Homework for Tutorial 9: Letter Writing Styles for VSTEP Writing Part 1

Hi class, we are Ngoc and Nhung, tutors of the 9th lesson on Letter Writing Styles for VSTEP Writing Part 1. In the face-to-face tutorial, we learned about tips to choose the appropriate style to follow based on task requirements as well as linguistic and grammatical features of each style. As can be seen from your feedbacks, some of you preferred us to revise the structure of a letter because it has been a long time since we wrote one. You can refer to this link for revision.

Now it’s time to practise your writing skill. Please spare some time to finish the following exercise. There are two parts in the exercise. You should spend about 20 minutes on each.  While writing, try to put suggested expressions we introduced to you  into practice.

Screen Shot 2016-04-22 at 11.19.09 AM

When you finish, please send your letters to e1clc.k48ulis@gmail.com under the name: [Tutorial 9] [Name].

Deadline for your submission:

1o p.m Monday 25th, April 2016

Have fun with writing. We are looking forward to your letters.

Thank you so much!


Homework for Tutorial 8: VSTEP Listening Part 3 – Note-taking Technique

Hi class, we are Vân Anh, Hằng and Hiền, tutors of the 8th lesson on VSTEP Listening Part 3. In the face-to-face tutorial, you learned about the note-taking technique which is very helpful for you to deal with long recordings in VSTEP Listening Part 3. You also practised listening to three lectures, took some notes and used the notes to answer questions. As practice makes perfect, here is the homework for you to self-practice applying the note-taking technique while listening.  

Our homework is composed of two main parts: the listening exercises and the suggested materials for further practice.

  1. Listening exercises:

Please spend time doing the following listening exercises at home. While listening, please take some notes using the note-taking technique that you have learned. When the homework is done, please take pictures of your notes and send us via our class email: e1clc.48ulis@gmail.com. You may want to bring your notes to the feedback session, as brief presentation on the recordings’ content might be required in class later on.

Follow this link to get the full package of our homework including:

2 recordings; and

– Handouts (soft version).


  1. Suggested materials:

Besides the materials that have been recommended in class, here are some useful websites and books where you can find long recordings and listening comprehension exercises. Have fun practising!



*english-test.net is a website that provides myriads of English level-categorized and skill-categorized exercises, tests, books and even worksheets for ones who love to pursue teaching career.


*Get tired of long, tedious recordings with no image? It’s time to visit TedEd. TedEd provides various lectures on a wide range of topics, from arts, technology to religion. Try listening to some of the lessons, taking some notes and reporting them later. You will have the chance to improve not only your listening skill, but also your speaking skill as well, as your vocabulary range is enhanced thanks to listening to the lectures.


David Beglar, N. M. Contemporary Topics 3: Advanced Listening and Note-Taking (3rd edition). Pearson Longman.

Tess Ferree, K. S. NorthStar: Listening and Speaking Level 4 (3rd edition). Pearson Longman.



Tutorial 7 – Brainstorm and elaborate speech in Vstep speaking part 2

Hi Critical monsters of E1,

I’m Nhi and Trâm Anh, tutors of the 7th lesson on Vstep speaking part 2. In the last session in class, we have introduced to you a Speaking template and some useful tips to utilize 1 minute preparation effectively, hope that these techniques could, to some extents, help you to brush up on your speaking skills in general and speaking part 2 in particular. Due to the limited time, our class didn’t have chance to apply what you have learned in the tutorial, therefore, this homework will make up for the missing practice in the in class tutorial.

Remind of previous lesson:

  1. Speaking template

Option A

Advantage 1

Advantage 2

Option B and C

1 Advantage (each)

2 Disadvantages (each)

Option A

1 Disadvantage


2. Brainstorm techniques: (You may want to refer to the handout of brainstorm tips we have given you)


The homework for tutorial No.7 consists of two parts:

  1. Topic vocabulary and collocations

We have prepared for you some exercises of vocabulary, expressions and collocations on topics as food and health, information technology, the media and education. Please work on these to gain some useful phrases for your speaking performance.

You can find all the homework, as well as the handouts of language functions and abbreviations in this link, download the handouts and do them at home.


  1. Speaking practice

Choose 1 topic from the following topics. You have one minute to brainstorm and three minutes to speak. Record your answer and sent it to nttramanh96@gmail.com  for feedback.

Name your audio file as follows: [Tutorial 7][Topic No][Your name]

Deadline for the submission: 24.00 p.m. April 1st 

  1. You have been having a throbbing headache for several days. What would you do? Going to the hospital? Looking the symptoms up on Google? Or asking for your family members for advice?
  2. You are having a philosophy final next week and you need to learn all the theories. What would you do? Highlighting key ideas in your notebook, drawing a mind map or writing down a summary of the theories you’ve learn?
  3. You are a university student major in English teaching and you want to find a part time job as an English teacher. What would you choose? Working at an English teaching center? Teaching at students’ house? Or operating your own classes?
  4. You are going to invite your friends to your birthday party, but you are wondering where to hold your party: at your house? at a restaurant? or at a karaoke?


Have fun doing homework!!!

Tutorial 6 – Speaking part 3

Hi guys,

We are Huyền and Yến, tutors of the 6th lesson about Speaking part 3 in VSTEP. In class, we have introduced to you the techniques of PRES (Point-Reason-Example-Summary) used in Part 3 speaking VSTEP. With the help of Mrs Yến, we also learned how to use other methods beside PRES to elaborate on the topic card. Since the time is limited in the face-to-face tutorial, we have not provided you with the suggested lexical terms as well as speaking sample for this part of the test. Therefore, in this post, along with the homework will be our compensation for the in-class session. We hope that this is helpful for you.


