Contents

NEW - FREE FCE VIDEO COURSE

Prepare First Certificate Online (FCE) – Introduction

Why Take The Cambridge English: First (FCE) B2 certificate?

First Certificate (FCE) Exam Format
Reading & Use of English
Speaking
Listening
Writing

Prepare First Certificate Online - Before The Exam -
Resources & Strategy

Prepare First Certificate Online - During The Exam

Prepare First Certificate Online - After The Exam

How My FCE Products Can Help You
-Free FCE Writing Critique
FREE Video Tutorials
Prepare First Certificate Online Course + Skype Lessons - £90
Prepare First Certificate Online Private Lessons - £20 per hour
Testimonials
Support My Work
Common Mistakes At FCE

Prepare First Certificate (FCE) Online – Introduction

If you want to prepare for the B2 First Certificate online, you have come to the right place! On this website you will be able to find lots of free information about the exam and the best tips and tricks to pass the exam and achieve SUCCESS! You don't need to spend lots of money taking private lessons to pass this exam. What you need is a strategy for how to approach every B2 First exam paper. When you have this strategy, you can easily prepare yourself for the B2 First Certificate in the best way possible. We have Speaking, Listening, Reading, Use of English and Writing courses which teach you this strategy with lots of examples and exam practice. But let's talk more about these courses later....first let's look at the Cambridge English: B2 First exam format and some common mistakes to avoid!

Why Take The Cambridge English: First (FCE) B2 certificate?

If you want to get into an English speaking university or get a better job, the B2 First (FCE) exam can help! If you pass this exam, you get a B2 level Cambridge English: First certificate. You can see a list of all the universities and institutions around the world which accept this course here. This certificate is proof of your language level and can really help you in life. See some of our success stories.

First Certificate (FCE) Exam Format

There are 4 main sections of the First Certificate Examination: Reading and Use of EnglishSpeaking, Listening and Writing. Our online lessons are filled with advice and practice to help you prepare for all of these aspects of the exam.

Reading & Use of English

75 minutes.

7 parts.

Parts 1-4 - Use of English

Part 1 – 8 questions - 8 marks

Part 2 – 8 questions - 8 marks

Part 3 – 8 questions - 8 marks

Part 4 – 12 marks - only 6 questions

Parts 5-7 – Reading

Part 5 – 12 marks - only 6 questions

Part 6 – 12 marks - only 6 questions

Part 7 – 10 questions - 10 marks

The Reading and Use of English section consists of 7 parts. The first 4 parts focus on grammar and vocabulary, testing your knowledge of common collocations, different word types and understanding sentence structures. While the final 3 parts focus on reading and test your comprehension and understanding of how sentences fit within larger pieces of writing. It is important to know how many marks are awarded for each section so you can plan which sections you want to complete first. If you want to learn some great tips and techniques for passing this exam paper for free, our First Use of English & Reading web page is full of advice or at the moment I have a 67% discount on my Reading and Use of English courses...

or check out our free and paid FCE lessons and courses below >>

Speaking

14 minutes.

4 parts.

The Speaking section has 4 parts. The first part is a general chat between yourself and the examiner - they typically ask questions about your family, your hobbies etc. In the second part you have to talk for one minute about the similarities and differences between two photos while answering a question about them. In the third part you have to discuss a topic with your partner(s) for 2/3 minutes and then answer a more specific question related to that topic for 1 minute (again with your partner). In the fourth part the examiner asks you and your partner more questions....generally related to the topic in part 3. To get the best tips and techniques for passing the Speaking paper buy my B2 First Speaking video course for 67% off or see our Speaking First Certificate webpage

or check out our free and paid FCE lessons and courses below >>

Listening

40 minutes.

4 parts.

Part 1 – 8 questions - 8 marks

Part 2 – 10 questions - 10 marks

Part 3 – 5 questions - 5 marks

Part 4 – 7 questions - 7 marks

The Listening section consists of 4 parts. Some test your general understanding of conversations/speeches/presentations etc. while others test your ability to find specific information. To learn more about this section of the exam and for tips and techniques for passing the Listening paper, see our Listening FCE webpage or check out my B2 First Listening video course currently at 67% off

or check out our free and paid FCE lessons and courses below >>

Writing

80 minutes.

2 parts.

The Writing section of the exam has 2 parts. The first part is a 140-190 word essay. The structure of the essay is key in passing this section of the exam. In the second part, you have 3 options from either: an article, a review, a report, an email, and you have to write 140-190 words about one of these. The writing marks are awarded on 4 criteria for both parts. These are: Content, Communicative Achievement, Organisation and Language. There is a picture of this assessment scale below from page 34 of the Cambridge English: First handbook. 1 = bad, 5 = very good.

 

Check out this page to see some more advice and FCE writing examples  or send us a writing to: questions@studentlanguages.com and we will mark it and give feedback. 


You need to show competence in all of the above areas in order to pass the exam. We offer a 12 lesson B2 First (FCE) Writing video course currently at a 67% discount to help you with tips and techniques for every section of the writing paper.

Or check out our free and paid FCE lessons and courses below >>

Prepare First Certificate Online - Before The Exam - Resources & Strategy

In this short section you will learn exactly what you need to do to prepare for First Certificate efficiently and effectively. Remember: Prior Planning Prevents Poor Performance. If you plan properly you will save time, money and get the best results in the exam. So, this is what you need to do:

  1. Get Your Resources - When preparing for this exam, you should start by getting the best resources you can. I will recommend the best materials for you as we continue through the following steps.

2. Learn an exam strategy - You need to learn the best ways to approach each part of the exam. If you can master a technique for every part of the exam the time it takes you to complete the tasks will be MASSIVELY reduced and you will hugely INCREASE your chances of success. You can find lots of these tips and techniques around this website for free. Or to learn the complete tips, techniques and practice them while listening to a native English teacher, you should join my Reading and Use of EnglishSpeaking, Listening and Writing video courses. They guide you through every part of the exam. These are the only courses I've found which explicitly shows you in a methodical way how to tackle each exam section.

