Grammar Writing Improvement Training in the Philippines

I admit that I was totally clueless on the certain rules in the English grammar. Given the fact that it was taught in elementary and high school, I was pretty confident that I would be able to ace any English examinations given to me. English has been my second language. It has been spoken at home and in school, so I really do not have a hard time using it until I had to take the IELTS.

I was preparing my requirements to study in Australia. I wanted to get a certificate for culinary arts and one of the school’s requirements was to take the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination. Not knowing what this test was, I checked it online and found bits and pieces of information about it. Since it was a requirement, I decided to buy some review materials in a bookstore. Honestly speaking, the reading and listening sections were quiet easy for me. Additionally, the speaking was not much of a problem since I am known to be very sociable and talkative. What really caused me serious trouble was the writing part. I did not know how to write essays for the IELTS.

With this, I started reading sample essays on the internet. I was surprised with how fluent the essays were and I realized I needed help. Friends recommended finding a review center for the IELTS. I looked for some online and found JRooz Review Center. I was thrilled with their program and decided to enrol. The best thing about their program is their grammar classes.

A diagnostic test was given to us and right there I noticed how poor my grammar understanding was. My score in that test was not something I was proud of; however, the classes indeed helped me a lot. Most of the time, classroom discussion on the common rules in verb tenses and sentence construction was discusses and further elaborated. There were lessons on punctuations, vocabulary and a step-by-step guide in writing essays for the IELTS writing. I had a hard time but I eventually gained more confidence as the program went on. All the things I learned in grammar class were useful in my writing responses.

My IELTS exam was done a month ago and I got an 8 in my Academic Writing. In truth, I did not expect that I would get an 8. It was all because of the grammar training I had with JRooz. So, for you who are preparing for the exam, the best thing to do is to build a strong foundation in grammar by attending grammar classes. Not only is this best for your writing but also for your speaking exam.

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How Do I Develop My Skills for the IELTS Writing Test?

The International English Language Testing System examination – sounds pretty scary right? For most Filipinos who have taken the test, the IELTS has indeed made them nervous and challenged. For first time takers, the IELTS test will sure bring cold feet.

Imagine that you are already scheduled for the examination. The days are fast approaching and you are still not satisfied with the improvement you are getting from studying. To make matters worse, you know that your skill in the IELTS writing test is not good enough, how will you be able to come up with a good essay with your skills? Here are some top tips that will help develop your skills for the IELTS writing test.

1. From the beginning of your review, always keep a journal. Record in the journal the things that you have done within the day. It does not have to be written in an academic style; however, be sure to write in full sentences. Develop your ideas and you will be surprised with the improvement in your skill.

2. Reading is a must. Improve vocabulary to better express ideas in your essays. New words can showcase that you are well with words. Just a reminder, do not overuse words though. Make sure they are suited in your sentences.

3. Practice brainstorming. Think of a word and write all ideas you have for it in three-minute time. With this exercise, you are practicing how to think within a time limit which is what the IELTS writing test is all about.

4. Write outlines. From the ideas you have come up with, try making outlines. Outlines are needed in writing. They serve as the framework of your composition.

5. Study grammar. This is where candidates have to remember. No matter how good the content is but it is poor in grammar, it will be nothing. Be consistent with the grammar usage in the essay.

6. Sentence structure is something to consider. Do not always write in the active form. Some sentences are better expressed in the passive voice. Practice changing sentences from active to passive and vice versa.

7. Know the basics in punctuations. Commas, periods, colons and many more should be used correctly. Remember that punctuations change the meaning of the sentence as well.

8. Watch out for misspelled words. Do spelling activities to refresh your spelling skills. Most are very careless in writing that they do not notice their mistakes in spelling.

9. Practice by writing essays. How can you develop your skill if you do not write essays? Learn from your mistakes and improve them on your next piece.

10. Get a writing partner. This partner can be a friend or a tutor who knows the way around writing essays. Getting feedbacks from these people is effective in developing and making your skills better.

Skills in writing are easy to develop once you work hard on it. Put a little extra effort in studying and you are sure to hit your target score in the IELTS writing task.

If you are planning to take IELTS go here

IELTS Test Cancellation, Refund, Reschedule

Imagine a situation wherein you have already scheduled your examination for the IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination; however, as the day of the test draws nearer, you feel that you are not ready for it or something important has come up. What is the most possible thing that you have to do?

