS speaking section, the interviewer sometimes asks questions or topics that you have never imagined or you are not interested in. Once you decide to study IELTS, I recommend you to be more active to gain various knowledge of different topics. For example, the economy, culture, environment, legal problem, etc.
My graduation date is nearly coming. Many students leave Monol with fulfillment and satisfaction. I also hope to finish my IELTS life in Baguio without any regret like them. After leaving Monol, I will make my English journey endless and make use of it to do medical research in the future.