3. Complete a coursebook with strategy. Use the techniques learnt from my Reading and Use of EnglishSpeaking, Listening and Writing video courses to complete a coursebook!

I recommend buying 'Ready for First'. This is a good coursebook and will focus you on the important grammar and vocabulary knowledge you need for the exam. It will give you plenty of practice for all the exam exercises. You should buy the coursebook with key (like in the picture below) so you can correct your own work.

The listening cds which accompany the coursebook are expensive and might be a bit outdated. As a cheaper alternative, you can find listening samples on youtube. Or for more practice and for listening exercises, you could also buy the workbook:

4. Use an FCE coursebook (and grammar book) to specifically target your weak areas of grammar. From my experience, students find the 'Use of English' section particularly difficult. This is where your grammar, knowledge of collocations etc. are tested. There are grammar sections in every unit of the above coursebook and there is a key at the back of the book. If you see you are weak in any areas, improve these areas of grammar by using one of the other recommended books or resources above.  This book is very good for grammar and has FCE exercises:

This book is also very good for extra grammar practice:

The British Council website is also trustworthy and full of information.

5. Complete a practice test book. By completing the first 4 steps above, you should be able to complete the tests in the following book more quickly easily. It is important to practise with real tests, so you can judge whether or not you are ready to take the exam. I recommend this book:

6. Test your speaking skills. If you are not sure if your speaking skills are good enough, complete the book a lesson form and one of our FCE teachers will tell you and give you advice.

7. Book your exam. Most of my students do the exam in Cambridge, but there are lots of test centres around the world. You can use this website to find your nearest exam centre.

8. Wait to hear a response from Cambridge about the date, time and location of your exam. Some of my students have not received exam information until only a few days or a week or two before the exam date. If you are in this situation, do not worry.

9. Before the exam day, work out how you are going to travel to the exam centre. By bus, car, train etc. If the exam starts early in the morning make sure there is public transport running at that time!

Prepare First Certificate Online - During The Exam

WRITE IN CAPITAL LETTERS or for the writing paper write in small but neat letters.

Use a pencil or a pen for the writing paper.

Always write an answer!

For more exam tips and free materials, check out our FCE EXAM PRACTICE page.

Prepare First Certificate Online - After The Exam

1. Have a beer!!! Or something else if you don't drink alcohol 😉

2. Wait 6 weeks to receive your results. Don't panic if it takes longer - this can happen!

3. When you get your results scream and shout with joy if you followed my strategy above and passed the exam!!! Or find a quiet place and cry if you didn't. Just joking ;), I really hope you pass because a B2 English qualification makes a big difference to people's lives, here are just a few examples of what students say about us. If you don't pass, it is possible to do the exam again immediately afterwards! However, the first thing I suggest is to take some time to read the strategies, tips and techniques around this website or join one of my Reading, Use of EnglishSpeaking, Listening and Writing video courses. Maybe you'll decide you need professional help, and if so, you can book a lesson with a native skype teacher, or see some of our fantastic free and paid products below.

How My FCE Products Can Help You

Do you want to pass this exam without spending lots of money on lessons?  If the answer to this question is YES then you are in the right place! You could be the next person on our list of success stories. You can take small group or individual classes with us, unlike language schools where you will be in a classroom with lots of different people. You can learn more in a few individual lessons with one of our Cambridge English teachers than in one year of generic group lessons that you will find elsewhere. There is more about our individual lessons below. But if YOU DO NOT want to pay for individual lessons, our Reading and Use of EnglishSpeaking, Listening and Writing video courses will teach you the best way to prepare and pass the B2 First Certificate exam by yourself.

Free FCE Writing Critique

Send us an FCE writing and if I have time I will mark it for you and give you feedback

Send your writing to: questions@studentlanguages.com

see some past FCE writing examples


Here is an example of one of my free FCE video lessons...

Prepare First Certificate Online Private Lessons - £30 per hour

These lessons are flexible and can focus on any part of the exam that you want. Book Lessons.

We want to make sure you get the most benefit for your money. Your contact time with the teacher is therefore extremely important and you can cover any topic you want.

Here is an example from one of my lessons with a Spanish FCE student...I was helping him work on his fluency and correcting his mistakes.

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What a good teacher! The lessons are surely fantastic!!! I did the Speaking video course and now I am training with private lessons and they are good. Antonio, Italy.

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Common Mistakes At FCE

See if you can correct the mistakes before looking at the solutions below!

Mistakes
we were like 15
to them house
you have to concentrate to what you're doing
when i'm with my own
the first 2 year
this tattoos

 

Solutions
There were 15 of us
to their house
you have to concentrate on what you're doing
when i'm on my own
the first 2 years
these tattoos

Mistakes
she don't speak more
My youngest son are studying for the exam
superior school
a neighbourhood where are lots of cinemas
we can to find the...
she is scared by the snake

 

Solutions
she doesn't speak much
My youngest son is studying for the exam
High/secondary school
a neighbourhood where there are lots of cinemas     or     a lot of cinemas
we can find the...
she is scared of snakes

Mistakes

I love the kitesurf

the goalkeeper did 2 big mistakes

she have other students

when i was driving it arrived a phone call

it's correct say he has been to X

it's very danger

there is an improved for this in Italy

some week ago my son has been in Nuremburg for visit a beer factory

the school of my son must to do marketing for this company

my friend George that live in Italy

 

Solutions

I love kitesurfing

the goalkeeper made 2 big mistakes

she has other students

when i was driving I received a phone call

it's correct to say he has been to X

it's very dangerous

This has improved in Italy - present perfect simple

some weeks ago my son went to Nuremburg to visit a beer factory

my son’s school must do marketing for this company

Don’t use ‘to’ after modal verbs: must, can, could etc.

my friend George who lives in Italy

Mistakes

When they product these elements

to participate to the backstage of a video

every shops

I was enthusiastic for the bigness

 

Solutions

When they produce these elements

to participate in the backstage of a video

every shop

Every + singular

I was enthusiastic about the size

Mistakes

sometime it’s possible to exit from the house for visit some friends

it's impossible to have less hour every day

if I born again I want to change my job

I'm looking in other company for find a new job

the major activity are related to...

for the major of people that work in software area

I want try to change

we work with other company

 

Solutions

sometimes it’s possible to leave the house to visit some friends

it's impossible to have fewer hours every day

if I was born again I would change my job = 2nd conditional - hypothetical present

If + subject + past simple…, subject + would + infinitive...

