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Irish Oral Notes that will Help you Ace your Exam

Updated: Feb 17

The Irish oral examinations are a source of anxiety and stress for many students. People feel nervous about what topics will come up in the exam and what accent the examiner will have. However, with some clever preparation and planning, as well as some tips and tricks for success, you can get the grades you deserve on the test.

Here are some notes and pointers that can help you ace your Irish oral exams:

Immerse Yourself in the Language

The best way to get comfortable with listening to and answering in Irish is to immerse yourself in the language. The most effective way of doing this is attending the Gaeltacht or spending time in Irish-speaking regions. However, this is only practical if the money is tight enough and if the exam is next week.

In this case, you should rely on the Irish culture and language you can find on TV channels like TG4 and through online resources like Youtube. Listening to fluent Irish speakers conversing as Gaeilge can help to familiarize your ears and mind with the sounds and fluency of the Irish language.

Of course, watching TG4 alone will not get you past the exam, but it can give you the edge over other students and help you build your confidence leading up to the exam.

Dictate the Conversation

You have more control over what comes up in your Irish oral exam than pretty much any other state exams that you will sit. This is because much of the exam is conversation-based, allowing you to bring up certain topics you are comfortable with as long as you have the vocabulary to keep your examiner engaged.

During the exam, the examiner may try to steer the conversation towards certain topics or tenses to test your skills, especially if you've been talking about a certain topic for a prolonged period. This is why you should try not to stay on a single issue for too long; instead, try to steer the conversation from one topic to another topic that you are familiar with.

This reduces the risk of the examiner changing the topic to something you are uncomfortable discussing.

Keep Talking

The oral exams in Irish are a test designed to challenge a student's Irish language speaking abilities. Therefore, it makes sense to talk a lot, so you can showcase as much of your skills as possible.

The examiner will move you to another topic or question when they feel you have given an answer, so try to keep talking until they do so. This maximizes your chances of saying phrases and using grammar that will impress the examiner.

Relax and Trust Yourself

Confidence is essential whenever you speak in a language that is not your first language. So, stay calm and relaxed before the test starts, as this will only hurt your grades. Trust your preparation, stay calm in the exam, and let your skills and knowledge get you over the line and get you the grades you deserve.

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