Posted in Exam Preparation Class

CAE Use of English Training

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This is a lesson plan I have designed for my CAE students who are about to take the exam. It is designed to help them prepare for the four use of English exercises in paper 1. You could set the worksheet as homework or have students complete it stage by stage in class in pairs or individually. Download the worksheet and key below:

CAE Use of English Training

CAE Use of English Training Key

Part 1 – Multiple Choice Cloze

Complete the 4 sentences with the words in the box below:

  1. I’ve been trying to get _______ of my boss all morning but he’s not picking up.
  2. The government realises that homelessness is an issues but has failed to ________ the scale of the problem.
  3. The article gives a fascinating ________ into the lives of the most vulnerable people in society.
  4. The _________ was dawning that this was a major disaster.
Insight Realisation Hold Grasp
  1. It’s just a ________of time before all courses are taught at least partially online.
  2. The police are only beginning to realise the complexity of the _________ now.
  3. The ______ of the accident has yet to be identified, but police have their suspicions.
  4. Since the inconclusive elections the political system has been in a _______ of disarray.
State Situation Matter Cause
  1. After the show I was ________ by an agent from a record company and offered a contract.
  2. Over the course of the trip we _________ many difficulties but we carried on regardless.
  3. After 30 years of service to the company he was _________ with a golden Rolex watch.
  4. They ________ us double what we originally paid for the house so we accepted straightaway.
Presented Offered Encountered Approached
  1. After several attempts to untie the knot I had to ________ defeat and cut the rope with a knife.
  2. I’m afraid I can’t ________ you to enter this area, it’s a restricted zone.
  3. The family will ________ €25,000 in compensation for the damage caused in the accident.
  4. I’m sorry sir but your parking ________ has expired and you have to pay a fine.
Permit Admit Allow Receive
  1. Hi, I’ve come ______ the party, I’m a friend of Josh’s.
  2. When it comes _____ computers, I’m completely useless.
  3. My family originally comes _____ Scotland but I grew up in Birmingham.
  4. The console comes _____ 2 free games of your choosing.
From With To For
  1. University should be _________ to people from all backgrounds to increase equality.
  2. Planning and organising the whole festival in just 2 days is not __________.
  3. The summit of the mountain is only __________ to experienced climbers.
  4. It’s best to use turkey for this dish, but if it isn’t ___________, just use chicken.
Feasible Obtainable Accessible Reachable
  1. We must do more challenge stereotypical gender _______ like male heroes and females needing rescuing.
  2. My favourite comic-book _________ are Batman and Ironman because they’re just normal guys with amazing gadgets.
  3. He is a general in the army and he certainly looks the ________.
  4. Surfing isn’t a hobby dude, it’s a _______ of mind!
Characters State Part Roles

Part 2 – Open Cloze

Complete the sentences with 1 word.

  1. Two students, neither of ______ had done their homework, showed up to class.
  2. The study was carried _____ by a group of scientists from Harvard.
  3. The houses on my street, all of ______ were built over 200 years ago, are painted in a range of colours.
  4. It normally takes me an hour or ____ to get home from school.
  5. Sometimes as _____ as 50 people come to the free dance classes.
  6. The city has many places of interest, _____ the beautiful roman buildings in the centre ___ the ultra-modern harbour side.
  7. I try to do at least a little exercise ____ a daily basis.
  8. The government have cut spending on education. ______ this means is that class sizes will increase.
  9. This part of the building is in the process of ______ repaired.
  10. _____ there were so many people at the concert, people had to sit on each other’s laps.
  11. The problems associated ____ shooting the film underwater were a real headache for the director.
  12. The development of smaller, hand-held cameras led ____ photography becoming a popular hobby.
  13. In the past people _____ have to wait up to a week for their photographs to be developed.
  14. They were ____ the point of calling off the search when they found the missing dog sleeping under a tree.
  15. When taken ____ a whole, the Lord of the Rings saga is one of the most impressive stories ever told.
  16. He has written well _____ a thousand songs in his career. (much more than)
  17. We’re thinking about having our house done ____ this summer, but it might be too expensive.
  18. I’m still not sure ______ or not I lost my phone or someone stole it.

