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47 IELTS Speaking Part 2 Topics with Answers pdf
47 IELTS Speaking Part 2 Topics with Answers pdf

47 IELTS Speaking Part 2 Topics with Answers pdf


To be well-prepared for the IELTS exam (both IELTS Academic & IELTS General Training Module), you can download Band 8.0+ Sample Answers for 47 New Topics for IELTS Speaking Part 2 (May-August, 2016) on page 23 to practice at home with your IELTS study partners.

Below are some topics that are given on IELTS speaking part 2 which may appear in your speaking test. These topics are along with the model answers as well as the vocabulary required. You can refer to this page to have a clear view of how the topics are given for IELTS speaking part 2 and work on it.

Describe a television program that you like to watch

You should say

  • what program it is
  • what the program is about
  • how often you watch it
  • explain why you like watching this program


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Sample Answer

Over the course of my life, I have been watching a lot of television programs, ranging from scientific to reality shows. However, the TV program that I am addicted to is “The Apprentice” on NBC channel. The show airs for about 30 minutes, twice a week. The show is hosted by Donald Trump, one of the richest and most powerful billionaires in the world.

There are often 10 people in each episode and all the participants are young, dynamic, enthusiastic and talented people from all walks of life. Despite different backgrounds, they all share the same dream of becoming successful people, which is the very reason why they join this program.

The Apprentice is regarded among one of the most popular educational TV programs. Watching this program, I can gain a deeper insight into the business world and about obstacles that people have to encounter and overcome in order to succeed.

This program is useful not only for business people but also for young people like me. It inspires us and motivates us to advance in our career paths.

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Describe a sport that you would like to learn

You should say

  • what sport it is
  • how you would learn it
  • how difficult you think it would be to learn
  • and explain why you would like to learn this sport

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Sample Answer

There are many kinds of sports which people like learning these days, such as baseball, basketball, volleyball, and cricket but I would like to learn football which is so-called the king of sport. 

Football is the popular kind of sport in almost all countries in the world. Basically, it is a collective game with 2 teams and each team has 11 players.  The main purpose is that players try to keep their goal safe and kick the ball to the net of their opponents. Scores are recorded and the winner is the team having higher scores.

It is the most famous sports in my country and all of my family members favor these sports, especially my father and my brother. Thus, I had a chance to approach this sport since I was 7 years old. I really love learning it because of the drama and surprise in each match.

From my perspective, it is really difficult to learn to play soccer well. A player needs to be very strong to compete with others, and be skillful in ball controlling, heading as well as having team spirit. A good football team needs to have solidarity as well as the ability to control the game. Therefore, normally there is a coach for each team and this person is not less famous than other players.

Describe one of your childhood toys that were special to you

You should say

  • what it was
  • who gave it to you
  • how you played with it
  • and explain why it was special for you

Sample Answer

I have many toys in my childhood and at different stages, I prefer different toys. However, among them, a Teddy bear is the most special one to me and I still keep it at my closet until now.

I guess that all kids love a furry friend and so did I. However, what made the bear really special to me was that this was a gift from my father on an occasion of my 5th birthday. Everything about it was so different from other stuffed bears. At that time, my father was working far away and I missed him so much. I thought that he could not come back to celebrate my birthday party as he had done before. To my surprise, on my birthday, he suddenly came home and brought with him a lovely Teddy bear. Missing him, I ran into him and my father gave me a big hug, then kissed me. I was so excited about the Teddy bear. When I squeezed it, it said I LOVE YOU by the most sweet and lovely voice on Earth.

Looking at it made me immediately think about my beloved father. His physical presence on my birthday was like gold to me. You know, it is really hard to not have one of the most important people to you in your birthday. I would never forget that special moment and the Teddy bear means so much to me.

Describe a goal that you hope to achieve in the future

You should say

  • what the goal is
  • when you first began to have this goal
  • how you would achieve the first step of your goal
  • how easy or difficult you think it will be to reach this goal
  • and explain why you have this goal

Sample Answer

I have a long desire to learn Chinese as a second foreign language, but even with my passion, I still have not achieved it yet.

This passion grew in me just a few years ago when I watched a very inspiring movie about Chinese history and culture. Then I decided that I had to learn Chinese in order to explore more about this incredible nation. Besides, knowing more than one language is very beneficial to not only my study but also my future career path.

Therefore, in order to achieve my target, I will register for a Chinese course for beginners, which is held 3 times a week.  I also intend to download many apps on my phone with the aim to study at home by myself. I have drawn my own schedule so that I can make time for self – study, at least 1 hour per day.

As currently, I have a full – time job, I am so busy that there are days when I have to work overtime or travel far away to meet clients. Moreover, after a tiring day, I often feel deadly tired and find it hard to concentrate on studying at home.  However, just thinking about the moments when I can speak Chinese gives me a sense of satisfaction, which encourages me to study harder and better. Thus, I always remind myself that I have to keep up with my schedule at any cost if I want to make my dream come true.


Describe a happy family event from your childhood

You should say

  • what the event was
  • where it happened
  • what you saw and did
  • and explain why you remember this event so well

Sample Answer

There are numerous happy events in my life that I can recall and among them, I would like to talk about the time when my family gathered to make the Chung cake for the Tet holiday.

The Lunar New Year, or Tet, is a very special traditional holiday in my country. It was probably my most favorite holiday when I was a small girl as my family had a lot of activities to celebrate this occasion.  Among them, making the Chung cake made me excited the most. The Chung cake is made of glutinous rice, green beans and fat pork, wrapped in banana leaves in the shape of a square. I often played with my older brother when my parents prepared the ingredients for the cake. And then, my father lit a small fire to boil the cake overnight.

It was perhaps the only time of the year when I was allowed to stay up late. While my family was sitting around the warm fire, my grandmother would tell the old legendary story about the Chung cake to commemorate the filial affection of Lang Lieu prince to his father and remind us of the long-lasting Vietnamese tradition.

In recent years, my family has not had enough time for making the Chung cake on our own. However, to me, a ready-made Chung cake that we buy from a local market cant bring the special feeling and replace the taste of a Chung cake from my childhood. I hope that my family can continue our tradition in the coming years.

Describe a useful app or computer program for a smartphone, computer or tablet that you have used

You should say

  • what the app is
  • how long/how often you have used it (or, been using it)
  • what you use it for
  • and explain why you think it is useful

Sample Answer

Well, I’m really into mobile apps so I set up at least 20 helpful apps on my smartphone like Meditation, Tripadvisor, Ted, Lumosity, Duolingo, Wunderlist. But maybe Money Lover is the most useful one and at the top of my list.

Let me tell you about it in more detail. The symbol of the app is a very cute piggy bank which impresses me a lot at the first sight. There are many expenses for clothes, food, cosmetics divided so that at the end of the month, I can know exactly what cost me a bomb, what are within my budget to tighten the belt next month.

It is not an exaggeration to say that this way of saving money changes my life for the better. Thanks to that, I am better at money management. When talking about money-saving, my friends consider me as a shining model for them to follow. This makes me so proud of myself.

In addition, my mom always got shirty with me for my wasting money but at the moment, she hardly loses her temper anymore and we seem to have better relationships than in the past.

If anyone asks what application I like best, “Money Lover” is the first thing that comes to my mind. Trust me, it is really helpful.

Describe a short holiday (vacation) that was special for you

You should say

  • where you went
  • who you spent time with
  • what you did
  • and explain why it was special for you

Sample Answer

Today I’m going to share with you a short vacation that left me a profound impression. It was a trip to the hometown of one of my classmates at university

At the end of the second semester, our group at the university was invited to pay a 5-day visit to the house of one of the group members, which is located in An Giang province. We had 5 people in total and bought coach tickets to reach our destination.

On arriving at the countryside, which is quite secluded from the hustle and bustle of the city life, we were greatly impressed by the picturesque landscapes there. The atmosphere was refreshing and the air is unpolluted unlike in the city where many of us were living in. My friend acted as a tour guide as he was well accustomed to the local lifestyles and tourist attractions there. We took the motorbikes to tour the city land stopped at some street vendors to taste the local cuisine, which I personally found tasty and delicate. After doing the sights, we gathered in the evening for some small games and gossip about our study and our future career path.

All in all, such a short vacation still fills me with great delight each time I recall it. Hope that we could make another vacation someday before Lunar New Year.

Describe an antique or some other old thing that your family has kept for a long time

You should say

  • what it is
  • how (or when) your family first got this thing
  • how long your family has kept it
  • and explain why this thing is important to your family.

