Objective: First Certificate (FCE)

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Archive for December 8th, 2007

FCE June 2007: Sample Papers (with Keys)

with 33 comments

Written by ElenaBen

December 8, 2007 at 12:26 pm

Posted in Practice Tests

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Are or Is

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(Taken from Google hits):

The Australian Government has made a strong commitment to fight terrorism and increase the security of all Australians.

governments target critical systems including. ..

Governments rely far too much on outside contractors to deliver IT solutions…

This secret World Government thing is tricky you know?

Government is not God.

When do we use plural then and singular? (easy: subject-verb agreement) (Please I want to hear that ‘s’ after ‘t’, otherwise it sounds like you are saying government in singular, and remember how /t/ sounds in English, it’s different from the Spanish /t/)


Akron/Family are four extremely nice, sincere and well-mannered young men from rural America who came to NYC…

Bush Family are nazi…

Family is above all.

When do we use plural then and singular? (not that easy, read below)

Singular nouns or noun phrases take a singular form of the verb. There are however some nouns which can take either a singular or a plural verb depending on whether they are seen as a single entity or as a number of individuals. Some examples of this are: family, committee, team, board…

Indicate here whether the verb should be singular or plural and consider why these might cause problems.

Written by ElenaBen

December 8, 2007 at 11:04 am


with 6 comments

(From Cambridge ESOL site)

Look at the following expressions which are used when writing letters. Where would you find each of them in a letter? Make a list under each heading:


Signalling the end

Closings (at the end)

When you have finished, decide if each expression comes from a formal or informal letter, and write F (formal) or I (informal) after each one.

a. Thanks for your letter.
b. I’ll finish now as I’m running out of space.
c. Thank you for sending me your brochure.
d. I must go now.
e. Sorry for not writing for so long.
f. If you have any further questions, please contact me again.
g. I must apologise for not contacting you sooner.
h. I look forward to hearing from you.
i. I’m writing to ask you a favour.
j. I’d better finish.
k. Write again soon!
l. The reason for my writing is to apply for the job I saw advertised.
m. Bye for now.
n. Anyway, I’d better post this letter now.
o. It was lovely to hear from you.
p. All my love.
q. Best wishes.
r. It was great to get your letter.
s. Regards,
t. Thank you so much for writing.
u. Take care.
v. I was so sad to hear that you had been ill.
w. Good luck!
x. I wish to complain about the terrible service at your restaurant.
y. Hope to hear from you soon.
z. I am writing with reference to your letter…

Language of formal and informal letters

Look at the following characteristics of letters. Decide whether they apply to formal or informal letters or both.



begins with Dear …

refers to reason for writing

uses contractions

uses abbreviations

uses simple, short sentences

uses simple linkers, e.g. then, later

has paragraphs

is polite

could use slang

could use exclamation marks (!)

ends with Yours sincerely, / Yours faithfully

ends with Best wishes / Write soon

ends with a signature

ends with a signature and a full name printed (or in capitals)

Written by ElenaBen

December 8, 2007 at 10:35 am

Posted in Paper 2: Writing, Writing

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