Top Tips for IELTS

Talk about an older person

The cue card question

An older person

Talk about an older person you admire.

You should say:

who this person is

how long you have known him/her

what qualities he/she has

and say why you admire him/her

Read the model answer

Brief introduction

I’m going to tell you about one of my teachers who taught me in middle school. He was a great influence on me and someone I still admire and look up to – a real role model.

Who he is

Barry – that’s his name – taught me Geography and Biology for about 2 years I guess. He was also my form teacher and so we saw  lot of each other when I was at school. Like quite a few teachers he hadn’t been a teacher all of his life – in fact he’d had a successful career in the army before he took up teaching. That I think is what made him a little different from the rest of the staff – he had a lot of outside interests in life.

How long I have known him

As  I was saying he taught me at middle school when was I around 11 or 12. But our relationship went much further than that. He became something of a family friend and he still comes to visit us quite often and he’s even shared Christmas Day with us once or twice. So I suppose you could say we have known each other for over 20 years now though naturally I see much less of him now that I have moved away from home.

His qualities

He has lots of qualities. For example, he was a strong disciplinarian at school and insisted that everyone tidied their desk and was polite. But his greatest quality for me is his sense of humour and enthusiasm. When we used to have lessons with him he was able to make a class of small boys want to learn because he wouldn’t just tell us funny stories he would show how us how enjoyable studying nature could be – even though I had no real interest in the subject.

Why I admire him

Why do I look up to him so much? Well, if I was a teacher I’d want to be just like him – someone who is able to make other people want to learn.

Structure your answer

One simple way – and perhaps the best way – to structure your answer is to follow each point on the cue card in turn and talk about that. This allows you to break your answer up into small sections – where you briefly develop a point.

It can be easier to talk about 4 points separately for around 30 seconds than try to speak about one thing for 2 minutes

See the linking language in blue

In part 2 you should try and link your ideas together to extend what you say. This will make it easier for you to keep talking and also make your answer more coherent.

Keep your links simple

To make this work you want to use simple linking language. See how often I use these words





for example



Test yourself on the topic language

Where next?

Get a lesson to understand the linking words in this talk

Get more model speaking answers

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