I'm looking in other companies to find a new job

Another + singular. Other + plural.

the main activities are related to...

for the majority of people that work in software areas

I want to try to change

we work with other companies

Mistakes
it is necessary use winter tyres

some years ago I know the owner

we started to do kitesurf together

you don't understand what are you looking for

 

Solutions

it is necessary to use winter tyres

Necessary to do something

some years ago I knew the owner

we started (to go) kitesurfing together

Go + sport-ing

you don't understand what you are looking for (this is not a question)

Mistakes

I want tell you

Another Russian guys visit London

she have a very small tattoo

the policeman took every children fingerprint

make you an injection

maybe we make rent this ship?

maybe we spend wedding on this ship

how many money

 

Solutions

I want to tell you

Other Russian guys will visit London

Another = singular. Other + plural

she has a very small tattoo

the policeman took every child’s fingerprint

every+singular

give you an injection

maybe we can rent this ship?

maybe we can spend our wedding on this ship

how much money

Mistakes

my father lives upstairs with her wife

for me it's an habitude to...

This piece of art it is a painting called “Les demoiselles d’Avignon”

When I was in the high school, at the art lesson

It’s a painting of Picasso, made at the beginning of the XX sec.

I like it because it’s one of the first painting who breaks the rules from the tradition of the Impressionist painters.

 

Solutions

my father lives upstairs with his wife

for me it's a habit to...

This piece of art is a painting called “Les demoiselles d’Avignon”

When I was at high school, in an art lesson

It’s a painting by Picasso, made at the beginning of the 20th century

I like it because it’s one of the first paintings which breaks the rules from the tradition of the Impressionist painters.

Mistakes

It can be complicated to do the right expression

It's long time I make bread

He prepared his flour very good

Or at lunch or at dinner

 

Solutions

-It can be complicated to find/use the right expression

It's been a long time since I made bread

He prepared his flour very well

Well = adverb. Good = adjective.

Either at lunch or at dinner

Mistakes

Yesterday I don't want to go to work

we are 6 

I don't cancel the mail - past

it's more gradual change of the temperature

the gulf current who is coming...

the grass is every time green

She is treating my teeth since 1980

we have the same age

The last time I go was...

My husband, she has all his original teeth since he was born

If I well remember

it depends from the day

 

Solutions

Yesterday I didn't want to go to work

There are 6 of us

I didn't cancel the email - past

There has been a more gradual change in temperature

the gulf current which is coming...

the grass is always green

She has been treating my teeth since 1980

we are the same age

The last time I went was...

My husband has had all his original teeth since he was born

If I remember well

it depends on the day

Mistakes

I watched 2 match

They haven't a lot of experience

if they will play with Brazil

in the whole Italy

the most good cheese

 

Solutions

I watched 2 matches

They don’t have a lot of experience

if they play against Brazil, they will not win = 1st conditional = hypothetical future

in the whole of the Italy

the best cheese

Mistakes

He promotion Daft Punk

I very like San Francisco

we been in Los Angeles 2 days

Kat, care of these plants

When Russia won Spain

I want to visit concert Eric Clapton long time

 

Solutions

He promotes Daft Punk/He is promoting Daft Punk

Promotion = noun and we need to use a verb here

I really like San Francisco

We went to Los Angeles for 2 days

Kat, take care of these plants

When Russia beat Spain

Or: when Russia won

I have wanted to go to an Eric Clapton concert for a long time

Mistakes

Yesterday I wake up at 6am

They proposed us to collaborate

There are some missing information

The methods remain into your laboratory

If you have fortuna

In the same via

Since I am young

Send the egg into the frying pan

You cook it at a slow temperature

They was boiled without...

I will search a photo

 

Solutions

Yesterday I woke up at 6am

They proposed to us to collaborate

There is some missing information

The methods remain in your laboratory

If you are lucky

In the same way

Since I was young

Put the egg in the frying pan

You cook it at a low temperature

They were boiled without...

I will search for a photo

Mistakes

the agency who is involved in drug development and registration

A friend which lives near the office

At 2 and half I’ve been into a shop

We have 32 degrees

I have done a lot of mistakes

 

Solutions

The agency which is involved in drug development and registration

A friend who lives near the office

At half past 2  I went into a shop

It is 32 degrees

I have made a lot of mistakes

Mistakes

I will no available

I am not used this kind of work

I have to decide who do what for one month

It was the first time we do this

You have to have knowledge of what people used to do

You have to do them into the same day

X is not famous as Y

He is very good in English

I didn't have a lot of time for meet my friends

I don't have visited a lot of museums of Bologna

They worked not into the house....

 

Solutions

I will not be available

I am not used to (doing) this kind of work

‘Be’ + used to verbing

I have to decide who does what for one month

It was the first time we did this

You have to do them (on) the same day

X /ex/ is not as/so famous as Y /why/ - ‘so’ only in the negative form

He is very good at English

To be good at something

I didn't have a lot of time to meet my friends

I haven’t visited a lot of museums in Bologna

They didn’t work in the house....

Mistakes

There is a different between different colleagues

With this colleague of Naples

I told to my colleague...

I took my plane for October

It will take about 130 euros to fly back from the U.K.

 

Solutions

There is a difference between different colleagues

With this colleague from Naples

I told my colleague…

Told + object. Said + to + object

I booked/bought my plane for October

It will cost about 130 euros to fly back from the U.K.