In the IELTS, cancellation or rescheduling of the examination is possible. However, there are some conditions before one can do so. It has always been suggested to candidates to register for the exam a couple of months before the target date. This is to give time for the candidates to prepare for the exam both mentally and psychologically. The exam is a strenuous test of English skills and most candidates feel worried and even nervous in the exam day. Hence, preparing themselves psychologically is a big help. Further, another reason for this early registration is for reasons of possible cancellation or rescheduling of the IELTS test.

Some candidates have a variety of reasons why they need to cancel or reschedule the examination. Due to this, IELTS have come up with valid reasons, provided with evidence or documents, which are considered for the said cancellation and rescheduling.

Both cancellation and rescheduling of the examination should be done 5 weeks prior to the test date. The IDP or British Council should be notified. There will be a 25% administrative charge in applying for a refund. Refunds are only available if the candidate has filed the notice on the said time. Any request filed less than 5 weeks will not be refunded.

For those who are going to request for a test date transfer, the same rule applies. However, the test center will still have to check the availability of the next test date. Requests for transfer of test date are not granted if filed less than 5 weeks from the exam date. Here are common reasons why candidates ask for a transfer or cancellation that are acceptable in the IELTS test:

• Death in the family
• A serious medical condition
• Trauma or victim of a recent crime
• Military service
• Loss of documents such as visa and government issued IDs to be presented on the test day
• Visa application problems

Any candidate should be able to produce a certificate or any related documents that will serve as evidence to these reasons along with the completed form of Request for Refund or Test Date Transfer Form which can be downloaded in the IELTS website.

For more information, visit an IELTS review center for a step-by-step procedure and help in filing your cancellation and rescheduling of the test.


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Citing Examples in the IELTS Speaking Test – Is it Important?

The IELTS or the International English Language Testing System examination speaking section is unique as it is done in an interview style with a native English speaker. A number of candidates who have taken this section have said that the test brought them cold feet and the level of anxiety was totally different. First time takers of the examination should know how to good at the IELTS speaking test. One step is to know what the test’s tasks are.

In the IELTS speaking test, the candidates have to undergo three different speaking tasks. It is expected that the speaking test will only last for ten to fifteen minutes. The first task is considered to be an introduction. This task will let the candidate feel more comfortable in the course of the examination. Candidates will be asked questions like personal information, work, studies, and even about family. What the candidates need to do is to have an open discussion or dialogue with the interviewer. Provide opportunities where the interviewer can ask more question and make the interviewer interested in knowing you. You can also ask questions to him or her to have a very nice conversation.

The second task is a where a cue card with a task is written. Candidates have to give a response depending on the question with guide questions. Most of the time, candidates are wondering whether they need to cite examples in their responses. Actually, doing this makes the response better. Citing personal experiences gives the response strength in content. Candidates need this to get a good score in the exam – a very well-planned content in the response.

Finally, the final task is a more detailed discussion on the topic of the second task. Here, interviewers assess how well you can carry an intellectual conversation and how you can defend your answers. They want to see how conversant you are in the English language. Providing personal examples and information that you have heard of or read about are good points to include in your response.

What candidates have to develop amongst themselves is the fluency in handling dialogues. It is possible with constant training and exposure to opportunities in speaking English. Because of this, many candidates for the IELTS speaking test take IELTS test reviews to have speaking coaches guide them in making responses for the exam. In addition, speaking training improves the candidate’s confidence in using the English language which is needed in the interview.

If you are planning to take IELTS go here

Tips on How to Organize Your Ideas for the IELTS Writing Tests

“Whenever I am given a topic to write on, I really have a hard time choosing an idea to use. How will I be able to use such ideas?” – Andrea, student

Dealing with a lot of ideas on writing essays can be messy and result to a poor outcome. Many students who are asked to come up with a composition are stuck in choosing an idea. This may consume a lot of time. Thus, it is important how to organize these ideas in writing an essay – most importantly writing for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) examination.

The writing section of the IELTS examination differs if a person is taking the Academic and the General Training modules. Both with two writing tasks, the level of difficulty is not the same. In the Academic writing, candidates have to describe a graph or data in the first task and write an opinion-based essay in the second task. On the other hand, the General Training asks candidates to write a letter depending on a given social situation and write an essay based on a given statement for the other task. These tasks sound hard to achieve, but are actually easy to do. The key in having a good essay is the organization of ideas. How can one organize ideas for the writing tests?

