Part 2 of the IELTS speaking test
In Part 2 of the IELTS speaking test, you need to speak for 2 minutes about a topic that the examiner will give you. This section of the test is also referred to as the long turn.
Before you need to speak, the examiner will give you one minute to prepare what you are going to say. You will be given some paper and a pen/pencil to make notes to help you when you start to speak. The topic that you are asked to speak about will have a main idea, follow by 4 sub-points that you can talk about. Here's an example:
Describe a good meal you have had
You should say:
• Where you had the meal
• Who cooked / prepared it
• What is was
And explain why you thought the meal was good
During the entire speaking test, you will not be able to see the time and in Part 2 of the IELTS speaking test, this makes it impossible to know exactly how long you have been speaking for. This is where practice becomes important - you need to have some idea of how it feels to talk for 2 minutes! Ideally, you want to still be speaking when the examiner tells you to stop - finishing early (before the 2 minutes have finished) will cost you points for fluency.
It is very important to use the 1 minute preparation time you are given to make some good notes about what you are going to say, but don't write full sentences - single words or short phrases are better.
The good news is that you don't have to cover all of the points in the topic card or talk about them in the order given. In the example presented above, if you only have time to talk about who cooked the meal and what it was, then that's no problem - the prompts are only there to help you and are not required for a good result.
At the end of Part 2 of the IELTS speaking test, the examiner will ask you to return the topic card and the paper and pencil you used to make notes.