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November 12, 2016


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*Sorry for posting again. I elaborated my question with more detail:
Dear All,

I am immensely confusing with the Question 6,Test A, General Reading, Cambridge 10.

while I believe that the correct answer is NG, Cambridge's Answer keys says True!

To my own understanding, two different types of Smoke Alarms have been mentioned in the text; battery-powered and hard-wired smoke alarms. The author has just said that "your battery-powered smoke alarm will produce a short beep every 60 second to alert you...". In other words, we are not given any information regarding hard-wired smoke, I believe.

I would then appreciate if anyone can help me to understand the reason why Cambridge gives the True for this question.

I look forward receiving your response.

Kind Regards,

* Sir Simon, your response would also greatly be appreciated.


I found that my answer! hard-wired smoke alarm has no battery, instead, it is powered form the main electricity supply. So, this question is quite tricky I think.

Thank you and sorry for cross posting.

Please let me also take this opportunity to thank Sir Simon for such a constructive and helpful website which provide us the best material for IELTS.

Finger Crossed!


I have a question about how to use example in task2. Is it possibe to get the high score such as above 7.0 in tasks without example? There are a lot of tasks which do not necessarily need to use example, I believe. It is depends on the tasks whether candidates should use example or not, is that right?

Thank you.

Hello Simon,

I noticed that you didn't classify 'advantages and disadvantages' essay in task 2. Even if the question didn't say 'what do you think are the advantages and disadvantages', but just 'what are the pros and cons', can I recognise it as 'opinion essay' and write 'In my opinion...' ?

Thank you for your help always.


Yes, you can write a great essay without examples. Just use them if you can, and only when it's relevant to do so.


Hi Lisa,

I consider 'advantages / disadvantages', 'pros and cons', 'positives and negatives' to be types of "discussion" essay. For me, any question that asks you to consider TWO sides of an issue is a discussion. It's basically the same as when the question asks you to "discuss both views". You might also be asked to give your opinion, or state whether one side "outweighs" the other side.

So, use my "discussion" essay lessons for guidance with that type of question.


Just wanted to share the question in task 2 for today's exam. It's an opinion essay about international cooperation. For task 1, it's a graph and table showing percentage of population in 1950 with a prediction in 2020 and 2040.

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