We all acknowledge that speaking itself is a “process”, which means we have to continually practice in order to see the improvement. The materials we introduce here cannot ensure you a high score within 1 or 2 weeks before the exam. Yet if you try to refer to these daily, we believe this would be of great help.

a.  The Ellen Show

Ellen is well-known for her comedy series “Ellen” and latter “The Ellen Show”, which is also globally famous.  She has a Youtube channel where she uploads short videos from her show on TV. This Youtube channel of Ellen has 15,348,620 subscribers  and  6,894,826,468 views, with a large number of videos of various kinds. 

Since the videos are short, they would not cause boredom. Instead, you can even get carried away with the various types of games and talks in the show. Thus, this channel is of authentic American English, so you can improve your accent by simply listening and mimicking. Moreover, the diversity of topics can enlarge your vocabulary in the most natural way. In this way, you can have fun learning speaking, effortlessly.

The Ellen Show

b. Web pages to improve your vocabulary

This is one of my favourite website to learn lexical items and topic-related words. There are various types to work on, tips and samples are also provided within the lesson. You may practice by speaking out the words and read out the sample. This is one of the most common ways to improve your language and pronunciation at the same time. Take your time to hit on every subject here, you’ll amaze yourselves with your improvement.

The name says it all. You are exposed to a variety of tips by native speakers, how to sound like them, how to intonate your sentence, how to say something when your mind goes blank, etc.



Sample 1: Online shopping ( PRES model)

Sample 2: Reading benefits ( Elaborate on your own idea)

Have fun learning, see ya 😀

Tutorial 6 Homework – VSTEP Speaking part 3

Hi guys,

We are Huyen and Yen. Last session in class, we introduced to you some methods to crack Part 3 Speaking in the Vstep test, which are taking notes quickly using PRES, noting down important words and adding idiomatic expressions when possible. So, we would like you to apply what you have learned into this homework of speaking. The more you practice, the better, right? 😀

These are the topics, you should choose at least 2 topics to work on. Please record your voice and send to ngochuyen7290@gmail.com before Monday 27th March.

In each topic there are suggestions on listening mateials related to the topic, you can make use of these to acquire some new vocab items and ideas. Listening is the input for speaking. Therefore, I advise you to watch these before starting to record, taking notes of words and expressions you think are applicable. Time your self when recording. Enjoy!

1. Learning foreign languages is necessary for every global citizen.
– job opportunity
– knowledge acquisition
– entertainment
– your own idea.

Why Learn a Foreign Language?
The benefits of a bilingual brain

2. Nowadays, it is advised that people should use more public transport.
– economical
– environmentally friendly
– safe
– your own idea.

Why The U.S. Has The Worst Public Transit System
IELTS Speaking Topic! How to Answer Questions About Transportation

3. Playing video games are actually of several benefits.
– Relax
– Pratice concentrating
– Inprove flexibility
– Your own idea

4 Reasons Video Games Make You Smarter
10 Surprising Health Benefits of Playing Video Games Alltime10s Alltime10sDaphne Bavelier: Your brain on video games

4. Uniform should be made compulsory in every school.
– Sense of equality
– Money saving
– Time saving
– Your own idea

Do School Uniforms Help Students Learn?
school uniforms- good or bad?

Homework for Tutorial 5

Last time, in the 5th Tutorial, we learnt about Inference questions in Vstep Listening. We introduced to you some tips to deal with this question type.

  1. Supplementary material:

As part of your request to self-learn note-taking skill, we provide you with link to download part of the book Baron’s Toefl 12th edition 2006 containing self-help for note-taking. Hopefully, you can take full use of this material to get the best score in Toefl.


2. Homework audios:

Here are some exercises for you to practise at home. During your listening, try to take note by using note-taking strategies we have learnt to answer all the questions.

(This is the audio only because the in-class handout already includes the homework).



Reference source for more practice:

Mastering skills for TOEFL iBT Advanced – Listening 2nd Edition




Homework for Tutorial 4

Hey guys and gals! Previously on our last tutorial session, we studied 3 types of inference questions (deduction, speculation and examination) and 5 tips on tackling the inference question in the VSTEP exam. In this post, we gladly present to you the follow-up session.

There are two hand-outs in this follow-up session. They include reading exercises in different genres which can be used for inference practicing. If you have any questions regarding the exercises, please do not hesitate to ask us in the next in-class session on Friday.

You can download the hand-outs by clicking the links here.




Thank you and have a good day!

Homework for Tutorial 2

There are 2 main parts in the homework:

  1. You will be provided with two books which can help you improve your comprehensive speaking skills. By using these books, you can equip yourself with a wide range of vocabulary, collocations and idioms of different topics. You should practice on one to three topics per day.
  2. You will hear questions that are typical of VSTEP Speaking Part 1. You should choose AT LEAST TWO topics, listen to each question and give your answers. Record yourself and send us so that we can check and provide appropriate comments to improve your performances.

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Homework for Tutorial 1

There are 3 main parts in the homework:

  1. You will read more about fallacies and do a practice spotting fallacies. There are two links for the reading and one link for practice.
  2. The second and third exericse is about spotting fallacies and write a counter argument. We can check your writing and provide feedbacks to improve it.For any further enquiries, please contact the tutors.

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