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Everything IELTS Academic - A Comprehensive Guide to IELTS Academic

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  1. Paraphrasing Technique

    Paraphrasing Technique - Two Methods to Paraphrase a Sentence
    1 Quiz
  2. Reading
    Part 1: Everything IELTS Academic Reading
    3 Topics
  3. Part 2: Text Types in IELTS Academic Reading
    3 Topics
  4. Part 2: Questions Forms and Reading Rules
    2 Topics
  5. Part 4: Types of questions and Strategies
    9 Topics
  6. Part 5: Common Mistakes
    2 Topics
  7. Part 6: IELTS Academic Reading Practice Tests
  8. Listening
    Part 1: Everything IELTS Listening
    4 Topics
    1 Quiz
  9. Part 2: Detailing Questions
    3 Topics
    5 Quizzes
  10. Part 3: Summary Questions
    4 Topics
    4 Quizzes
  11. Part 4: Common Mistakes
    4 Topics
  12. Part 5: IELTS Listening Practice Tests
    10 Quizzes
  13. Writing
    Part 1: IELTS Academic Writing Task 1 - Reports
    15 Topics
  14. Part 2: IELTS Writing Task 2 - Essay
    16 Topics
    18 Quizzes
  15. Part 3: Two-task Practice Tests
    6 Quizzes
  16. Speaking
    Part 1: Introduction to IELTS Speaking
    3 Topics
  17. Part 2: A good IELTS Speaking Performance
    2 Topics
  18. Part 3: Common Mistakes in IELTS Speaking
  19. Part 4: IELTS Speaking Practice Tests
    7 Quizzes
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In SCQs, there are questions and there are several options for each question. ONLY ONE option is correct to answer a question. The number of choices varies, often 3 or 4 choices for each question.

Cambridge IELTS book 15 test 1 listening
Example of SCQs in IELTS Listening, Cambridge IELTS Book 15 Test 1 Listening.

This type normally appears in parts 2 and 3 of the Listening exam. However, it can also be in part 1, even though it is uncommon.


  • Answers are ALWAYS in a sequential order. For example, question 12 always comes before question 13 in the above example.
  • The best way to start practicing for SCQs is by taking notes. (Explained in detail below)
  • Highlighting the keywords in questions is useful but be prepared for synonyms.
  • Do not choose the first choice that appears in the recording. All the choices normally appear in the recording but only one choice is confirmed by the speaker(s). (More details in Common Mistakes)
  • The information may not be mentioned in the same order as the choices.
  • If there is more than one speaker, the correct answer always comes from the speaker that is mentioned in the question. For example, the question asks, “What does Mike think about the idea?”, the answer is always confirmed by Mike. So, if the information comes from another person, it may not be the answer. Mike’s confirmation is needed to determine the answer.

Step-by-step strategy (with notetaking) – Recommended if you just started practicing

Step 1: Analyze the questions and highlight the keywords in the questions

  • Prepare for synonyms of keywords.
  • Do not read the choices because you will be confused when all the choices are mentioned in the recording.

Step 2: Follow the flow of information and take notes

  • Only take notes of information related to the questions.
  • Only use bullet points.
  • To speed up note-taking, use more abbreviations.
  • Write the information next to the questions for easy navigation later.

Step 3: Read the notes and answer the questions

  • Read the notes carefully and answer the questions by your understanding.
  • Read the choices and choose the answer based on your understanding.

Step-by-step strategy (without notetaking)

Step 1: Analyze the questions, highlight the keywords in the questions, and read the choices

  • Prepare for synonyms of keywords.
  • Read all the choices and prepare for the synonyms of the choices.

Step 2: Follow the flow of information and choose the answers

  • Do not choose the first choice that is mentioned in the recording.
  • Move on to the next question if the previous question is missed.

Step 3: Check the answers

  • Use your memory to check the answers.