DiscoverIELTS Made Easier
IELTS Made Easier
Claim Ownership

IELTS Made Easier

Author: Fiona Wattam

Subscribed: 4,084Played: 77,232


A weekly talk-through of IELTS topics and tests to help you learn about the issues, vocabulary, tips and strategies you need to prepare for your test day. Follow me on and join the Members Academy for all the downloads, step-by-step online courses and support to get you a Band 7+ in the #ielts test.
331Β Episodes
This is a nice and easy Academic Reading Part 1 (great for GT too). It goes in chronological order, so it's easy to find information from dates, names and places, and there are 2 sets of questions (TFNG and gapfill). If you're aiming for 7 and you can get 10/13 correct in less than 20 minutes, you're doing very well. Check your band score here: Get the conditionals review here: Learn about 'willing to' vs 'want to' here: Join the Conditional Bootcamp here: β˜•Buy me a coffee to say thanks here: --- Send in a voice message:
Today's Listening is a 6/10 for difficulty. It's a Part 3 Listening with multiple choice and matching from a list. Useful vocabulary and synonyms: surprising = amazing got cut off = became isolated exact = precise contact = get in touch with make detailed notes = write down all the ideas check timing = make sure we won't overrun add personal opinions = give your own viewpoint Join the Conditionals Bootcamp here. Get the Signals and Signposts lesson here. Buy me a coffee to say thanks here: --- Send in a voice message:
This is a really really useful passage to read because of how it can help your WRITING. The passage itself is not difficult, but it is jam-packed full of excellent examples of Formal Academic Writing so if you have this reading at home, go through it carefully. - 'PEEL' paragraphs - Hedging - Linking words - Noun forms - Conditionals - Critical Thinking Want to say thanks? --- Send in a voice message:
This is an extremely difficult Academic Reading Passage 3. It took me 30 minutes to find the answers even with the answer sheet in front of me. What can we learn from a text like this? Background knowledge and vocabulary will aid understanding Strategies such as locating the researchers' names will speed up your responses Every little helps - 2 of my recent daily tasks from the Writing Challenge will help you break down the dense text 1) affect vs effect 2) factor vs reasonΒ Add these synonyms to your list: managers need to know = it is beneficial for hotel managers to understand to increase employee retention = to encourage staff to remain employees feel obligated to stay = staff feel they shouldn't move little is done = undeveloped practices employee development = improve their skills if cooperation is encouraged = if managers encourage employees to work together research has shown = evidence exists to support this hypothesis staff have a tendency to = employees have a predisposition toΒ  to dislike their workplace = to view their work environment negatively they conducted a study = they carried out research to fit with company goals = to align with organisational goals Want to support my podcast? Please click on the link below: Many thanks Fiona --- Send in a voice message:
In this lesson you'll learn the 9 main ways of hedging - an essential feature of sophisticated academic writing. Get the full lesson and more practice on the blog: This is Day 17 of the Advent Challenge - catch up on anything you've missed by going to this page: Enjoying the podcasts, challenges, lessons and videos? Help support my work by buying me a coffee here: Thanks! --- Send in a voice message:
No time to do my Advent Challenge? This podcast (watch the video version on talks you through the past 12 days, so you'll get up and running really quickly! It's never too late to start - just go to my website: and open the windows which will take you through to all the links. Come and post your sentences on Facebook, where I will check them every day: If you'd like to say thanks and contribute to the costs of running the free challenge, you are very welcome to do so here on my 'Buy Me A Coffee' page: In return, I will send you a copy of my A-Z of IELTS Advent when it's ready in the New Year. Many thanks in advance - your donations help me pay for the cost of the website, graphics, advent page and podcast, so you'll be helping me to help others. Best wishes Fiona --- Send in a voice message:
Is this Listening more difficult than usual? I got a special request from Elango in my Members Academy, and yes I think it is a tricky one! I had to read the tapescript very carefully to figure out the answer to Question 27, and it even required a bit of background knowledge (possibly true of Question 28 too!). Apart from that, this is a really good one to practise listening for: - Signals and Signposts: - Synonyms (fascinating = interesting; amazed = surprised; type = genre) - Grammar (not many = few) - Language of hedging (comics can serve a really useful purpose = comics have the potential for being useful) - Pronunciation of key words (ballet) Catch up on the Free Writing Task 2 Challenge here: --- Send in a voice message:
This is Day 1 of the November Writing Task 2 Challenge. Join us in the Facebook group: And on YouTube (this is the first video) And on my website --- Send in a voice message:
I had a special request from Isabella on Instagram today πŸ‘‹πŸ‡§πŸ‡·. She asked me to look at a really difficult text (yes, this one's 9/10!). It's an Academic Passage 3 and it follows the Reading Type 2 structure (discursive) which goes like this - Title: asks a question (Why? The answer is not what everyone thinks). 1. Old theory: Everyone thinks fairy tales have endured because the STORIES give us WARNINGS about life e.g. Little Red Riding Hood. 2. New theory: Everyone is wrong. There's another reason. 3. Test to prove the old theory is wrong: Is the STORY important? 'NO'. Is the WARNING important? Answer: 'NO'. 4. Results of the test: The reason why fairy tales have endured is just that people enjoy scary stories. 5. Althernative theory (instantly proved wrong): The stories remain relevant because they're about women as victims. 6. Conclusion: Everyone likes scary stories because they build up our resistance to negative emotions, so the first theory is probably right. You can find similar 'discursive' structures here: What destroyed the civilisation of Easter Island? Is there anybody out there? The search for extra-terrestrial intelligence. Autumn Leaves Canadian writer Jay Ingram investigates the mystery of why leaves turn red in the fall. My updated guide to Time Management in the Reading Test gives you 8 techniques to help you improve your Reading Speed for the #ielts test. --- Send in a voice message:
Do you have a bike-sharing scheme where you live? In London there are the so-called 'Boris bikes' (named after Boris Johnson, who launched them in 2010 after being inspired by the success of a similar scheme in Paris, which is mentioned in this reading). This is a Section 2 Academic Text with 3 types of questions: Matching Statements, Choosing from a List and Gapfill. So whenever there's a lot to do, the text is slightly easier. This is a chronological text (in order of time) and is suitable for General Training practice too. It has some fantastic language that you can use in your writing e.g. urban bike-sharing scheme an answer to the threats of air pollution and consumerism. The police were opposed to the initiatives The council rejected ('turned down') the plan. 'The bicycle belongs to the past' That mentality has totally changed. By 1999, people had become more environmentally conscious. The system, however, was prone to vandalism and theft. The Parisian bike-sharing programme now boasts more than 20000 bicycles. Amsterdam is regarded as one of the two most cycle-friendly captials in the world. Today everybody longs for cities that are not dominated by cars. Get all my 10-minute lessons on my website Join the Members Academy See you next weekend, All the best Fiona --- Send in a voice message:
This is a difficult Section 4, but if you listen to my podcast regularly, you will be very familiar with this common IELTS topic! It's about marine archaeology, the use of technology to find ancient shipwrecks and building under the sea, and the lessons researchers can learn about how ancient civilisations lived. In this episode I refer to similar IELTS Reading/Listening texts, so you can see how important it is to learn the vocabulary that is relevant to so many IELTS texts. Find the Modals of Deduction Grammar here [e.g. Atlit-Yam MAY HAVE BEEN DESTROYED by a tsunami, climate change MAY HAVE CAUSED glaciers to melt. Find the Reading about the Lapita [Beyond the Blue Horizon] here. Get all my lessons in one place in the Members Academy. --- Send in a voice message:
Both texts are gapfill summaries. The first one gives you practice with summary Flow Charts (IELTS 28-Day Planner Day 12) and the second covers the common topic of how to deal with absence in the workplace (good practice if you never usually read this kind of document). Get more General Training Reading tips on my website. Follow me on Instagram and Facebook for daily practice. #ielts #ieltstest #ieltscourse --- Send in a voice message:
Listen out for the 5 most common gapfill types in this Part 4 gapfill on the very common topics of Agriculture and Water (28-Day Planner Week 1). Practise these topics on my website: Watch my YouTube 5-minute Vocab review of Agriculture here: And here's the Honeybee Listening I mentioned: Get the 28-Day Planner here - do NOT let it get lost in your computer. Print it off. Use it every day. Listen to another Part 4 about agriculture in Africa here: Get lots more help on my website: --- Send in a voice message:
This is an Academic Reading Part 1 (so it's good for GT too). The structure is chronological (in order of time) which helps you locate the answers more easily. It's also very similar to a text on my website: The Story Of Silk, which you can find here: and I refer to last week's podcast about The Eucalyptus Tree to show you how similar they are in terms of the gapfill answers. Check out my blog relating to the grammar in this reading here: --- Send in a voice message:
If you've taken my IELTS Progress Predictor Test, you may be wanting to know a bit more about how it works and what it means for your IELTS Preparation. This podcast talks you through how to make the most of your assets and build a mindset that will help you prove the test wrong! Get the quiz and full blog here --- Send in a voice message:
#ielts Listening Part 4 - gapfill summary. Find a similar topic here: --- Send in a voice message:
IELTS Listening Part 3: How birth order affects your personality. --- Send in a voice message:
IELTS GT Reading Part 3 - gapfill summary, multiple choice and choosing from a list. Find a similar reading with the vocab you need to know about animals here: Listening about a dinosaur museum and how to spot distractors: --- Send in a voice message:
This is a Section 3 (dialogue between 2 students) with lots of vocab related to the environment: - urban planning - coastal cities - pollutants are discharged into rivers - to protect against flooding - global warming - sea levels are rising - they need to consider the whole ecosystem - environmentalists --- Send in a voice message:
A long and difficult but FASCINATING text with SO MUCH useful vocabulary which I list at the end. - Matching Information with paragraphs - Choosing from a list - Gapfill summary It's a KEY TOPIC (see similar texts on my website - and and I also talk about how parts of the text help us with Writing. --- Send in a voice message:
CommentsΒ (27)