1. Always start your essay with a quick brainstorming. Your ideas are all cluttered and the next thing to do is to group them and eliminate ideas that will not be of help in the essay.
2. Making an outline guides the flow of ideas. Make sure your outline is complete with an introduction, body and conclusion.
3. Fill your outline with your ideas. Arrange them according to importance.
4. As much as possible, do not be very specific or too broad in your introduction. Introductions should catch the reader’s attention. It should not give away the content in the body.
5. Double check on the clarity of your statement. It should hit the task required in the test.
6. Ideas are better if they are written in separate paragraphs in the body. Support these ideas by explaining them in details through the use of examples.
7. Use transitional phrases. These words let the readers know the flow of the essay. They will be guided if an idea is a support or a contrasting notion.
8. Choose an idea that is easy to write about. Do not opt for something that sounds great but you have limited knowledge.
9. Always have a clear link within your ideas. They should be directed to one aim: supporting the thesis statement.
10. Do not introduce ideas on your conclusions. Conclusions are meant to close the essay.

Writing tasks become much easier if guided accordingly. With these tips, ideas on your essays will have a smooth flow resulting to an effective delivery of your essay’s content.

If you neew to take IELTS go here

Why is it Hard to Pass the TOEFL?

Is English a difficult language to learn?

Some might say that English is easy when you are exposed to it. Some say it is hard to get accustomed with the language with its different technicalities. Maybe it is safe to say that learning English is a long process – that a month is not enough to be considered good at it. Hence, non-native English speakers, such as Filipinos, take a lot of time in preparing for the Test of English as a Foreign Language or TOEFL test.

The TOEFL is an English fluency exam wherein an individual’s fluency in academic English is evaluated. Academic English is one tough area in English. Topics covered in the examination are from academic subjects in school like science and technology, history, and music. Like any other English proficiency examinations, it has four different sections – reading, listening, speaking and writing. Most TOEFL candidates take this examination to apply for work or pursue their studies overseas. There are different target scores required by different institutions of which candidates of the exam need to attain.

However, not all candidates are lucky enough to hit their target scores. There are some who are having a hard time getting their scores. Why is the TOEFL hard to pass?

• Familiarity with the topic
It is difficult to understand a given topic when you do not have any idea about it. Vocabulary words that are new can hinder someone from getting the right answer. When one is faced with a difficult topic, the individual has the tendency to lose focus on what he or she is reading or listening to. Once focused is lost, the performance in the exam is affected.
• Lack of notes
Taking notes is a skill one must have in the TOEFL. If the candidate’s notes are lacking and not enough, it will be difficult to answer detail questions. In taking down notes, do not write long sentences. Write in phrases and key words that you can understand. Make sure that you are getting the gist of the article or passage while note-taking as well.
• Inaudible responses
Since speaking is recorded, candidates are expected to be more relaxed in answering. However, some candidates fail to speak clearly while delivering a response. Open your mouth when speaking. This way, words come out clearly. Also, take note if the task is independent or integrated tasks. Know how to respond to these question types.
• Poor grammar
Grammar is very important. Poorly constructed responses get a very low score. One should have a strong foundation of grammar knowledge to effectively formulate responses that are appropriate and correct. Poor grammar makes a response dull, boring, and most of all, incorrect.

Learning English is a process. So, as early as today, start practicing your English skills for the TOEFL. Once you get accustomed with all of these, hitting the target score will just be a piece of cake.

IELTS Manila – Testing Centers and Test Dates

As the capital city of the Philippines, Manila has a lot of things to offer. International companies and prestigious universities are found in the capital. Thus, a lot of Filipinos crowd in Manila to find opportunities that they do not have in their provinces.

In the recent years, Manila has been receiving a lot of candidates for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) examination. This is due to growing numbers of working professionals and students who wish to work and study overseas especially in countries like Australia, New Zealand, Canada, the United Kingdom and even in the United States of America. Though opportunities are available in the city, people still find better for them to grow professionally and personally as well.

The IELTS examination is a paper-based examination that is held thrice a month in Manila. The examination is composed of four different sections – the speaking, listening, reading, and writing. These four different sections include different tasks that evaluate a candidate’s ability to understand and use English in a social context. Most of the time, the speaking examination is done before or after the written exams. Speaking exams are done in front of a native English speaker, making this a huge challenge for Filipinos to overcome being intimated during the interview.

There are a number of test centers available in Manila for the IELTS examination:


1 Garden Way, Ortigas Center, Mandaluyong City


Seashell Drive, Mall of Asia Complex, Pasay City


Roxas Boulevard corner Edsa, Pasay City

Here is the schedule of the exam in both Academic and General Training for IDP and British Council:



Take note of the dates and make sure to reserve a slot a few months before your exam. Slots fill up quickly so candidates have to register as early as possible. For more information, visit and

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