Category Archives: Grammar for IELTS

Test your grammar level for IELTS

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Test your grammar level for IELTS

This 60-question quiz will tell you your current level of grammar, running from Beginner to Advanced. Before you start the quiz, please read these notes:

1. If you do not know the answer, don’t guess – this will not give you an accurate level.

2. When you have finished the quiz, every question will have show links to learning resources about that specific question. Follow these links to improve your score!

3. The quiz increases in difficulty from the beginning to the end.

4. Click the ‘Finish quiz’ button at the end of the quiz to submit your answers and see the results of our ‘Test your English level’ quiz.

 

Test your level of English

Present continuous (present progressive)

Present continuous

This is also known as the present progressive

present_continuousIn English grammar, the present continuous is used to talk about something that is happening now or around now. Here are some examples:

  • I am studying English grammar now.
  • They are visiting friends at the moment.
  • He is playing football.

The present continuous can also be used to talk about something you are not doing now.

  • I am not sleeping right now.
  • They are not working today. They have the day off.
  • She isn’t watching the TV, she’s playing a computer game.

The present continuous verb can change when you talk about other people.

Positive + Negative –
I am working am not / I’m not working.
You are working are not / aren’t working.
We are working are not / aren’t working.
He is working is not / isn’t working.
She is working is not / isn’t working.
It is working is not / isn’t working.
They are working are not / aren’t working.

The present continuous verb changes when you ask questions.

Am I working?
Are you working?
Are we working?
Is he working?
Is she working?
Is it working?
Are they working?

 

Some verbs cannot be used in the present continuous form.

For example:

I like Coca-Cola Correct

I am liking Coca-Cola Incorrect

Click here for more information about dynamic and stative verbs

 

Present continuous for future

We can also use the present continuous tense to talk about arrangements we make with other people that are planned and will happen in the future.

For example:

I am meeting David next week.

My company is moving to a new office next year.

They are flying to Thailand tomorrow.

……………..

Are you having dinner with Louise tomorrow?

Is your mother visiting you next week?

Are they coming to the party on Saturday?

Click here to try the present continuous exercises.

Irregular verbs list

Irregular verbs list

irregular_verbs_listIrregular verbs, as the name suggests, don’t follow a pattern. You simply need to learn them. In this lesson you will find an irregular verbs list. We suggest you try to learn a few each each day.

But before we look at an irregular verbs list, we need to think about how to form regular verbs. English verbs often end in +ed or +d when used in the past tense or participle form.

For example:

work – worked / live – lived

These are regular verbs.

Below you will find an irregular verbs list. Don’t try to learn them all at once! Go through the irregular verbs list until you get ten that you don’t know, then practice.