Mistakes

I’ve been only in Tate museum

She know how promote instagram account

She degree second time

 

Solutions

I’ve only been to the Tate museum

Only = adverb = adverbs go between 2 verbs in a sentence

Use ‘to’ when talking about ‘going to a place/movement’

She knows how to promote instagram accounts

To know is a stative verb. Use the present simple/past simple for stative verbs.  States/facts/stative verbs are not used in continuous tenses (‘be’ verbing). So - don’t say - ‘I am knowing/she is knowing’ because ‘know’ is a stative verb. Here are some more examples of stative verbs: ‘be’, ‘understand’ - I am understanding

She graduated for the second time a few weeks ago. 

'Graduate' is a verb and 'degree' is a noun.

Mistakes

I live until 15 years in another city

There are a lot of beautiful city

I went only in London

He has  21 years

He made a masters in Rome

Now he make a stage in xxxx

xxxx is a company that produce sport wear and sport shoes

He is at second year now

 

Solutions

I lived until I was 15 years old in another city

There are a lot of beautiful cities

I only went to London

Go + to a place

Subject + Adverb + verb...

He is 21 years  old

He did a Masters in Rome

Do + degree

Now he is doing an internship in xxxx

Present continuous (‘be’ + verbing) for actions at the moment

xxxx is a company that produce sportswear and sports shoes

He is |in his|doing his| second year now

Mistakes

I don't know how say in English

You can study informatic

I do a lot of error of grammar

You say me

There was a lot of windy

I would like to live in other city how my sister

She work for the tv

London is very different of the Italian city

More beautiful of Padua

 

Solutions

I don't know how to say xxxx in English

You can study I.T.

I make a lot of errors with grammar

You told me

Say + to someone

Tell + subject

There was a lot of wind

Y = why. Windy = adjective. Wind = noun.

I would like to live in other cities like my sister

She works for the tv

London is very different to Italian cities

More beautiful than Padua

Than = for comparisons

Mistakes

For work reason I need to participate to some meeting

It's difficult to understand what they required to me

I need to think what they are asking to me

Try to speak with all about....

I had a call with the responsible of GFT

I am responsible of global mobility in GFT

I scared that I don't understand what someone ask to me

One time of a week

I have not a book in which to study before I do the exercise

When I was in school the teacher saying before doing the exercise I need to study

It's important not only study but also speak

I’m a little bit on delay

I usually speak on the present form

I have not so many time this week to exercise and study

We are 17 of us

There is a lot place to watch

She has 3 year old

 

Solutions

For work reasons I need to participate in some meetings

Participate + in

It's difficult to understand what they require me to do

I need to think what they are asking me

Try to speak with everyone about....

I had a call with the representative of GFT

Responsible = adjective, not a noun

I am responsible for global mobility in GFT

I am scared that I won't understand what someone asks me

One time a week

I don’t have a book in which to study before I do the exercises

With a possession - in the negative form either use ‘don’t have’ or ‘haven’t got’

When I was at school the teacher said before doing the exercises I need to study

It's important not only to study but also to speak

I’m a little bit delayed

I usually speak in the present form

I don’t have so much time this week to do exercises and to study

There are 17 of us

There are a lot places to watch

She is 3 years old

Mistakes

He try to learn they language

I search the word - for the future

When he started go to the future it was the beginning of 19th Century

The book say that in the 18th century

In the book write that it's all green

When this building was create

He's not similar at these people

The book 'Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' talk about a famous doctor that become in an evil person when he drink

When he don't drink this potion

I must read other 2 books

The book use some word you don't know

 

Solutions

-He tries to learn their language

I will search for the word

When he started to go to the future it was the beginning of the 19th Century

The book says that in the 18th century

In the book it was written that it's all green

When this building was created

He's not similar to these people

The book 'Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde' talks about a famous doctor that/who becomes an evil person when he drinks

When he doesn’t/didn't drink this potion

I must read 2 other/more books

The book uses some words I don't know

Mistakes

I will pass 2 weeks in Abruzzo

In summer we go out for dinner much time than autumn or winter

They will married at 4pm

She works on the night

At the beginning she always cry when I left her

The most part of children have the same problems

Usually we do it by night before going bed

It's usually for us to read a book before going bed

She have to grow

I went in England

one of the most big of the world

The most beautiful trip that I can do in my life

 

Solutions

I will spend 2 weeks in Abruzzo

In summer we go out for dinner more often than autumn or winter

They will get married at 4pm

She works at night

At the beginning she always cried when I left her

Most children have/had the same problems

Usually we do it at night before going to bed

It's usual for us to read a book before going to bed

She has to grow

I went to England

one of the biggest in the world

The most beautiful trip that I could do in my life/that I have ever made in my life

Mistakes

How is called the people from Germany?

He decide to suicide.

I do a lot of error in grammar

I saw it a lot of times ago

 

Solutions

What are the people from Germany called?

He decides to commit suicide.

I make a lot of grammatical errors

I saw it a long time ago

Mistakes

I make lesson with you

I prefer the dinner to lunch

I will make some tour

I go in Greece

We will rent a car for run around the island

The sea is not every time clear

 

Solutions

I’m doing lessons with you/I do lessons with you

I prefer dinner to lunch

I will do/go on some tours

I (will) go to Greece

We will rent a car for travelling around the island

Preposition + verb ing

The sea is not always clear

The sea is not clear every time we visit the beach

Sempre = always

Ogni volta = every time

Mistakes

The day are beautiful

We taked the sun to get a tan

 

Solutions

The day was beautiful

We lay in the sun to get a tan

Take, took, taken

Mistakes

The temperature will slow down

From one side we have.... and from the other side...

Most of time I like simple food

It was before my 15

He liked a lot to go on the mountains for holidays

When I was young I've been in the mountains

 

Solutions

The temperature will go down

On one side we have ….. and on the other side...

Most of the time I like simple food

It was before my 15th birthday or it was before I turned 15 years old.

I learnt to drive before I turned 18.

I  learn French before I turned 6.

