ESL Speaking Tip: How to Express your Opinion
Another very common question type of speaking exam question is expressing an opinion. For example, part six of the TOEIC speaking test shows a question on the screen. You then have 15 seconds to prepare, and 60 seconds to answer the question. When you speak, you are evaluated on: pronunciation, intonation and stress, grammar, vocabulary, relevance of content, and completeness of content.
You can use these four simple steps to do well on these kinds of speaking exam questions.
4 Simple Steps to Express your Opinion
Step 1. State your preference (Directly answer the question). For example,
“Do you prefer A or B? I prefer A.”
“Some people think that… Do you agree or disagree?” “I agree that…”
“Which of the following skills is most important for ______: A, B, or C?” “I think that B is the most important skill for…”
Step 2. Connecting sentence (A) and main reason (B). For example,
I have several reasons to support my opinion (A). Most of all…(B)
Step 3. Further examples and more details.
“For example, I have a friend named…”
“When I was young,…”
“For example, I would like to talk about…”
“For example, last month, I had to…”
Then, give more details!
Step 4. State your preference again
Example: “That is why I agree/ disagree with this opinion.”
“That is why I prefer this option.”
“That is why I think “(X-item, quality, skill, etc.)” is the most important thing for…”
Let’s put it all together in a couple of examples.
ESL Speaking Tip, Example #1:
“When taking a college course, do you prefer online lectures or classroom lectures? Give specific reasons to support your opinion”
1. “I prefer…”
2. “I have several reasons to support my opinion. Most of all…”
3. “For example.”
4. “That is why…”
ESL Speaking Tip, Example #2:
“Which of the following skills is the most important thing for parents to teach their children? -being friendly -being creative -being honest. Give specific reasons and details to support your answer.”
1. “I think that… is the most important thing…”
2. “I have several reasons to support my opinion. Most of all, it will…”
3. “For example…”
4. “That is why I think that… is the most important thing…”
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