Practice the IELTS with Movies and TV

If you feel exhausted after reading pages of IELTS vocabulary list and doing a number of IELTS practice tests, let’s try another way to prepare for the test—practice the IELTS with movies and TV programs! There are so many fantastic British films and TV programs. Watching them can be a great pleasure as well as an interesting way to learn the language. Here are several recommended movies and programs which are good for English learners. I also provide tips on how to make the best use of them to learn language!

Recommended Movies and TV programs

#1 BBC Documentaries

BBC documentaries have educational contents and narrators with clear pronunciation. They are good resources for those who take IELTS Academic test because you can learn the accent, new words and some academic language which may help you with all of the four skills. I recommend two fascinating series: Life story and Planet Earth.

#2 Extra English BBC

Extra English BBC is a TV drama for English Learners. The language is based on what you need to use in real life and it is not hard to understand. You can learn how to use the language in some daily settings such as shopping and looking for jobs.

#3 The White Elephant from BBC Learning English

The White Elephant is also a drama created by BBC for intermediate level English learners. Check out the link and learn English with it!

#4 Yes Prime Minister

This famous BBC comedy is for more advanced English learners. It is harder than Extra English and The White Elephant because the language is more complex, but you can be motivated to learn more expressions and words because it is funny and engaging.

#5 The King’s Speech

The King’s Speech is about a king who overcomes his speech difficulty. Though the language of king’s speech is formal, it will help you with your pronunciation and sentence structure.

#6 Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice have different versions of films and TV dramas. In each version, the language is beautiful and not hard to comprehend. It’s never a waste of time to learn English with the classics!


How to Learn with These Movies and Programs

#1 Subtitles

The first time you watch them ,You can try to understand  without subtitles, which can a good way to improve your listening skills. Then you can replay them with subtitles to check whether you have got the right meaning or not. Also, you can research and take notes of some vocabulary and expressions.

#2 Retell

After watching these movies and TV programs, try to retell the story or describe what is mentioned to other people or even yourself. You can ask yourself some questions such as ‘What is my favorite part and why?’ and ‘What would I do if I were the main character?’

#3 Imitate the Accent

You can imitate the accent by simply repeating the words. Watch them how to ask questions and express certain feelings. Pay attention to both pronunciation and intonation.

Movies and TV programs are useful tools for you to improve your pronunciation, expand your vocabulary and enhance your ability to understand both academic and communicative language. Also, you won’t feel bored because it is so fun!


By the way, improve your IELTS score with Magoosh!

Most Popular Resources


  • Kuangyan

    Kuangyan creates IELTS blogs at Magoosh. She is passionate about language education and has a MA in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages from New York University. Kuangyan has experience of teaching English both in China and in US. In her free time, she drinks mocha, does yoga, takes photos and travels to different places to explore the exciting world.