Learning collocations makes our communication more vibrant and descriptive. It enlivens it. Let’s have a look at 6 adjectives that collocate with the word effect.


Calming effect

“At the end of a stressful week,

the absolute silence in the snowed forest

had a calming effect on her.”

(also soothing effect)



If you found your way to this post, you must be an advanced student and quite likely, also a candidate for Cambridge C1 Advanced. In that case, you might as well be familiar with the information I am going to share here. Having said that, you can still use this post as a tool to help you revise and rethink what a proposal is all about. Continue reading “CAMBRIDGE C1 ADVANCED (CAE) PROPOSAL – TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE”

Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) Essay (Mini-series Part 3) – Final tips

Take every essay assignment as a golden opportunity to start training for exam day

I have hardly seen any students rejoice at the idea of writing an essay task for homework but here is the key to achieving that level of confidence you are aiming at. If you are consistent in dedicating time to writing periodically before exam day, you will get there with, admittedly, considerable effort, but also with the guarantee that the essay will not be a problem for you. Continue reading “Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) Essay (Mini-series Part 3) – Final tips”

Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) Essay (Mini-series Part 2) – Writing Stage

This is the second part of a CAE Essay writing mini-series of blog posts. Click here for part 1

Let’s begin by taking a step into the future. To make sure your essay is up to the mark, you should be able to answer with a “yes” to the following questions once you have finished your writing:

  1. CONTENT:  Did I cover all the points?
  2. COMMUNICATIVE ACHIEVEMENT: Did I use the right register and develop the points effectively?
  3. ORGANISATION: Are my ideas organised into a suitable layout?
  4. LANGUAGE: Did I make use of advanced grammar structures and appropriate connectors?

Continue reading “Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) Essay (Mini-series Part 2) – Writing Stage”

Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) Essay (Mini-series Part 1) – Getting started

There is no choice here. If you take the CAE -C1 Advanced, the essay is mandatory. 

It is, therefore, crucial to be prepared and well-informed about what is expected of you. Daunting as it may seem at first, breaking it down into smaller tasks will help you get the hang of it. Let’s give some thought to what to do before you start writing. This simple action will guide you through and help you elaborate a successful piece of writing. 

Continue reading “Cambridge C1 Advanced (CAE) Essay (Mini-series Part 1) – Getting started”

Self-study for speaking tests: 4 steps that will raise your game

Speaking exams are tough but with the right preparation and mindset, you can step into the examination hall with a good dose of self-confidence in your abilities and a feeling of being in control of the situation rather than overwhelmed by it.

Keep reading for some ideas to help you build confidence and take away some of the anxiety so that you can perform better on exam day.


Continue reading “Self-study for speaking tests: 4 steps that will raise your game”

Phrasal Verbs and Register: Formal

There is a widely-held belief that phrasal verbs in English are informal and will be frowned upon in academic writing such as the essay, the formal letter, or the report tasks in the CAE.

While there is an element of truth in that,  there are indeed certain phrasal verbs, formal ones that is, which are not only acceptable but will also enhance your writing and show mastery of the language.

Continue reading “Phrasal Verbs and Register: Formal”

6 phrasal verbs to speak about yourself

6 phrasal verbs to speak about yourself that will enhance your Speaking (Part 1) in the CAE exam.


The way you are seen by people, the impression you give.

You come across as a friendly/funny/serious/fussy … person, based on what you project to others.

“I would like to come across as a person who knows how to listen.” Continue reading “6 phrasal verbs to speak about yourself”