Using Collocation to Boost Your IELTS Score – Key Word: truth


1          Verb + truth

Use the correct form of these verbs:

come out                     distort

expose                         face up to

hide                             tell

  1. She didn’t have the courage to ___________ him the truth about his friend.
  2. Newspapers are often guilty of ___________ the truth. => Yes, it’s a well-known fact that some of them bend the truth to sell more copies.
  3. You’ll have to ___________ the truth some time. You’re just too old for this job. Why don’t you think about retiring?
  4. As a journalist it’s my job to uncover and ___________ the truth.
  5. I don’t think the truth about President Kennedy’s assassination will ever ___________. => I think you’re right. It’s all so long ago now. We’ll never know the truth now.
  6. Since I became a politician I have never tried to ___________ the truth about my past.

2          Finding and telling the truth

Match the two halves of these sentences:

  1. The real reason people buy our paper is that
  2. Before we start blaming anyone, it’s important that
  3. The police forced him into admitting
  4. It will be difficult to discover
  5. It was some time before I realised
  6. The doctors thought it best not to reveal

a          the truth of what he had done.

b          the truth about who my real parents were.

c          it speaks the truth.

d          the truth about her parents, but she is determined to leave no stone unturned.

e          we establish the truth about what went on.

f           the truth to him until he was strong enough to deal with the news of his parents’ death.

Now list 6 verbs from the exercise which mean:

find out the truth                               tell the truth

  1. ___________the truth      4. ___________ the truth
  2. ___________ the truth     5. ___________ the truth
  3. ___________ the truth     6. ___________ the truth

3          Common adjective collocations

Use these adjectives in the sentences

sad       honest                         painful            whole

  1. I didn’t take your pen! That’s the plain and ____________ truth!
  2. I don’t think you’re telling us the____________ truth about what happened, are you?
  3. My father has always been independent but the ____________ truth is that, at 89, he’s no longer able to manage by himself.
  4. The truth may be ____________, but there’s not much you can do about it!

4          Noun + preposition + truth

Use these expressions in the sentences:

distortion of the truth

moment of truth

quest for the truth      

ring of truth

scant regard for the truth

  1. The instructor gave me the controls. It was the ____________ ! Could I fly the plane myself?
  2. Nothing will stop them in their ____________ . They will not be satisfied until they find out exactly how their son died in a police cell.
  3. I’m inclined to believe Laura. Her story has a ____________ about it.
  4. The film was a gross ____________ . It bore little resemblance to what actually happened.
  5. I wouldn’t trust him. He has ____________ . He will lie if he needs to.

1.         Note these ways of saying there is a small amount of truth in something:

a measure of truth                   a certain degree of truth

an element of truth                  a grain of truth

2.         These mean there is no truth in something:

Don’t listen to her! There’s not a jot / an iota / a vestige / an ounce of truth in what she’s saying.

3.         Note this expression to introduce an idea:

To tell you the truth, it doesn’t really matter.

4.         To deny something:

Nothing could be further from the truth!

5.         ‘Home truths’ are ideas to bring someone back to reality:

It’s time someone told him a few home truths.


Ex 1:

1. tell 2. distorting 3.faceupto 4. expose 5. come out 6. hide

Ex 2:

l-c           2-e       3-a       4-d       5-b       6-f

find out the truth = discover, establish, realise

tell the truth = admit, reveal, speak

Ex 3:

1. honest            2. whole          3. sad               4. painful

Ex 4:

  1. moment of truth
  2. quest for the truth
  3. ring of truth
  4. distortion of the truth
  5. scant regard for the truth

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Written By

Misbah Kagad is a Content Marketing Specialist, currently working as IELTS Trainer at Experience Expert with a demonstrated history of working in the education management industry. Skilled in Copywriting, Web Content writing, Management, IELTS and Research. Strong professional with a Diploma focused in Computer Science... Currently helping aspirants to crack IELTS, with tips and tricks to score a bandwidth of 8 and more. Handles the ideation and creation of compelling content including content for IELTS website, writing e-books and solving previous IELTS question papers…

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