Irregular verbs list

Verb Simple Past Past Participle
A
arise arose arisen
awake awakened / awoke awakened / awoken
B
be was, were been
bear bore born / borne
beat beat beaten / beat
become became become
begin began begun
bend bent bent
bind bound bound
bite bit bitten
bleed bled bled
blow blew blown
break broke broken
breed bred bred
bring brought brought
build built built
burn burned / burnt burned / burnt
burst burst burst
buy bought bought
C
cast cast cast
catch caught caught
choose chose chosen
cling clung clung
come came come
cost cost cost
creep crept crept
cut cut cut
D
deal dealt dealt
dig dug dug
dive dove / dived dived
do did done
draw drew drawn
dream dreamed / dreamt dreamed / dreamt
drink drank drunk
drive drove driven
dwell dwelt / dwelled dwelt / dwelled
E
eat ate eaten
F
fall fell fallen
feed fed fed
feel felt felt
fight fought fought
find found found
flee fled fled
fling flung flung
fly flew flown
forbid forbade forbidden
forecast forecast forecast
forego forewent foregone
foresee foresaw foreseen
foretell foretold foretold
forget forgot forgotten
forgive forgave forgiven
forsake forsook forsaken
freeze froze frozen
G
get got got / gotten
give gave given
go went gone
grind ground ground
grow grew grown
H
handwrite handwrote handwritten
hang hung hung
have had had
hear heard heard
hew hewed hewn / hewed
hide hid hidden
hit hit hit
hold held held
hurt hurt hurt
I
inbreed inbred inbred
inlay inlaid inlaid
input input / inputted input / inputted
interbreed interbred interbred
interweave interwove / interweaved interwoven / interweaved
interwind interwound interwound
J
K
keep kept kept
kneel knelt / kneeled knelt / kneeled
knit knitted / knit knitted / knit
know knew known
L
lay laid laid
lead led led
lean leaned / leant leaned / leant
leap leaped / leapt leaped / leapt
learn learned / learnt learned / learnt
leave left left
lend lent lent
let let let
lie (ie ‘to lie down’) lay lain
lie (ie ‘to tell a lie’) lied lied
light lit / lighted lit / lighted
lose lost lost
M
make made made
mean meant meant
meet met met
mow mowed mowed / mown
N
O
P
partake partook partaken
pay paid paid
plead pleaded / pled pleaded / pled
proofread proofread proofread
prove proved proven / proved
put put put
Q
quit quit quit
R
read read (pronounced red) read (pronounced red)
rid rid rid
ride rode ridden
ring rang rung
rise rose risen
run ran run
S
saw sawed sawed / sawn
say said said
see saw seen
seek sought sought
sell sold sold
send sent sent
set set set
sew sewed sewn / sewed
shake shook shaken
shave shaved shaved / shaven
shear sheared sheared / shorn
shed shed shed
shine shined / shone shined / shone
shoot shot shot
show showed shown / showed
shrink shrank / shrunk shrunk
shut shut shut
sight-read sight-read sight-read
sing sang sung
sink sank / sunk sunk
sit sat sat
sleep slept slept
slide slid slid
sling slung slung
slink slinked / slunk slinked / slunk
slit slit slit
smell smelled / smelt smelled / smelt
sneak sneaked / snuck sneaked / snuck
sow sowed sown / sowed
speak spoke spoken
speed sped sped
spell spelled / spelt spelled / spelt
spend spent spent
spill spilled / spilt spilled / spilt
spin spun spun
spit spat spat
split split split
spoil spoiled / spoilt spoiled / spoilt
spread spread spread
spring sprang / sprung sprung
stand stood stood
steal stole stolen
stick stuck stuck
sting stung stung
stink stunk / stank stunk
strew strewed strewn
stride strode stridden
strike struck struck / stricken
strive strove / strived striven / strived
sunburn sunburned / sunburnt sunburned / sunburnt
swear swore sworn
sweat sweat / sweated sweat / sweated
sweep swept swept
swell swelled swollen / swelled
swim swam swum
swing swung swung
T
take took taken
teach taught taught
tear tore torn
tell told told
think thought thought
throw threw thrown
thrust thrust thrust
tread trod trodden / trod
U
understand understood understood
upset upset upset
V
W
wake woke / waked woken / waked
waylay waylaid waylaid
wear wore worn
weave wove woven
wed wed wed
weep wept wept
wet wet wet
win won won
wind wound wound
withdraw withdrew withdrawn
withhold withheld withheld
withstand withstood withstood
wring wrung wrung
write wrote written
X
Y
Z

Past continuous tense

Past continuous

past_continuousThe past continuous is also known as the past progressive tense.

Example:

  • He was washing his hands when the phone rang.
  • We were singing and they were dancing all night.

Past continuous form:

was / were + [verb -to] + ing

Uses of past continuous:

1. To talk about an activity in progress at a particular time in the past
2. To talk about two actions happening at the same time in the past
3. To talk about a longer activity that was interrupted by a shorter activity
4. To give a background to an event

 

Past continuous use #1:

To talk about an activity in progress at a particular time in the past

  • This time last week, I was relaxing on the beach.

The particular time is ‘this time last week’, and we are referring to an activity (relaxing).