He really liked to go to the mountains on holidays

When I was young I went to the mountains

Mistakes

Sorry for my late

A lot of people is on vacation

A lot of call twice a day for example

You have not to buy the server

I'm not good in language

When I got some problems

My colleagues who speak English since a lot of time

 

Solutions

Sorry for my late reply (email)

Sorry I am late / Sorry for being late

A lot of people are on vacation

Person = singular. People = plural

A lot of calls, twice a day for example

You don’t have to buy the server / You haven’t got to buy the server

I'm not good at languages

good/bad at something

When I have (got) some problems

My colleagues who have spoken for a long time

Until now = present perfect tense = have + past participle

Mistakes

Otherway you have a bitter taste

Someone prefers more soft and someone a little bit hard

It don't want to paste

My colleague which is the responsible for this

Installed by a friend of us by an electrician

 

Solutions

Otherwise you have a bitter taste

Some people prefer more soft and some a little bit hard

It doesn't want to paste

My colleague who is responsible for this

Responsible = adjective

Installed by a friend of ours who is an electrician

Mistakes

Black coffee is not good for my healthy

I feel not good

When I can arrived?

I don't like to be a long time in sun

I went to beach

The sea was worried

The weather in Sochi change often

 

Solutions

Black coffee is not good for my health

Healthy = adjective. Health = noun. Running is good for my health. Running is healthy for me. Fruit is healthy.

When can I arrive? or when did you arrive?

I don't like to be in the sun for  a long time

I went to the beach

The sea was frightening. I was frightened by the sea.

Adjective with -ed is how something/somebody feels.

E.g. I am worried.

Adjective with -ing - this describes the thing CREATING the feeling

The sea was scary.

The film was boring, I am bored by the film.

This book is interesting.

I am interested by the book.

The weather in Sochi changes often

Mistakes

I start at 7.30am until 9am (for the past)

To take my son in the airport

During the summer it's too much hot

It's not too breeze at our beach

 

Solutions

I started at 7.30am until 9am (past)

To take my son to the airport

Take someone to + place

I accompanied him to the airport

During the summer it's too hot

There isn’t too much of a breeze at our beach

It isn’t too breezy at our beach

Our beach isn’t to breezy

Breeze = noun. Breezy = adjective.

Mistakes

I just returned to home

I had some call with some colleague in the US

Another colleagues from Israel

I know I have to make a lot of exercise

I tried to watch some films to Netflix

Addicted about 'Breaking Bad'

How long was the travel?

I flow in Palermo

I enjoyed it very well

Some friends of hims

I prefer to not visit other place

It's rich of history

A lot of structures that was built in the Baroque style

You have not to buy nothing

It's tough to me to understand well

I don't remember what I saying

 

Solutions

I just returned home

I had some calls with some colleagues in the US

Another colleague from Israel

Another + singular

Other + plural

I know I have to do a lot of exercises

I tried to watch some films on Netflix

Addicted to 'Breaking Bad'

How long was the trip?

I  flew to Palermo

Fly, flew, flown

I enjoyed it very much

Very much = a lot

Some friends of his

I prefer not to visit other places

It's rich in history

A lot of structures that were built in the Baroque style

You don’t have to buy anything

It's tough for me to understand well

tough/difficult for me to...

I don't remember what I was saying

Mistakes

We are near of the Adriatic Sea

When I will return in office

When I was 25 years

 

Solutions

We are near to the Adriatic Sea

When I return to the office

When I was 25 years old

Mistakes

Light comes on the window

Until last week it isn’t a problem

This path finish to a place where the people make the cheese

1225m over sea level

I began to ate fish

The most Italians are on holiday

 

Solutions

Light comes through the window

Until last week it hadn’t been a problem

This path finishes at a place where people make cheese

1225m above sea level

I began to eat fish

Most Italians are on holiday

Mistakes

My grandmother has a house on the mountains

My husband works today

On July

We think on this (past)

When we go in my grandmother's house

 

Solutions

My grandmother has a house in the mountains

My husband is working today

In July

We thought about this (past)

When we go to my grandmother's house

Mistakes

I leave work at 10 to 6 today

I make an example

I prefer to back home

This is a think that I don't use it before

We meet specialist who come from other country

When I was manager

They liked me very well

It was a very challenge situation

 

Solutions

I left work at 10 to 6 today

I’ll give you an example

I prefer to go/come back home

This is a thing that I haven’t used before

Present perfect = until now

We met a specialist who came from another country

When I was a manager

When I was a boy, when I watched a film

They liked me very much

It was a very challenging situation

Mistakes

I thinking about cat

When I started learn English

 

Solutions

I am thinking about a cat or I am thinking about cats

When I started learning English or when I started to learn English

Mistakes

Now I see the name on the internet

it's more easy go by car respect the public transport

My dad it's a plumber

She must return at home

A job similar at my sister

The last time I seen my sister

She will go in India

I have learn system of conversions

 

Solutions

Now I will look for the name on the internet

it's easier to go by car rather than public transport

My dad is a plumber

She must return home

A job similar to the job of my sister

The last time I saw my sister

She will go to India

I have learnt a system of conversions

Mistakes

I phoned to my Italian contact

I was discuss with them that they can do directly research with us

In this case I will speaking in French

They not have decided until now

 

Solutions

I phoned my Italian contact

To phone somebody

I was discussing with them if that they can do research directly with us

In this case I will speak in French

Future continuous = use when you’re talking about something in the future that will have started before a time and will be continuing.

This time next week, I will be flying to Bordeaux.

