Much of the IELTS test requires that you know synonyms for various words. You need a rich vocabulary to do well in the reading, writing listening, … and, well, the speaking. So basically to get a good result, you need to be continuously boosting your vocab.

You can do that by reading, by specifically learning vocabulary and by having some good strategies.

When you learn new vocab, make sure that you note collocations too. For this group of words some collocations are:
alternate between, alternative route, circumstantial evidence, comment on/about, make a comment, victim compensation, compensate for, under/overcompensate for, components of

Check the meanings of the words if you don’t already know them. Check the meanings of the various forms as sometimes they are different. You can check them at Time4english by clicking the words (

Complete the sentences below with the correct form of the word.

  1. One route to university is through high school while an ______________ route is through the technical education system. (alternative)
  2. He was arrested on the basis of _______________ evidence. (circumstance)
  3. Do you prefer to watch sport on television or listen to the _______________ on the radio? (comment)
  4. Should people who are wrongfully imprisoned be awarded _______________ ? (compensate)
  5. Lego sets have so many small _______________ . (component)

Answers (in the wrong order below)
5. components   3. commentary   2. circumstantial    1. alternate / alternative   4. compensation

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