IELTS Listening Strategy # 6 Get Clues from the Questions

In all four parts of the IELTS listening test, you need to use the questions to help you understand the main idea of the topic.

The questions are like a summary of the listening, so you need to use the questions to guess and make predictions, understand the situation and imagine the type of information that is usually given in these situations.

For example, if there are multiple choice questions, the questions should tell you important information about the listening.

Choose the best answer, A, B or C.

What is the main reason for the man calling the restaurant?

  1. to order his meal
  2. to confirm his reservation
  3. to buy a ticket

By looking for clues in the above question, you should understand the following:

  1. The conversation is between a man calling a restaurant and a restaurant staff member.
  2. The man will most likely want information from the staff member.
  3. The man will tell the staff member what he would like.
  4. People usually call restaurants to make a booking.

These are all clues that give you a deeper understanding of the listening. You need this information to help you score high marks because you will be prepared for the listening when you hear it. You will know the context and what to expect.

Bonus Tip!

The thirty seconds preparation time is the perfect time to get clues about the main ideas by analysing the questions and getting the main idea of the section.