Students who come to Ireland to learn English tend to improve their listening and speaking the most. Certainly developing everyday conversation and fluency skills are the main focus of most of our General English Fluency classes.
Students in Dublin also encounter English everywhere they turn and so your reading will usually improve quickly too. It is, then, writing, that often receives least while studying here just because students tend to be focussed on using the other skills to live and enjoy life in the city. It’s not always easy to get enough real practice activities outside class.
Here at Atlas, though, we provide our students with regular scheduled writing classes and lots of support to really encourage you to write more outside the class. You can find useful tips on how to improve your writing in our blog posts on the Cambridge PET, FCE and CAE writing exams. Many students appreciate that with improved writing comes improved accuracy and they are looking for extra help and feedback on their writing.
A really useful website that students can use to improve their writing alone is Cambridge’s Write and Improve.com.
What is ‘Write and Improve’?
This is a really useful website that can give you instant feedback on your writing.
It is run by Cambridge so it can be especially useful for those who are preparing for any of the Cambridge exams, whether it be the KET, PET, First, Advanced or even the CPE. Most of the tasks are typical questions taken from the Cambridge exams.
How does it work?
Once you get to the main page you can choose from 3 levels: Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced. You can click to open any of these options and will then have plenty of tasks to start practising your writing.
Inside each level, you are given a text box to write your answer in. Once you have written a certain number of words, you can check the answer and will receive feedback immediately.
The feedback will use certain colours and codes for you to see your errors.
What are the disadvantages?
With each writing you do, it tells you what level you are. We would tell our students to ignore this as it does not reliably reflect your true level. Another disadvantage is that it tells you what’s wrong but sometimes it does not give you the solution. It really is a very useful tool for self-directed study and improving your writing, but this incomplete feedback is its major drawback. It just can’t compete with a real teacher and the learning that comes with fuller feedback.
Who is it for?
It’s for everybody. Especially people preparing for the Cambridge exams.
Is there an app?
No, but it is very tablet- and mobile-friendly.
Do I need to pay?
Not at all.
Do I need to login?
You don’t, but we recommend that you do. By doing this, you can save your work and progress. You can also easily login with your facebook account as well.
What are other features?
There is a feature where you can create a workbook. In a workbook you can create your own tasks and share them with friends.
Give it a go!
To get started, why not try these introductory tasks. Get creating! Get exploring!
Task 1 – Go to the website and sign up to Write and Improve.
Task 2 – Write one of the tasks at your level.
Task 3 – Try to work out the solutions to your errors.
Task 4 – Start a workbook, create a task and then invite your friends to get involved. Try it and make writing fun.
Other great learning tools are:
- Online vocabulary learning tool ‘Quizlet’
- Writing app ‘Grammarly’
- Online English Video Lessons with … engVid
- Practisicing Listening with Podcasts
- Writing app ‘Grammarly’