Improve Your Skills and Confidence with FCE Testbuilder: Student Book with Key and Audio CD - Tips and Strategies for Each Skill Area
FCE Testbuilder: Student Book with Key and Audio CD
If you are preparing for the First Certificate in English (FCE) exam, you might be looking for a reliable and effective resource that can help you improve your skills and boost your confidence. One such resource is FCE Testbuilder: Student Book with Key and Audio CD, a comprehensive and practical book that provides you with authentic exam practice and useful feedback. In this article, we will explain what FCE Testbuilder is, why you should use it, and how you can use it effectively for each skill area.
FCE Testbuilder: Student Book with Key and Audio CD
What is FCE Testbuilder?
FCE Testbuilder is a book that contains four complete practice tests for the FCE exam, as well as an audio CD that accompanies the listening section. The book is designed to help you familiarize yourself with the format, content, and level of difficulty of the real exam. The book also provides you with key information about each task type, as well as tips and strategies on how to approach them. Moreover, the book includes detailed answer keys that explain why each answer is correct or incorrect, as well as model answers for the writing section. The book also offers useful advice on how to improve your performance and avoid common mistakes.
Why use FCE Testbuilder?
There are many benefits of using FCE Testbuilder for your FCE exam preparation. Here are some of them:
It helps you practice under realistic conditions. The book simulates the actual exam in terms of timing, layout, and difficulty, so you can get a feel of what to expect on the test day. You can also use the audio CD to practice your listening skills in a similar way as in the exam.
It helps you improve your skills and knowledge. The book covers all the topics and skills that are tested in the FCE exam, so you can review and consolidate your learning. You can also use the answer keys and model answers to check your answers, learn from your mistakes, and see how to produce high-quality responses.
It helps you monitor your progress and identify your strengths and weaknesses. The book allows you to measure your performance and see how close you are to achieving your desired score. You can also use the feedback and advice in the book to pinpoint your areas of improvement and focus on them.
How to use FCE Testbuilder effectively
Now that you know what FCE Testbuilder is and why you should use it, let's see how you can use it effectively for each skill area. Here are some tips and strategies for getting the most out of the book:
How to use FCE Testbuilder for listening practice
The listening section of the FCE exam consists of four parts, each with a different task type. You will hear a variety of texts, such as conversations, interviews, lectures, radio broadcasts, etc., and you will have to answer multiple-choice questions, gap-fill exercises, matching tasks, or sentence completion tasks. Here is how you can use FCE Testbuilder for listening practice:
How to improve your listening skills with FCE Testbuilder
Listen actively. Don't just listen passively to the audio texts, but try to engage with them and understand their main points, purpose, tone, and attitude. Try to predict what you will hear before you listen, and use your background knowledge and context clues to help you comprehend the texts.
Take notes. While you listen, jot down some key words or phrases that can help you answer the questions. Use symbols, abbreviations, or diagrams to make your notes concise and clear. Don't try to write down everything you hear, but focus on the relevant information.
Check your answers. After you listen, compare your answers with the answer key and see how well you did. If you got some answers wrong, try to understand why and learn from your mistakes. Listen again to the parts that you found difficult or confusing and try to improve your comprehension.
How to avoid common listening mistakes with FCE Testbuilder
Don't rely on your memory. Don't try to remember everything you hear without taking notes or looking at the questions. You might miss some important details or get distracted by irrelevant information. Use the notes and questions as a guide to help you focus on what matters.
Don't get stuck on one question. Don't spend too much time on one question if you are not sure about the answer. Move on to the next question and come back later if you have time. Don't let one difficult question affect your performance on the rest of the section.
Don't fall for distractors. Don't choose an answer just because it sounds familiar or matches a word or phrase that you heard in the text. Sometimes, the audio texts might contain information that is similar but not identical to the correct answer, or information that is irrelevant or contradictory to the correct answer. These are called distractors and they are designed to test your attention and comprehension. Make sure you choose an answer that is based on evidence and logic, not on intuition or guesswork.
How to use FCE Testbuilder for reading practice
The reading section of the FCE exam consists of seven parts, each with a different task type. You will read a variety of texts, such as articles, reviews, reports, emails, etc., and you will have to answer multiple-choice questions, gap-fill exercises, matching tasks, or sentence transformation tasks. Here is how you can use FCE Testbuilder for reading practice:
How to improve your reading skills with FCE Testbuilder
Read efficiently. Don't read every word or sentence in the text, but use skimming and scanning techniques to find the main idea and the specific information that you need. Skimming means reading quickly for the general meaning, while scanning means looking for specific words or details. Use the title, headings, subheadings, pictures, and keywords to help you skim and scan the text.
