Matching Headings Question: IELTS Reading Exercise

In this question you must match the correct heading to the correct section of the passage. Matching headings questions are common in IELTS reading and are one of the longest to complete. This is a practice exercise for students, not an IELTS test.

Take time to read through the headings given. Which which ones are similar  or contain similar language – they are often traps. Also check the number of headings given, usually there are more headings available than are needed.

The heading usually relates to the general aim of a section.

Antimicrobial Resistance

A) While antibiotic resistance refers specifically to the resistance to antibiotics that occurs in common bacteria that cause infections, antimicrobial resistance is a broader term, encompassing resistance to drugs to treat infections caused by other microbes. Antimicrobial resistance (AMR) is resistance of a microorganism to an antimicrobial drug that was originally effective for treatment of infections caused by it. Resistant microorganisms (including bacteria, fungi, viruses and parasites) are able to withstand attack by antimicrobial drugs, such as antibacterial drugs (e.g., antibiotics), antifungals, antivirals, and antimalarials, so that standard treatments become ineffective and infections persist, increasing the risk of spread to others. The evolution of resistant strains is a natural phenomenon that occurs when microorganisms replicate themselves erroneously or when resistant traits are exchanged between them. The use and misuse of antimicrobial drugs accelerates the emergence of drug-resistant strains. Poor infection control practices, inadequate sanitary conditions and inappropriate food-handling encourages the further spread of AMR.

B) New resistance mechanisms emerge and spread worldwide threatening our ability to treat common infectious diseases, resulting in death and disability of individuals who until recently could continue a normal course of life. Without effective anti-infective treatment, many standard medical treatments will fail or turn into very high risk procedures. This would be a financially draining situation for wealth countries but for the poorer ones, it could have catastrophic effects.

C) Infections caused by resistant microorganisms often fail to respond to the standard treatment, resulting in prolonged illness, higher health care expenditures, and a greater risk of death. As an example, the death rate for patients with serious infections caused by common bacteria treated in hospitals can be about twice that of patients with infections caused by the same non-resistant bacteria. For example, people with MRSA (another common source of severe infections in the community and in hospitals) are estimated to be 64% more likely to die than people with a non-resistant form of the infection.

D) WHO’s report on global surveillance of antimicrobial resistance reveals that antibiotic resistance is no longer a prediction for the future; it is happening right now, across the world, and is putting at risk the ability to treat common infections in the community and hospitals. Without urgent, coordinated action, the world is heading towards a post-antibiotic era, in which common infections and minor injuries, which have been treatable for decades, can once again kill.

Questions 1-4

Choose the correct heading from the list below (i-x)

Choose the correct heading for sections A-D from the list of headings below.

i. A fatal threat

ii. A global concern.

iii. The evolution of resistance

iv. MRSA in hospitals

v. The present situation

vi. What is antimicrobial resistance?

vii. Protecting future generations

  1. Section A =
  2. Section B =
  3. Section C =
  4. Section D =
  1. vi
  2. ii
  3. i
  4. v

(passage adapted from WHO)

All reading exercises on have been written by myself to help you prepare for your IELTS test.   


  • broader term = a more general term
  • encompassing = including
  • persist = continue
  • phenomenon = occurrence
  • replicate = copy / reproduce
  • erroneously = mistakenly
  • sanitary = hygienic  / clean
  • catastrophic = disastrous / terrible / devastating
  • prolonged = lengthy (prolonged illness = chronic illness)



Matching Heading Practice: Medium Level

Reported Essay Question Jan 10

Here is an IELTS writing task 2 essay question which was reported in the test on Saturday. Below are some ideas for your answer.

In some countries, fast food restaurants and companies give money to schools provided that the schools promote their products to school children.

What do you think is the positive and negative of this in the development of children?

Positive Effects

  • children benefit from the additional resources and facilities that schools can afford due to the funding from companies
  • children can learn the value of money in order to buy the products being promoted
    • learning to manage money is a useful life skill
    • children learn to be selective about what they buy

Negative Effects

  • promoting companies such as fast food restaurants encourages a poor diet
    • poor diets, which include high quantities of salt and sugar, can be harmful to a child’s health
    • this sets children up to be unhealthy adults which can be expensive for the state in the long run
  • advertising and promoting to children can be exploitative and unethical
    • they are easily influenced
    • they are not able to criticise or form their own opinion
    • this form of advertising is aimed at the parents through their children
    • children are unable to distinguish what is promotional and what is educational

Get my free lessons by email

Subscribe for free to get my new IELTS lessons sent to your email inbox.

IELTS Listening; Table Completion Practice

The questions below require you to complete a table and are typical of section 2 in IELTS listening. You need to prepare the columns and rows in the table before you listen in order to predict paraphrasing as well as the type of answer you need to listen for.

Filling in a table is a question type that can come in all sections of the test. The key to tables is to remember that the answers will all come in order so follow the information in the table.