Sample Answer 1

When it comes to an old thing I keep in my family, I want to talk about the transformer that I got from my parents on my 10th birthday.

On that day, my parents bought me a transformer as a birthday gift. When I opened the gift box, I was really astonished by what I was seeing in front of me. It was an awesome transformer that I had been dreaming about for ages. The moment I saw this transformer, I fell in love with it. It was pretty huge and looked like a hip yellow car, and it could be shifted from a car to a robot action figure and back again. The transformer had a really nice color scheme and finish. And it came with a nice handgun like the weapon and different accessories. It was super cool! And with the transformer, there was a card from my parents saying, “Sweetie, you mean everything in the world to us and you are forever the apple of our eyes. Happy Birthday! Love parents.” I am telling you, although I was pretty young at that time, those words impressed me a lot.

Until today, I still keep this toy. It has been over ten years since I got it. I love it not only because of the toy itself but also because of the sentimental value it has for me. The value is irreplaceable.

Sample Answer 2

Today, I am going to share with you an old possession that my family has kept for a long time. It is an antique terra-cotta dish, which is displayed in an honored position in the living room.

This old dish originated from feudal times in Vietnam, although I am not sure of the year exactly. It might have belonged to the Nguyen Dynasty. It is made from pottery material with some small artificial fissures, and it was my grandfather’s favorite thing when he was still alive. There is a village picture painted in blue in the center of the dish.

When I was a child, my grandfather used to tell me the story of this dish. His close friend gave it to him to celebrate his house-warming in the past. They had been companions in arms for a long time, so that was the reason why he really treasured their ties and that gift as a reminder of their friendship.

There is a lot of other modern furniture arranged in my house nowadays, however, this antique object is still a treasured possession for each member of my family. We have kept this antique dish for over 30 years, even when my grandpa passed away and left it for my family. Whenever I look at this dish, it always reminds me of my grandfather as a fond memento.


  • possession: something that you own.
    Eg: When leaving the plane, please make sure that you have all your possessions with you.
  • antique:   old and often valuable
    Eg: I have an antique table in my living room which is about 200 years old.
  • terracotta:   material of a red-brown color, used to make pots.
    Eg :My mother still cooks using traditional terracotta pots.
  • honoured:   very respected, showing respect for something.
    Eg: The President was an honored guest at the ceremony.
  • feudal:  describing a time in the past when given land and protection by a rich person, and had to work and fight for him in return.
    Eg: Life in feudal times in Vietnam was very hard for poor people who worked on the land.
  • dynasty:   a series of rulers of a country who all belong to the same family.
    Eg:  Pottery from the time of the Ming Dynasty in China is very valuable.
  • pottery:   pots or dishes, usually made by hand from a type of earth called clay and made hard by baking in an oven.
    Eg:  I learned to make traditional dishes by hand by going to a pottery class.
  • fissures:  long cracks in something.
    Eg:  The rocks had many fissures, some of which were very deep.
  • house-warming:  a party given by someone who has moved into a new house.
    Eg:  My new neighbours invited our family to their house-warming party.
  • companions-in-arms:  people who have been soldiers, fighting together.
    Eg:  My two uncles were companions-in-arms during World War 2.
  • treasure:   to have or keep something that you love and is very valuable to you.
    Eg:  Thank you for your gift.  I will always treasure it.
  • ties:  strong connections between people, especially friendships or family relationships.
    Eg:  She continues to have close ties with her old school friends, and she often visits or calls them.
  • fond:  kind, happy and loving.
    Eg: I have fond memories of my years in London.
  • memento:  a thing that you have that reminds you of a person or place.
    Eg:  We returned home with some mementos of our holiday in China.

Describe an art or craft activity you did when you were in school

You should say

  • when this happened
  • what you did in the activity
  • who you did it with
  • and explain how you felt about this activity

Sample Answer

Today I’m going to share with you about a craftwork that a bunch of high school buddies and I took part in. It was prior to Mid-Autumn Festival that our form teacher made a decision to hold a small competition among our classmates. The theme was to design the most attractive and meaningful lantern

My group decided on creating a spinning lantern ’(while other groups chose much simpler shapes like butterflies, fish, and stars. As a matter of fact, ours was a lantern which spins around when a candle is placed inside, which symbolizes the seasonal spinning of the earth around the sun. Therefore, it was a bit tricky and time-consuming to make it work.

My assigned duty was to cut the colored plastic papers and draw some exotic pictures to decorate the exterior of the lantern. I drew great shapes and cut them out neatly, glued and stuck them onto the shiny outer surface of the spinning lantern. A couple of my friends strategized and positioned the axis so that it could spin properly. And we finished our product within 3 hours of hard work

This craft activity had a realty special meaning for me. Actually, our team won the first prize not only in our class, but the whole school as well. Afterward, our lantern was singled out and donated to a local orphanage. I was really moved and blissfully happy since we did accomplish something for those less fortunate. This actually left a really profound Mid-Autumn impression on me.

Describe an activity you do for your health or fitness

You should say

  • what you do
  • how often you do it
  • where you do it
  • and explain how you think this activity helps you stay healthy or fit

Sample Answer

Staying in good shape is everyone’s concern and I am no exception. To be honest, I have been so caught up in my study since I entered university that I have a problem in organizing my daily routine. However, I have been participating in a yoga class for about 2 years, which takes me only 1 hour a day, to try to lead a healthy lifestyle.

Unlike dancing or running, yoga definitely involves stretching actions. You might look at yoga and think that it is light and easy but it is more demanding than it appears. Yoga allows me to work on all the parts of my body. It can burn a lot of calories in just one hour of training. Also, it enhances my flexibility and suppleness in every single movement.

What I enjoy the most about yoga is meditation. It is all about regulating your breathing and helping you take things off your mind easily. Another thing is that doing yoga is supposed to be good for curing headaches and digestion-related problems,  so it benefits not only physical well-being but also mental health.

By maintaining a schedule of taking part in the yoga class on a daily basis, I feel extremely relaxed and full of energy after the class. It helps me to keep fit and refresh my mind after a long stressful day. And of course, I don’t see myself stopping practicing this activity any time soon.


  • in good shape:  the good physical condition of someone
    Eg: For a man of his age, he is in good shape.
  • caught up: completely involved in something.
    Eg:  He was so caught up in the TV program, that he forgot to do his homework.
  • stretching actions: actions which make your muscles stronger by exercises in which you extend your arms and legs.
    Eg:  When I get up in the morning, I do some stretching actions to exercise the muscles in my arms.
  • demanding:  needing a lot of effort.
    Eg:  The work of a farmer is physically very demanding.
  • work on:  try hard to improve something, or how something functions.
    Eg:  She works on her yoga skills by practicing the exercises every day.
  • burn a lot of calories:  use up a lot of energy [that comes from the food we eat].
    Eg:  One reason why people do exercise is to burn a lot of calories and lose weight.
  • flexibility:  the ability to move and bend your body easily.
    Eg:  Regular exercise helps older people to maintain their flexibility, especially by stretching their muscles.
  • suppleness:  the ability to move and bend your body into different positions – it is a synonym for flexibility.
    Eg:  Different yoga movements develop suppleness in different muscles.
  • meditation:  thinking deeply in silence, to make you feel calm.
    Eg:  To help you to relax, try meditation after a stressful day at work.
  • regulating your breathing:  controlling the way in which you breathe in and out.
    Eg:  An important part of learning how to swim is regulating your breathing.
  • take things off your mind: forget things which are causing you anxiety or stress.
    Eg:  After an exam, I usually have a short holiday, to take things off my mind and enjoy myself.
  • cure:  make an illness go away.
    Eg:  The website advertises a new drug for curing AIDS.
  • digestion:  the process of changing the food you eat into substances that the body can use.
    Eg:  Unlike cows or horses, the digestion of grass is impossible for humans.
  • well-being:  general health and happiness.
    Eg:  The company tries to ensure the well-being of its employees by providing good working conditions.
  • schedule:  a plan that lists all the things that you have to do and when you must do them.
    Eg:  For the next few days, I have a busy schedule, which includes my yoga class each morning.
  • I don’t see myself stopping:  I don’t think that I will stop.
    Eg:  I don’t see myself stopping working in the next 10 years because I have to support my family.
  • any time soon:  in the near future, soon.
    Eg:  I should receive the exam results any time soon – perhaps tomorrow.

