Vocabulary and questions EU Intermediate (III)
News and media
High-quality news, nature / sports / cookery programmes, popular / reality shows, dramas, cartoons, series, detectives, thrillers, comedies, horrors, music channels
adverts (ads) − advertisements, the Internet, magazines, reference books, encyclopedias
(un)reliable facts, (in)accurate information, a dangerous website, up-to-date, free, trust
scandals, fake, made-up facts
Habits and preferences
I’m a big fan of…, I’m really into…, I prefer…to…, I’d rather…
I’m not a big fan of…, I can’t stand…, I’m not keen on…, I find… really irritating
I hardly ever…, I tend to…, I’ll…, I used to…
It’s a good / bad / popular / great / terrible / different place / time / way / idea TO DO smth….
a really good idea / quite a good idea
Describing books and TV shows
It’s by someone called…, It’s quite a well-known…, It’s about this… who…, People say it’s…, I found it…, It’s based on…, It has… in it, It looks at…, It’s a really…, Basically, it shows you…
What types of media are popular where you live?
What media do we get news from?
What mass medium is the most efficient (the fastest and the most reliable)?
How do you prefer to get the news? Why?
What kind of TV or radio programmes do you enjoy?
Are there any international channels or programmes that you watch?
Have your habits changed in the last 5 years?
Why is advertising so annoying? Can media do without them? What is their positive side?
Which of these do you use if you need to get information or write a report: the Internet, reference books, encyclopedias? Why?
Can we believe what we read on the Internet?
Have you seen any good films recently? / Have you read any good books recently?
Ways of communication
Totally addicted, to make friends, to be / to be back / to keep in touch / in contact with, to check profiles, to keep up with, to mess around with, to check emails, to ping, to ban, stuff, a huge waste of time
to chat to, to surf the Internet, to post a comment, to have a blog or web page, to socialise online
social networking site, search engine
at the click of a mouse, Internet generation, everyone is equal, lasting relationships, an unrealistic view of the world, an efficient way of communicating, Intranet
I'd say, I reckon, They say, Some people say, There's no point in, There's no harm in
How do you keep in touch with your family and friends?
How often do you use your mobile?
What are the advantages of using a mobile?
Do you agree that texting is making our spelling worse?
How much time do you spend online? Which sites do you use most?
Do you have a blog or a web page? Do you ever read other people's pages?
Do you ever post a comment after you've watched a video or read a blog online?
What search engine do you use to look for information and why?
Do you enjoy socialising online?
What are the disadvantages and benefits of using the Internet to socialise?
How did you meet your closest friends?
How important are online relationships?
Do you think we should ban the Internet at work or university?
Is it a good idea for children to use the Internet for homework?
How do you think people will communicate in the future?
Life story (story of success)
To invent, to come up with an idea, to patent (patent office), opportunity, to give a performance, inspired by, success / successful, influential people, to change completely, to make a living doing smth., to be excited about smth., to be worried about smth., a venture, to bring ideas to life
Intelligence, intelligent, to do smth. physically, to act / perform, to co-operate, to work as a part of the group, to communicate effectively, typical introvert / extrovert, goal, ambition, motivation,
to concentrate on a subject, to memorise, a high level of, to compose music
to be good at, to able to, to be capable of, to have a facility with, to excel at, to have the ability to,
to have a good visual memory / sense of direction / hand-eye coordination
What great inventors do you know?
What does an invention need to become successful?
Do you have any dreams or ambitions?
How can you become successful?
What intelligences do you think you have?
Would you say you are a competitive person?
Do you think it’s ok to bend the rules to win something?
Are you comfortable talking about your achievements?
What are your strengths and weaknesses?
What experience of dealing with people do you have?
What qualifications or skills do you need for your future job?
Is it possible to become an entrepreneur in Russia?
What do you need to start you own business?
What spheres are popular for small business in Russia?
Do you have any selling ideas?
to take risks, an accident, accident-prone, cautious,to knock things over, to trip over, to drop, to cut yourself, to slip, to fall (over), to break a wrist, an arm or a leg, to bang your head (on smth.)
a flood, a hurricane, an eclipse, a tsunami, the northern lights, an earthquake, a forest fire, a volcanic eruption
Telling a story
Immediately, suddenly, slowly, quickly
Obviously, unfortunately, amazingly, luckily
to find out, to realize, to remember, to know
Do you take a lot of risks?
