IELTS: the word conjures an image of listening to unfamiliar accents, reading boring comprehension passages, writing essays on unknown topic and describing strange objects. But whether the module is academic or general, the test taker is a fluent English speaker or a total novice, the one thing in common among all IELTS aspirants is IELTS books from Cambridge. With seven volumes and numerous reprints, the Cambridge IELTS books have been an invaluable companion for IELTS test takers since 1996. Nowadays there is a lot of preparation material for IELTS. Publishers like Kaplan, Barrons, and Oxford all have IELTS study material; some publishers have separate books for the Academic and General module for the tests. But Cambridge IELTS books are a “must-have” for a student preparing for the IELTS test in any part of the globe.
The reason behind the popularity of these books is that they are published by the test setters itself. The IELTS exam is jointly conducted by British Council, IDP, and Cambridge ESOL examinations. For anyone to familairise himself with the format of the actual IELTS paper, the best option would be to solve a paper from these books as these books contain past papers of IELTS exams. . Each book has four tests each of Listening, Academic Reading, Academic Writing and Speaking along with two tests of General Reading. The books also contain answers for the listening and reading sections of the tests and sample answers for the writing sections. The books have been responsible for the success in the IELTS exams of an innumerable number of students all over the globe.
The one disadvantage of these books would be they offer no technique for solving the questions. Also feedback from recent test takers put the difficulty level of questions in actual IELTS exams marginally higher than those in the Cambridge IELTS books. But all things considered, if a student wants to get the desired band score in IELTS exams, the safest option would be to solve as many papers from the Cambridge IELTS books as possible. (Input from Niraj Ramaiya, IELTS Mentor at Achievers Point, Pune)
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