Describe a new skill you would like to learn

You should say

  • what skill (= what you would like to learn to do)
  • where you would learn it (or, where you think would be the best place
  • to learn it)
  • how difficult you think it would be
  • and explain why you would like to learn this skill

Sample Answer

I’d like to talk about a new skill that I want to learn. I’m the kind of adventurous person who enjoys the challenge of learning new things, whether it is a new sport or a skill that would be useful to me.
I would like to have the skills to set up my own website. Probably the best place to learn to do this would be online, using a distance-learning course run by a university, which I could take free of charge. I wouldn’t need to travel and I could complete the course at my own pace in my spare time.
Although there would be a lot to learn, I already use computers all the time, so I think that I could pick up the basics quite quickly. With practice, I would become more creative and able to incorporate new features on my website.
Of course, I imagine that I would find the course interesting, but I have a practical reason for wanting to master this skill. I have recently started my own company, selling sports goods, so it would be a really cost-effective and attractive way to advertise my products.


  • adventurous: willing to take risks and try new ideas.
    Eg: My friend is very adventurous and she loves to try the local cuisine when we travel to other countries.
  • challenge: a new or difficult task that tests someone’s ability or skill.
    Eg: It will be a big challenge to pass my final exams.
  • set up: create or start something.
    Eg: The government has set up a new clinic in the city center.
  • distance learning: a system of education where people study at home with the help of special Internet sites, and e-mail work to their teachers.
    Eg: Although he lives in the countryside, he is able to take a distance learning course to qualify as an engineer.
  • at my own pace: at the speed which is best for me.
    Eg: She prefers to study alone so that she can work at her own pace.
  • pick up: get information or a skill quite easily, without too much work.
    Eg: I picked up a lot of English during my visit to New York.
  • creative: able to use skill and imagination to produce something new.
    Eg: The advertising company employs a creative team to think of new ideas and designs.
  • incorporate:  to include something, so that it then forms part of something else.
    Eg: The teacher incorporates music into his English lessons, to make them more enjoyable.
  • master:  learn or understanding something completely.
    Eg: I was never able to master the French language when I was at school.
  • cost-effective: giving the best possible results for the money and time spent on something.
    Eg: Using more security cameras in public places is a cost-effective way to reduce crime.
  • attractive: having features or qualities that make something seem interesting or pleasant.
    Eg: My flat is opposite some attractive gardens, which are full of trees and flowers.

Describe an interesting public place in your hometown, or where you are living now, that you like to go to

You should say 

  • where it is
  • how often you go there
  • what you do there
  • and explain why you think it is interesting

Sample Answer

Today, I’m going to share with you an interesting public place where I really enjoy going to hang out with my close friends in my spare time, which is a lovely café named The Hanoi Social Club.

It is situated at Hoi Vu alley – a small quiet lane near Hang Bong street in the center of my hometown. The coffee house is decorated in an old, traditional French style, with a lot of paintings on the wall, and it attracts a lot of foreign customers. As a full-time student, I have been so caught up in my studies, therefore, I just take a day off to go there on weekends after a long stressful week.

There are many live music events taking place there performed by acoustic guitarists, so I often check them out on the internet and come with my friends. Because this type of music is my kind of thing, I am in my element just humming the tune of the songs and relaxing in a comfy chair to enjoy myself.

The fast food tastes quite savory and especially the coffee in The Hanoi Social Club is always irresistibly delicious. That might be the reason why it was ranked among the top 5 best coffee shops in Vietnam in 2015. What I really love is how cozy the atmosphere is, something which I have not found in any other coffee shop yet.

Whenever things go wrong, I often go there as a hideaway to escape from all the pressures and order a cup of coffee to relieve my stress. It always works wonders. I find it extremely therapeutic and soothing. Therefore, it’s more than likely that I will still keep coming back to it as my favorite place in the near future.


  • hang out: spend time in a particular place.
    Eg:  I sometimes hang out at the shopping mall on Sundays and meet up with my friends.
  • lane: a narrow street in a city, with buildings on both sides.
    Eg:  The lane behind the museum will take you directly to the train station.
  • decorate:  make something more attractive.
    Eg:  Her living room is always decorated with flowers.
  • caught up:  involved in a concentrated way, so that you forget other things around you.
    Eg:  I was so caught up in the film that I forgot to feed the cat.
  • acoustic:  designed to make natural sound, no sound produced by electrical equipment.
    Eg:  Artists who play traditional music usually use acoustic instruments, copying the way in which the music was originally played.
  • in my element:  doing what I enjoy.
    Eg:  I am really in my element at parties, because I love dancing and mixing with friends.
  • hum:  sing a tune with your lips closed.
    Eg:  He began humming along to the music.
  • comfy: 
    Eg:  This new jacket isn’t as comfy as my old one.
  • irresistibly: in a way that is so strong that it cannot be stopped.
    Eg:  Romeo and Juliet in Shakespeare’s play were two young lovers who were irresistibly attracted to each other.
  • cozy:  warm and comfortable and safe, often used to refer to something small.
    Eg:  I felt cozy and relaxed sitting by the fire.
  • hideaway: a place where you can go to be alone.
    Eg:  He escapes to his hideaway in the country at weekends.
  • relieve:  remove or reduce an unpleasant feeling or pain.
    Eg:  To relieve his feeling of guilt, he decided to tell the truth to the police.
  • work wonders:  have a very good effect on someone or something.
    Eg:  If you have a bad cold, a hot lemon drink at night works wonders.
  • therapeutic:  helping you to relax.
    Eg:  I find that yoga is very therapeutic, and I always feel better after my yoga class.
  • soothing:  that makes someone who is anxious or stressed, feel better.
    Eg:  The doctor has such a soothing voice that his patients feel relaxed immediately.

Describe a wedding that you have attended

You should say 

  • whose wedding it was
  • who was there
  • what happened
  • and explain how you felt.

Sample Answer

Today, I’m gonna share with you a wedding of my friend that I attended. Last month, I received a wedding invitation from my old friend from primary school. The wedding was held at the beginning of April. We have been close to each other for over 15 years, therefore, I definitely wanted to attend at all costs, due to the fact that we hadn’t had a chance to get together for ages.

Her wedding ceremony took place at The Sum Villa, located near West Lake. It was decorated impressively with a lot of lights, candles, and flowers around the room. There were three glamorous wedding photo albums, showing tables right at the centre of the official gate. The principal colors were likely to be white and violet, so all the guests were requested to wear clothes with one or both of these colors. Personally, I wore a white dress with small accessories.

It was meant to be a casual wedding, which I had never attended before. It turned out to be refreshingly informal.  One of the best moments that really touched me was when the bridegroom sang a song for the bride and all the guests sang along with him. Also, he made a photo clip by himself marking their 4-year romance, to show to everyone in the room. It was no surprise that everyone clapped their hands and cheered them. Of course, I was no exception.

It was also a good chance to catch up with my old friends and we all had a great time. We definitely made the most of the occasion and took a lot of pictures with the bride and the bridegroom. I gave my friend a gift to celebrate her wedding day. I had given much thought to my wedding present when I was choosing it, and I wished her lots of happiness for the future.


  • hold:have a meeting/conversation/party/wedding/event.
    Eg:  The next Olympic Games will be held in Brazil.
  • close to: knowing someone well and liking them very much.
    Eg:  She has always been close to her grandparents and often visits them.
  • at all costs: whatever is needed to achieve something.
    Eg:  I knew that, at all costs, I had to catch the last train home.
  • for ages: for a long time.
    Eg:  I waited for ages to speak to the doctor.
  • decorate: make something more attractive.
    Eg:  Her living room is always decorated with flowers.
  • glamorous: especially attractive and exciting.
    Eg:  When my sister was young, she wanted to have a glamorous job, like a model or a film actress.
  • albums: a book in which you keep photographs.
    Eg:  All of my parent’s photographs are still in the family photo albums in my drawer.
  • accessories: things like belts or bags, which you carry to match your clothes.
    Eg:  The shop sells only fashion accessories, and my friend buys all her bracelets there.
  • bridegroom: a man on his wedding day.
    Eg:  The bridegroom was very nervous during the wedding ceremony.
  • bride: a woman on her wedding day.
    Eg:  The bride wore a very beautiful white dress.
  • romance: a relationship between two people who are in love.
    Eg:  Romeo and Juliet is a play about the romance of two young lovers.
  • clapped their hands: hit their open hands together, to show that they liked or enjoyed something.
    Eg:  At the end of the fantastic show, all the audience clapped their hands.
  • cheer: to shout loudly, to show support or to encourage someone.
    Eg:  The crowd cheered when Barcelona scored the winning goal.

Describe a time when you tried a new food for the first time.