Scan for keywords. Before you read the text, look at the questions and identify the keywords that can help you find the answer. Keywords are words or phrases that are related to the topic, question, or answer. For example, if the question is "What is the author's opinion on...", the keywords might be words that express opinion, such as "think", "believe", "agree", etc. Scan the text for these keywords and read the sentences around them carefully.
Infer meaning. Sometimes, you might not find the answer directly in the text, but you might have to infer it from the context or clues. Inferring means using your logic and common sense to figure out what the text implies or suggests. For example, if the text says "She was exhausted after a long day at work", you can infer that she was tired, even if the word "tired" is not in the text. Use your background knowledge and experience to help you infer meaning.
How to avoid common reading mistakes with FCE Testbuilder
Don't ignore the instructions. Don't start reading or answering the questions without reading the instructions carefully. The instructions tell you what kind of text you are reading, what kind of questions you are answering, and how many words or options you have to choose. Follow the instructions exactly and don't write more or less than required.
Don't choose an answer without checking. Don't choose an answer just because it looks correct or matches a word or phrase in the text. Sometimes, the text might contain information that is similar but not identical to the correct answer, or information that is irrelevant or contradictory to the correct answer. These are also distractors and they are designed to test your comprehension and attention to detail. Make sure you check your answer against the text and see if it fits logically and grammatically.
Don't rely on your previous knowledge. Don't choose an answer based on what you already know or think about the topic, rather than what the text says. The text might contain information that is different from or opposite to your previous knowledge or opinion. Your task is to understand and interpret the text, not to agree or disagree with it. Use only the information given in the text and don't make assumptions or generalizations.
How to use FCE Testbuilder for writing practice
The writing section of the FCE exam consists of two parts, each with a different task type. You will have to write two texts of about 140-190 words each, such as an essay, a letter, a report, a review, etc., based on a given input and purpose. Here is how you can use FCE Testbuilder for writing practice:
How to improve your writing skills with FCE Testbuilder
Plan your writing. Before you start writing, spend some time planning what you are going to write and how you are going to structure it. Think about your audience, purpose, tone, and format. Think about what points you want to make and what examples or evidence you want to use. Make a brief outline of your writing with an introduction, main body paragraphs, and a conclusion.
Draft your writing. After you plan your writing, start writing your first draft following your outline. Don't worry too much about grammar or spelling at this stage, but focus on expressing your ideas clearly and coherently. Use connectors, linking words, and transition words to make your writing cohesive and logical. Use a variety of vocabulary and sentence structures to make your writing interesting and engaging.
Revise your writing. After you finish your first draft, read it again and check for any errors or weaknesses. Use the model answers in FCE Testbuilder to compare your writing with a high-quality example and see how you can improve it. Check your grammar, spelling, punctuation, and vocabulary. Check your content, organization, and style. Make any necessary changes or corrections to your writing.
How to avoid common writing mistakes with FCE Testbuilder
Don't write off-topic. Don't write about something that is not related to the given input or purpose. Make sure you understand the task and the question and stick to the topic. Don't include any irrelevant or unnecessary information or details that don't support your main points.
Don't write too much or too little. Don't write more or less than the required word limit. Writing too much might make your writing unfocused, repetitive, or boring. Writing too little might make your writing incomplete, superficial, or vague. Count your words and make sure you write within the range of 140-190 words.
Don't copy from the input or the model answers. Don't copy any words or phrases from the given input or the model answers in FCE Testbuilder. This is considered plagiarism and it will lower your score. Use your own words and expressions to show your originality and creativity. You can paraphrase or summarize the input or the model answers, but don't copy them word for word.
How to use FCE Testbuilder for speaking practice
The speaking section of the FCE exam consists of four parts, each with a different task type. You will have to interact with an examiner and another candidate (or two examiners if you take the exam individually) and perform various speaking tasks, such as answering questions, comparing pictures, discussing topics, or collaborating on a problem. Here is how you can use FCE Testbuilder for speaking practice:
How to improve your speaking skills with FCE Testbuilder
Speak fluently. Try to speak without too much hesitation, repetition, or silence. Use fillers, such as "well", "you know", "I mean", etc., to give yourself some time to think and avoid long pauses. Use discourse markers, such as "first of all", "on the other hand", "in conclusion", etc., to organize your speech and signal transitions. Use intonation, stress, and rhythm to make your speech clear and natural.
