(Answers from last time:1. in addition, 2. too, 3. and, 4. also, 5. moreover, 6. firstly, 7. secondly, 8. but, 9. eventually, 10. also, 11. for example, 12. to sum up, 13. and)

Dear student,

1275249_study_tableToday we are going to discuss the IELTS scoring, which is reported on a nine-band scale. In addition to the general score, you are also given a band for each language skill (reading, writing, speaking, listening). Each band has a descriptive statement. Here they are:

9 Expert User – Full command of the language: the user is accurate, fluent and uses all structures appropriately.

8 Very Good User – Operational command of the language. Errors might occur, though infrequently. He might misuderstand some unfamiliar situations, but he can argument his point of view in detail.

7 Good User – Operational command of the language, though some occasional inaccuracies misunderstandings might occur. Generally he understands complex reasoning.

6 Competent User – Has general knowledge of language despite some inaccuracies, misunderstandings and lack of appropriate vocabulary.

5 Modest User – Partial command of the language, coping with overall meaning in most situations, though he/she might likely produce lots of mistakes.

4 Limited User – He can only deal with familiar situations. Frequent problems occur in understanding and expression. Cannot use complex language.

3 Extremely Limited User – Conveys and understands only the general meaning in familiar situations. He might experience a „breakdown” in communication.

2 Intermittent User – The candidate only uses a limited range of words or short formulae in familiar situations. He/She has great difficulty in understanding/speaking English.

1 Non User – No ability to make use of the language expect for a few isolated words.

0 Did not attempt the test – The candidate was not present/ the information provided was insufficient for assessment.

(NB: Most universities/colleges in the UK, Australia, New Zealand, Canada accept a band score of 6-7. Please contact the respective institution you want to study at to find out exactly the band score required.)

Till next time, here are a couple of exercises to prepare you for the Reading portion:

You have the following text:

When was the last time you saw a frog? Chances are, if you live in a city, you have not seen one for some time. Even in wet areas once teeming with frogs and toads, it is becoming less and less easy to find those slimy, hopping and sometimes poisonous members of the animal kingdom. All over the world, even in remote jungles on the far side of the globe, frogs are losing the ecological battle for survival, and biologists are at a loss to explain their demise. Are amphibians simply over-sensitive to changes in the ecosystem? Could their rapid decline in numbers be signalling some coming environmental disaster for us all? This frightening scenario is in part the consequence of a dramatic increase over the last quarter century in the development of once natural areas of wet marshland; home not only to frogs but to all manner of wildlife. Yet, there are no obvious reasons why certain frog species are disappearing from rainforests in the Southern Hemisphere which are barely touched by human hand. The mystery is unsettling to say the least, for it is known that amphibian species are extremely sensitive to environmental variations in temperature and moisture levels. The danger is that planet Earth might not only lose a vital link in the ecological food chain (frogs keep populations of otherwise pestilent insects at manageable levels), but we might be increasing our output of air pollutants to levels that may have already become irreversible. Frogs could be inadvertently warning us of a catastrophe. An example of a bizarre occurrence regarding a species of frog dates from the summer of 1995, when ‘ an explosion’ of multi-coloured frogs of the species Rana klepton esculenta occurred in the Netherlands. Normally these frogs are brown and greenish-brown, but some unknown contributory factor is turning these frogs yellow and/or orange. Nonetheless, so far, the unusual bi- and even tri-coloured frogs are functioning similarly to their normal-skinned contemporaries. It is thought that frogs with lighter coloured skins might be more likely to survive in an increasingly warm climate due to global warming. One theory put forward to explain extinct amphibian species that seems to fit the facts concerns the depletion of the ozone layer, a well-documented phenomenon which has led to a sharp increase in ultraviolet radiation levels. The ozone layer is meant to shield the Earth from UV rays, but increased radiation may be having a greater effect upon frog populations than previously believed. Another theory is that worldwide temperature increases are upsetting the breeding cycles of frogs.


I. Find the single words in paragraphs 1 and 2 which mean the following:

i. appearing in great numbers

ii. disturbing

iii. unintentionally

iv. death

v. deterioration

vi. branch of biology (adj.)

II. Next, find the single words in paragraphs 3 and 4 which mean the following:

i. no longer in existence

ii. remarkable occurrence

iii. assisting

iv. (beings) existing at the same time

v. strange, weird, odd

vi. (to) protect

III. TRUE / FALSE / NOT GIVEN. Specify which information is true, false or not given in the text about frogs.

a. Frogs are disappearing only from city areas. T F NG

b. Frogs and toads are usually poisonous. T F NG

c. Biologists are unable to explain why frogs are dying. T F NG

d. The frogs’ natural habitat is becoming more and more developed. T F NG

e. Attempts are being made to halt the development of wet marshland. T F NG

f. Frogs are important in the ecosystem because they control pests. T F NG

g. It is not known why the Netherlands frogs are changing colour. T F NG

h. Highly-coloured frogs are an unusual phenomenon in nature. T F NG

i. The multi-coloured frogs are exhibiting abnormal behaviour. T F NG

j. There is convincing evidence, that the ozone layer is being depleted. T F NG

k. It is a fact that frogs’ breeding cycles are upset by worldwide increases in temperature.  T F NG

Source: https://www.t1t.net/researches/english/4.pdf

Autor: Alexandru Macovescu – Trainer intern A_BEST Limba Engleză, Italiană şi Limba Română pentru Străini

Alexandru este absolvent al Facultăţii de Limbi şi Literaturi Străine, specializarea Engleză-Italiană. În 2010, a absolvit un masterat specializat în Traducerea Textului Literar Contemporan. Alexandru are o bogată experienţă atât în predarea limbilor engleză şi italiană cât şi în traduceri şi interpretariat şi exerciţiu în utilizarea, în contexte diferite, a limbilor străine. În prezent, Alexandru predă inclusiv cursuri A_BEST de limba engleză şi italiană, limbaj general şi de afaceri, precum şi cursuri de limba română pentru străini, în cadrul companiilor.