[The examiner asks the candidate about him/herself, his/her home, work or studies and other familiar topics.]
Newspapers and Magazines:
Q. Which magazines and newspapers do you read? [Why?]
A. I like to read any kind of newspapers and magazines which are published in the English language mainly because they help me improve my English skills. Of course, they also help me to keep myself updated with the latest news and views of the world around us, but that’s just secondary to me. BBC News, Daily Telegraph, CNN and USA Today are some of the newspapers I read regularly and thanks to the internet technology that I can read them from my computer. “Reader’s Digest”, “Cosmopolitan” and “Computer World” are three magazines that are available in my city, and I often buy them from a local magazine store.
Q. What kinds of article are you most interested in? [Why?]
A. I like to read mostly those articles which discuss the latest business trends and activities of the corporate world in general as I am a post-graduate business student. These kinds of articles also help me understand how the top executives of some of the biggest companies in the world conduct themselves in their day to day affairs. Besides, I am also curious to read about technology, current affairs and some interesting real-life stories which are inspiring or humorous!
Q. Have you ever read a newspaper or magazine in a foreign language? [When/Why?]
A. If you are asking if I have ever read a newspaper or magazine in a foreign language other than English, then the answer is ‘no’ because I don’t know any other foreign language(s). However, English itself is a foreign language to me, and so, from that point of view, I do read newspapers and magazines in a foreign language.
Q. Do you think reading a newspaper or magazine in a foreign language is a good way to learn the language? [Why/Why not?]
A. Yes, I do strongly believe that reading a newspaper or magazine in a foreign language is a good way to learn that particular language as I and some of my friends are living proofs of that. In fact, whatever I have learned so far, as far as the English language is concerned, a very significant part of it has been achieved by reading English newspapers and magazines for years.
[The topic for your talk will be written on a card which the examiner will hand you. Read it carefully and then make some brief notes.]
Describe a restaurant that you enjoyed going to.
You should say:
and explain why you enjoyed eating in this restaurant.
[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you are going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]
Sample Answer 1:
I do not dine in a restaurant very frequently. In fact, I prefer to eat homemade foods. However, there are some occasions when I prefer meeting people at a restaurant and like to taste the delicious menus the restaurants offer. One such restaurant is ‘Plaza de Capita Foods’ that I really like and I would like to thank you for the opportunity to talk about my favorite restaurant that I enjoyed going to.
I went to this restaurant a couple of weeks ago with my parents and siblings. The restaurant is situated in a large shopping mall in the city we live in and it is almost 30 minutes away from our home. The restaurant is on the 18th floor and offers a nice open sky view.
It was my younger sister’s birthday and we planned prior to the occasion to celebrate this special day outside. As part of our whole day plan, we ate the dinner at this restaurant. My father also like the way the restaurant offers an excellent dining experience at a moderately cheaper price.
We ate the buffet and that included almost 40 items in total. I remember eating around 8-9 items while my parents less. But my younger brother John enjoyed more than 20 items. Side note: He did not eat all the items. He just tasted many of them!
The common items we ate included fried rice, sandwiches, fried chicken, curry chicken, cheese and onion rolls, seafood platter, garlic bread, prawns and ice cream. The restaurant offers an excellent view as well as a nice decoration. It was a perfect place to enjoy our dinner and they offered a free birthday cake! I loved the way they served the foods and the overall price was reasonable. It was my younger sister’s birthday and the dinner could not have been better!
Sample Answer 2:
I am not a foodie but I do not miss the chances of having some delicious meals when I am in travel. In January last, I went to Yangon for some business purposes and had my meals at a restaurant named Le Planteur, a gorgeous restaurant. It was a nice experience for me.
This is a posh restaurant. Le Planteur is located at the University Avenue under Bahan Township in Yangon. This is a large fine restaurant in the city and comes with a great number of delicious food menus. Besides, the representation of the foods was another impressive aspect of this restaurant. Pricing is comparatively reasonable than the other contemporary restaurants in the city. It is accessible by all available means as it is located in the city centre. I took my lunch and supper in the restaurant during my stay in Yangon and I am highly glad about their service.
I am a sales manager for a multinational computer hardware manufacturer and I work mostly in Malaysia. The authority has opened a new branch in Yangon and I was sent from Malaysia to diagnose a test about the success rate of our products. So, it was a business trip for me. But I was also accompanied by some other colleagues of mine from a different department. In fact, we were seven in number altogether. The regional manager was with us in line with the other managers. Actually, the managers of various departments, including me, participated in the tour. The accommodation was good but the foods were great. I have a habit of homework before moving to a new place. I try to learn about the best living arrangements, foods, convenient routs and other issues. Accordingly, I was asked to sort out a standard restaurant for dining purposes.