Table Completion

Questions 6-10
Write no more than two words and / or numbers

London Attractions

Name of Place Adult Price          Child Price (below the age of 5) Opening Times 
Hampton Court Palace  £ 16.50 (6)…………………. (7) ………….to ……….
Madame Tussauds (8) ………….. (9) ………………. (10) 9.30am to ……….


London has uncountable attractions for first time visitors but for those of you looking for interest and history, Hampton Court Palace and Madame Tussauds are unmissable. Hampton Court Palace, which was the favourite royal residence of Henry VIII, boasts 60 acres of formal gardens as well as the famous maze and Great Vine. For adults the price for an entry ticket is 16.50 but a child’s ticket is 8.25 although if your child is under 5, it’s free. If you are only interested in the gardens rather than entering the court itself, then you can get a garden ticket only. It opens daily at 10 in the morning, last admissions are at 5pm and closing time is at 6.

Another popular favorite place to put on your London itinerary is Madame Tussauds. Filled with life size wax models of celebrities, there are 14 interactive zones as well as the amazing Marvel Super Heroes 4D movie experience. Why don’t you take a walk down the red carpet and strike a pose next your favourite film star. Tickets are 28.00 for an adult and 22.50 for all children. That may sound like a steep price but it really is a once-in-a-life-time experience. Doors open at 9.30 each morning and close at 5.30pm.

6. free
7. 10am   6pm (you need both answers correct)
8. £28.00
9. £22.50
10. 5.30pm



More Table Completion Practice, click here
More Section 2 Practice, click here

Crime: Vocabulary Exercise

Crime is a common topic in IELTS writing task 2 and occasionally it also appears in IELTS speaking part 2 and 3. Below is an exercise to help you practice this vocabulary. This exercise is aiming for students aiming for band score 7 and above. To get a full vocabulary list for crime and punishment, follow the link.


Fill in the gaps using the list of vocabulary provided. You may need to change the form of the words to make the sentences grammatically correct. Words may be used more than once.

arrest  /  suspect  /  guilty  /  convict  /  sentence  /  innocent   /  penalty  /  commit

  1. Before handing out a ………………, the circumstances of a crime should be taken into consideration.
  2. The police should be sure of their facts before ……………. someone for a crime.
  3. Criminals who are found …………….of a major crime should receive a heavy ………………….
  4. Criminals …………. of serious crimes should receive the maximum …………..
  5. If a person is found to be …………., they should receive compensation for wrongful arrest.
  6. People …………. of terrorism should be on a watch list.
  7. Having a fixed …………… for each type of crime does not take into account the motivation for ………… the crime.
  1. sentence
  2. arresting
  3. guilty / sentence
  4. convicted or guilty / penalty or sentence
  5. innocent
  6. suspected
  7. penalty / committing


Get my free lessons by email

Subscribe for free to get my new IELTS lessons sent to your email inbox.

IELTS Current Essay Question Jan 2015

Below is a an essay question that came in the exam this week.

Directors and managers of organizations are often older people. Some people say that it is better for younger people to be leaders. To what extend do you agree or disagree?

This is an opinion essay which means you must give a clear opinion in the introduction and then support it and explain it in the body paragraphs. Let me give you some ideas for this topic. If you have more ideas of your own, please post them in the comments box below.

Reasons why young people should be leaders

  • young people are usually more up-to-date and in touch with the modern world
  • they are often more dynamic and forward thinking which means they are more open to new ideas
  • young leaders are stronger and healthier than their old counterparts and therefore more able to cope with the demands of leadership

Reasons why older people should be leaders

  • with age comes experience and this is critical for any leader
  • older people have more authority which is needed to lead and manage others
  • a sense of responsibility is needed to lead effectively which is found in older people and often lacking in the young

If you recently did your exam, please post your full essay question in the comments box below so we can all benefit from it.

Get my free lessons by email

Subscribe for free to get my new IELTS lessons sent to your email inbox.


IELTS Listening Multiple Choice: Essential Tips

This lesson focuses on IELTS listening multiple choice questions and offers tips, practice and useful vocabulary to help you achieve your best. Multiple choice questions are the most difficult of all the questions in IELTS listening and you need to develop the right techniques to deal with them in order to do well.

Watch the video tutorial before you read the tips below.

Multiple Choice Video Tutorial

Multiple Choice Tips

The tips below are summarised from the video lesson.

Preparing the Questions
  1. check for a title
  2. read the question
  3. find a key word in the question
    1. the key word will help you understand which answers are right and which are wrong
    2. paraphrase the key word
    3. if it is a list selection multiple choice, underline the number of words you need to find
Preparing the Multiple Answers Options
  1. read through the answer options
    1. highlight similar options so you don’t get confused
    2. think of paraphrases
  2. all answer options will probably be given in the recording
  3. don’t think that the first answer you hear is the correct one – keep listening
  4. watch out for answers that are given and then taken away again by the speaker
  5. listen for the word “but” or “however” this can mean a negative is coming which means it might not be the right answer
  6. if you think an answer is correct, put a tick but keep listening to make sure it is right
  7. you can write on your question paper so use ticks and crosses for right and wrong answers
Multiple Choice Answers
  1. you might not hear the exact words in the answer options – answers might be a paraphrase
  2. your answer should be a letter not a word – be careful when you transfer your answers


Get my free lessons by email

Subscribe for free to get my new IELTS lessons sent to your email inbox.