Do risky people tend to have more accidents?
Why are some people accident-prone?
In what situations are you extremely cautious?
When was the last time you had an accident? What happened?
Have any of the natural disasters taken place in your country recently?
Does your country often experience forest fires? How do people cope with that?
Where can you watch the northern lights?
Have you ever seen an eclipse?
Describe an experience: either an accident or a natural event you have experienced. Think about how to:
explain the background to the story I was living in…
explain what you were doing I was on the way to…
describe the events I went to… I saw…
say how you felt about the experience amazingly… luckily…
explain your understanding of the events Later, I realized… I didn’t know…
Unit 5 (not an exam card)
A change of plan
lock yourself out, lose your car / flat keys, get on a wrong bus or train, the battery is running out, the car won’t start, have an emergency at work
pick up smb. / take smb. to
there’s / was no chance, there’s / was no way, it’s no coincidence, it’s no surprise, it’s / was no use
I am / was supposed to do / be doing smth., I am / was meant to do / be doing smth.
How often do you help people?
What things do you usually help people with?
Is it ok to help people with money?
If you don’t like someone, do you help them?
Is it hard for you to say ‘no’?
Have you ever had a situation when you needed help? What was it like?
Do you believe in fate?
Do you think good luck is important when doing something?
Do you try to control your life?
What things do you leave to chance?
Can you give an example of a surprising coincidence?
Have you been to a reunion party? What was it like?
Do you often see your ex-classmates?
What do you usually talk about when you meet up with people you haven’t seen for long?
Dealing with money
survive on, look out for bargains, give up a mobile / the Internet, save up (for smth.) keep to one’s budget, to go over your budget
because, since.. (так как), as, because of, due to, so (следовательно, поэтому), so that (так чтобы),
it’s important to, it’s difficult to, it’s a bad idea to, it’s easy to
try and avoid, have you tried?, you should think about, have you considered?
Do you earn money?
What do you usually spend money on?
Are you good with money?
Is it easy for you to save money?
Do you ever waste money?
Have you ever saved money to buy a gift for someone special?
Do you find it difficult to keep to a budget?
Do you ever look out for bargains? Where?
Have you ever given up something you enjoyed in order to save money?
What tips / advice can you give to save money?
Why is it important to have your own money (e.g. in a family)?
Why is it important to manage money in the right way?
Do you apporove of gambling?
Why do they say, money is not everything?
People around you
Personal qualities / personality
to have faith in, to have discipline, to have some talent, to have initiative, to have an open mind, to have confidence, competition, motivation, to be pushed by somebody, to be able to take rejection,
to have some luck, never give up, to keep going
a difficult / great / miserable character, a / an strange / interesting / calm person, a bright / nice / charming guy / woman
Dealing with someone’s influence
Made a huge impression on me, got me interested, helped me to be, made me much more confident, encouraged me to, had faith in me, inspired me to
What are your good and bad qualities?
What are you generally good / bad at?
What is your lifestyle? What is an ideal night out for you?
What is the most surprising thing that has ever happened to you?
What is the best age to be and why?
What do you do in weak moments?
What is important when you fail at something?
What would you have been in another life?
What is your philosophy?
What qualities do you need for your future profession?
Do you agree that parents should push their children to be successful?
What are the key things for success?
Choose a friend or a family member. In what ways are you similar and different? How have you both changed over the years?
Talk about a person / people who have influenced your life. Think about their personality and how they have changed you.
Things around you
clutter, rubbish, stuff, possessions
to drown in, to clear out, to tidy up, to put things away, to clean up, to throw away, to give away,
to get rid of, to take over, gradually, a huge source of stress
they may have a point, the idea of… is ridiculous
a sort of, a kind of, looks like, sort of like, smallish, brownish, reddish
Do you find it easy to throw things away?
Do you always tidy up before visitors come round?
How often do you get rid of old stuff and replace it? Do you usually sell it, give it away or throw it away?
Do you think ‘Freecycle’ is a good idea? Is there anything like this where you live?
