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Published on 07 Feb 2015 | about 1 year ago

Don't make these common spelling mistakes! Students often lose marks for spelling words incorrectly in the reading, writing, and listening modules of the IELTS. However, you can easily avoid making these mistakes with a bit of practice. In this lesson, you will learn eleven of the most common spelling mistakes students make on the IELTS and how to avoid them. After this class, you can practice spelling these words by taking the quiz so you will be ready on test day.


Hello. My name is Emma, and in today's lesson, we are going to talk about IELTS: Common Spelling Errors. Okay? Common spelling mistakes students make.

Now, a lot of students don't realize how important spelling is on the IELTS. It's a big problem because many times, the students will have the right answer, but they will spell it wrong, and then, they'll lose a mark. So it's very important to practice spelling before you do the IELTS.

In today's video, we're going to look at ten common words that students make mistakes with. Okay? So first, I'm going to I show you the words, and I'm going to explain to you some mistakes students make. And then, we'll have a practice test. Okay? So let's get started.

The first word that many students make a mistake on when they spell it: different. Okay? So notice, first off, there are two Fs. Sometimes, students only use one F. Another mistake, this E. I've seen students spell it-rant, but it's an E, okay? Actually, there's one more mistake I see. Sometimes, students mix up "different" and "difference", with -ence. They make a mistake between these two. They spell "different" "difference". They are two different words.

The next words that students commonly make a mistake with spelling is "society". Usually, in the second part of the writing test on the IELTS, you often write about society. What students often do is they can't remember if it's -cei or -cie. It's -cie. This is a mistake to keep an eye out for.

No. 3: their. Again, students make the -ei/-ie mistake. They often want to write t-h-i-e-r when it's t-h-e-i-r. Sometimes, students also mix up which "their" it is. There are three "theirs": t-h-e-r-e, like "'there' is three 'theirs'"; there's "they're", t-h-e-y-'-r-e; and then, there's this one, "their phone, their box, their cat." So make sure you use the right "their", and also make sure you write -ei instead of -ie.

No. 4: believe. A lot of the times in these essays we write, "I believe it's better to live in a city than a town. I believe education is very important." The mistake students make, again, -ei/-ie. So notice this one was -ie, -ei, back to -ie, "believe".

No. 5: definitely. Students often use this word in the IELTS. And they often forget this little E. So make sure you don't forget that E if you use "definitely".

No. 6: government. Many students forget this N because when you say the word "government", the N you don't really hear. So as a result, a lot of students forget that. They also sometimes write -mant when it is -ment.

No. 7: Another similar spelling mistake is with "environment". We often write about the environment on the IELTS, in the essay section. Students forget this N, and sometimes they write an A here. So be careful.

No. 8: which. Which witch is which? Sometimes students might spell w-i-t-c-h, which is pronounced the same, but has a different meaning, okay? So it's very important to also notice the -ch. Sometimes, students might write it -sh. So be careful with "which".

No. 9: percentage. In the first writing task of the IELTS, you often talk about percentages. Students often make that an E when it should be an A.

Finally, No. 10: nowadays. I think this is the most common mistake I see out of all of these. Students always forget the S. They always write "nowaday". But it should be "nowadays" with an S. Sometimes, they also forget this A also.

So what I want you to do now -- look at these words. Remember them in your head, okay? "Different. How do I spell 'different'? Society, their, believe, definitely, government, environment, which, percentage, and nowadays." Are there any of these words that you think you're going to make a mistake with? Try to remember how to spell these because now, we're going to do a practice is spelling test. So get out a pen and paper, and prepare yourself. Take a breath. We are going to spell.

Okay. I actually thought of another very good word that you should be able to spell on the IELTS. The word is "until", u-n-t-i-l. Very important word. Many times, I have seen students forget or -- not forget, sorry. They add an extra L. So there is only one L in "until", but many times, students will write two L's, which is no good. Okay. So this -- no. Just one L on "until". So are we ready to spell now? You got your paper and pen ready? All right. Great.

[Spelling bee]

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