I couldn’t be less motivated right now.
Not by my job, fortunately, but it’s still English-related: the IELTS.
As you probably know, I did the Cambridge Proficiency Exam last November, and failed the Listening part. I decided to take the test again, but then, I realized that I would need the IELTS (Academic) in order to apply for a MA in TESOL, so I wasn’t left with much of a choice.
So, I ordered books about the IELTS, practice tests, Phrasal Verbs in Use, Common mistakes at IELTS Advanced and I set myself an objective of 8 out of 9. Just for the record, the universities I want to apply to are requiring a 7,5, not 8. That was 6 weeks ago, and I was supposed to take the test on the 25th of November.
(Spoiler alert: I won’t. I am crossing fingers for January)
And yet, here we are, Friday 13th of October, desperately trying to find some moments to study. My job isn’t to blame, nor my timetable. You wanna know why I can’t study properly? The answer is really simple:
Because these tests are boring as hell.
I used Common mistakes at CPE last year, so I used the IELTS version of the book. It’s a good book, but you better be motivated before starting it, because there is no originality whatsoever. Like in a lot of other books, the sentences used are totally uncanny, far from regular and you know that you will never use it in real life.
So, I do have a question: What is the point of learning by heart for an exam if you are not going to be able to speak in real life?
Let me reformulate: Why will I be motivated to study for a test ,that I know will determine if I can go to college, but makes me revise some vocabulary that I will never use again?
Standardized tests are not for me, which is a fact that I knew for some time already. What I realize now as well, is that language tests need to be re think and more realistic. Describing statistics, really? I wanna do a MA in TESOL, not in economics science, thank you very much.
As teachers, or as students, what do you think about those tests?