Better off using ‘better off’

Many students spend hours reading grammar books in order to improve their English. However, they are probably better off reading novels instead.

Most people are familiar with better off as the comparative form of well off (= wealthy). However, better off has other uses in IELTS speaking and writing (Task 2). Continue reading

Contrasting while and meanwhile for contrast

The amount of time children spent watching TV remained stable, meanwhile the amount of time they spent using computers increased dramatically.

In this post we contrast while and meanwhile in terms of grammatical usage and their usefulness as contrast signals.

Continue reading

Cost or costs?

In the metal and mining sector, companies are facing significant problems (Hopwood, 2018). For example, they face increasing production cost due to the rapid development of new mining technologies.

Like much basic vocabulary in the field of economics, cost is a difficult word! First of all this is one of those words that can be countable and uncountable, and secondly there are some usage peculiarities with each. Continue reading

The workforce in IELTS

In fact, palm oil plantations cover huge hectares of land which often requires a significant amount of workforce to pick the heavy oil palm fruit.

Words like amount and number are used to communicate statistics, as in the amount of electricity, the number of deaths, etc. The same is true of workforce: Continue reading