Part 3 – Word Formation

Put the correct negative prefix on the word: in-/dis-/il-/im-/ir-/un-

1.       ____legal

2.       ____secure

3.       ____regular

4.       ____logical

5.       ____predictable

6.       ____pleased

7.       ____sufficient

8.       ____reparable

9.       ____loyal

10.    ____literate

11.    ____rational

12.    ____adequate

13.    ____conventional

14.    ____professional

15.    ____willing

16.    ____capable

17.    ____able

18.    ____precise

19.    ____mature

20.    ____patient

21.    ____complete

22.    ____belief

23.    ____agreement

24.    ____affected

25.    ____pleasant

26.    ____coherent

27.    ____ accurate

28.    ____valid

29.    ____perfect

30.    ____certain

Complete the sentences with one of the words above, check the context, should the word be positive or negative?

  1. Don’t be so ___________! You have to wait for your turn like everyone else. PATIENCE
  2. I’m afraid there is ___________ money to pay everyone this month. SUFFICE
  3. There was a __________ smell coming from the kitchen that made my mouth water. PLEASE
  4. It was very difficult for the _______________ refugee children to fit in at school. LITERACY
  5. We finally reached a(n) ________________ about what to do with the money. AGREE
  6. I’m afraid that the damage to the car is _______________. REPAIR
  7. Your tickets are ___________ for the VIP area, take a glass of champagne and sit down. VALIDATION
  8. He was so drunk that his speech was completely ______________. COHERENCE
  9. Our son is so ___________ compared to the other boys in his class, he never gets in trouble. MATURITY
  10. If your ___________ behaviour continues, you’re going to be out of a job. PROFESSIONALISM
  11. I hate that kind of film, the endings are always so __________ you can see it coming a mile off. PREDICT
  12. What Donald Trump said about Mexican immigrants was completely _____________ and should be corrected at once. ACCURACY
  13. Luckily out area was _____________ by the storm and heavy rain. AFFECT
  14. Your work on the project was _______________ and I expect you to do better next time. ADEQUACY
  15. We should sack him immediately, he’s _____________ of arriving on time. CAPABILITY
  16. Calm down, we need to be ____________ and think about it carefully. RATIONALITY
  17. If they are ____________ to lower the price then we should break off negotiations. WILL
  18. When I was a teenager I felt very ____________ about my body, but I’m fine now. SECURITY
  19. The puzzle is still _____________, we’re missing 4 pieces. COMPLETION
  20. Her methods may be _______________, but they’re very effective. CONVENTION

Part 4 – Key Word Transformations

Choose the correct option to complete the key word transformations:

  1. Mauro says he prefers to do his homework on his own


Mauro says that ______________________________________ do his homework with other people.

  1. He wouldn’t rather to
  2. He would rather not
  3. He would rather not to
  4. He rather wouldn’t


  1. Clara said that she had not seen the missing letter.


Clara ___________________________________ the missing letter.

  1. Refused having seen
  2. Denied having to see
  3. Admitted to not having seen
  4. Denied having seen


  1. It took Layla five minutes to find her car keys.


Layla ___________________________________ for her car keys.

  1. Spent five minutes looking
  2. Spent five minutes to search
  3. Spent five minutes finding
  4. Spent five minutes to find


  1. A short meeting of the cast will take place after today’s rehearsal.


Today’s rehearsal ___________________________________________ a short meeting of the cast.

  1. Will be after by
  2. Followed after by
  3. Will be followed by
  4. Will followed by


  1. I’ll be happy to show you round the sights of my city when you come to visit me.


It will be a _____________________________________________ sightseeing tour of my city when you come to visit me.

  1. Happiness taking you to a
  2. Pleasure to take you on a
  3. Pleasing to take you to a
  4. Pleasure taking you on a


  1. Rousseau painted fabulous pictures of the rainforest although he had never travelled outside Europe.


Rousseau painted fabulous pictures of the rainforest ____________________________________ travelled outside Europe.

  1. In spite of the fact that he never
  2. In spite of he never
  3. In spite the fact he never
  4. In spite of never having


  1. It is thought that one in every five people cannot control how much they spend.


One in every five people is thought _______________________________ their spending under control.

  1. To be unable to keep
  2. That is unable to control
  3. Of being unable to control
  4. Unable to keep


Part 1:

1.       Hold

2.       Grasp

3.       Insight

4.       Realisation


1.       Matter

2.       Situation

3.       Cause

4.       State


1.       Approached

2.       Encountered

3.       Presented

4.       Offered


1.       Admit

2.       Allow

3.       Receive

4.       Permit

1.       For

2.       To

3.       From

4.       With


1.       Accessible

2.       Feasible

3.       Reachable

4.       Obtainable


1.       Roles

2.       Characters

3.       Part

4.       State


Part 2:

1.       Whom

2.       Out

3.       Which

4.       So

5.       Many

6.       From, to

7.       On

8.       What

9.       being

10.    as/since/because

11.    with

12.    to

13.    would

14.    on

15.    as

16.    over

17.    up

18.    whether

Part 3:

1.       illegal

2.       insecure

3.       irregular

4.       illogical

5.       unpredictable

6.       displeased

7.       insufficient

8.       irreparable

9.       disloyal

10.    illiterate

11.    irrational

12.    inadequate

13.    unconventional

14.    unprofessional

15.    unwilling

16.    incapable

17.    unable (adjective) disable (verb)

18.    imprecise

19.    immature

20.    impatient

21.    incomplete

22.    disbelief

23.    disagreement

24.    unaffected

25.    unpleasant

26.    incoherent

27.    inaccurate

28.    invalid

29.    imperfect

30.    uncertain


1.       impatient

2.       insufficient

3.       pleasant

4.       illiterate

5.       agreement

6.       irreparable

7.       valid

8.       incoherent

9.       mature

10.    unprofessional

11.    predictable

12.    inaccurate

13.    unaffected

14.    inadequate

15.    incapable

16.    rational

17.    unwilling

18.    insecure

19.    incomplete

20.    unconventional

Part 4:

  1. b
  2. d
  3. a
  4. c
  5. b
  6. d
  7. a
Posted in Exam Preparation Class, Grammar Classes, Vocabulary Classes

CAE: Collocations with similar words worksheet

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This is a worksheet to practice different collocations putting similar words into context. It will be useful for teachers teaching CAE preparation classes as it will help students develop the skills needed for part 1 of the use of English paper. Download the worksheet below:

Collocations Similar Words

Use of English – Collocations

  1. She stood on the ____ of the diving board and dove into the pool head first.
  2. They all stood in ____ waiting for their dinner.
  3. He was on the _____ of calling the Police when the man ran away.
  4. It’s a picturesque village on the Swiss/French _____.

Border  verge    line        edge

  • The film was so _______ terrifying that I had to hide behind the sofa.
  • He is _______ qualified and should get the job easily.
  • The new basketball player was ________ tall, he was 20cm taller than the rest of the players.
  • It is ________ hot at midday in the desert.

Intensely            utterly                  highly                   exceptionally

  1. The charity spent the evening ___________ food to the homeless.
  2. We thought the show was going to be a disaster but it ___________ fine in the end.
  3. They have been _____________ tests on her all weekend but they still don’t know what’s wrong.
  4. After 20 years of rumours about his sexuality he finally ___________ in an interview with GQ magazine.

Turned                 out         came out            carried out         gave out

  1. I live _________ a beautiful gothic church.
  2. _________ to popular belief pigs are actually very clean animals.
  3. _________ my brother, I’m a very sociable person.
  4. This breed of dog is ________ from its long lost cousin the wolf in many ways.

Distinct                contrary              unlike                   opposite

  1. They ___________ a fantastic array of food for us when we arrived.
  2. After waiting on the phone for 3 hours they finally _______ me________ to the department I needed to speak to.
  3. We spent 6 months _____________ our house after we bought it.
  4. The referee __________ the rules very clearly before the game began.

Put through       set out                 fixed up               laid on

  1. Have you heard? They’re making a new ________ of the Lion King, I bet it’s going to be rubbish!
  2. This __________ of the roof was badly damaged in the fire.
  3. You’ll have to speak to John in the finance ___________ if you want to get your money back.
  4. They divided the different insects they found into 5 different ____________ based on size.

Section                version                department                      categories

  1. After the earthquake 100 people are still _____________ for.
  2. This material is ____________ of 30% cotton and 70% polyester.
  3. He ___________ the club in 1999 and has been a member ever since.
  4. They _____________ detailed records of all their findings and presented them to the director.

Composed                         compiled                            joined                  unaccounted

  1. You can __________ at my house after the concert if you want.
  2. Of the 50 trees we planted in 1975 only 10 __________.
  3. To reach the top of the mountain they had to ____________ bitter cold and biting winds.
  4. When he asked her out on a date the first time she turned him down but he ___________ and finally she said yes.

Remain                endure                persisted            stay


  1. edge
  2. line
  3. verge
  4. border


  1. utterly
  2. highly
  3. exceptionally
  4. intensely


  1. giving out
  2. turned out
  3. carrying out
  4. came out


  1. opposite
  2. contrary
  3. unlike
  4. distinct


  1. laid on
  2. put through
  3. fixing up
  4. set out


  1. version
  2. section
  3. department
  4. categories


  1. unaccounted
  2. composed
  3. joined
  4. compiled


  1. stay
  2. remain
  3. endure
  4. persist