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ESL Testing Cheat Sheet by

Guide to help students prepare for testing.
language     testing     hearing     revision     esl     sign     speaking     listening

Word Bank

grow up
typical
buy
cheap
expensive
study
learn
simila­rities
differ­ences
community
library
near
far
favorite
health
healthy
unhealthy
seasons
weather
recently
thank
fix
enjoy
who
what
when
where
why
 

Speaking and listening

Describe things you like better than other things and why "I like summer better than winter because I love to swim"
Clarify by asking to hear something again "Can you repeat that please­?"
Describe people or objects using contra­sting adjectives "I think studying on the computer is easy, but studying the book is hard because . . . "
Clarify by asking to hear something again "one more time please?
Describe simila­rities with linking details "the schools here are similar to the schools in Califo­rnia, because . . ."
Clarify by asking to hear something again "­excuse me, what did you say? wash or watch?­"
Describe differ­ences "­tra­spo­rtation here is very different from transp­ort­ation in New York, because here . . ."
Clarify by asking the speaker to reduce their speed "­could you speak more slowly­?"
Describe what you see "I think this video is about a family celebr­ation because . . ."
Clarify by asking for the letters in the word, "can you spell that please­?"
Describe typical activities you engage in regularly "I typically wash clothes every Sunday." "I typically get up every morning at 5:30 a.m."
Clarify by pointing or showing "is this right? is this what you are looking for? like this?"
Describe your likes and dislikes "My favorite ice cream flavor is coconut, I don't really like chocol­ate­"
Clarify by restating with different words "does that mean to move quickl­y?"
 

Testing Tips for the Reading and Writing Exam

On this assess­ment, it is better to guess than not answer a question.
In multiple choice questions, you can only choose 1 answer. If you think 2 or more are correct, you should reread and select the answer you think is best.
Read directions carefully. Are you on topic? Are you meeting all specif­ica­tions such as what to include, how long your answer should be, etc.
If asked to write a letter, be sure you have included 3 parts. You must have a greeting, the body or message, and a closing.
Look for key words or inform­ation when reading to help you unders­tand.
Read every answer choice before deciding on the correct answer. Eliminate answers you know are incorrect.

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