You should say

  • what food it was
  • where you ate it
  • what it tasted like
  • and explain whether or not you liked this food

Sample Answer

Well, I’m a great fan of barbecues and I would like to talk about the first time I tried some typical barbecue food. This happened when I was 10 years old.

My familiy went out to have dinner to celebrate my younger sister’s birthday. After putting so much thought into some new savory food to have for our meal, we decided to go to a BBQ restaurant on Ba Trieu street.

We ordered four dishes with three different tastes. One of them which really interested me was grilled-Australian beef, flavored with something spicy, rich and aromatic. It not only tasted delicious but also looked appealing. Also, it went well with two kinds of dipping sauces and was served with baguettes. There was also a salad, which gave it a mild taste to contrast with the spicy flavors.

The idea of a barbecue originated in America, and for us, it was a novel and sophisticated meal.

What I really enjoyed was that we could watch as it was cooked in front of us. I loved how juicy it was and the aroma it had. Just mentioning it makes my mouth water. I mean, the BBQ was out of this world.  That was the first time I had tried it, and I would have liked to have kept on coming back for more, but I was just too full.


  • barbecues: a meal, usually eaten outdoors, which is cooked over an open fire.
    Eg:Every summer, my friends and I have barbecues on the beach and we each bring some beef or other meat to grill.
  • put thought into:considered seriously and carefully.
    Eg:I put so much thought into my school project that I received a very high score.
  • savory:having a delicious taste, usually containing salt.
    Eg:We ate some tasty savory biscuits with cheese to finish our meal.
  • dish:food prepared in a particular way as part of a meal.
    Eg:Our meal arrived at the table – two dishes of meat, with rice and salad.
  • flavor:add to food to give it a special taste.
    Eg:The fish was flavored with spices and it tasted delicious.
  • aromatic: having a pleasant smell or aroma.
    Eg:She grows a number of aromatic plants in her garden.
  • dipping sauces:different types of sauces in which you can put your food quickly, take the food out again and eat it.
    Eg:The chef flavors his dipping sauces with different spices – some sweet spices and some hot ones.
  • baguettes:white bread in the shape of long sticks.
    Eg:The cheese baguettes which we ordered were hard on the outside and soft on the inside.
  • mild:not strong or severe.
    Eg:I prefer cheese that is mild rather than cheese with a strong flavor.
  • originate:happen or appear for the first time in a particular place or situation.
    Eg:Tobacco originated in America and was later brought to Europe.
  • novel:new, and different from anything known before.
    Eg:Drive-in restaurants are a novel idea which originated in America.
  • sophisticated:typical of rich or socially important people.
    Eg:They like to dress in very sophisticated clothes, although they don’t have a lot of money.
  • juicy:having a lot of juice, so that it is good to eat.
    Eg:He bought some delicious juicy oranges at the market.
  • makes my mouth water: makes me feel hungry.
    Eg:Thinking about Thai cuisine makes my mouth water.
  • out of this world: wonderful and exciting.
    Eg:The new James Bond film is out of this world.
  • full:having had enough to eat.
    Eg:Although I was full after lunch, I still ate an ice-cream in the afternoon.

Describe a difficult decision that you made.

You should say 

  • what decision it was
  • what difficulties you faced
  • how you made the decision
  • and explain why it was a difficult decision

Sample Answer

Well, the most difficult decision I’ve ever made was whether or not I should study abroad next year. / Well, the most important conversation I had so far was with my parents about whether or not I should study abroad next year.

In the recent couple of years, there’s this growing tendency among high school graduates to embark on a study abroad program. I’ve always wanted to do the same, because it’s a good opportunity to see the world, to experience different styles education, and to improve my language skills. And for a girl who has never been far away from home, studying in a foreign country might bring out my independent nature. But I need to give it some careful thought before I could make the decision. I told my parents who are both open-minded about my plan,and they were pretty supportive, but they also pointed out some disadvantages. My mom told me that being in a new place by myself could be overwhelming sometimes, and it tests my ability to adapt to diverse situations. And it’s highly possible that I would feel lonely and helpless every so often because all of my close friends and family members are on the other side of the world. I would be completely on my own, and basically everything I took for granted in the past would then be a challenge, like paying bills, opening bank accounts, communicating with fellow students, and the list goes on and on.

All of a sudden, I felt stuck. All those challenges sounded terrifying, but I really didn’t want to miss this great chance to broaden my horizon and learn more about other cultures around the world. I weighed up the pros and cons carefully, and after some serious consideration, I finally made up my mind to seize the opportunity to go abroad for study.

Describe a place you have visited that has been affected by pollution

You should say

  • what place it was
  • why you went there
  • how it was affected by pollution
  • and explain how you felt about this situation

Sample Answer

I’d like to talk about the capital city of China, Beijing, which is famous for its places of interest like the Great Wall, and also some modern tourist attractions. But these years, I believe it has become well known for its heavy air pollution. I don’t remember since when high levels of air pollution have become commonplace in Beijing, especially during winter months when temperatures drop and more coal is burned when heating systems are switched on. All I can hear from the news every now and then is Beijing is hit by hazardous smog again and the municipal government issues yellow smog alerts all the time, and the number of patients who suffer from respiratory disease is on the rise, blah blah blah…

I guess that’s why I don’t have too much affection for this city. But a few months ago, my best friend was getting married in Beijing and I was asked to be her bridesmaid. So I had to fly there to attend her wedding.

After I landed at the airport, I just had this weird feeling in my throat and I started to cough. I noticed that most people around me were wearing masks, I just regret why I didn’t get one before I went there.

When I looked out of the window, I could see the city was covered in a dense layer of smog, and some of the skyscrapers were barely visible.

I remember I was wearing a white blouse, but by the time I got to my hotel, the collar was dirty, it was only like 4 hours? So you see, the pollution was that serious.

Honestly, I’ve no idea why people still flock to this city to make a living at the cost of their health.

Describe a product you bought that you were (or, are) happy with

You should say

  • what you bought
  • how you bought it
  • why you bought it
  • and explain why you were (or are) happy with it

Sample Answer

Ok then, well firstly I’d just like to mention that I’m quite lucky because my parents have always bought stuff for me, so I seldom buy something by myself. But one occasion that I did save up to buy something myself was when I got my iPad, which really made me happy and that’s what I’d like to talk about.

And um, I think it took me about four or five months to save up for it, and I basically did it by cutting back on other things, you know, like eating out and buying clothes. At that time, I study in a college, I mean, I don’t have a job, unfortunately, so the only money I receive is my living allowance which my parents give me every month, and that’s what I had to use to pay for it.

Anyway, regarding why I wanted an iPad, well I suppose the main reason was that I’m a big Apple fan. You know, I already had an iPhone and laptop, so the only thing I was missing was an iPad. I also watched Steve Jobs’ presentation of the iPad when it was launched, and it looked pretty cool. So I just thought it would be great to have one!

And as for how I felt after buying it, well, first of all, I was really excited and happy, you know, because I couldn’t wait to start using it. And it also felt great because I’d saved up for it myself instead of simply asking my parents to buy it for me. So for that reason, it just felt a bit more special to me, if you know what I mean!

Describe a person (you know), much older than you, who you admire

You should say 

  • who this person is
  • how you know this person
  • how this person has influenced you
  • and explain why you admire this person

Sample Answer

 The senior person whom I really respect and like is my grandmother.
From my childhood, she has been a caring person for me. Still she is a good friend of mine whom I share many things. She is a benevolent and good person who possesses a good heart. She tries to help others with her highest efforts. I know her from my childhood as she lives with us and we have a lot of happy memories together. She is a successful mother of 3 people including my father. She has devoted all her life to her kids and made them educated. She possesses a nice and charming personality that illuminates the people around her. I love and respect her for many different reasons. The most important reason is because of her unconditional love and affection for me. She is a good mentor who can show me positive ways and guide me in my depressed time. Talking to her is a soothing experience and the story she tells is always attractive and full of morality. I have learned many positive attitudes and good thinking from her.
For all those reasons and a strong bonding between us, I respect and admire her very much.

Describe one of your best (= one of your close, or good) friends

You should say

  • who this person is
  • who long you have known them (= him or her)
  • Or, How you first met
  • what you do together
  • and explain why you think this person is a good friend

Sample Answer

When it comes to talking about my friends, I’d like to talk about Bess. She is my best friend. We are the same age and she is only two days older than me. We studied in the same school, so we had many opportunities to communicate with each other. She is a good looking and outgoing person. We have many of the same hobbies. We both like reading books and watching films, then we exchange our own opinions about the books and films. We had many fun times together. She is good at cooking. Every time I went to her home, she would cook many tasty dishes for me. She likes to research all kinds of cookbooks and cook programs, while I don’t like to cook at all. She is patient to play with kids and help them. She takes part in a charity organization, she regularly goes to the disabled children school to read all kinds of fairy tale books to children. I feel proud of her. Although both of us are pretty busy with our jobs, we still meet each other once in a while. Whenever I am in trouble or in hardship, she is always there with a helping hand and encouraging words. I do appreciate having this friend.

