IELTS is a crucial exam for students looking to study abroad but getting a good score isn’t easy. Especially when it comes to IELTS writing, the subject has some tricky topics. Like, students can’t decide whether to prefer vocabulary for IELTS writing or collocations for IELTS. However, don’t you worry, we solve all these questions and answer your question on “What should I prioritize: learning vocabulary or collocations for IELTS preparation? and more in this article below.

IELTS Vocabulary Words

Vocabulary is important in every language; without it, you can’t whip up a sentence. So, having extensive vocabulary knowledge, especially in IELTS, is essential. It will not only show the examiner that you have extensive knowledge of the language, but you are also willing to use the not so common words to back up your opinion.

The vocabulary for IELTS writing should be simple enough yet not so straightforward that it lacks uniqueness. Sometimes, using too many big words can distort the original meaning and intention of the sentence. So, sticking to a simple stretch of vocabulary with a dash of rare words enhances the whole point of the topic.  

Collocations in IELTS

What are collocations in IELTS? Collocations are a pair or group (in some cases) of words that go together in a sentence and sounds just about right to a native speaker. There are some words in the English language that can be only spoken as collocation and not as an individual word.

Collocations in IELTS are of utmost importance because they show your expertise and command over the language. You can also expand your vocabulary with collocations, but knowing just vocabulary will never give you the edge that you need.

Writing Task

The IELTS writing task is where you’ll be tested on your knowledge of both writing task vocabulary and collocations. Using too many random words might make your content look shabby and won’t be pleasing to read. On the other hand, using collocations helps make the content structured and gives a smooth finish.

Concluding Writing Task

Use collocations such as: to summarize, recapitulate, conclude, encapsulate, recap, rehash, to sum up, to epitomize, to compile, to finish your article in the writing task. This final use of collocations gives a touch up to your already well-written content, and the last thing that a reader needs is a dilapidated ending.

When an examiner reaches the end, he’ll soon forget what he read in the beginning. He will mostly focus on whether the ending is right, which is why it is so essential to always conclude your articles or stories appropriately.

Also Read : Is the English Proficiency Exam Compulsory for People Migrating to Canada?

Vocabulary or Collocations for IELTS

There is always a confusion while preparing for IELTS as to what should you give more preference to- vocabulary or collocations? The answer is quite objective. It depends on the task that you are doing. Collocations are usually more preferred in writing tasks, and having a substantial awareness of the vocabulary is preferred in speaking tasks.

While writing if you use collocations, it is assumed that you have a fair share of knowledge of the language as collocations are mainly adopted in use by the native speakers. And when you use a good amount of vocabulary while speaking, it shows that you can hold on to a conversation with a native speaker without fumbling or panicking.

Speaking in IELTS

Many people get nervous and anxious before their speaking test as they get afraid that they’ll stammer or stutter in front of the moderator. But they really shouldn’t worry about that as that’s not the first thing that the moderator pays attention to. They are all aware that English is your second language, and fumbling with words is quite common.

But what they focus on is your IELTS speaking vocabulary. Even if you are grammatically incorrect, which sometimes happens out of nervousness, your use of vocabulary gets their attention going. They judge you how you use different words to portray the same meaning repeatedly without sounding repetitive.

Good Collocations for IELTS

There are some decisive collocations that if used in IELTS correctly can help you boost your score. Unlike vocabulary, collocations can’t be learnt. You’ll just need to keep on learning and reading the language and focus on the words that are most commonly used together.

Eventually, you’ll come up with your own academic collocations list that will not only come in handy during IELTS but also while interacting with your peers, colleagues, or native speakers. Some of the most common collocations are: centre of attention, take pride in, a sense of accomplishment, binge-watch, catch up on, confide in.

IELTS Preparation

There’s no such thing as too prepared, and it’s the same while preparing for IELTS. English is a language that keeps growing, so you need to be updated on the vocabulary and keep on them. Being aware of all the slangs and the words in trend also give you an edge over other IELTS students.

Your use of vocabulary, collocations, and grammar is what IELTS revolves around. Your expertise in the same will make you stand out from your competitors for IELTS tests your reading or writing skills and your comprehensive language proficiency. Constantly challenging yourself to do better is the best way to crack IELTS.


For more information on IELTS and preparation related to IELTS, keep on reading our blogs. We have every possible information that you could need if you’re going to appear for IELTS or are thinking of appearing for IELTS soon. These tidbits of information are a sure hack to crack IELTS with a good score to help you get admitted into your desired university.

And if it’s PR that you have your eyes on, then focusing more on speaking is the right way to go as general IELTS leans more towards speaking than writing compared to academic IELTS. Stay tuned for more IELTS related content.

Also Read : How do I know Which is more Suitable for Me IELTS or TOEFL?


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