Be careful when talking about the past in the IELTS Speaking test. If the examiner asks you a question, for example:
What kind of music did you listen to when you were younger?
Here are three simple tips to help you answer these questions well.
- DON’T use the present perfect if you are asked about the past. Don’t say ‘I have listened to rock music’. For uses of the present perfect, see this post.
- If you want to talk about a habit or routine in the past, use used to + infinitive to show the examiner that you have a good range of grammar. For example: I used to listen to rock music.
- If you are not sure what tense to use, listen carefully to the question (ask the examiner to repeat if necessary) and try to reflect the tense used in the question. If the examiner uses the past simple, use the past simple in your answer, for example: I listened to rock music.