Past continuous use #2:

To talk about two actions happening at the same time in the past

  • Last night I was cooking dinner while my friends were watching television.

Using was cooking and were watching tells the listenener that both actions were happening at the same time.


Past continuous use #3:

To talk about a longer activity that was interrupted by a shorter activity

  • I was reading a book when the doorbell rang.

The longer activity = ‘was reading a book’
The interruption or shorter activity = ‘the doorbell rang

We would not say:

I was reading a book when the doorbell was ringing.

This would mean that the two actions were happening together over the same length of time.


Past continuous use #4:

To give a background to an event

  • It was a quiet night. The moon was shining and the wind was blowing gently.

In this example, you are simply describing the background of what was happening that night.

Relative clauses – defining and non defining

Relative clauses – defining and non defining

Parts of a sentence that identify people, things or add some additional information are called relative clauses.

Compare the sentences below. Which one is better?

a The International English Language Testing System is a globally recognised exam. It was first developed in the early 1960s.
b The International English Language Testing System, which was first developed in the early 1960s, is a globally recognised exam.

Hopefully you choose sentence B, which combines two sentences in a more formal, academic manner using relative clauses.

They often begin with either a question word (who, what, where, which etc) or ‘that’. They can also start with pronouns; e.g. whose).

Relative clauses - defining and non definingExamples of relative clauses:

  • He is the man who lives next door to me.
  • The journalist, whose work involves a huge amount of international travel, is currently in South America.
  • My house, which is in the country, is not very big.
  • Here’s the book that you wanted me to get.

 

Notice how the clause immediately follows the noun it relates to.

The game that they are playing originated from Southern Europe.
NOT: The game originated from Southern Europe that they are playing.

There are two common types of relative clause:

1. Defining relative clauses (also called ‘restricting relative clauses’ or ‘identifying relative clauses’)

2. Non-defining relative clauses (also called ‘non-restricting relative clauses’ or ‘non-identifying relative clauses’)


1. Defining relative clauses

A defining relative clause is one in which the clause is required for the understanding / grammar of the sentence.

Example:

She is the teacher who helped me with my homework.

If we remove the relative clause ‘who helped me with my homework‘, we are left with ‘She is the teacher’ which is not a complete sentence.

With defining relative clauses, we can change the question word for ‘that’:

She is the teacher that helped me with my homework.

 

2. Non-defining relative clauses

A non-defining relative clause is one in which the clause is NOT required for the understanding / grammar of the sentence. A non-defining relative clause adds extra information, but we can remove it and the sentence will still make sense.

Example:

My friend, who comes from Australia, loves surfing.

If we remove the relative clause, we are left with ‘My friend loves surfing.’, This a grammatically complete sentence.

NOTE: In non-defining relative clauses, we CANNOT change the question word for ‘that’.

Example:

My friend, that comes from Australia, loves surfing. We MUST use ‘who’.

In addition to not using ‘that’, non-defining relative clauses differ from defining relative clauses in that they use commas to show that the clause is not essential to the grammar of the sentence. Defining relative clauses do not use commas.

Compare:

She is the teacher that helped me with my homework.

She is the teacher, that helped me with my homework.

My friend, who comes from Australia, loves surfing.

My friend who comes from Australia loves surfing.


 

TEST YOURSELF: Are the following sentences defining or non-defining?

  • The IELTS interviewer that I had for my speaking test was very friendly.

    Show answer This is a defining relative clause

  • The Academic IELTS test, which is used for university entrance, is more difficult than the General Training modules.

    Show answer This is a non-defining relative clause

  • The teaching methods that some schools favour require students to learn new vocabulary every week.

    Show answer This is a defining relative clause

  • Any listening test which has four sections is bound to be difficult.

    Show answer This is a defining relative clause

  • My friend, who is Scottish, is an IELTS examiner.

    Show answer This is a non-defining relative clause

 

TEST YOURSELF #2:   All of the following sentences are incorrect. Can you identify the error?

a.  America which is one of the world’s most developed countries gives millions of dollars in aid to developing nations every year.

