IELTS Speaking Band 9 Tips

Remember, you will definitely get a high score if your speaking is natural and effortless. Just go on speaking daily.

Download and read the Speaking Band Descriptors here:

Practice speaking naturally and effortlessly, while paying attention to the following points:

Speaking is evaluated against four criteria, namely, fluency and coherence, lexical resource, grammatical range and accuracy, and pronunciation.

Fluency and Coherence

1. Speak only in English
2. Don’t pause lengthily (do not give a pause of over 3 seconds)
3. No repetition of words or ideas
4. No self-correction
5. No hesitation (content-related; lexical-related; grammar-related; language-related)
6. No break-down in coherence (do not go goofy by becoming illogical)
7. Speak at length (cover all aspects of the topic with additional information)
8. Use all sentence structures (simple, compound, complex)
9. Use a range of discourse markers (you see, you know, well, okay, in fact, so, right, anyway, finally)
10. Develop topics coherently (logical structure of beginning-middle-end)
11. Use appropriate cohesive features (bind with pronouns, conjunctions, logic)
12. Speak fluently, naturally and effortlessly.

Lexical Resource

1. Do not produce memorised words, phrases or utterances.
2. Do not produce isolated words.
3. Use a wide vocabulary.
4. Speak comfortably on both familiar and unfamiliar topics, using a wide range of words.
5. Paraphrase effectively.
6. Discuss topics at length, with full flexibility and precision.
7. Use collocations appropriately.
8. Use idioms accurately.
9. Use words that convey the precise meaning.
10. Use some less common, but not too uncommon, English words.
11. Never use words whose meaning you do not know or fully understand.
12. Use words naturally and effortlessly.

Grammatical Range and Accuracy

1. Speak all types of sentence structures.
2. Generally, use active voice in present tense; nonetheless, use one or two sentences in passive voice, if appropriate.
3. Use contractions.
4. Use appositives.
5. Use many idioms.
6. Use tense shifts accurately.
7. Do not make mistakes with sentence order (Subject-Verb-Object) or any other grammar mistakes.
8. Use grammar naturally and effortlessly.


1. Be careful when pronouncing the article ‘the’. With a consonant, it is pronounced as ‘the’ with a gap between the article and the consonant; while with a vowel or a vowel-sounding word, it is pronounced as ‘thee’ without any gap between the article and the vowel or the vowel-sounding word.
2. When using contractions, pronounce the contracted word appropriately.
3. Pronounce intelligibly. Do not produce such sounds that the listener might not understand.
4. No mispronunciation should occur.
5. Use intonation.
6. Do not speak too fast or too slow. Pronounce words clearly and speak at a medium pace.
7. The accent of your first language (L1), most likely, will be present; however, it should not hamper intelligibility.
8. Pronounce each word with utmost clarity and accurately.
9. Speak naturally and effortlessly.

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