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CAE Exam Tips CAE Writing Test Tips

CAE Exam Tips CAE Writing Test Tips


You have got 90 minutes to publish two texts. Each text ought to be about 220-260 words long (start to see the Questions section in the bottom when you yourself have concerns concerning the word count). Part 1 is definitely an essay, whilst in part 2 you have got a selection of 3 tasks (letter/email; proposal; report; review).

The examiners assess you on 4 elements:

  • Content – Did you do the job you were asked to complete?
  • Communicative achievement – Did you use the right tone and standard of formality?
  • Organisation – Did you link paragraphs together? Will there be a flow that is logical?
  • Language – Did you show your sparkling vocabulary off or do you merely use First Certificate words? Do you make lots of grammar mistakes?

Before you continue with this particular guide, I highly recommend you read about this free tool that will help you along with your writing:

Last year I made a decision Grammarly, a free writing aid, was not useful – this is actually the story of how one Russian student convinced us to change my mind.

Time management

You have got 90 minutes to create 2 texts. Both texts would be in regards to the length that is same and are worth the same quantity of points. Obviously, you should spend the amount that is same of for each! Personally, I’d spend as much time planning as possible, since it makes everything else easier. The exact time split will depend on how fast you write, but try something such as this:

  • Planning – 10 minutes (I’ve made a video clip in regards to the planning process – it’s in section 8 below.)
  • Writing – 25 minutes
  • Checking – ten minutes


Plenty of students hate planning and think it is a waste of valuable exam time. But do chefs head into a kitchen and just start cooking? Of course not – they lay out their ingredients, make sure their utensils are clean, and also their recipe nearby.

Your plan may be the recipe you’ll use to cook up a piece that is great of. Think of how many paragraphs you want then get some ideas concerning the content of every. But even as of this stage that is early should start planning the language you intend to use. Ask yourself questions like:

  • Where may I use a passive form?
  • Where can I prefer an inversion?
  • What CAE-level vocabulary do i am aware concerning this topic, and where can i take advantage of it?
  • Just how do I link from one paragraph to a higher?

Thinking about solutions before you start writing could be the easiest way to resolve problems!


The initial thing you’re assessed on is the content. That basically means reading the job carefully and doing what you’re told to do! In part 1 you might be given three bullet points but are asked to share TWO of those. (You’re also given some opinions on the topic which you can use if you’d like, you do not have to.) listed here is an example of the three bullet points and a task:

Because I feel like I have more to say about those topics if I were planning my answer, I’d probably choose ‘giving rules’ and ‘setting an example’ as my two points. (How much would I write about ‘offering advice’? Nothing! Because i ought to only write about a couple of things!)

Another point that is important to state that is far better. I would probably write one paragraph about ‘giving rules’, plus the next paragraph would be about ‘setting an example’ – I would personally be sure to give reasoned explanations why it was a more efficient way to influence younger people.

What about part 2? Again, you need to see the question carefully and then make sure you include everything it tells you to.

Here is the kind of task that will come up:

Here is a plan you might follow:

  • Intro
  • Evaluation associated with the programme
  • Probably the most useful elements of the programme
  • Year suggested changes for next
  • Summary

Not very imaginative, but you’d be guaranteed to get marks that are full terms of content!


Which is better English:

Dear Sir or Madam

Well, this will depend who you’re talking to! In the event your task is to write a report for your ‘serious’ organisation you need to use a tone that is formal. If you should be writing a magazine article for teenagers you will be more informal.

This is a giant topic and there’s not space that is enough get into it in detail here. I’ll list a couple of external resources that can help, but a coursebook that is good provide you with lots of guidance.

The primary tip is to be consistent – students often write a written report this is certainly 95% formal, and then throw in a few exclamation points, slang, contractions, and informal vocabulary. That is bad! You be suggested by it do not have control of your tone.

Learn more about formal vs informal English:

Task types

You should invest some right time making certain you realize the difference between a letter and an essay, and between a study and a proposal. Here are some tips that are quick


You’ll want to give your opinion in an interesting prices way. CAE essays are often academic in tone, so practice of formal writing will be helpful.


Write a contact aided by the opening/closing that is same a letter. In these you come up with your experiences that are personal. Your writing shall have an objective, like giving an answer to a newspaper article that you do not agree with.


Use headings for every single paragraph. The job will let you know a number of the content you need to include and you will be able to utilize your imagination to include a few more ideas. You might be asked to gauge if some goal happens to be achieved and/or to suggest alternative courses of action. A proposal will have more scope for making suggestions and more need for polite persuasive language.


Cambridge love linking words and cohesive devices. They are components of text like ‘firstly’, ‘whereas’, ‘in addition’, ‘however’, and so forth. Properly used, they shall make your writing flow and work out your text much easier to read. You can not do well in CAE without using these phrases.

Here’s a web page with some ideas about cohesive devices – make an effort to include them in your writing. Here is another one with strategies for the IELTS exam.


Organising a text, using linking words, and having all of the content points is a start that is great but also for a higher grade you will have to use advanced vocabulary and much more difficult sentence structures.

When you look at the planning stage regarding the exam think of which words that are high-level know for that topic and think in which paragraph you should use them. For instance, if the subject is mostly about transport you might use phrases like ‘mass transit system’, ‘to commute’, ‘congestion,’ and ‘pressed for time’.

You will need to make use of a number of structures – passives, inversions, cleft sentences, questions, sentences with semi-colons. The greater amount of variety the greater!

Also many different sentence lengths. This picture explains the reason:

So rather than writing like this:

Lots of politicians say they’re going to improve train and bus services. Having trains will work for individuals who have to go to work. It indicates they don’t really have to take the motor car to operate. It really is probably faster. If everyone takes a train to operate there defintely won’t be any traffic jams.

You are able to produce this:

Why do progressive politicians pledge to prov >mass transit systems inside their cities? The answer is obvious: Not only do pressed-for-time commuters benefit, but there is also less pollution. Let congestion be a plain thing of history; let flowers bloom next to every tram stop.

In those three sentences there was one question; one colon; one semi-colon; one ‘not only but additionally’; one imperative. Pretty good, right? It is possible to write similar to this if you practice of course you are not afraid which will make some mistakes as you go along.

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