  Show answer This sentence needs to have commas – America, which is one of the world’s most developed countries, gives millions of dollars in aid to developing nations every year.
b.  Students communicate with their classmates in English often become considerably more fluent and confident.

  Show answer This needs ‘who’ adding to the sentence – ‘Students who communicate with their classmates in English often become considerably more fluent and confident.’
c.  We should, of course, punish those which break the law.

  Show answer ‘who’ should be used instead of which – ‘We should, of course, punish those which break the law.’
d.  The population is increasing, that is putting strain on both the environment and our supply of natural resources.

  Show answer Because this is a non-defining relative clause, ‘that’ should be changed to ‘which’ – ‘The population is increasing, that is putting strain on both the environment and our supply of natural resources.’

 

Countable and uncountable nouns

Countable and uncountable nouns

countable_and_uncountable_nounsThe English language has different rules about countable and uncountable nouns than some other languages. Basic rules about countable and uncountable nouns are –

  • A countable noun can be counted (e.g. one apple, two apples).
  • An uncountable noun cannot be counted (e.g. sugar – it’s hard to ‘count’ the number of small sugar grains).

Abstract nouns (things you cannot can’t feel, touch, see, hear, or taste) are usually uncountable too. For example: knowledge, leisure.

Here are some examples of countable and uncountable nouns.

There are more examples of uncountable and uncountable nouns in the picture too.

Countable nouns:

car, table, pencil, computer

Uncountable nouns:

water, bread, milk, information, education

When you learn new words in English, it is important to know whether the nouns you are learning are countable or uncountable nouns because the words and the grammar you use in sentences are different.

Remember that the rules in English might be different to the rules about countable and uncountable nouns in your own language!

Countable and uncountable nouns – ‘a‘ or ‘an‘ and making plurals

1. Use a or an before a single countable noun.

Single countable noun examples:

  • a car
  • an apple

2. Don’t use a or an before an uncountable noun

Uncountable noun examples:

  • water (not a water),
  • information (not an information)

3. Add +s or +es after more than one countable noun (plural countable nouns).

Plural countable noun examples:

  • two cars
  • five potatoes

Remember though that some nouns are irregular – you don’t add ‘s’ or ‘es’ when you make them plural and you just need to learn them! e.g. child / children, man / men, tooth / teeth etc.

4. Don’t add +s or +es after an uncountable noun (they have no plural)

Uncountable noun examples:

  • milk (not milks)
  • leisure (not leisures)

Countable and uncountable nouns – ‘some’ and ‘no’

1. Use some when talking about more than one countable noun and with uncountable nouns in positive sentences.

For example:

  • There are some cars parked on the street. (there is more than one car on the street)
  • There is some milk in the fridge. (there is milk in the fridge)

Also note the differences is grammar. Remember uncountable nouns have no plural form so in the example above ‘milk’ takes the ‘is’ form of the verb ‘to be’.

There are some cars. (NOT There is some cars or There are some car)

There is some milk. (NOT There are some milk or There is some milks)

2. The opposite of ‘some‘ is ‘none‘. You can use ‘no‘ in a ‘positive’ sentence structure to say that something is not present.

For example:

  • There are no cars parked on the street. (there zero cars on the street)
  • There is no milk in the fridge. (milk is not in the fridge)

Also note the differences is grammar. Remember uncountable nouns have no plural form so in the example above ‘milk’ takes the ‘is’ form of the verb ‘to be’.

There are no cars. (NOT There is no cars or There are no car)

There is some milk. (NOT There are no milk or There is no milks)

Countable and uncountable nouns rule – ‘any

Use any when talking about more than one countable noun and with uncountable nouns in negative sentences and in questions.

  • There aren’t any books about that topic at the library.
  • Are there any books about that topic at the library?
  • There isn’t any information about that topic at the library.
  • Is there any information about that topic at the library?

Also note the differences is grammar. Remember uncountable nouns have no plural form so in the example above ‘information’ takes the ‘is’ form of the verb ‘to be’.