The restaurant offered a wide number of courses including lobsters, fish menus, desserts and more others. But I liked the traditional meal of Yangon most than any other things in the restaurants. Besides, I loved the dessert prepared with some local ingredient. On the other side, my other companions took some of the foreign dishes available in the restaurant. The bistro menu was the top quality dish that they highly praised. The restaurant also had the opportunity to take candle light dinner in a romantic environment which was really appealing to us all. We wanted to have a candle light dinner but discarded the idea because that was unsuitable for us. Instead of such ideas, we concentrated on having the best quality meals in the restaurant and really enjoyed our foods.
This was a very good restaurant for many aspects. Firstly, it is located at a convenient location. The restaurant is accessible from any parts of the city. This is splendid restaurant considering the foods it offers to the visitors. There are a large collection of foods and you can have it based on your taste. Pricing is not an issue here. In fact, the food prices are far cheaper than the other restaurants while the service belongs to the top class. I also loved the interior decoration and seating arrangements. The restaurant authority is highly efficient and serves the foods shortly after ordered. So, I was in love with the restaurant and took all of my meals excluding the breakfast in that place.
Q. Why do you think people go to restaurants when they want to celebrate something?
A. I would assume that people go to restaurants when they want to celebrate something, mainly because a celebration is never complete without filling their stomachs with some good and tasty food. And, what other places are there on this earth other than the restaurants which can provide so many types of good food at the same time without burdening them with the troubles of cooking and cleaning! Besides, I also think that they just like to go to restaurants in the name of “celebration” probably because they like to have some changes in their daily eating habits.
Q. Which are more popular in your country: fast food restaurants or traditional restaurants? Why do you think that is?
A. I think that traditional restaurants in my country would still win the “popularity race”, not by very far though, when it comes to choosing a food place in which people can sit and enjoy their favorite food. It is like this because, in my humble opinion, food items, served at traditional restaurants, are relatively cheaper and tastier in most cases than those foods that are served at fast food restaurants. I would also say they prefer going to traditional restaurants because their food offers more nutritional values in comparison to those offered by fast food restaurants.
Q. Some people say that food in an expensive restaurant is always better than food in a cheap restaurant – would you agree?
A. No, I wouldn’t exactly like to agree with the suggestion that food in expensive restaurants is always better than food in cheap restaurants. The keyword here is “always”, and there is no concrete evidence to suggest that expensive restaurants “always” choose the best ingredients to prepare their food. Nor is there any evidence to suggest that they prepare their food in the best possible manners also. On the contrary, the opposite could be true as the “so-called” expensive restaurants could actually choose the “cheap” ingredients with poor quality in order to keep their profit margin high, but nobody would “dare” to question them because they are “expensive”!
Q. Do you think there will be a greater choice of food available in shops in the future, or will there be less choice?
A. Yes, I do think that there will be greater choices of food available in shops in the future as different food products manufacturing companies are coming up with different kinds of food in order to keep up with the increasing demands of their customers. Besides, with the existing food engineering processes, food products manufacturing companies are managing to produce and prepare some food items throughout the year which used to be prepared only “seasonally” before. Thanks to technological advancement and globalization, people nowadays want to taste different foreign food in their home country and restaurants, food producers and fast food shops are coming up with this to offer a variety of choices to the customers.
Q. What effects has modern technology had on the way food is produced?
A. Overall, I would say that modern technology has helped a great deal in increasing the production of food both on the fields and off the fields (in factories). Besides, with the help of modern technology, food production has become easier and less time-consuming. However, with genetic engineering processes, unfortunately, the food is becoming lesser and lesser “natural” for human consumption which just might not be good for our health.
Q. How important is it for a country to be able to grow all the food it needs, without importing any from other countries?
A. It is very important that a country is able to grow all the food it needs without importing anything from other countries because that will certainly make the country “self-reliant”. On top of that, if a country is indeed able to meet its own demands of food, then the chances are that it will be able to export some of its food crops to other countries and thus earn some valuable foreign currencies in order to improve its economy even further. But, of course, the reality is that it is almost impossible to become “self-dependent” on food because of weather conditions, types of cultivable lands and human-caused errors and limitations.