Speak confidently. Try to speak with a positive and assertive attitude. Don't be afraid to express your opinion, preference, or feeling. Don't be afraid to ask for clarification, repetition, or confirmation if you don't understand something. Don't be afraid to correct yourself if you make a mistake. Use modal verbs, such as "can", "could", "would", etc., to make polite requests or suggestions.
Speak coherently. Try to speak with a clear and logical structure. Use connectors, linking words, and transition words to make your speech cohesive and coherent. Use a variety of vocabulary and sentence structures to make your speech interesting and engaging. Use examples, reasons, or evidence to support your points.
How to avoid common speaking mistakes with FCE Testbuilder
Don't speak too fast or too slow. Don't speak too fast that you might lose control of your speech or make it difficult for the examiner or the other candidate to follow you. Don't speak too slow that you might lose the interest of the examiner or the other candidate or waste your time. Speak at a normal and comfortable pace that allows you to communicate effectively and efficiently.
Don't speak too much or too little. Don't speak too much that you might dominate the conversation or interrupt the examiner or the other candidate. Don't speak too little that you might seem uninterested or unprepared. Speak enough to show your ability and contribution, but also leave some space for the examiner or the other candidate to speak.
Don't memorize or recite scripts. Don't prepare or memorize any scripts or sentences before the exam and recite them during the exam. This is considered unnatural and unspontaneous and it will lower your score. Use your own words and expressions to show your flexibility and adaptability. You can prepare some topics or ideas that you want to talk about, but don't memorize them word for word.
skills and knowledge, monitor your progress and identify your strengths and weaknesses, and boost your confidence and performance. If you are serious about passing the FCE exam with flying colors, you should definitely buy FCE Testbuilder and start using it for your exam preparation.
Summary of the main points
To summarize, here are the main points of this article:
FCE Testbuilder is a book that contains four complete practice tests for the FCE exam, as well as an audio CD that accompanies the listening section.
FCE Testbuilder helps you practice under realistic conditions, improve your skills and knowledge, and monitor your progress and identify your strengths and weaknesses.
FCE Testbuilder provides you with tips and strategies for each skill area, such as how to listen actively, take notes, and check your answers; how to read efficiently, scan for keywords, and infer meaning; how to plan, draft, and revise your writing; and how to speak fluently, confidently, and coherently.
FCE Testbuilder also helps you avoid common mistakes in each skill area, such as relying on your memory, getting stuck on one question, or falling for distractors in listening; ignoring the instructions, choosing an answer without checking, or relying on your previous knowledge in reading; writing off-topic, writing too much or too little, or copying from the input or the model answers in writing; and speaking too fast or too slow, speaking too much or too little, or memorizing or reciting scripts in speaking.
Call to action
So what are you waiting for? If you want to ace the FCE exam and prove your English proficiency to the world, you need to get FCE Testbuilder today. It is the best investment you can make for your future. You can order it online or buy it from your local bookstore. Don't miss this opportunity to achieve your goals and dreams. Get FCE Testbuilder now and start preparing for success!
Here are some frequently asked questions about FCE Testbuilder:
What is the FCE exam? The FCE exam is a Cambridge English Qualification that tests your general English language skills at an upper-intermediate level (B2). It is widely recognized by employers, universities, and governments around the world as a proof of your English ability.
How much does FCE Testbuilder cost? The price of FCE Testbuilder may vary depending on where you buy it from. However, it is usually around $30-$40 USD. You can check the current price on Amazon or other online retailers.
How long does it take to complete FCE Testbuilder? It depends on how much time you spend on each section and how often you use it. However, a reasonable estimate is that it takes about 10-12 hours to complete one practice test in FCE Testbuilder. Therefore, it takes about 40-48 hours to complete all four practice tests in the book.
Can I use FCE Testbuilder without a teacher? Yes, you can use FCE Testbuilder without a teacher. The book is designed to be self-study friendly and provides you with all the information and feedback you need. However, if you have a teacher or a tutor who can help you with your exam preparation, that would be even better.
Can I use FCE Testbuilder with other resources? Yes, you can use FCE Testbuilder with other resources. In fact, it is recommended that you use FCE Testbuilder along with other books or materials that cover the grammar, vocabulary, and skills that are required for the FCE exam. You can also use online resources such as websites, podcasts, videos, etc., to supplement your learning.