There aren’t any books. (NOT There aren’t some books or There isn’t no books)

Are there any books? (NOT Is there some books? or Are there any book?)

There isn’t any information. (NOT There isn’t no information or There aren’t any information)

Is there any information? (NOT Is there some informations? or Are there any information?)

Countable and uncountable nouns rule – ‘many’ and ‘much’

Use many when talking about more than one countable noun in negative sentences and in questions.

Use much when talking about uncountable nouns in negative sentences and in questions.

Much and many follow the same rules as ‘any‘ but the meaning is different.

Can you see the difference? Look at the examples below.

1. Countable nouns – ‘any‘ and ‘many

  • There aren’t any books about that topic at the library. (there are zero books on the topic)
  • There aren’t many books about that topic at the library. (there are a small number of books on the topic)
  • Are there any books about that topic at the library? (the speaker wants to know if the library has books on the topic)
  • Are there many books about that topic at the library? (the speaker wants to to know the quantity of books on the topic at the library)

2. Countable nouns – ‘any‘ and ‘much

  • There isn’t any information about that topic at the library. (there is zero information on the topic)
  • There isn’t much information about that topic at the library. (there is a small amount of information on the topic)
  • Is there any information about that topic at the library? (the speaker wants to know if the library has information on the topic)
  • Is there much information about that topic at the library? (the speaker wants to to know the quantity of information on the topic)

Also note the differences is grammar. Remember uncountable nouns have no plural form so in the example above ‘information’ takes the ‘is’ form of the verb ‘to be’.

There aren’t many books. (NOT There aren’t much books or There isn’t many books)

Are there many books? (NOT Is there many books? or Are there much books?)

There isn’t much information. (NOT There isn’t many information or There aren’t much information)

Is there much information? (NOT Is there many information? or Is there much informations?)

 

Countable and uncountable nouns –  a lot of (lots of), too many, too much

A lot of (lots of), too many and too much can be used with countable and uncountable nouns to talk about quantity (bigger amounts).

Here are some rules and information about when to use them and the differences in meaning.

1. Use a lot of (lots of) and too many when talking about plural countable nouns. Be careful as the meanings are different!

Compare these examples:

  • There were some people at the party. (There was more than one person at the party)
  • There were a lot of people at the party. (There were a large number of people at the party)
  • There were lots of people at the party. (There were a large number of people at the party)

Note: Too many describes the quantity in a negative way.

  • There were too many people at the party (negative – the speaker thinks the party was so crowded they didn’t enjoy it)

2. Use a lot of (lots of) and too much when talking about uncountable nouns. Be careful as the meanings are different!

Compare these examples:

  • The manager gave his staff some information to read before the meeting. (The staff had something to read)
  • The manager gave his staff a lot of information to read before the meeting. (The staff had a large amount of information to read)
  • The manager gave his staff lots of information to read before the meeting. (The staff had a large amount of information to read)

Note: Too much describes the quantity in a negative way.

  • The manager gave his staff too much information to read before the meeting. (negative – the speaker thinks the boss was treating his staff unfairly)

Countable and uncountable nouns (a) few, (a) little

Few, a few, little, and a little can be used with countable and uncountable nouns to talk about quantity (smaller amounts).

Here are some rules and information about when to use them and the differences in meaning.

1. Use few or a few when talking about plural countable nouns.

Examples:

  • There were a few people waiting in the queue. (There were a small number of people in the queue)
  • There were few people waiting in the queue. (There were a very small number of people)

Note: Few describes the quantity in a negative way.

  • He has a few friends (neutral)
  • He has few friends (negative – the speaker probably thinks the person doesn’t have enough friends)

2. Use little or a little when talking about uncountable nouns.

Examples:

I have a little money left. (I have a small amount of money)

I have little money left. (My money is almost all gone)

Examples:

Note: Little describes the quantity in a negative way.

  • He has a little understanding of the subject. (neutral)
  • He has little understanding of the subject. (negative – the speaker thinks the person doesn’t have enough knowledge about about the subject)

 

Click here to try the countable and uncountable noun exercises.