They have not decided until now

Mistakes

You can make nice walking around Moscow by boat

In xxx teenager usually have bog coats

I make copy of the picture

Every carriage has tv

 

Solutions

You can have a nice trip around Moscow by boat

In xxx teenagers usually have big coats

I will copy the picture

Copy = verb

Every carriage has a tv

Mistakes

We have been there 2 years ago

I search in internet

I have a friend which is very kind

A place into nowhere, in the deep France

It is by far much better

You can't do what you have done in your youngest

We drink coffee in the whole Italy

Perhaps people was convinced not to drink

 

Solutions

We were there 2 years ago

I search for information on the internet

I have a friend who is very kind

A place in the middle of nowhere

It is much better

You can't do what you have done in your youth

We drink coffee in the whole of Italy

Perhaps people were convinced not to drink

Mistakes

The views is not nice
It wasn’t a very city with building, square
There were 2 little city
There it’s possible eating meat
Not too much English people
I hasn’t time to go cycling

 

Solutions

The view is not nice or the views are not nice

It wasn’t a city with lots of buildings, squares

There were 2 little cities

There it’s possible to eat meat

(im)Possible + to do something

Not too many English people

Much + uncountable nouns. Many + countable plural nouns.

I didn’t have time to go cycling

Mistakes

I just leave out my socks

I can hear just few

You colleagues who could be 3 or 4 metres apart of you

My colleagues is very polite

What a shame company

When this guy know that I leave the company

an heist

I was an eager reader about Stephen King

I was addicted about football

 

Solutions

I just took off/removed my socks

I can hear just a little bit or I can’t hear very well or I am a bit deaf

Your colleagues (who) could be 3 or 4 metres away from you

My colleagues are very polite

What a shameful company

Shame = noun. Shameful = adjective. Shamefully = adverb.

When this guy knew/found out that I was leaving the company

a heist

If you hear the ‘h’ then don’t use ‘an’ but if the ‘h’ silent, use ‘an’

I was an eager reader of Stephen King

I was addicted to football

Mistakes

I hasn't able to talk with her

She's responsible of control

A few year ago

 

Solutions

I wasn't able to talk with her

She's responsible for controlling

Responsible for something

A few years ago

Mistakes

Techniques that you use for remember

There are a method called Lochi

Lochi was invented of Chichirone

He imaginated a road

When he must talk in the parliament of Rome

If you want remember a big number

The word hello can you convert in number

This method can you use for a big number

In this course I have learn

This method is used for remember...

 

Solutions

Techniques you use to remember

There is a method called Loci

Loci invented Cicerone

He imagined a road

When he had to talk in parliament in Rome

If you want to remember a big number

You can convert the word hello to a number

You can use this method for a big number

In this course I have learnt

This method is used to remember/for remembering...

Preposition + verbing

Mistakes

Today has come up just an opportunity

the last years

I tell the true

I can get a decision

I am the kind of person that strongly believe that you....

In a place such Malaga

A lot of year ago

The people is very good

 

Solutions

An opportunity has just come up today

last year / the last few years

I tell the truth

True = adjective. Truth = noun

I can make a decision

I am the kind of person that strongly believes that you....

In a place such as/like Malaga

Many years ago

(the) People are very good

Mistakes

All the people was friendly

The young man don't wanted to return home

The heart is increased

They are very complicate animal

They have problems withe their legs

Horses fur grow and they are protected

I had problems to find it even in...

 

Solutions

All the people were friendly

The young man didn't want to return home

The heart rate is increased

They are very complicated animal

They have problems with their legs

Horses fur grows and they are protected

I had problems finding it even in...

Mistakes

representated

On the right there are  the moon

I visited Egypt a lot of time ago

 

Solutions

 

Mistakes 

Sunday we come back

He come back to her home

into the wood there is a good restaurant

I went not with professional bicycle

Both exams was

Solutions

We came back on Sunday

He went back to his home

In the wood there is a good restaurant

I didn’t go by professional bicycle

Both exams were

The carton raw materials have increased a lot

Mistakes

I tend to not to dream

a 2 hours call with colleagues

He lives there from 3 years

 

Solutions

I tend not to dream

a two-hour call with colleagues

A three-day holiday

He has lived there for 3 years

Mistakes

I prefer make another faculty at university

I am interested for this method

I want ask you

From begin to now

A lot of people tell that English is a simple language

 

Solutions

I would have preferred to join another faculty at university (hypothetical past)

I am interested in this subject

Interested + in

I want to ask you or I would like to ask you

Want + to, would like + to

From the      start/beginning      to now

A lot of people tell me that English is a simple language or a lot of people say that English is a simple language

People = plural

Tell + object

Mistakes

Other my colleague from my office and I go to lunch together

My daughter is going to make a lot of things for her travel to Japan

I can eat fruit all time

If I very want to eat

We go to many restaurants which near my office

 

Solutions

Other colleagues from my office and I go to lunch together

My daughter is going to prepare a lot of things for her trip to Japan

Travel = verb. Trip = noun.

I can eat fruit all the time

If I really want to eat 

We go to many restaurants which are near my office

Mistakes

I'm not able to ride with the bicycle

To keep the equilibrium on my bicycle

I made my homework

I used to understand her and now I don’t = I didn't understand her more.

I didn't understand her clearly = I didn't understand her more.

I will ask her to say everything very slow

I have a lot of iron into the walls

 

Solutions

I'm not able to ride the bicycle

To keep my balance on my bicycle

I did my homework

I I didn't understand her clearly used to understand her and now I don’t = I don't understand her anymore

I didn't understand her clearly = I didn’t understand her much

I will ask her to say everything very slowly

I have a lot of iron in the walls

 

Mistakes

I had no reason to woke up

I'm realised that I need

Mainly for foreigners who is not native speakers

The last interview I got with a lady from...

I have saw

Sometimes no word come up

You tend to up your volume

I have 5 or 6 hour free

 

Solutions

I had no reason to wake up

Had to + present simple = past

I (have) realised that I need

Mainly for foreigners who are not native speakers

The last interview I had with a lady from...

I have seen

Sometimes no words come up

You tend to increase your volume

I have 5 or 6 hours free

Mistakes

I went to beach

The beach is full - in the past

It is an hotel with a restaurant

One person took spaghetti

They will married in ...

Maria have a sister

 

Solutions

I went to the beach

The beach was full - in the past

It is a hotel with a restaurant

One person ate/had spaghetti

They will get married in ...

