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Checking Understanding

What is it and why is it important?


Sometimes if you don’t quite understand, it
could be a good thing! Checking your understanding by questioning the examiner
actually shows a good level of fluency and communication, so it just may earn you
some extra marks in the text! It’s also a clever way to buy some time in the test.

Ways to Clarify

To ask the the examiner to repeat the question:

- I’m sorry, I didn’t quite catch the question.


- Pardon me, could you repeat the question?
- Sorry, can you ask me the question again please?

To clarify meaning and define words or phrases, try these:

- Could you explain what you mean by “…”?


- Do you mean “…” – This one can easily score extra points!

Q: When did you last visit a memorable place?


A: Do you mean a tourist attraction or something like that?

Try and write a reply using “Do you mean…” to this question:

Describe a time you found something very challenging.

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© IELTS SPEAKING 7 PLUS 1