Describe a family (not your own family) that you like

You should say

  • where this family lives
  • who the members of the family are
  • how you know them
  • what each person in this family does in life (student/work/retired etc.)
  • and explain why you like this family

Sample Answer

When I was a sophomore in college, I made acquaintance with a girl my age in another department.We soon became good friends and occasionally she invites me to her place. Thus, I get the chance to meet her whole family.

Her family is not very rich nor powerful but I like them because they are happy and care for each other. The father is always going on a business trip around the country but whenever he returns back home, the mother prepares for dinner, picks him up in the airport while receives the gifts he brings. Actually, the father is the stepfather of the girl, but as she told me, he treats her even better than her own dad does.

I like the family also because it is quite democratic. For example, they always take an annual trip together but unlike most families where father or mother takes the lead, they pick up the destination through family discussion. And then, they share tasks like booking hotel and designing routes and planning intended traveling spots.

In a word, I like the family because they own happiness and mutual respect.

Describe a photo of yourself that you like

You should say 

  • when the photo was taken
  • how this photograph was taken
  • where the photo was taken
  • who took the photo
  • and explain why the photo was taken or why you think it is a good photo

Sample Answer

The photo I would like to describe is a scenic, which was just taken by my phone. Although this photo is just a normal scenic, it was taken in a special place, which is on helicopter. In the summer holiday last year, my roommate and I decide to go to America for a one-month traveling. When we arrived there, we heard from locals that Grand Canyon is the most famous attraction in California. People living there suggested that viewing canyon scenery from sky was the best choice. And we felt really moved and interested in their words. So we immediately booked tickets for sky tour of Grand Canyon. Originally, I planned to enjoy the first time of the sky tour, but actually the helicopter shaked heavily and it was difficult to take any photos during flying. This made me dizzy. You know, I looked outside the window and enjoyed views my eyes without taking any photos. Luckily, after we got off from the helicopter, my roommate told me that she used her phone, taking a photo for me. The photo has the splendid background of the whole Grand Canyon and I was looking at the window. I love this photo and use it as my desktop until now.

Describe a time when you saw an interesting animal

You should say

  • what animal it was
  • where you saw it
  • what happened when you saw it 
  • how you felt when you saw it
  • and explain why you thought it was interesting

Sample Answer

I found there was a bat nest in my balcony recently, and one night I happened to see they flew across the patio under our apartment and hover in the sky. I was shocked, because it was dark outside but they knew exactly where to go without mistakes. Moreover, they went out only at night.

I thought bats are interesting not because they can fly in the dark since I know they are nocturnal animals. I always think the ability which aids bats fly and prey capture is their unusual eye-sight, like another nocturnal animal, owls. But the truth is because of their echolocation. Bat echolocation is a perceptual system where ultrasonic sounds are emitted specifically to produce echoes. By comparing the outgoing pulse with the returning echoes the brain and auditory nervous system can produce detailed images of the bat’s surroundings. This allows bats to detect, localize and even classify their prey in complete darkness.

Describe a meal you had your friends or family (in someone’s home or in a restaurant)

You should say 

  • who organized this meal
  • where you had it
  • what you talked about during the meal
  • what you ate and drank
  • and explain why you had this meal with your friends

Sample Answer

The meal I really enjoyed with my friends was the one when we graduated from high school three years ago.

We had it in July when we just graduated. One of my best friends Monica organized it. She reserved our favorite restaurant which was just two blocks away from our school. It served traditional Chinese food and we all enjoyed it so much. We often had birthday parties together there, so it was the perfect place for us to, you know, say goodbye to our high school and start a new life.

The food there, like I just said, was very popular. We had a lot of amazing dishes, including MapoTofu, vegetable soup and fried rice. The yummiest one was Kung Pao Chicken, we ordered the super spicy one, and it was crazy hot.

During the dinner, we talked about our future, you know, the university we were going to, the new life we would have in a couple of months. We even came to an agreement that every July, we would come back to the restaurant and had dinner together. We all made it so far. I mean, we’ve already had two dinners together.

Describe an item of clothing that someone (recently) gave to you

You should say 

  • what it was
  • who gave it to you
  • what it looked like
  • why they gave it to you
  • and explain how you felt about this gift

Sample Answer

It just happened in the last year of my birthday.
My sister bought me a strapless dress as a present. I felt surprised because this dress is not my taste. My sister said she bought it for me because she has never seen I wore any this kind of dress. She told me, girls should have to care for your appearance and the strapless dress is one of the most vital items in my wardrobe. The dress comes from a famous luxury brand and I know lots of my friends dream for it. You know, the dress is black with understated decoration on the hemline. Although I love this gorgeous dream, it could be worn only on formal occasions. So I wore this dress at my graduation ceremony party. A lot of my classmates were fascinated by it and came to ask me where they could buy it.
You know, as I said I had never dressed like that before. But after that time, I became more confident and changed my dressing style.

Describe a time when the weather caused you to change your plans

You should say

  • what your plan was (or, plans were)
  • what weather you were hoping for (or expecting)
  • what happened
  • and explain how you felt when you had to change your plans

Sample Answer

I’d like to talk about the time when my travel plan got shattered by the horrible weather.

Last summer vacation, my parents took me to Sanya, which is a coastal city in the south of China where there’s gorgeous views and exciting entertainment facilities. We planed a wonderful vacation during which we could try palatable seafood, play exhilarating water sports, or just lie on the beach doing nothing, so as you can imagine, for a girl who has been living far away from the sea, I was pretty thrilled about that trip, but to my great disappointment, there happened to be a typhoon just the day I arrived there, which totally ruined my plan.

It rained heavily and it was unbelievably windy, I couldn’t even step outside, otherwise, I would get completely soaked, plus, it was pretty dangerous, you know, with the gale and all. The typhoon lasted for many days, and it didn’t go away until the day I left.

I bought lots of colorful dresses that are designed to wear on the beach but sadly I didn’t have the chance to put them on. I thought I could take quite a few stunning pictures that I could post on the social networking websites where I can get a lot of likes, you know. However, I just ended up staying in the boring hotel, complaining about the unexpected weather, which pathetically became my Plan-B.

So I felt that the money I spent on my flight tickets and the hotel just went down the drain. It was literally the worst travel experience ever.

Describe a time when someone apologized to you

You should say 

  • who apologized to you
  • why they apologized
  • where it happened
  • and explain how you felt (or what you said) after this person apologized

Sample Answer

Today I’m going to share with you an occasion when one tour consultant gave me an apology for being late for picking us up at the airport.

It just happened last month. My friends and I decided to go traveling to somewhere during the vacation. Finally, we chose Korea as our destination. As none of us can speak Korean and in order to avoid any uncertainties may occur during the trip, we think joining a travel group may be the best choice for us. So we consulted a local travel agency and made the payment immediately. The travel agency promised that they would pick us up on time at Seoul airport when we arrived there. However, when we arrived in Seoul and waited for over 1 hour, no one showed up. By nature, I’m a forgiving person and hardly take mistakes seriously because I think anyone can make blunders sometimes really. But waiting for such a long time made me feel helpless and annoyed. I called back to the travel agency and after an hour of busy signals, I finally got through. The staff who answered my phone explained to us that it was his fault that he forgot to type our names on this travel group list and he would try his best to solve the problem.

Finally, the company arranged another car to pick us up and we got part of a refund as well when we came back to HongKong. He also sent us a long email to show the apology to us for his mistake. My gut instinct told me that the apology seemed genuine and sincere, and I should try to accept the apology and then I acted on that acceptance by replying to his email to show my appreciation for his attempts and my willingness to recommend their tours to other friends who want to visit Korea.

Describe a story or novel you have (recently) read that you found to be particularly interesting

You should say 

  • what the plot of the story or novel was
  • who wrote it
  • why you read it
  • how much time it took to read it
  • and explain why you thought it was interesting

Sample Answer

Admittedly, for the past few months, I haven’t been reading as much as I should because of my new projects at work. It’s a shame, because reading is, without a doubt, the best way to learn as well as to relax. The last book that I read, “A still forest pool”, is also the one that has had the most significant impact on me.

