Review ~ Complete IELTS: Bands 5-6.5

Up-to-date preparation for the academic module of IELTS for young adults at the intermediate level (B2).
Reviewed for Teflnet by Margaret Bade
Complete IELTS: Bands 5-6.5

Complete IELTS: Bands 5-6.5

Complete IELTS: Bands 5-6.5, written by Guy Brook-Hart and Vanessa Jakeman and published by Cambridge University Press, is a welcome resource for teachers preparing students for the academic module of IELTS (International English Language Testing System) at the intermediate level (B2). The eight-unit Student’s Book is designed as a short course for IELTS preparation of around 50-60 classroom hours. It includes a full IELTS practice test as well as all grammar and vocabulary considered relevant to this level, informed by the Cambridge English Corpus, not to mention plenty of well-explained IELTS practice exercises in each unit. The full set of answers and CD-ROM are a bonus. There are also two Class Audio CDs which contain additional listening practice, as well as recordings for all the listening sections.

The 166 pages include a map of the units and an IELTS Academic Module: Content and Overview at the front, and at the back a speaking, writing and language reference (giving the additional descriptions of grammar covered in each unit) to give students more of what to expect “on test day”. A detailed word list of useful words from each unit is also provided here but some teachers could consider the detail given a little complex, and students might be better off finding the meaning for themselves.

The eight units are each nine pages long and are divided into the predictable sections: Listening, Reading, Speaking and Writing, with helpful additions of “exam advice” and “exam information” within each. Each unit follows the order of the particular IELTS modules. For example, Unit 1 gives practice for Section 1 of the Listening and Reading and Part 1 of the Speaking and Task 1 for the writing – the second sections and part 2 for writing then being offered in the second unit. Unit 3 gives practice for section 3 for the Listening and Reading while giving additional practice for Speaking Part 2 and Writing Part 1 (there only being two parts to the Writing). Unit 4 gives another Section 1 practice for the Reading (because there are only three sections for the Reading) but gives practice for Section 4 for the Listening, which has four sections, and practice for both Parts 2 and 3 for the Speaking and practice again for Writing Task 2. After every second unit (Units 2, 4, 6 and 8) there is a vocabulary and grammar review of the previous two units. Students are therefore given plenty of practice for the various sections of the test. The speaking sections which cover word and sentence stress patterns are especially helpful when used with the CD ROM.

The reference sections at the back of the book provide explicit advice on strategies and sample answers with detailed explanations for the writing and speaking sections. The language reference section gives additional details about each grammar item from the units, such as the relative clauses and relative pronouns in Unit 6, reference devices in Unit 7 or the time conjunctions in Unit 8.

Complete IELTS: Band 5-6.5 is particularly aimed at young adults and Brook-Hart and Jakeman have compiled a worthwhile coursebook to maximise the results of such students aiming for this level. Whether planning to take the test or just needing the skills and language for this level, students will not be disappointed.

Reviewed by Margaret Bade for Teflnet March 2013
Margaret Bade lectures in the Advanced English Programme at Unitec Institute of Technology, Auckland, New Zealand.


  • Temurbek Shakhobov says:

    it seemed to me that reading passages in this book far tougher than real exam questions. Why intermediate level reading passages are so hard. Could you explain?

  • mohamed says:

    thank you for your great efforts

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Teflnet : TEFL Book Reviews : Exam Materials, Level B : Review ~ Complete IELTS: Bands 5-6.5