Research Questions for IELTS Speaking Part 1

Hi guys,

I’d like to ask you about your worries and concerns for IELTS speaking part 1.

I’m starting to prepare an Advanced Video Lesson which will be a Crash Course in IELTS Speaking. To ensure I cover all your concerns as thoroughly as possible, I’d like you to share them with me on this page.

  1. What are you worried about most in part 1?
  2. Are there any types of questions you struggle with in part 1?
  3. Are there any part 1 topics that you find difficult?
  4. Is there anything you specifically wish to know about part 1?
  5. What would you most like to learn about part 1?


I have posted tips for speaking part 1.

You can still post your concerns to help me with my e-book. But if you need to know something about part 1, click below:

Click here:

All the best



  1. Hi Liz, hope you are doing well, I have a doubt about cause solution essay structure, can I write like this-
    2. BP 1- 2 reasons &explanation
    3. BP2- 2 solutions
    4. Conclusion

  2. Hi LIZ,
    I am from INDIA, I do follow you, but I am a bit confused about reading and writing, so can you please suggest me any book that helps in practising and enhance my skills and confidence. As I have enrolled for the exam in next month, for your loving and supportive videos.
    Thank you.

    • Have you already finished the 300 pages of free lessons, tips, videos, model answers etc on this site? Use the RED BAR at the top of the website to choose the section of the test you want to learn. Use my free resources first.

  3. Hello Liz, please i would like to know if a hometown is where am currently leaving or where i am originaly from?

  4. Hi Ms. Liz

    Before I took the exam, I had been studying so hard. I tried to gain more confidence and techniques especially in speaking. However, I could not demonstate all the skills that I have, and it seems that I forgot all the things I reviewed. I could not even speak a simple word properly because of the nervousness and tense that I felt.

    Can you please give us advice how to manage the nervousness and uneasiness. It seems that it is the hindrance to get a good band score.


    Thank you very much ms. Liz abd more power

    • Nerves is quite common. For this reason many people take two tests. If you know you will be extremely nervous use the first test as a practice and the second test as a real one. Also remember that skills are something you learn and practise before the test…. But during the test, you focus only on chatting and being friendly.

  5. Blessing Nwankpa says

    My concerns are with idea generation, I plead you into that too.

  6. Igiogbe Aganmwonyi says

    Hello Liz,
    First I would like to appreciate you for your wonderful videos, they have been very helpful.
    I would like to know how the IELTS examiners score candidates I the speaking test.



    • Simon
      am sure you can google the meaning or features of ‘house’ and ‘apartment’ and see the difference.

  8. Good day Ma’am.
    I would like to know some technique of answering question.

    Thank you

  9. Hello Liz,
    I would like to know if one is expected to pause in the course of introduction or continue without necessarily waiting or take the introduction gradual

  10. Hi Liz

    Recently, I had the test but I am a bit confused as I been practicing many topics and how to respond any question but in my test the examiner interrupted me all the time and I couldn’t finished my ideas! Or I just said one phrase and he asked me next question.. is this normal??

  11. Nimmy Koshy says

    Hi Liz, in Part 1 examiner asks What’s your name? I have seen the answer in your video “My name’s Nimmy” and specially you have said not to say “My name is”. But my trainer says to say “My name is”. I am confused. Please clarify.
    I would like to know how we should answer questions in Part 1. Because when I talk “aaa” sound and “hmmm” sounds are coming in. Is that ok?

    • I will answer this one directly. Contractions (name’s) is a pronunciation feature and that is what the examiner looks for. You should use “gonna” and “wanna” etc to boost your pronunciation score.
      About fillers – sounds are not words. You should be using words to fill the gaps in your answer – well, let me see…. If you have a lot of “umms” and “ahhs”, it will have a negative impact on your score for fluency.

  12. Pabitra K Bhattacharjee says

    Fluency is a problem, moreover lackings of ideas

  13. Hi Lize! thanks for asking this question. I’m still puzzled as to ma last IELTS result. My Speaking in Academic were both 8.5 but when I took the General, I only got a 7.5. Did I have to sound casual rather than academic as the questions were supposedly more practical?

    • There is only one speaking test for all candidates. GT candidates take a different reading and writing test only. The listening and speaking tests are the same for all candidates. Your scores fluctuated because your performance did – based on topics, expressions etc.

      • Ironically, now that I’m living in an English-speaking country, I find myself confused and double-guessing what English would suit my audience, e.g. British-English, American-English, Kiwi-English, knowing very well that consistency is important. Thanks for this again, Lize. All the best! 🙂

        • Sorry I don’t understand. What audience are you referring to?

          • Apologies for the ambiguity, Liz.

            ‘Audience’ could be people I talk to both during work or outside working hours. English-speaking workmates, friends, acquaintances, students, even email language. That is why, I remember, during the Speaking test, I had to choose my words that may have triggered hesitation or lacking in fluency and vocabulary suitable for a simple question such as ‘Do you have a garden? or something like do you like planting? Why or why not?