Basically, “A still forest pool” is a book about meditation written by Ajahn Chah, a Buddhist master in Thailand. Ajahn had spent years meditating in forest monasteries, which are not as easy to be found as they were several decades ago. Being among the most influential and respected teacher of Buddhism in his own country, he has been known as a man of great wisdom who people seek advice from.

“A still forest pool” is such a remarkable book that reflects the author’s simple yet powerful message about the Buddhist practice of “everyday mindfulness”. Not only does it describe the importance of staying fully awake in everyday life, but it also shows people how to start living mindfully. The book has profound insights, especially for the West, where Buddhism has recently become more popular.

This is definitely the most interesting book that I have ever read. It helps me realize how important it is to live fully in the present instead of the past or the future. I would recommend it to everyone who is in search for inspiration, motivation or simply a change in attitude in order to live more meaningfully.

Similar Cue Card Topics

  1. Describe your favorite book.
  2. Describe a book you read in your childhood.
  3. Describe a book you enjoyed reading.
  4. Describe a book based on a real event or a real person.
  5. Describe a storybook you have at your home.

Describe some local news that people in your locality are interested in

You should say

  • what the news is
  • how you know about this news
  • who is involved in this news
  • and explain why it is interesting to people

Sample Answer

Last summer I saw a news on the net which is very interesting and encourage.

In my hometown surrounded with some rural area where is very poor. the young man in there are not satisfied wither living condition, so they move to a big city looking for good employment opportunities, but they don’t have any skills to earn money, so they study electrical weld in a vocational school. After they graduate they came to Australia by labor service export. They are hard-working, energetic, and gradually received faith form their local employer. Finally, they become the Australian Permanent Resident. The salary they earn is enough to afford their house ownership, and they have extra money monthly send back to china for their parents. When this news first appears in china, that vocational school become very popular, and many people want to study in it. Now these guys working and living happily in Australian.

When the first time I heard this news,I felt very interesting but felt more encouragement from it, they came from poor family but had changed their life through their effort, their spirit deserves all of us to learn it.

Describe the first time you used a foreign language to communicate

You should say

  • who you communicated with
  • what the situation was 
  • what you said (or wrote)
  • and explain how you felt during this experience

Sample Answer 1

I remember the first time I talk with other people in English that happened when I was a middle school student.
One day, my mom heard from her colleagues that there was an English Corner that would be held twice a month near our apartment. So she encouraged me to go for practicing English-speaking skills. Actually, I was not willing to do that. But finally, I forced myself toward it because I know it was a good chance to communicate with foreigners. When I arrived there, a guy came over me with a warm smile. He started to introduce himself and showed his friendliness. He spoke English in a fluent and natural way and sounded like a native English speaker. Needless to say, I was a bundle of nerves because I knew my English accent, pronunciation, grammar and vocabulary were not good at all. Surprisingly, he told me that English was not his mother tongue and urged me to speak out. Thus I used my poor English to chat with him and he listened to me patiently, complimented on my accent which made me feel much more confident.

Although we just met for a while, that inspirational man really motivated me to learn English with focus and commitment. I also got to understand that if you want to learn something new, you must be brave and go towards it.

Sample Answer 2

The first time I used a foreign language was actually pretty funny.
When I was in high school, I attended a summer camp in London, and our school arranged home-stay for us in order to help us learn the language and customs. We were so thrilled about that trip and most of us just couldn’t get to sleep on the plane, even though it was an exhausting 15-hour flight. I remember by the time we arrived at our homestay family, it was early in the morning, but due to the jet lag, everyone was drowsy. And I drank a lot of coffee on the way, so I needed to use the bathroom badly. It was a three-story house, there’s no way I could find the bathroom myself. So I asked the mother in the family where the bathroom was, but she led me to a room with a bathtub but no toilet. I was confused. But I suddenly remembered there are minor language differences between American English and British English, so I thought maybe that was one of them. I got out of the “bathroom” and racked my brains trying to find a word better than “pee”, ‘cause I guess “I want to pee.” is not a proper thing to say to a stranger. But I really couldn’t think of anything other than that, so I just went ahead and said: “Excuse me, where can I pee?” And she took me to a room on the second floor.
So that was the first time that I communicated with a foreigner, and as you can see, it was a little embarrassing. But once I got to know the language and their customs better, everything just went much smoother.

Describe an occasion when you helped someone

You should say

  • who you helped
  • how you helped them
  • where it happened
  • why you helped them
  • and explain how this person reacted to your help
  • or/and explain how you felt after helping this person

Sample Answer

Well. There are times when people need other’s help and lend a helping hand to others as well I am no exception. Last year, I helped my roommate to see a doctor as she could barely walk because of the great pain caused by a kidney stone.

Actually, it was in a snowy morning, I waked up and saw that she was trembling all over and as white as a sheet in her bed. She thought it would be alright after a while. Without a second thought, I took all the cash I had and helped her to get dressed, and then we hurried to the nearest hospital in a taxi. However, after all the difficulties we had in catching a taxi and all the coldness and pain my roommate suffered, the hospital did not put an immediate end to it. We had to stand in a long line to pay the registration fee first. What pissed me off was that there were still more patients before us waiting to see the doctor. Later, with prescription in hand, I had to do the whole waiting thing again to pay for and pick up medicine separately. Thankfully, the acute pain of my roommate was greatly relieved by a shot of painkiller. As we returned to school, I put her to bed and saw her grateful look.

For my part, I think it is quite natural to help people we care about and expect nothing in return. And I believe a friend in need is a friend indeed. Besides, I do enjoy the feeling of being needed.

Describe what you think would be the perfect job (or “dream job”) for you

You should say

  • what job it would be (or is)
  • what you would do in this job
  • what skills you would need to learn for this job
  • and explain why you think this would be the perfect job for you

Sample Answer

It has always been my dream to be a singer ever since I was a child. When I was a kid I used to be a singing talent. I would win many singing competitions and represented the school in the choir. However, because of the pressure of the College Entrance Exam I had to stop singing and focus on my studies to go to a good university.

The main reason why I’d like to be a singer is cuz it would allow me to inspire the world. I’m quite fond of the idea that people would be listening to my songs and trying to be more like me-a a nice guy.

These days, the only time I sing is probably in the shower or when I’m at a karaoke bar with my friends. I even had a plan for how to spend all the money I would make once I became famous guess I’ll have to earn money the old fashioned way now-by starting my own company.

If I had a chance I would definitely choose to be a singer but I’m still quite realistic and that’s why I’m going abroad to study business.

Describe a magazine or newspaper that you like to read

You should say 

  • what magazine or newspaper it is
  • what the magazine or newspaper is about
  • how often you read it
  • what kinds of people generally read this magazine or newspaper
  • and explain why you like to read it

Sample Answer

Personally, I would like to say that my favorite musician is Michael Jackson. And there are a couple of reasons to name.
Firstly, throughout his career he received numerous honors and awards. He is the “King of Pop”, but more and more people think “King of Pop” is not big enough for him; he should be the best entertainer in history. Also, Jackson had a notable impact on music and culture throughout the world. For much of his career, he had an “unparalleled” level of worldwide influence over the younger generation through his musical and humanitarian contributions. And he is pretty diligent. When he was a little kid, he practices his voice and dancing regularly. Admittedly, he is very gifted, but I think his success mostly dues to his hard-working. Personally, I would like to say that my favorite musician is Michael Jackson. And there are a couple of reasons to name. Firstly, throughout his career he received numerous honors and awards. He is the “King of Pop”, but more and more people think “King of Pop” is not big enough for him; he should be the best entertainer in history. Also, Jackson had a notable impact on music and culture throughout the world. For much of his career, he had an “unparalleled” level of worldwide influence over the younger generation through his musical and humanitarian contributions. And he is pretty diligent. When he was a little kid, he practices his voice and dancing regularly. Admittedly, he is very gifted, but I think his success mostly dues to his hard-working.

Describe a place with a lot of water (such as a river, a lake or the ocean) that you enjoyed visiting

You should say

  • where this place was
  • what people were doing at this place (Or, what you did there)
  • why you went there
  • who you went there with 
  • and explain why you liked this place

Sample Answer

I have visited many places near a river or a sea and I enjoyed the scenic beauty and vast water very much. I would like to talk about a river I visited 2 years back. I chose to talk about it because I really enjoyed my visit there.

The name of the river was (…say a river’s name…) and it was in (…say a place’s name…). One of our relatives invited us to visit their house and we decide to visit there. I went there with 4 of my family members including my parents. After we reach there, I was amazed to notice that our relative’s house was near a big river. This was the first time I visited that relatives and I was very excited about the beauty of nature there.