Are there any things / offers you’d be interested in?
What are the most important things around you? Why can’t you do without them?
How do modern machines influence your life?
What things do you usually take with you when you go travelling? Why?
What is the most precious thing of yours? What or who does it remind you of?
Why is it so important for you? How long have you had it? How did you get it? Is it valuable? How does it work? Why is it good for you personally?
Problems and how to solve them
the tap’s leaking, the pipe’s burst, the handle’s come off, the window’s stuck, the batteries are flat, the washing machine’s not working, the bathroom’s flooded, there’s a power cut
to make decisions, to develop, to represent, to believe, to solve problems, to come up with an idea, to trust your intuition, to listen to your heart, to explain views, to justify views, to recognise,
to affect, to be optimistic, benefits, gloomy, to brainstorm ideas, solutions to the problems, to hold a meeting, to evaluate
to resolve a conflict, to show respect, to have an argument / disagreement, to argue one’s case,
to cause tension, to have rows, to reach a compromise
How often do you have to deal with problems?
How do you usually solve household (domestic) problems?
In which situations would you call for professional or any help (e.g. a plumber, an electrician, an engineer, someone else)?
Is it easy for you to make decisions about your studies?
Is it easy for you to deal with money?
Do you ask anyone for advice in tough situations? Why? Do you trust only yourself?
What biggest (major) decision in your life do you remember?
If you hadn’t made it, what would have happened? How would your life have changed?
What do you think of the Six Thinking Hats strategy? Is it good in dealing with problems?
What do you do when you’re angry with a friend or a relative? A colleague?
How do you think conflicts should be resolved at work or at home? Give an example of your experience.
Is it acceptable to get angry in public in your country?
What issues do you usually argue about? Do you respect other people’s opinions?
What problems need to be solved globally? What are they caused by?
What environmental problems are most urgent? What can be done to solve them?
To fancy, to be keen on, to lead an active way of life, to be a cinema / theatre goer, to have a good night out, to be a club goer, to have people come round at your place, to visit friends, that sounds like my kind of thing; what’s on your mind; to take long walks, to have a special hobby,
Words of description: great, excellent, important, nice, tricky, typical, understandable, unfortunate, a shame
How do people usually entertain themselves?
Do you spend a lot of time on your social life?
How often do you go out?
Do you ever have friends come round your place? What do you do?
Do you like to take photos to keep good memories? How else do you keep memories about good moments?
Where do you prefer to eat out? What is the place like? What can you recommend there?
What does an active way of life mean? Are you a club goer? Why do you (dis)like it?
What are the best ways to have a good time for people who prefer to stay in rather than go out?
Do you have a special hobby?
When you meet up with friends, what topics do you usually talk about?
Do you ever discuss politics?
How much do you gossip? Who with?
Do you think gossiping is a good or bad thing?
What way of relaxing do you prefer?
When was the last time you had a long weekend? What did you do?
Units 11 + 1, 3, 7
Visiting different cultures
It’s absolutely normal / acceptable / not acceptable / quite common / polite / impolite
in public places, a sign, a symbol, a stereotype, a myth, gestures, language, behaviour, etiquette,
to break the ice, to meet, to introduce, to shake hands, to apologize, to have a small talk / chat
to have a strong opinion about, to frown upon, to be against, to respect, to violate rules
to have no difficulty in adapting, to tend to, another way is..
generally, usually, apparently, almost always / never, as a rule,…
Think about these aspects of culture where you come from:
Eating habits, greetings, personal space, showing emotions, sense of humour
What are generally the relationships between:
Older and younger people
Men and women
Employers and employees
Which aspects of culture do you think visitors can begin to understand quite quickly?
Which aspects will take longer to get used to?
What are the common stereotypes about Russia? What popular myths do you know about other nations?
What is the attitude to success in your culture?
Do you think people in different countries have the same or different attitudes to success?
What is the attitude to work and having a career in your country and abroad?
At what age do most people retire? Do people generally see retirement as a positive or negative thing? Why?
Do people usually give priority to their family or work?
How are these people seen where you live (working mothers, househusbands, unemployed people)?
As a child what were you brought up to believe in?
