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What’s in Speaking Part 4 (Discussion) | C1 Advanced (CAE)

Level: C1
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C1 Advanced (CAE) Speaking Part 4: Format
(CAE) C1 Advanced: Speaking Part 4 - Example Topics
(CAE) C1 Advanced: Speaking Part 4 - Tips

Are you preparing for C1 Advanced (CAE)? Not sure what’s in the speaking part 4? Do you want to improve your skills? Great!

You’ll find here a lot of useful tips, examples and advice to help you pass. This is a test sample of what the real Cambridge exam looks like.

C1 Advanced (CAE) Speaking Part 4: Format

Timing: 5 minutes 

Task type and interaction:
A discussion on topics related to the collaborative task (spoken questions).

The focus is on expressing and justifying opinions, agreeing and/or disagreeing and speculating.

This section of the exam evaluates your skill at engaging in a conversation based on the content raised in the collaborative task in Part 3. For Part 4, the interlocutor will moderate the discussion by asking questions that expand upon the topics explored in Part 3. The questions may well focus on more abstract issues as the discussion develops.

Speaking Part 4 Video (Sample Test)

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Speaking Practice (On-line)

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(CAE) C1 Advanced: Speaking Part 4 – Example Topics

Below you will find test sample questions you may encounter on the C1 Advanced (CAE) exam.

  • In what ways can training change people’s attitudes in the workplace?
  • Some people think that school does not train young people adequately for the world of work today. Do you agree?
  • Which is more important to teach people: a sense of team spirit or individual initiative? Why?
  • How difficult is it for young people to find jobs nowadays in your country? Why?
  • What can be done to create jobs for young people?

  •  In what other ways can a company keep its customers happy?
  • The best form of publicity for a product was once thought to be “word of mouth”. How true is this nowadays?
  • Advertising campaigns persuade us to buy unnecessary things. To what extent do you agree?
  • What future is there for small companies in today’s world?
  • How important is it for companies to be aware of environmental issues?

  • Are we slaves to consumerism?
  • How do we avoid credit card debt?
  • How important is it to save money?
  • Some people earn much more money than others. Is this fair? Why (not)?
  • Some people say money can’t buy happiness. To what extent do you agree with this?

  • How good an idea would it be to build a new tourism development in your area
  • Where do you think the best place to build it would be?
  •  What environmental considerations should one think about when building holiday developments like this?
  • Do people overestimate the importance of holidays?
  • Are there any places where you think it is inappropriate to build theme parks and specially designed holiday resorts?
  • What are the advantages of going abroad on holiday?

  • Are all these new gadgets really necessary?
  • Are you fascinated by new gadgets like iPods?
  • Are technological advances always for the best?
  • Can you imagine your life without a mobile phone?
  • How can we use technology in education?

  • Do you think working in a sales department would be interesting?
  • Why is social media so important for businesses?
  • Do you think advertising can be unethical?
  • Do you think sponsorship has made sport into a business?
  • Do you think companies should pay so much money to top sports stars?

  • How has technology made our lives more dangerous?
  • New technology often leads to unemployment.
  • What should governments do about this?
  •  Do you believe that one-day technology will provide solutions to all our problems? Why (not)?
  • What effect has modern technology had on the lives of young children
  • Some people say life was better and simpler fifty years ago.
  • To what extent would you agree with them?

  • What are the most important characteristics of a job that make it a good job?
  • Is it better to be a lawyer or a construction worker? (Why? / Why not?)
  • When people retire from their jobs they are often quite unhappy at first. Why do you think this is?
  • In times of recession, many people lose their jobs, but others do not. What are some jobs that we will always need people to do, however bad the economy is? (Why?)

  •  Is it possible to have too many possessions? What is your opinion?
  • Why would people buy things that they cannot afford?
  • Often, people make assumptions about others based on the clothes they are wearing. How do you feel about this?
  • Shopping is therapeutic. Do you agree?
  • What are the risks involved when using credit cards?

  • Some people say that we will run out of petrol before too long. What do you think about this?
  • How has the availability of affordable long-distance flights changed the world?
  • What can be done to a city to make it a better place for pedestrians?
  • How do you think we will get around in a hundred years’ time?

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More than Practice Tests

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(CAE) C1 Advanced: Speaking Part 4 – Tips

  1. When practising Part 3, try to predict what types of questions you may encounter in Part 4. Try this with a friend or classmate and exchange feedback and ideas to enrich your depth of knowledge.
  2. Note you are not being evaluated on your ideas, rather simply your ability to express them.
  3. Remember to not interrupt your fellow candidate or try to monopolise the discussion.
  4. Train yourself to respond quickly to the questions you are asked by using expressions that enable you to play for time such as: “Well that’s something I’ve never considered, though, I’d have to say … “.
  5.  Refine your skills over time under simulated test conditions, especially in terms of time requirements. In addition, the impression you make at the end of the exam is equally important as the one you make at the beginning.
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