After we reach our relative’s house, my younger sister told me that she would like to visit the river. I restrained her by saying that we will all go there in the evening. In the evening we went near the river and the river was very calm at that moment. A sweet wind was blowing from the river and the weather was very pleasant. We sat near the river and had our tea. That was a kind of family picnic. I had my younger brother, sister, my parents and 3 of our relatives at this place. Since this was the summer season, we felt very comfortable being at the bank of the river. We noticed many boats were in the river and we planned to rent a boat for an hour. When we were in the boat, the wind suddenly started blowing heavily. We quickly came to the high land and left for our relative’s house.

Describe a time when you made a mistake

You should say

  • where you were
  • what you were doing
  • what mistake you made
  • and explain what was the result of your mistake

Sample Answer

Ok right then,  I had a project I was working on, and while I was in the middle of typing up my documentation, my computer started acting weird. It froze for a while and so I rebooted. After 10 minutes, the computer showed a blue screen saying that there were problems and recommended that I reboot the computer again. After another reboot, everything appeared to be ok. I continued my work and finished for the day. I spent two days on this assignment and when I went to retrieve my data the next day to double-check my work, my computer wouldn’t startup. A technician came and found that my hard drive malfunctioned. I lost all the data and lost two days of work.

I was disappointed and thought I would never trust a computer again, but there was a great lesson to be learned. I had a couple of warnings and I ignored them. From then o, I practiced being someone who can anticipate problems. I now think of potential problems ahead of time and pay attention to details along the way. If I applied this sooner, I would have saved the data on another computer and I wouldn’t have lost a couple of days of work. But I can’t say I regret making the mistake because it made me someone who can anticipate problems better.”

Describe a big company that you would like to work in.

You should say

  • the name of this company
  • what this company does
  • where this company is
  • and explain why you would like to work in this company

Sample Answer

The big company that I am interested in must be Apple. Apple is an American multinational corporation that designs and markets consumer electronics, computer software, and personal computers. The company’s best-known hardware products: the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad. As of August 2010, the company operates 301 retail stores in ten countries, and an online store where hardware and software products are sold. As of May 2010, Apple is one of the largest companies in the world and the most valuable technology company in the world, having surpassed Microsoft. Apple has about 46,600 full-time employees and 2,800 temporary full-time employees worldwide and had worldwide annual sales of $65.23 billion last year. Apple has established a unique reputation in the consumer electronics industry. This includes a customer base that is devoted to the company and its brand, particularly in the United States. Fortune magazine named Apple the most admired company in the United States in 2008, and in the world in 2008, 2009, and 2010.

Describe something that you have shared with others (or another person)

You should say

  • what you shared
  • who you shared it with.
  • why you shared it
  • and explain how you felt about sharing it

Sample Answer

I shared my depression experience with a stranger.

I had depressed feelings for a number of years. I couldn’t find joy in anything, my energy level was low and I was struggling to do basic chores like cleaning and washing. I found it incredible when people would suggest things like getting exercise to make me happier. All I could think was, ‘I can’t drag myself out of bed to take a shower, and how the hell am I supposed to drag myself to the gym?’

A friend of mine realized what was happening, and after one particular outburst of tears and misery, he suggested I went to the university counselor. Talking things through with someone who is completely unbiased is a wonderful experience. Even when you think you have nothing to talk about, they are good at getting you started. Unfortunately, there was a limited time frame, and I felt those feelings creeping back. I finally went to my doctor, told them I had tried counseling, and asked if the medication was an option. He agreed. I know that anti-depressants are a controversial topic, but they were truly life-changing. The first type did not help. The second type was like opening a window. They did not make me happy. What they did do, however, is give me the strength to start making myself happy. I stopped crying for no reason. I was able to sleep soundly. The thoughts screaming around my head ground to a halt so I could focus, and I started enjoying things again. I still have bad days, but they are days – not weeks, or months.

In short, seek professional help. Friends and family are wonderful, but they can be biased and I can feel guilty for ‘troubling’ them with my feelings. Professionals are just that. I was proud of myself for taking that first step to find support.

Describe a creative person who you admire (e.g., a scientist, an inventor)

You should say

  • who this person is
  • what area of creativity they work in
  • how you know about this person
  • and explain what work they have created that you particularly admire

Sample Answer

I’m going to talk about a musician/songwriter that I admire, called Adam Levine. He’s also a singer who plays the guitar and writes his own songs. I think he recorded his first album about 10 years ago with his band called Maroon 5, and he’s released several other CDs since then.

He became successful after many years of writing songs and performing live in small venues all over the country. Gradually he built a following of people who liked his music. I think the key to his success was one of his songs that was used in a TV advertisement. This meant that more people became aware of his music.

I found out about Adam  because one of my friends got tickets to see him in concert. I hadn’t heard any of his music before, but I went along to the gig and really enjoyed it. After that, I bought the first CD, and now I’ve got all of them.

The reason I’m into Adam is that he has worked hard for his success: it takes years of practice to become a good singer and guitarist, and he spent several years playing to very small audiences before he became successful. I also like the fact that he writes his own music. I admire people who have worked hard to get where they are.

Describe a course you would like to study (or, do)

You should say

  • what course it is (or, would be)
  • where you would do it
  • what you would learn in that course
  • and explain why you would like to do this course

Sample Answer

Well, I would like to do an English course. Today, English is considered to be the most important language in the world. That’s why it ‘s become one of the compulsory subjects and we now have to study English from elementary onward.

I’d like to get admitted to the Foreign Trade University which offers a professional course in Business English. They have a good reputation for teaching this course effectively to a high standard. As I have other classes in the morning, I would like to enroll in the afternoon course. Also, the course fee is both cheap and convenient for me to pay using my bank account.

There are so many reasons why I’d like to enroll in an English course. First of all, English is an international language, hence, having a knowledge of English can help people around the world to communicate better. Second, it also gives us countless opportunities to become more acquainted with other cultures. We depend on English to keep up to date with the latest news from all over the world, since almost all the books and magazines are written in this language. Finally, learning English can really help us in our careers and enhance our CVs, as these days, many firms need good office employees to conduct international business.

Describe a positive change that you made to your life

You should say

  • when it happened
  • where it happened
  • what the change was
  • and explain how you have benefited from this change
  • ( or, explain how you feel about this change)

Sample Answer

The positive change that I would like to talk about is ‘I started playing outdoor games instead of playing computer games’. After I got my first personal computer when I was only 9 years old or so, I started learning many things. Besides that, I started playing computer games. As computer games are addictive I found that I was playing the games whenever I had spare time. This addiction barred me from playing outdoor games like cricket, football, etc.

I found myself very much attracted to computer games and I preferred to play the games at home instead of going to open spaces or fields to participate in outdoor games that involve physical exercises. Not that computer games are all so bad, but playing them all the time someone has got is not a good thing especially for kids. I found that I was spending more times at home than being outside. After my parents noticed that, they discussed with me about that and explained me the importance of outdoor activities. They gave me strict restrictions that I would only be able to play computer games for an hour daily and in the evening I’d have to go outside to play with my friends.

This was obviously a very positive change for me. I’m not against computer games but I feel that if there are more important things to do, then we should not spend time on computer games only.

This change affected me very positively. I became a good cricket player later on, I started maintaining my times more prudently and I am sure this change has affected me positively in terms of physical and mental health.

Related cue cards :

  1. Talk about something you started doing lately.
  2. Describe something you want to do in the future.
  3. Describe a change you would like to have in you.
  4. Describe a change you would like to have in you.

Describe a situation that made you a little angry

You should say

  • what it was that made you angry
  • where you were when this happened
  • what you were doing at the time
  • who you were with
  • and explain how you handled this situation and explain why you felt angry

Sample Answer

A recent situation that made me angry was getting stuck in a traffic jam on the way to meet some friends. It was last Sunday lunchtime, and I didn’t expect there to be much traffic; people don’t work on Sundays, so the roads aren’t usually very busy.

Everything was going well until suddenly I saw a queue of cars on the road in front of me. I had no choice but to join the queue and wait to get past whatever was causing the delay. It turned out that it was caused by some roadworks, and it took me an extra 30 minutes to get past them.

Getting stuck in traffic congestion doesn’t usually make me angry, but this time it did, mainly because I wasn’t expecting it and I knew that my friends were waiting to meet me for lunch. I felt frustrated and powerless because there was nothing I could do to change the situation, and I had no idea how long I would be sitting there waiting. When I finally saw the reason for the congestion, I was relieved that I was close to getting past the roadworks, but I still felt a bit stressed knowing that I was half an hour late.