Present perfect simple

Present perfect simple

present perfect simple

Present perfect simple tense examples:
I have cleaned my shoes.
He has gone to America.
I have travelled through Asia, but I haven’t been to Africa.

Uses of the present perfect simple:

1. To talk about something completed some time in the (recent) past that has an effect now
2. To talk about an experience we have had in our lives.

Present perfect simple form:

have / has + [3rd form of the verb / past participle]

 

 

Present perfect simple use #1:

We can use present perfect simple to talk about something completed in the past that has an effect now.

  • I have cleaned my shoes.

This tells us that:

a) the speaker cleaned his/her shoes in the past
b) that there is a present effect of this – probably that they are now clean.

  • I haven’t finished my homework!

NOTE: you cannot use present perfect simple with a specific time in the past – you have to use past simple.

e.g. I didn’t finish my homework last night. NOT  I haven’t finished my homework last night.

Present perfect simple use #2:

We can use present perfect simple to talk about an experience we have had in our lives.

Have you ever visited New Zealand?”
“No, I haven’t” been there yet. I have been to Australia though!

“I have eaten tofu but I have never eaten crocodile meat”

NOTE:

American English does not use this form of the present perfect. In American English, the past simple is used instead.

“Have you ever visited New Zealand?” (British English)
“Did you ever visit New Zealand?” (American English)

‘Ever’, ‘never’, ‘yet’ with present perfect simple

Have you ever…..?

Used for questions about experience up to now.

Example:

  • Have you ever taken an over night train?
  • Has he ever met your wife?

Have you…… yet?

Used for questions  and negative sentences about experience up to now.

  • Have you seen that new film yet?
  • I haven’t asked him yet.

NOT: Have you ever visited New York yet.

Never

Used for negative sentences about experience up to now.

I have never climbed a mountain.

I have never spoken to her.

NOT: I have never drunk champagne yet.

 

Grammar for IELTS parts of speech

Grammar for IELTS parts of speech

Grammar for IELTS parts of speechIn order to improve your result in the IELTS test, both for speaking and writing, it is important to be aware of the ‘parts’ of speech that create sentences in English. It is commonly accepted that there are only 9* different parts of speech from which all sentences, phrases or utterances are made.

*Some schools believe that there are only 8 parts of speech, with articles being part of the adjective group.

The different parts of speech are as follows:

  1. nouns
  2. verbs
  3. adverbs
  4. adjectives
  5. articles
  6. pronouns
  7. prepositions
  8. conjunctions
  9. interjections

Understanding which groups words are in can also help you to break down sentences, making the passive skills (reading and listening) easier.

Below is a table showing the different parts of speech and an example.

Parts of speech

Part of speech Common use Example
Verb to describe an action He sat.
Noun To describe a thing He sat on the chair.
Adverb To describe the verb He slowly sat on the chair.
Adjective To describe the noun He slowly sat on the tall chair.
Pronoun To talk about who He slowly sat on the tall chair.
Preposition To talk about where or when He slowly sat on the tall chair.
Conjunction Used to join ideas He slowly sat on the tall chair but fell off.
Article Used to give more information about the noun He slowly sat on the tall chair but fell off.
Interjection A short exclamation – not a full sentence Ouch! He hit the floor.

Improving your knowledge of English

It is also useful to keep a vocabulary list and group words together that come from the same parts of speech.

For example:

adjectives – e.g. glamorous

You should try to also learn their antonyms and synonyms to build your vocabulary.

e.g. alluring, attractive (synonyms) – dowdy, plain (antonyms)

and think about their comparatives and superlatives e.g. – (adj) more glamorous (comparative) the most glamorous (superlative)

nouns – e.g. accommodation

(check spelling and think about articles etc) – uncountable, no ‘a’ or ‘an’

You should try to also learn their synonyms to build your vocabulary.

e.g. place of residence, dwelling, abode (synonyms)

verbs – e.g. drive

(and their past and participle forms);

drove, driven

prepositions – e.g. on

(with examples of their different uses),

e.g. on the sofa, but in an arm chair.

conjunctions – e.g. moreover

(with examples of use and punctuation)

Smoking is expensive; moreover, it is detrimental to health.