Khatai SuleymanlΔ±

good job

Feb 10th

Donya Bashiri

Sorry i want to know where can I find the passage that you talked about "driverless cars"

Jan 13th
Reply (2)

ΠœΠ°ΠΊΡΠ°Ρ‚ Кондо

Thank you very much!

Aug 9th

Aidin Frdi

absolutely helpful πŸ‘πŸ‘πŸ‘

Jul 13th

sepideh shirizadeh

I start to follow you.. I like your episodes and I have a recommendation for you.. please use more synonymous words between your helps me to improve my vocabulary tooπŸ€—

Dec 31st
Reply (1)

Marcos Andrade

Reading and Listening.

Nov 18th

Marcos Andrade

How can I contact you to get more information.

Nov 18th
Reply (1)

Dr Hamed

You are amazing teacher and your fantastic podcasts really helped me. Keep going I'm your big fan!

Oct 21st
Reply (2)

adebayo mohammed

Hi Fiona, I am a fan of your IELTS ETC podcast. Since I came across your podcast last Dec, I always try to make sure that I listen to your new episodes. And am still trying to listen to the previous ones. All your podcasts have been really helpful I must confess. Due to my busy schedule, the only convenient way to be abreast of your lessons in via podcast, which am making effort to catch up with all. Please Fiona I am finding IELTS questions on T/F/NG, Y/N/NG a lot more challenging. After listening to your podcast, which turned out to be highly useful, I decided to try some of the Cambridge tests. I can see that I have made a lot of improvement in answering the questions, thanks to your guide. However, I felt highly disappointed in myself when scored 1/6 on some questions I tried recently. I can't get a convincing explanation why the answers were what the book said they are. The questions were from Cambridge IELTS 9, passage 3. Questions 32-37. They were, of course, somewhat tricky I guess. Please would you make some tutorial or a review on the questions and explain the reasons for the answers ? I understand that you have other important activities and might be too busy to attend to my request now. Anytime you are treating questions on T /F/ NG, I would love to see that question be among the ones that you will treat. Thanks.

Jun 15th
Reply (1)

eb rozbeh

good tnx

Jun 4th

Ali Almaliky

Thanks for your efforts. A great podcast I have found so far.

Nov 13th
Reply (1)

farnaz Gbd

I just wanted to thank you for this amazing thing you are doing.I Specially totally appreciate the episodes on writing task 2. Wish you could cover speaking too, but this is already a 5stars pidcast❀️

Sep 3rd
Reply (1)

Lovely Girl

I donvt have a blog. Do you have any idea to create my own blog? And what i shoud i write about?

Aug 21st

Preslava Petrova

Hi. I really like the idea of the Discussion Clock. Do you have a blog post about it?

Aug 8th
Reply (1)

Guramritpal Singh

awesome podcasts. thank you

Jun 23rd
Reply (1)

Noor Musa

Great podcast! Big thanks

Jun 1st
Download from Google Play
Download from App Store