Maria has a sister

 

Mistakes

She very few times spend at home

I'm not used to go to Milan

apart of that I jump into another meeting

If you can't executre nothing

It gives me an hope

We come across each other without to say hello

She said me that she left her job

 

Solutions

She spends very little time at home

I'm not used to going to Milan

‘Be’/’get’ used to + verbing

I don’t usually go to Milan

I didn’t use to go to Milan

apart from that I jumped into another meeting

If you can't execute anything

It gives me hope

We come across each other without saying hello

Preposition + verbing

She told me that she left her job or she said to me…

 

Mistakes

We went in mountain to visit my grandmother

It’s difficult to take part on all of this

And follow all the step these activities need

My responsible Silvia will…

We will done all the activities - future

Employee information which we have not

An hotel

 

Solutions

We went to the mountains to visit my grandmother

It’s difficult to take part in all of these activities or It’s difficult to take part in every activity

And follow all the steps these activities need

My manager Silvia will…

We will do all the activities - future

Employee information which we (still) don’t have in our system

A hotel

 

Mistakes

He been in London

It’s warm - past

It’s happened when I...

Sailing is not a relaxed sport

She very happy

One teacher’s name Paris

Evgenia feel very comfortable

In evening and  in winter

 

Solutions

He was in London - past simple

It was warm - past

It happened when I...

Sailing is not a relaxing sport

Sailing doesn’t make me feel relaxed

Adjectives ending -ing describe the thing that creates a feeling

Adjectives ending -ed describe your feeling

This film is boring. This film makes me feel bored.

She is very happy

One teacher’s name is Paris

Evgenia feels very comfortable

In the evenings and in winter

Mistakes

in 2014 the company was buy by XXX
the companies fusion
I am scared about loss words
the words does not come to my mouth
in order to don't forget
nobody can believe about that

 

Solutions

in 2014 the company was bought by XXX

the companies merge

I am scared about forgetting words

the words do not come to my mouth

in order not to forget

nobody can believe in that

Mistakes

She live in a mini student town
My daughter goes by bus from Tokyo's aeroport
They are don't afraid of people
Only in forest
They are afraid people
They are no friendly
It is no good idea
He dreams to be famous football player
He don't understand us
He is not enough healthy

 

Solutions

She is living in a mini student town

My daughter goes by bus from Tokyo's airport

They aren't afraid of people

Only in forests

They are afraid of people

They are not friendly

It is not a good idea

He dreams of being a famous football player

Preposition + verbing

He doesn't understand us

He is not enough healthy

 

Mistakes

It's surprise for these people

We lived in a hotel

We ate more French Fries

She more likes swimming pool in the hotel (past)

The next day morning (in the past)

I'm really like this attraction because you down on water

Evgenia very scary this attraction

Last Monday we are dancing

Milk not healthy for stomach

When I stopped drink milk

 

Solutions

It's surprising for these people

We stayed in a hotel

We ate many/a lot of French Fries

She liked the swimming pool in the hotel a lot

The following morning (in the past) or the morning after

I really like this attraction because you go/are down underwater

Evgenia was very scared of this attraction

Last Monday we were dancing

Milk is not healthy for the stomach

When I stopped drinking milk

stop + verbing = something you stopped doing in the past

 

Mistakes

We have many people who want to come in Italy
I'm working with another colleagues
We have many deadline to attend
I do many lists of activities
You can't certificate the purity of the water
At the moment we are looking different cartoons
Every children can read some words

 

Solutions

We have many people who want to come to Italy

I'm working with another colleague

We have many deadlines to attend (meet)

I make many lists of activities

You can't certify  the purity of the water

At the moment we are watching different cartoons

Every child can read some words

 

Mistakes

Every day there is sunny

It is more hot than usually for the season

I’m born in XXX

I went in XXX

I travel around XXX

The transport is well organised than in Genoa

The last time I trip around

I don't remember how to call name

I met more time ago

I saw from the coast

I stayed in the aquarium in Valencia

Solutions

Every day there is sun in XXX or Every day it is sunny in XXX

It is hotter than usual for the season

I was born in XXX

I went to Spain

I travelled around XXX

The last time I travelled around

The transport is better organised than in XXX

The last time I travelled around

I don't remember how to say...

I met her a long time ago - you need to say the object

I saw sharks from the coast - you need to say the object

I visited the aquarium in Valencia

 

Mistakes

Nobody doesn’t understand the problem

It’s enough good

I live 25 km near to Florence

He made me x-ray

From where the problem born

There are many peoples that go in his study

I live in a little country called xxx

I visit 6 years ago this stadium

There are many room of history of Real Madrid

Yesterday I went in Florence to see play Florence against Cagliari

I born in xxx

The important was to found work

We have more and more business meet with people that come from Spanish

I decided to don't accept

I'm not concentrate with the sound

It started like a very little company

 

Solutions

Nobody understands the problem

It’s good enough

I live 25 km from Florence

He took an x-ray of me/my mouth

From where the problem is born

There are many people that join his classes/practice

I live in a little city called XXX

I visited this stadium 6 years ago

There are many rooms about the history of Real Madrid

Yesterday I went to Florence to see/watch Florence (play) against Cagliari

Go + to a place

I was born in xxx

The important thing was to find work

We have more and more business meetings with people that come from Spain

I decided not to accept

I don’t concentrate on the sound

I’m concentrating on my work. ‘Concentrate’ collocates with ‘on’.

It started as a very little company

Like = similar to

 

Mistakes

The captain that guide the ship are me

He cook for the family

He love cook

It's a form of relax himself

My husband buy the products to the supermarket

Lots of video in which she see lots of children...

She can listen music...

He have to save the world

 

Solutions

The captain that guides the ship is me

He cooks for the family

He loves cooking

It's a way to relax himself

My husband buys the products at/from the supermarket

Lots of videos in which she sees a lot of children…

Lots of or a lot of

She can listen to music...