What were you forced to do / encouraged to do?
Are children encouraged to be independent? In what ways?
Do teenagers spend more time with their family or friends?
When do most people leave home?
What is the attitude to family in Asia and in the West?
On the whole, what makes your culture so special?
Jobs and careers
to do smth. for a living, to work long hours / part-time / full time / shifts, to have flexible hours,
long vacation, benefits / perks, the money is pretty good, a well-paid job, salary, wages
Work: tiring, boring, satisfying, challenging, routine, interesting, to feel anxious / pleased
to deal with people, to work independently
to work from home, to start a career, training, to get into job / occupation, to talk smb. out of it,
to apply for a job, special qualifications, skills, computer literacy, fluent English
Organizing a talk / comparing and contrasting
to start with / first of all, secondly, and finally, on the one / other hand, another point is, another thing is that, in other words
What are the most popular professions in your country?
Where can you learn them?
Why do people choose risky jobs? (e.g. a stuntman)
What do you think would be the pros and cons of the job?
What sort of person would be good at it?
Which of the following activities would you most like to do? (technical mountaineering course / web design course / photography courses / bungee jumping) Why?
At what age do people in your country start a career?
How can you earn money as a teenager?
How did you choose you future profession?
Has anyone tried to talk you out of it?
What skills do you need for you future job?
Have you ever had any working experience? Did you apply for the job?
What is more important to you – a high salary or job satisfaction? Compare the two.
What is the future of jobs? Will people be able to work from home?
Is it a good idea to have several different careers during your life?
Rules and freedom
to rescue, to be fired, to risk one’s life, a good deed, to do a favour, to be grateful to smb.
to burst into a bank, to rob, to steal, a thief, a shoplifter
to follow / break a rule / a law, in a loose manner, to be aware of, to complain, to take a risk, to be / not to be supposed to, to be allowed to, to have to do smth., to be forced to do smth., a flexible attitude to the law, to introduce a new law
to be fined, to be arrested, to be sent to prison, a serious / minor crime, to charge with an offence, to be involved in an incident
Do you think it is important to thank people for helping you?
Do you try to think of others before yourself?
Do you do a lot of favours to your friends?
Would you risk your life by diving into a river to save someone? What about other situations?
How are you supposed to behave in these places? (a workplace, a university, at home, a café or canteen)
Where you live, what are the laws about these things? (road rules, speed limits, buying cigarettes or alcohol, smoking in public)
In your country, what laws are there to protect people’s health and safety?
Do you agree with the laws? Why? Why not?
Do you follow these laws? Give examples.
What do you do if other people don’t follow the laws?
What would you do if you saw someone stealing someone’s wallet or bag?
What would you do if you saw someone pushing an old man in the street?
What would you do if you saw someone robbing a shop or a bank?
Do you agree that "A law is a law, but laws can be interpreted differently"?
Have you ever regretted something that you’ve said or done? (think of any of these: buying things, education, work, friends and family)
What did or didn’t you do?
Why was it a mistake?
What should or shouldn’t you have done?
What could you have done differently?
Society and the future
population change, genetic engineering, further / latest developments, researches in, a major problem
a leading scientist, to consider the possibility of, some academics believe that…, it is likely to, to become common practice, to put into practice, to be used in many ways, to be used to benefit society, to create better-quality food for more people, to help science and technology to move forward, available, physically interactive computer games, to reduce obesity, to help people with brain injuries
Opinion: that makes sense, it’s got potential, I’d go for this one, this one looks promising
What have you heard on the news about recent developments?
Are your predictions about the future generally optimistic or pessimistic?
What fields of science and technology look most promising?
What are the major problems in society today?
What areas need urgent changes?
What improvements in social life do you look forward to?
Do you think that the use of genetic engineering in sport would be fair?
Do you think genetic engineering could benefit society? Why? Why not?
What changes will happen in the following years? (think about family life, education, medicine, robots and computers)
Do you agree that people in 2050 will be the "lucky generation"?
What will change in the political sphere? Are we likely to have a new superpower?
What is going to happen in the field of space engineering and exploration?
Do you think that the idea of Mars colonization has got potential?
Would you like to try an expedition to other planets?