Describe your favourite season or time of the year

You should say

  • what season (or time of the year) it is
  • what the weather is like at this time
  • what people usually do at this time
  • and explain why you enjoy that season or time of the year or
  • and explain why you enjoy that season or time of the year more than other seasons or times of the year

Sample Answer

My favourite season in England is winter. A typical English winter would last around 4 or 5 months between November and March, but when I say that I like the winter, I’m really thinking about the coldest month or two each year.
During those really wintry months, the temperature drops below zero and it often snows. Over the last few years we’ve had periods of quite heavy snowfall, to the extent that roads have been blocked and schools have had to close. Last winter I remember looking out of the window one morning and seeing everything covered in a layer of white. Obviously the snow is what differentiates winter from the other seasons, but when it doesn’t snow there isn’t much difference between winter, autumn and spring; winter is just a bit colder.
The reason I’ve chosen winter as my favourite season is because I like the snow. I live near the countryside, and the landscape looks beautiful when everything is covered in white. We also celebrate Christmas and New Year in the winter, and these are my favourite festivals.

Describe a person who you like to spend time with

You should say

  • what relationship the two of you have
  • how often you are together
  • what you usually do together
  • and explain why you like to spend time with this person

Sample Answer

I spend a lot of time with my best friend John. I’ve known him since primary school where we were in the same class.

We only see each other during our university holidays because we don’t study in the same city. My university is in London but he lives in Liverpool.

When we are together we always play lots of sports like football and tennis.  John loves Manchester United and he is a very good footballer. I prefer tennis but I am not as good as my friend. We also both enjoy playing computer games. Our favourite is probably World of Warcraft which many of my friends play too.

As we live in a small town there aren’t many places to go so we normally hang out at the sports centre or in the big park near my house.  We’re both big film buffs so we go to the cinema quite often and we get a student discount.

I really like spending time with John, he’s such a nice person and very friendly. I always have a good time when we are together and he never fails to make me laugh. In fact, I think he’s the funniest person I know.


  • I spend a lot of time with….
  • I have known him/her since…
  • We (only) see each other during/at…because…
  • When we are together we always…
  • We also both enjoy + noun/verb+ing.
  • We normally hang out at the…
  • We’re both big film buffs (you like films).
  • I really like spending time with…
  • I always have a good time when we are together.

Related Cue Cards

Describe a family member who you spend the most time with

You should say

  • who the person is
  • when you usually are together
  • what kind of person he or she is
  • what you usually do (when you are) together
  • and explain why you spend more time with this person than with other members of your family


Describe a skill you learned when you were a child

You should say

  • what skill it was
  • who taught you this skill
  • how you learned it
  • and explain why you learned this skill

Sample Answer

Typing on a keyboard without looking at that is a special skill and recently I have learnt to type by not looking at the keyboard.

When I was 10 years old , my father bought me a computer, it was impossible for me to type without looking at the keys. It took longer hours for me to type a single page by searching the letters on the keys. It was a troublesome task for me and most of the time I had to type different topics on computer. But I could not complete the tasks in due time for my lack of skills in typing. When I started to type, it appeared to me that the letters should be placed on the keyboard alphabetically for better use. But gradually I learnt that this way is better than the alphabetical letters.

Basically I learnt the skill at my home using my personal computer. In the very beginning, it was tougher for me to compose anything on the computer with the keyboard attached with it and it took longer hours for me to compose a document of three or four pages. So, I started using internet to get some ways to learn typing. I found some special applications that allow the users to get the desired typing skill. Besides, the applications also helped me to make the typing faster than it was in the beginning.

All of the earned skills are useful in real life but the applications may differ in situations. When I started learning the skill, I thought that it would be of no use in my practical life and I am wasting my times. But when I took part in my work, I was surprised by the applications of typing. I have started serving the office in different ways with the typing skill. As a result, my fame has increased as a typing expert and accordingly the office has evaluated my performance. I have been promoted to a senior administrative officer after three months when I applied the skill to my daily works at the workplace. So, it appears to be a very useful skill for me.

Describe someone you know who recently moved to new accommodation

You should say

  • who he or she is
  • what kind of accommodation they moved to
  • and explain why they moved

Sample Answer

Speaking of a person who moves to a new accommodation, I just think of my friend Linda. Her neighbor frequently played his music excessively loud, which rattles the change off her coffee table. She spoke to him repeatedly and he always turns it down to merely loud. But then turns it back up within the hour. She said she couldn’t stand her downstairs neighbor any more so she changed her living place. Now her new neighbors are about 70 years old and they are very quiet. She stays at college most of the time. They don’t have anything in common and just say “hi” when they meet.

The new accommodation she moves to is in a suburb. Linda has to drive 20 minutes to go to the grocery store. But she doesn’t mind it because she can live in a bigger than before. When she looks out of the window, she can see the flowers and cute birds flying in the sky. The only thing should be improved of her new accommodation is the blue-color stars all over the walls. Although they glow in the dark, during the day they make her feel depressed. Therefore, she plans to add some posters on them.

Describe a leader who you admire

You should say

  • who this person is
  • what this person does (as a leader)
  • how he or she became a leader
  • how you know about this person (or, how you personally know this person)
  • and explain why you admire this leader (= explain how (or why) this reader’s qualities impress you)

Describe a dream you have had You should say

  • When you had this dream
  • What you saw in the dream
  • What you did or said in the dream
  • Explain why you had a dream like that

Sample Answer

I’d like to talk about the nightmare I had the other night.

On the way to a mountain in the dead of winter, I dropped behind the group I was traveling with and got lost. To make matters worse, it began to rain heavily. The wind blew hard, and the blasted forest groaned as if in pain. And so overcast was the sky that night came several hours earlier than usual. Cold and frightened, I was trembling all over. All I could do was shout for help, but no help was forthcoming. The night became darker, the wind blew harder, and the rain poured down more heavily. I ate my last piece of food, a tiny piece of cake. Totally despaired, I was waiting not for miracle but for death. Suddenly, a thunderclap woke me up. A rainstorm was indeed raging outside, but I was grateful to find that I only had a nightmare.

I still couldn’t figure out why I would have that dream, and I certainly wouldn’t want it to come true.

Describe a movie you have watched in a cinema or at home

You should say

  • When this movie is
  • Who you would want to watch with
  • What the movie is about
  • And explain why you want to watch this movie

Sample Answer

It’s quite hard to say what my favorite movie is because there are quite a few to choose from! But I would say that the one that made the strongest impression on me is a German film called ‘The Lives of Others’.
This film is set in communist East Germany, shortly before the fall of the Berlin Wall. At that time, the Stasi, the East German secret police, used to spy on all kinds of people. The two main characters in the film are a playwright called Dreyman and a Stasi spy called Weisler, whose job it is to keep Dreyman under 24-hour surveillance. Weisler is supposed to be reporting back to his superiors at the Stasi in order to discredit the playwright. However, he develops a strong sympathy for the playwright and his girlfriend and determines to protect them by not reporting anything significant. The scenes in the film where it cuts from the colorful and interesting lives of Dreyman and his friends to the lonely attic where Weisler is sitting really show the contrast between the two men. The film is shot in such a way that it makes you believe you are also spying on Dreyman, it even made me feel a bit guilty!
I like this film because it has fascinating, 3-dimensional characters, and also the plot has plenty of twists. Right up until the end of the film, we are left guessing how it could possibly end. It is also very thought-provoking because it makes you wonder how many people working for the Stasi actually did protect the people they were spying on.
As for the message it gives, I would say the main message is that we can find kindness and humanity in the most unexpected of places. The film makes us realize that nothing is ever black and white! The film also serves as a warning about the dangers of an oppressive, paranoid regime and is perhaps quite pertinent in this current age of mass surveillance.

Bear in mind that Band 8.0+ Model Answers for 47 Speaking Part 2 Topics will be updated on May 26. Please save the date to get the latest updates on our website. You can download these topics (PDF file) to practice at home with your study partners.



For IELTS test takers from September to December 2016, you can check out 55 New IELTS Speaking Part 2 Topics and Sample Answers 

Written By

Nafia Zuhana is an experienced content writer and IELTS Trainer. Currently, she is guiding students who are appearing for IELTS General and Academic exams through With an 8.5 score herself, she trains and provides test takers with strategies, tips, and nuances on how to crack the IELTS Exam. She holds a degree in Master of Arts – Creative Writing, Oxford Brookes University, UK. She has worked with The Hindu for over a year as an English language trainer.


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