He has to save the world

 

Mistakes

Every part of the world have different days

The people was amazed that he wasn't dead

Rasputin don't dead and arrive in the exit and people shoot it twice

I went in the Egypt

I went in other part for example Thailand

 

Solutions

Every part of the world has different days

The people were amazed that he wasn't dead

Rasputin wasn't dead and he arrived at the exit and people shot him  twice

I went to Egypt

I went to other parts for example Thailand

 

Mistakes

2 people want to wedding

I don’t know explain

When this 2 people want married meet

The person don't want they married

He died for ill

 

Solutions

2 people want to get married

I don’t know how i can explain

When these 2 people want to get married  meet

Want is always followed by ‘to’

‘These’ is plural. ‘This’ is singular:

The person doesn’t want them to get married

He died because he was ill

 

Mistakes

He search for find his friend

This person say at the main character

A lot of times ago

At finish the book the main character adopted the son of his friend died

This kite have a rope very thin

 

Solutions

He searched/searches to find his friend

This person said to the main character

A long time ago

At the end of the book the main character adopted the son of his friend who died

Adopt something from someone who did something

This kite has a very thin rope

 

Mistakes

He decided to sell him flat

In Germany I want to say food is very expensive

You want buy every month

We have problem because our economic not good

When I wanted to buy flat

My fly tomorrow will be at 3pm

In Friday evening

All our colleagues will be on the exhibition

 

Solutions

He decided to sell his flat

I want to say food is very expensive In Germany.

You want to buy every month

We have problems because our economic situation is not good.

When I wanted to buy a flat

My flight will be at 3pm tomorrow

Fly = verb. Flight = noun. My + noun.

On Friday evening

All our colleagues will be at the exhibition

 

 

Mistakes - Piece of writing

You can make marmalade with many fruits, usually the choice depends on the sudden availability during the summer season. What is important is that you have to use only ripe fruit, so is someone gives you unripe fruits wait until they are ready for doing marmalade.

Wash the fruits with water, then let them dry on a towel. To the fruits add a lemon and a couple of apples per about 2 kilograms of fruit. Cut the fruits in pieces, remove the core and the seeds of the fruits, but leave the peel, which is very important because it contains the pectine, the compound that make thick the marmalade. With the lemon, you can cut the whole fruit in small pieces or use only the grated peel and the juice: it depends on if you like or not the pieces of peel in the finished marmalade.

Weigh the clean fruits and add sugar in the proportion you prefer, but not lower than 500 g per kilogram; I usually use from 600 to 700 g per kilograms.

Start cooking at low temperature with a covered pot. When the marmalade has became liquid, cut the pieces with a mixer: this helps you to reduce the cooking time.

Continue cooking and mix often with a spoon, with uncovered pot. Cooking takes about one hour. To control if the marmalade is cooked, put a little on a saucer and put it in the freezer for some minutes. 

 

Solutions

You can make marmalade with many fruits, usually the choice depends on the sudden availability during the summer season. What is important is that you have to use ripe fruit only, so if someone gives you unripe fruits wait until they are ready for the marmalade.

Wash the fruits with water, then let them dry on a towel. Add a lemon and a couple of apples to about 2 kilograms of fruit. Cut the fruits in pieces, remove the core and the seeds of the fruits, but leave the peel, which is very important because it contains the pectine, the compound that makes the marmalade thick. With the lemon, you can cut the whole fruit in small pieces or use only the grated peel and the juice: it depends on if you like the pieces of peel in the finished marmalade or not.

Weigh the clean fruits and add sugar in the proportion you prefer, but not lower than 500 g per kilogram; I usually use from 600 to 700 g per kilogram.

Start cooking the marmalade at a low temperature in a covered pot. When the marmalade has become liquid, cut the pieces with a mixer: this helps you to reduce the cooking time.

Continue cooking the marmalade and mix it often with a spoon, in an uncovered pot. Cooking takes about one hour. To see if the marmalade is cooked, put a little on a saucer and put it in the freezer for 5 or 6 minutes until it becomes cold.

 

Mistakes

My hobby at the moment is gardening. When I was young, I liked reading and I was very happy every time I could read a new book. Then, when I started working at the university, reading and writing became my work and after some year I almost stopped reading for fun. For about 10 years I enjoyed gymnastics indoor but, when we bought the first house in the country, I started gardening and now is my main hobby.

I like studying to choose trees, shrubs and flowers, buy them and finally plant them in my garden. When we bought this house where I live now, there really wasn’t a garden, just a piece of bare soil without trees. Starting from 2011, we have raised a hedge composed of mixed shrubs, and planted 17 trees, together with  a lot of flowers, mainly roses. We also have built two pergolas, one with 8 vine plants, half with red grapes and half with white grapes, and the other with two kiwi plants.

The soil of my garden is very rich of clay and alkaline, so I have a lot of problems in growing plants, because they don’t have enough air available at the roots. In return, they usually don’t suffer scarce water during the summer, because the soil of the garden retains a lot water.

 

Solutions

My hobby at the moment is gardening. When I was young, I liked reading and I was very happy every time I could read a new book. Then, when I started working at university, reading and writing became my work and after some years I almost stopped reading for fun. For about 10 years I enjoyed gymnastics indoors but, when we bought our first house in the country, I started gardening and now this is my main hobby.

I like studying to choose which trees, shrubs and flowers are the best for my garden. I like to buy them and finally plant them in my garden. When we bought this house where I live now, there wasn’t a garden, just some bare soil without trees. Starting from 2011, we have raised a hedge composed of mixed shrubs, and planted 17 trees, together with  a lot of flowers, mainly roses. We have also built two pergolas, one with 8 vine plants, half with red grapes and half with white grapes, and the other with two kiwi plants.

The soil of my garden is very rich in clay and it is alkaline, so I have a lot of problems growing plants, because they don’t have enough air available at their roots. In return, they usually don’t suffer scarce water during the summer, because the soil of the garden retains water a lot.

 

Check out this page for loads of articles based around common mistakes students make during the FCE exam.