Click here to try the parts of speech exercises.

Prepositions of time (1)

Prepositions of time (lesson 1)

prepositions_of_timePrepositions of time (like all prepositions) can be one of the hardest parts of English to use correctly.

This is because the rules are often quite difficult and there are lots of exceptions!

In this lesson, we are looking at the following prepositions of time:

  • at
  • in
  • on

Here are some example sentences using prepositions of time:

  • I’m going camping at the weekend.
  • They will be here in 5 minutes
  • School starts on the Monday.

Prepositions of time – ‘at

Here are the rules for using the preposition ‘at‘.

Rule #1:

For a clock time (at 5 p.m., at quarter to 12)

Example: I finish work at 5.30 p.m.

Rule #2:

For a particular time (at lunch time, at sunset)

We will be having dinner on the deck at sunset. How romantic!

Rule #3:

For a collection of days (at the weekend [the weekend includes Saturday and Sunday], at Christmas [Christmas period includes Christmas day, Christmas Eve etc])

Most games are held at the weekend.

Here are the rules for using the preposition ‘in‘.

Rule #1:

For months of the year (in February, in April)

They are getting married in March.

Rule #2:

For years (in 1990, in 2015)

I started working at the school in 2010.

Rule #3:

For part of a day (in the morning, in the afternoon, in the evening) EXCEPTION: at night

I can concentrate better in the morning.

I love listening to the owls at night.

Rule #4:

For longer lengths of time: (in the summer, in the Middle Ages)

He always goes skiing in the winter.

Prepositions of time – ‘on’

Here are the rules for using the preposition ‘on‘.

Rule #1:

For days of the week (on Monday, on Tuesday etc)

I am seeing him on Wednesday.

Rule #2:

For dates (on the 4th of May, on the 26th February)

They got married on the 12th June.

Rule #3:

For specific single days (on my birthday, on New Years Eve, on Labour Day)

I am going to a party on New Years Eve.

Click here to try the prepositions of time exercises.

good sentences for ielts

Grammar for IELTS writing good sentences

Grammar for IELTS writing good sentences

When writing in your IELTS test it is essential that you use a range of sentence structures, from simple to complex sentence forms. In order to write good sentences for IELTS means you will need how to form each type of sentence.

Start by looking at these examples:

SIMPLE SENTENCE:

  • Smoking can cause cancer.

 

COMPOUND SENTENCE:

  • Smoking can cause cancer, so should be banned.

 

Grammar for IELTS writing good sentencesCOMPLEX SENTENCE:

  • Even though smoking can cause cancer, many people continue to buy cigarettes.

 

Now let’s look at each type of sentence in more detail.

 

Simple sentences

As the name suggests, simple sentences are quite basic in structure. They need only a subject and a verb. Because they are the easiest form of sentence structure, it is important to make sure that your essay does not overly used this form of sentence structure.

 

Compound sentences

Compound sentences are formed when simple sentences are combined using a linking word (called a ‘conjunction’ word). There are seven conjunctions that can be used to combine simple sentences:

FOR, AND, NOR, BUT, OR, YET and SO (looking at the first letter of each of this conjunctions, you can spell ‘FANBOYS‘ – a useful way to help you remember!). In the example sentence used at the beginning of this page, SO has been used to combine Smoking can cause cancer SO (smoking) should be banned.

 

Complex sentences

These are the most important sentences for a good IELTS result – they are more difficult to accurately build, but are essential to make your writing ‘academic’. Complex sentences are created from 2 or more phrases joined together with a conjunction, but not the conjunctions used in compound sentences (FANBOYS). Instead, there are considerable more conjunctions that can be used. Here are some examples: even if, so that, unless, even so.