1. Study the following text.
Edi studied economics at university because he was concerned about the economy in his country. He knew that the Indonesian economy was not a healthy economy. At the same time, he understood the economic value of education, and he knew there were good economics faculties in Australia, so he went to study there and was soon able to compare the Indonesian economy with healthier economies in other countries.
2. Now use the terms following the instructions (below) to complete the rules below.
This app – which shuffles the words in the sentences of a submitted text – has been updated, renamed and moved from its previous location.
Now you have the option to open a printer-friendly version. Might be useful for teachers? Continue reading
An app that converts any text into a total cloze – a text in which all the letters have been blanked out – which you can then reconstruct, word by word!
Enjoy! Continue reading
The IELTS test does actually produce quite a lot of waste, and some of it probably ends up in the ocean.
Look at the graph and then try to reconstruct the text – without looking at the text!
(Similar activities here, here and here.) Continue reading
IELTS often requires us to talk about money and how we spend it, so here’s a song illustrating some common collocations. Lyrics are embedded in the video.
Notice that we do not usually say “The price is expensive.” This is acceptable collocation in some languages (!), but not in English – see here, here and here.
A fun tool that converts any text into an interactive gapfill.
Go ahead and test yourself! Continue reading
It could be argued that a patient who doubts with modern medicines will take longer to heal.
Bahasa Indonesia often features with after certain verbs where it would not be used in English. In English the opening example would simply read:
- It could be argued that a patient who doubts modern medicines will take longer to heal.
Other examples of the redundant with include:
- In addition, patients do not fully believe with the capability of the doctor.
- I like with dangdut music.
- Please promise with your mother that you will meet her after work.
So that’s four verbs – doubt, believe, like, promise – that are not followed by with in English, but are followed by with in at least one other language. I’ll add more examples when I think of them. Meanwhile, if you can think of any other examples, please add comments below.
I will tag this post with the Indonesian word dengan – please come back another time and see if the list has grown!
Old people believe if traditional medicines are more effective for long-standing health complaints than contemporary ones.
Here an Indonesian student has used if as a relative pronoun. This is allowed in Bahasa Indonesia, at least after the verb ‘believe’, but it is not allowed in English.
Instead you need:
- Old people believe that traditional medicines are more effective for long-standing health complaints than contemporary ones.
- The word ‘relative’ made me think of Einstein, and that’s why he appears on this post’s featured image.
- Since there is a cultural note for ‘relative’ then I suppose we ought to include one for ‘if’. How about this inspirational poem by Rudyard Kipling?
Most patients think hard about the best way to recover their health and to accelerate the healing process.
This verb noun collocation – recover health – is very weak. Let’s take a look at the two words separately.
Recover + noun
The strongest collocation for recover + noun seems to be associated with money:
- Apple invested heavily in the iPhone but soon recovered their research and development costs.
- Fraud victims find it difficult to recover their money.
- The state’s Consumer Protection Assistance Fund (CPAF) can help victims, who have filed complaints with our office, recover their losses.
Verb + health
Meanwhile, verb + health gives us:
- Most people make an effort to improve their health.
- regular exercise and a balanced diet can help to maintain good health.
- I’m quite concerned about my uncle’s health.
Recover (no object)
In the context of health, recover is usually intransitive:
- I hope your uncle recovers quickly.
- If you take this medicine you will recover in a few days.
- You had a bad fall. You need some time to recover.
Returning to our opening example, either of the following are possible:
- Most patients think hard about the best way to recover and to accelerate the healing process.
- Most patients think hard about the best way to improve their health and to accelerate the healing process.
Zoos are good places for animals conservation.
This is an example of a noun pre-modifying another noun.
Well, sometimes we have to consider how nouns function within a larger noun phrase.
Well, animal is a noun, and conservation is a noun, but together they form a noun phrase: animal conservation.
So what’s the problem then, Pak Guru?
Well, in this example, the ‘main’ noun is conservation.
What do you mean main noun?
Well, in this example, are you saying that zoos are good for animals or good for conservation?
Right, so conservation is the main noun.
I see, so what’s wrong with animals?
OK, well in the example animals is pre-modifying conservation. ‘Pre’ means ‘before’ – the word ‘animals’ comes before the word ‘conservation’, right?
Wait. Did you say ‘modifying’? What’s that?!
Well, the word animals changes (modifies) the word conservation – it tells us exactly what kind of conservation.
OK. But I still don’t see what is wrong with the original sentence.
The problem is.. If you use a countable noun to pre-modify another noun, then that modifying noun (in this case animal) must be singular.
I see. Like ‘Computer scientist?’
The featured image for this post is a photograph of the man who has done more than any other to conserve wildlife, the incredible David Attenborough – here conversing with orang utan.