IELTS Practice Tests

IELTS Speaking. Part Three Question Type 6: Problems.

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IELTS Speaking. Part Three Question Type 6: Problems

This type of question is not as common as the previous five types, but it is often used in topics that deal with nature, environment, social problems or global problems. Example: “What problems are caused by the increase in use of private cars?”

As you should now understand, your aim here is to present two problems using appropriate “problem” vocabulary. Begin with an opening linking phrase to explain that there are problems:

  • Obviously we can say there are quite a lot of dangers with regard to this issue.
  • It’s universally accepted that there are a few hazards involved with…
  • This issue is weighed down with a few problems.

Now highlight your main problem:

  • At the outset, the most crucial predicament is that…
  • First and foremost, one major worry is probably that…
  • Essentially, one fundamental concern is probably that…

Add a simple statement and develop it with one of the following structures:

  • This is clearly alarming because…
  • This fact is unmistakably perturbing because…
  • This need to be seen as a sensitive matter because…

Now introduce your second problem with one of the following linking phrases:

  • Additionally, another major cause for concern has to be the fact that…
  • Equally worrying is the suggestion that…
  • Another matter which causes unease is the point that…

Add a simple statement and develop it with one of the following:

  • And the short-term and / or long-term implications of this are that…
  • And the underlying repercussions of this are that…
  • And the principal upshot of this is probably that…

So a final answer to our first question might look like this:

It’s universally accepted that there a few hazards involved with the increase in the use of private cars. Essentially, one fundamental concern is probably that it leads to an increase in pollution. This fact is unmistakably perturbing because we are facing huge global pollution problems at the moment.

Additionally, another major cause for concern has to be the fact that cars consume huge amounts of our energy resources. And the underlying repercussions of this are that we will soon be confronted with a global energy crisis.”

Some candidates try to offer solutions to the problems in the same answer. In most cases the examiner will follow the “problem” question with a “solution” question, so do not offer the solutions until you are asked this question.

What are the problems associated with the increase in car use?

(Your answer)

How could these problems be solved?

Use your “problem” structure to answer the following questions:

  • What problems are caused by international tourism?
  • Tourism can cause problems in natural areas.
  • What are these problems?
  • What environmental problems are common in your country?
  • What are the problems facing the natural environment?
  • What problems are associated with overcrowded cities?
  • What problems are associated with the Internet?
  • What problems are associated with globalization?
  • What problems are caused by the use of too much technology?
  • What problems are associated with the news media (journalists)?

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