11th June 2021

A common grammatical mistake I see is when people use It, This and That in their writing. These words are important because they are used to refer back to something mentioned earlier. Referencing, or referring back in this way, has an impact on your Coherence and cohesion score. The image below shows how to use…

4th December 2020

Extending The Key to IELTS Writing I am making some changes to The Key to IELTS Writing that I am sure everyone using the course will be pleased about. The first change is to extend access to the book from 6 months to 12 months. Remember, if you haven’t completed the book, or reached the…

23rd May 2019

I am often asked about scoring and whether the examiner will give half bands for each criteria in the writing and speaking test. I assume people ask this because they are hoping that 4 scores of 6.5 could then be ’rounded up’ to make an overall writing or speaking score of band 7.  I am…

18th April 2019

This post will clarify what I mean when I advise band 6.5 candidates to ‘discuss both sides’, and help you to understand when and where to write a counter-argument. I often find my advice about ‘discussing both sides’ being misunderstood or misinterpreted. Some people mistakenly believe that when I say that ‘you must always discuss…

IELTS Author Pauline Cullen

Books for band 7+

Apps for bands 7+