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IELTS Speaking

Our AI reveals top grammar errors of IELTS test-takers

A photo of an English text corrected with a red felt-tip pen top grammar errors of IELTS test-takers

SmallTalk2Me's English learning platform has leveraged AI technology to uncover a correlation between IELTS bands and common grammar mistakes made by test-takers. Through the analysis of over 26,000 simulated IELTS test submissions from learners around the world, SmallTalk2Me's team has identified the top errors that hinder success.

Typically, the IELTS band score is assessed in four sections, namely Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing, and ranges from 4 to 9, which indicates a candidate's English language knowledge and proficiency. Achieving the desired band level requires avoiding common grammar errors that can significantly impact one's score. To assist with this, the team at SmallTalk2Me has conducted AI-powered study to identify and help learners avoid such errors, ensuring they have the best possible chance of high scorin on the IELTS Speaking test.

The study has revealed that IELTS test-takers in lower bands (5.5-6.0) commonly make specific stumbling blocks and erroneous expressions during their exams. By understanding and avoiding these errors, learners can boost their grammar skills and increase their chances of scoring 6.5 or higher on the IELTS exam.

The 5 Grammar Mistakes You Must Avoid

(1) Improper use of articles – English learners often have difficulty using articles because it is a highly context-dependent aspect of the language. The rules for using articles can be complex, and many exceptions and variations exist. Additionally, there are often no direct equivalents to articles in other languages, making it challenging for learners to understand their usage. The most common mistakes include omitting articles when needed, using the wrong article, and using articles with uncountable and proper nouns.
Real-life examples: I have a dog and it is (a) very faithful. That is (the) a very worrying and very shocking thing.

(2) "Most" vs. "Most of the" – The correct usage of 'most' and 'most of the' can be difficult due to the need to determine the context of the sentence. 'Most of the' should be used when referring to a specific group, while 'most' is appropriate for describing a majority. It is also important to use the correct noun form (countable or uncountable) with each expression.
Real-life example: Most (of the) children live with their parents.

(3) Double helping verbs – this mistake occurs when two helping verbs are used together with the main verb in a sentence. The most common examples of this include 'I am do not like wild animals' and 'I am do not agree with this notion'. The correct way to express these sentences is to use only one helping verb with the main verb.

(4) The incorrect use of prepositions – it can be challenging for non-native speakers due to various reasons. English prepositions often have multiple meanings and can be used in different ways depending on the context. Non-native speakers may also carry over their understanding of prepositions from their native language and apply it to English. Furthermore, English has many idiomatic expressions that use prepositions in unique ways, which can make it difficult for learners to grasp their usage.
Real-life examples: The majority of teenagers like to play games (in) on smartphones. I have an iPad, which has many games (in) on it...

(5) Verbs conjugations – non-native speakers who do not have frequent opportunities to use and hear English may struggle with verb conjugation, even with the simplest ones, as in the most common example from SmallTalk2Me's users: Modern technology (have) has a bad influence.

Progressing by one level within just 2.5 months
To use English grammar correctly, it's crucial to have regular exposure and practice. SmallTalk2Me can assist with it: using advanced Machine Learning technology, users receive detailed feedback reports on their spontaneous speech, examining thirty different parameters to determine their proficiency level and identify errors. The most recent integration of ChatGPT for IELTS Test also provides users with tailored AI-generated feedback, offering detailed insights into areas of improvement: it includes AI-examiner’s suggestions such as the use of more complex sentences or a wider range of vocabulary, which allows users to reach their target score on the test.

"SmallTalk2Me has proven results in improving English speaking and helping prepare for proficiency tests like IELTS. Learners who regularly use our tools have shown significant progress, achieving a higher IELTS level on average in just 2.5 months. SmallTalk2Me is revolutionizing the way people learn English, and we are excited to continue to witness its positive impact on learners worldwide," - said Sofia Terpugova, CEO and Co-founder of SmallTalk2Me.

To improve your IELTS score by addressing common mistakes and practicing English with an AI-powered IELTS Speaking practice test, visit

About SmallTalk2Me

SmallTalk2Me is an international startup focusing on utilizing AI in language learning. It provides education technology solutions for private customers and businesses. From its launch, SmallTalk2Me helped more than 200 000 people worldwide to improve English.