IELTS – What should you read?

There’s a LOT of material on the internet related to IELTS and it’s easy to get overwhelmed and lost in a maze of websites.

For an exam such as the IELTS, it is important for students to read on a variety of topics. However, this does not necessarily mean reading everything on the internet. I advise my students to bookmark two or three websites and visit them everyday. I recommend bookmarking:

1. The Economist: This news site is often a source of texts used in IELTS Reading exams. A lot of the topics you will come across are common topics for IELTS Speaking Part 3 and IELTS Writing Part 2. Even if you read only one news article a day, spend time underlining / highlighting useful vocabulary, looking up its meaning and usage (See how to learn IELTS vocabulary).

2. The Financial Times: Again, this is a popular source of texts and topics for all parts of the IELTS exam. Browse the website everyday and pick one article that looks interesting. It is really important that you pick an article that looks interesting because that will motivate you to read right through to the end of the article. It’s better to read 500 words of an interesting article than a 100 words of a boring one.

Some of the premium news websites such as The Economist, Financial Times, New York Times etc. need a subscription. Here’s how to get around it and read the articles for free! 🙂

3. Your choice: Perhaps you’re interested in football or fashion, technology or celebrity gossip – whatever your interest, find one website which suits your interest. No topic is too frivolous for IELTS. Also, niche websites are usually written in an informal style which are a great source of vocabulary for IELTS Speaking Part 1, 2 and 3.


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