IELTS Listening thử nghiệm practice is an essential part of your preparationfor exam day. This lesson shows you how to lớn answer summary completion questions,one of the ten different types of questions you could get in your test.

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Whilst not the most common type of Listening question, theydo sometimes come up so you need to understand them in case you vì getone.

The lesson includes:

We’ll start with the definition of a summaryin case you"re unsure of the meaning of the word.

Summary – a short, clear description thatgives the main facts or ideas aboutsomething

For summary completion questions, you"ll begiven a summary of the recording. The recording will typically be a monologue on an academic subjectsuch as a lecture on the Amazon rainforest or the Pyramids at Giza. There willbe words missing from the summary which you must fill in.

This type of question is most likelyto come up in Section 4, the most challenging part of the test.

Here are two summarycompletion questions lớn show you what they look like. The first is from a pasttest paper & the second has been created specifically to lớn teach youthe strategy for answering them & to illustrate some tips.

IELTS Listening chạy thử Practice – Sample 1

                               Source:Cambridge English kiểm tra paper

IELTS Listening thử nghiệm Practice – Sample 2

We’ll beusing this second example for some IELTS Listening test practice after we’ve looked at thestrategy và tips.

Strategy và Tips

You will have a short time lớn prepare before the speakers begin talking. Use this time to lớn familiarise yourself with the question và focus your mind on what you need to listen out for.

1) Read the instructions

Read the instructionscarefully, paying particular attention lớn how many words you are allowed towrite for the answer as this does vary.

The instructions for oursample question state that you must,

WriteONLY ONE WORD for each answer.

The instructions for theCaveman Diet question, on the other hand, state that you must,

Write NO MORE THAN TWO WORDS for eachanswer.

If you write more than thenumber of words required, your answer will be marked incorrect even if theinformation you give is correct.

2) Look for a title

Not everyquestion will have a title but if there is one, it will tell you the context of thequestion. This will help you lớn understand the question & give you a big clueas khổng lồ what sort of information will be contained in the recording.

Both our sample questions havetitles. These are:

Origins ofthe Caveman Diet

Sydney Opera House

3) Answer order

The answers will come in thesame order in the recording as they are listed in the question so, for this question,you will hear answer 32 first, then answer 33 & so on. This makes it easierto pick out the answers than if they were in a random order.

4) Predictthe answers

Try to predictwhat the answers might be. This will focus your mind on what khổng lồ listen out forin the recording.

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Occasionally,you’ll be able lớn predict the actual word but mostly it’s one or more of thesethings that you’ll be able khổng lồ determine:


You can see that just a few seconds spend doing this can give you a lot of information about what you need lớn listen for in the recording. This will greatly improve your chances of identifying the correct answers.

5) Synonyms và paraphrasing

Synonyms và paraphrasingwill be used extensively in the recording. So, you will not only be listeningfor the exact words that are used in the summary but also, different words andphrases that have the same meaning.

In your preparation time, scanthe summary và underline key words that are likely to be replaced by synonyms.These will be words immediately before & possibly straight after the missing word(s).Then, quickly think of words that might be used instead.

I’ve underlined someimportant key words in our practice question. Can you think of some synonyms forthem?

Sydney OperaHouse is famous for its roof’s architecture resembling 32 ………. . The opera house wasdesigned by Jørn Utzon from Denmark and it was built between 1959 & 33 ……………. . .

The roof iscovered with more than 1 million roof tiles which were manufactured in 34 ……………. . Every evening the roof is litup in a 35 ……………. Spectacle.

The operahouse has a variety of performance halls and theatre và exhibition spaces. Morethan 36 ……………. Shows arestaged there every week. Every year, more than 8 million visitors visit thisAustralian landmark.

You must be able to recognise them in speech và to write them correctly in your answers.

I’ve written a whole lesson on this topic, including 8 listening exercises to help you recognise & learn these types of vocabulary. Follow this link to the lesson: Vocabulary Lesson & Exercises

7) Watch out for distractors

The examiners may try and catch you out with distractors. A distractor is a word or a phrase that changes or corrects the original piece of information given. So, you may be given an answer & then have it taken away again.

Here are two sample sentences containing distractors. I’ve highlighted the relevant words.

The use of ‘but’ and ‘however’ are particularly common distractors but there are many different words & phrases that can be used to change or correct a piece of information so be alert for them.

8) Guess if necessary

My final tip is to neverleave a blank space on the answer sheet. If you miss an answer, take aneducated guess. This gives you at least some chance of getting it right. Don’tstress about a missed answer or it will affect your ability to answer the nextset of questions. Just make your choice and move on.

Practice Activity

It’s now timefor you to practice using this strategy on our sample question. Here it isagain.

IELTS Listening demo Practice Question

Listen lớn thisrecording và identify the missing words in the summary. Refer back to thestrategy as you need to and keep the predictions in mind. Asyou’re listening, remind yourself that you are not looking for the exact wordsas in the question but the same meaning.

When you’vecompleted the practice activity, go through the answers below. 

IELTS Listening demo Practice – Summary Completion Recording


Here are thecorrect answers: