Prep for Oral Exam - International English

Published: 08.08.2013, Updated: 05.03.2017
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Yes You Can

To revise the material covered in English this year and to prepare for the oral exam, we suggest organizing the class in groups of three to practise speaking and assessment skills. We have suggested topics and questions based on competence aims, but these could of course be changed to better comply with what you have focused on.


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Work in groups of three – one examiner, one candidate and one external examiner.

The candidate draws a topic (see below) and gets 10 minutes to brush up on his/her knowledge. The examiner and external examiner will spend this time noting down questions. Remember, it is your job to get the student to show what he/she knows. Help them get started and ask questions to help them out when they are stuck, but the candidate should try to present what they know freely without being too dependent on the examiner's questions.

The examiner asks questions and tries to get the candidate to speak as much as possible. The external examiner evaluates the candidate – the level of knowledge, communication skills and vocabulary. Print out this table to help you in the evaluation Oral Assessment Form.

Each examination should last for about 5 minutes.

Change roles and repeat the exam so that all members of the group take turns to be the candidate, the examiner and the external examiner. Each candidate should get a different topic.

Topic 1: Studying and Working Abroad

  1. Many young people choose to go abroad to study or work. What might be the reasons for this? Which countries are the most popular do you think? Why? What kind of challenges are there to be faced when one would like to work abroad; before leaving, living and working abroad and returning home?
  2. Do you think the situation for young people working abroad has changed in recent years? Why? What kind of problems face young people starting out on their career today?

Topic 2: Multiculturalism

  1. What is multiculturalism? Can you give examples of multicultural societies? What possibilities and challenges do multicultural societies face?
  2. Can you give an example of a literary text or a film dealing with multiculturalism? Describe and discuss it.

Topic 3: Intercultural Communication

  1. Describe some areas in which intercultural communication is important. Why is it so important to understand cultural differences? Give some examples of the cultural differences that affect communication.
  2. How can sport and travel contribute to a better understanding and communication between cultures?

Topic 4: Varieties of English

  1. How did English become a world language? Explain, giving examples to describe this development.
  2. There are many variants of English. Choose one of the countries where a variety of English is spoken (not the USA or the UK). Explain why English is one of the main languages there and describe how this variant differs from standard English.

Topic 5: Media and the Role of the Media

  1. Social media have become more and more important and powerful in today’s society. Describe some of the ways in which social media are used. Give examples.
  2. Discuss this topic: Social media – a curse or blessing?

Topic 6: Global Issues

  1. In our global society there are many challenges. (environment, overpopulation, terrorism, conflicts, etc.) Choose one issue and discuss it (problem, where, effect, possible solution).
  2. Can you give an example of a literary text or film dealing with one of the global issues mentioned above? Describe and discuss it.