Introduction Paragraph Feedback

The introduction paragraph below was sent to me by a student in response to the following essay question.

Essay Question

With an increasing population communicating via the internet and text messaging, face to face communication will become a thing of the past. To what extent do you agree?

Student Introduction

Face to face communication is become less important than the past, since increase and populate communication by the internet and text messaging. In my opinion, I agree that face to face communication will suffer as some small, develop new technologies but it is fishy that it is cause the death of traditional communicate.


The ideas and technique in this introduction are fine. However, the grammar and vocaulary make it difficult for the reader. Let’s go through each mistake before seeing the model.

      1.  “Face to face communication is become less important than the past ….” There are two mistakes in this sentence. One mistake is with the grammar tense and one mistake is a missing preposition. Can you correct the errors? Answer
        Face to face communication has become less important than in the past.
      2. since increase and populate communication by the internet and text messaging. There is a problem with both vocabulary and grammar. Can you correct it? Answer
        …since the popular increase in communication by internet and text messaging.
      3. face to face communication will suffer as some small, develop new technologies Can you correct the problems? Answer
        …face to face communication will suffer due to the development of technology.. 
      4. …but it is fishy that it is cause the death of traditional communicateThere are a lot of errors with this part of the sentence due to the choice of vocabulary. How would you write it? Answer
        but it is unlikely that it will result in the disappearance of direct, face to face communication .


  1. “It is fishy that …” this is an idiom which means it is suspicious. Firstly, the meaning is not right for the above sentence. Secondly, it is not academic. Many idioms are not academic and therefore many shouldn’t be used in IELTS writing task 2. Don’t confuse idioms with idiomatic language. The student should use “it is unlikely to …” or “it is doubtful that …”.
  2. “..cause the death of …” this is also an idiom which can be used in academic writing but the meaning is not appropriate for this essay.
  3. “traditional communication” the writer is trying to paraphrase the words “face to face communication”. Unfortunately, it can’t be paraphrased. Not all words can be paraphrased in English.
  4. Many students try to paraphrase all words because they think they will get a high score. Unfortunately, the result is a lot of errors. If you have frequent errors, you will get band score 5  or 5.5 in vocabulary. You must be very sure of your paraphrasing or you will end up with more and more mistakes which will reduce your band score.

Model Introduction

As a growing number of people are choosing to communicate through the use of modern technology, such as the internet and text messaging, some people think that face to face communication will eventually die out. In my opinion, although I agree that face to face communication will become increasingly less popular, it is unlikely to disappear completely and will still be favoured in certain situations.

Get my free lessons by email

Subscribe for free to get my new IELTS lessons sent to your email inbox.

Sample Answers for Speaking Topic: Charities

These model answers are for IELTS speaking part 3, which is the most difficult part lasting 4 to 5 minutes. The topic of charities usually comes under the topic of unpaid work / volunteer work.

Before you read the sample answers, try to answer the questions yourself.

1. Do you think charities are important? Answer

Yes, I do. In some countries, there is no welfare system so the only form of assistance which poor people or disabled people can get is from charities. For example, some of the local charities around here provide food, clothing and even education support for needy people which really helps to get them back on their feet. So, without help from charities, these people would have very serious problems.

2. Do you think children should be made to do volunteer work as part of their school curriculum? Answer

That’s an interesting question. I think it is great for children to take part in charity work as they can learn about helping people and also understand what it means to be part of a community. However, I don’t think it should be obligatory for them. When children are forced to do something, they often become resentful which would result in them possibly not doing that kind of work later in life. If schools could encourage them to do charity work as an out of school activity, which is not compulsory, that would be better and would encourage them to continue helping others when they’re older.

3. Which do you think are more important, local charities or domestic charities? Answer

Well, I think they each have a different role to play so I can’t say that one is more important than the other. For example local charities are better at helping with the day to day needs of local people because they know exactly what it is they lack and what they need. Large international charities, on the other hand, are good at tackling natural disasters or sending aid to the third world as they have the financial means to help on a big scale. So, they are definitely both very important.

4. If you could donate a large amount of money to any charity, what would it be? Answer

I suppose I would go for an international charity that either deals in providing much needed medical care to developing countries or a charity that champions human rights on a global scale such as Amnesty International. These types of charities are able to help so many people around the world and for me it would be rewarding to think that my money has helped so many. Also these charities deal in the fundamental needs of life, which I think everyone is entitled to, so I would certainly choose them.


Speaking Part 3 Model Answers: Health Topic

Get my free lessons by email

Subscribe for free to get my new IELTS lessons sent to your email inbox.