            Way back, in my home country, English was mostly used in the academe, thus, vocabulary was more formal.

            I hope I make sense. It’s just me, I guess.

            Thanks again, Liz!

            • Thanks Millie, still not sure I understand. The whole speaking test is informal – all of it. Every single question is answered as though you were chatty with a friend. However, it is a language test and you do need to show a range of language skills. You also need to pay attention to whether the question is about you or about people in general. Remember that when you prepare for IELTS speaking, you are preparing to showcase your English – but in a naturally and informal way.
              I’ve just put tips up for part 1 – they might help you:

              • Super thanks, Liz!

                Having read through the link, I must’ve missed out on the ‘informal’ way part of it making my answer so contrived for a simple question such as ‘gardening’. I was also surprised to have been asked a question to which my answer was a ‘No’, I guess.

                If I do get to take the test again, I’ll know better.

                By the way, the fact that I redeemed myself by getting a 9 in Reading just by following your tips (always got a 6 – oh my!) was way over the top! Wootwoot!

                Thank you for this wonderful feedback on my Speaking and asking us to ask you about it!

                You’re my star! 🙂

  14. SHAIK HUSSAIN says

    HI Ma’m,

    I would like request an PDF materails for IELTS SPEAKING FOR MY PREPARATION.
    Thank you

  15. Hello Liz, please can you tell me how to handle a part 2 question especially a question asking about my IDEAL HOME

  16. What if we don’t know the cue card topic?
    How should we handle the situation?

  17. Hi my lovely teacher liz:
    thank you so much for helping me with more information.

  18. Aman Sinha says

    I am pretty good at generating ideas. The only problem which I feel is hampering my attempts to get good band in speaking section is forgetfulness (Knowing the word but not able to remember at that moment) of the specific word to be used while speaking, in middle of the sentence i feel embarrassed and lost.

  19. Hi Liz
    Are there any kinds words that help me to start conversation? I mean some structure which boost my courage. I built my vocabulary but academic words do not flow after asking question

  20. how many questions or topics do we need to know for preparation?

  21. Esther Olamoju says

    How could i be fluent?
    Also i have problems in generating ideas

    • i have also same problem

    • Fluency is something you can’t learn overnight. It comes along if you have good English skills to begin with. So, improve on your English speaking abilities by talking in English, listening to a radio in English or watching English movies/TV shows.

  22. Eze Jonas says

    Hi, what is the difference between home town and neighborhood?

    • Well, hometown (one word) is basically the place where you were born or brought up. For example: ‘She was born in California, but is now living in Chicago.’ So, California is her hometown. Neighborhood is the area or the poeple that surrounds your home. For example: ‘They will in a poor neighborhood.’

  23. Good day Ma’am. I would like to know the Do’s and Don’t’s. For Eg. Can we use contractions.

  24. Umme Kulsum Mukta says

    Hello Liz
    I want to score good in IELTS speaking. But regarding describing my home town,I have confusion. Which should be my home town – the place where I born and brought up since childhood or my father’s birth place which I use as my permanent address?
    Thanks in advance.

  25. I have never written any tests. So, basically I need the techniques in answering questions during the Speaking parts.

  26. jayasuriya says

    hello liz…am nervous in speaking also i have some pronounciation problem…could u pls guide me how to tackle them…

  27. Eze Jonas says

    Hi, thank you for this great opportunity.

    If you are asked to talk about a book or a movie you recently read or watched, would you mention the name of the movie or the book.
    Or would you begin like this: the movie I watched recently is a romantic book. A wealthy woman and a poor man fell in love…………….

  28. Hello Liz
    I had an exam in March. I couldn’t concentrate. I was so nervous .Why I didn’t use my “lovely” academic words still don’t know.

  29. Ahmad Hamodat says

    Hello Liz
    Thank you for sending us this link that might increase our chance of getting high score in IElTS speaking.

    I was working as an Engineer but I am not at the moment.And I have a gap in my c.v of about eight years . What will my answer be when the examiner asks me about what am I working now .
    Also I came from abroad what should my answer be about my home town is it about where I live now as I am in the UK , or to describe my original home town ?

    Thank you.

    • Generally, the first question an examiner may ask you is “Do you work or study” and the examiner will proceed asking you succeeding questions based on your answer on this. The examiner may ask you about what you studied before or what your job was before. So, you can answer these by referring to your past job or studies. Just make sure to use the proper verb tense appropriately which is the past tense.

  30. 1. How to be confident.

    2. How to build vocabulary

    3. What paraments do the examiners mark

    4. How to pronunce words well when English isn’t ones Ist language

    5. How to prep in a short time (like a month)

    6. etc

  31. Hi Liz,
    I am confused in answering the question ” Describe about your home town”
    I am working in City other than my birth place since last 10 years. Confusion is that when confronted with question of home town which city to say work city or birth city?

