Friday, 11 November 2011

The Cambridge examinations

In this article I would give some advice concerning the Certificate in Advanced English or the CAE. The tasks that you have to perform for the CAE are: Reading, Writing, the Use of English, Listening and Speaking. The focus of my article will be on the Use of English test, which includes some grammar and vocabulary exercises.
These are not very difficult and not really based on grammar, because grammar is usually assessed during the other tasks or papers. I noticed that students have difficulties when performing a certain task. Students are given sets of three sentences in which they have to fill the same word. So there are three sentences that lack the same word. The difficulty is that students have to find just one word, but its meaning can be different in the three sentences. Also in a sentence the word can be a noun, in another a verb, sometimes an adjective or other.
A few tips:
First read the sentences thoroughly and compare them from the point of view of the meaning. Firstly you can focus on what kind of word (noun, verb, adjective..) each sentence needs. Secondly you will notice that in one of the sentences the word is rather obvious. If you find the word, check if you can use it in the other two sentences. If not, try to find another one till all three sentences are complete and correct. More on the speaking task for this exam you can find here.
We will have more tips in future articles or provided you need more practice, apply for a course.

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