    • dr. deepanker kothiyal says

      hello maam. for me it becomes difficult to answer any qn with a promt. how can we buy time so we can generate ideas. hope to hearing from you.

  32. I had my ielts exam in March and the most difficult thing in part one was the surprise
    The examiner kept changing the topic suddenly, she asked me about work then next question was about tea followed by sleeping hours when I was preparing I thought part 1 we should speak about 1 topic only

  33. Issues with my fluency and intonations.also don’t know how long I should speak.will there be a time piece.I also don’t want to say ehmmm.uhnnn!

  34. Hello Liz,
    I have a problem to start speak. My pronunciation is bad. I felt disappointed & i don’t believe my self. Most of time, I felt nothing to speak any topic. For example, the questions that I am not unfamilier topic. I need motivation and good instruction. In the first time of my speaking test, I got 5.5. Now my quality become decrease gradually. I feel like that. Please help me.

  35. Thanks Liz for this another great opportunity. Can i use words like well, as a matter of fact, actually, Certainly, inasmuch as, by and large et cetera to begin part one talk?
    Thanks immensely

  36. Hello Liz, thanks for your concern , well i would like to know about how to organize the ideas , most of the time my ideas and my speaking dnt match up, and is there any problem if we take too long to speak or we stop before the time.
    if we dnt have ideas is it ok to change the cue card or the questions being asked.

  37. AMANDEEP KAUR says

    Hello Mam,

    Kindly share your views about length of answers and vocabulary used in part-1 part of speaking because generally questions are of routine nature in which answers are mostly given in simplest way.


  38. Actually i do not under stand exact formula to get 8.5 in writing it is no crystal clear in my mind.kindly suggest that beacise i consistantly get 6.5 bands so exactly i feel that there impossible to find the method to acore in ariting more than6.5

  39. SUHANSAR jit says

    Hello Liz
    Your all content is very useful and I have undergone through most of it. As you are going to provide an advance material for speaking module.. it will be a great experience, pl focus on how to generate ideas in the speaking module..This will be of grest help.
    Once again I want to thank you and salute to you for this wonderful service.

  40. Hey liz
    I have almost read all your content and I’m clear with what ielts is and what each module is demanding.
    But still after so much of practice and coachings I’m not able to get the correct answer of questions being asked in Specifically Reading part. Kindly help in giving ways by which i can improve my reading score .
    Thank you

  41. How do we speak fluently without hesitations?

  42. I think that the difficult part is the length and the idea organization. I don’t know how much I should talk

  43. joana may says

    I am worried about cue card bullet points. will there be any problem if we miss any point?

  44. Thanks Liz so much for caring about us.
    I am struggling with speaking for three times and two weeks later I will have a third trial. I got 6.5 twice and third time I had difficulty so probably I will get 5.5! Though I did much better in other parts. So sad!
    I have a general problem which is stopping or giving long um or Ah or so. I live in Japan for almost 6 years as a researcher and out of my lab we never speak English. Moreover, Japanese English in work is just terrible and decreasing my level. I stick to some international friends who speak English but we just end with speaking in nothing like the exam.

  45. Franchesca says

    1. I have the most difficulty in the part 1 cause I feel like I am still warming up to speak in english. I’m mostly worried about the question that will be asked. What if I don’t have any idea about it? Or for some reason it’s difficult to answer?
    2. Questions about hometown, I don’t know why but I’m dreading those question. Also about government and politics.
    3. Government, politics, favorite flower.
    4. When is the ideal time to stop? How many sentences are acceptable? I have friends whom the examiner stopped while answering questions. My instructor said it might be because the examiner already got the answer they’re looking for. Yup, this is in part 1, not part 2. But are they really allowed to stop you midway your answers?
    5. Basically, how to stay calm and focused and to avoid stuttering.

  46. Hi Liz
    thank`s a lot for every thing you mad it , i am very happy from using this website it is very useful
    about speaking part 1 , what i can do if i can not understand the question ??! or if i did not have a lot of vocabulary related to the topic, especially that the questions were related together ?

  47. Commen belive among people is that first impression is last impression is same thing happens in ielts too ? Is part 1 is most important part in ielts speaking

  48. Hello Liz, another stupendous idea from your end ! For speaking i currently stand at band 8 – well my only concern is for someone at level 8 what aspects should be considered to score 9 ?
    Awaiting for the video , much love.

  49. Specifically repeated questions with best answers . Timing for giving each ans in part 1

  50. Hello Liz,

    Thanks for this opportunity.

    I would like to know that I am a home maker, what kind of questions examiner can ask from me in part 1?
    For example: do you work or study? My answer will be : currently, I am home maker but earlier I worked with IT company as marketing coordinator.

    What would be next list of questions?

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