This part of the test is sometimes called the 'discussion'. It usually lasts between three and five minutes.
In this part the examiner will ask you questions which are related to the topic you have just discussed in part 2 of the test. You will need to show that you can give an opinion and put together ideas into a logical pattern. You will be asked to express abstract ideas (i.e. talk about things like emotions, plans, ideas.)
The examiner will be checking your fluency (how easily you express and connect ideas, the speed that you talk at and whether you pause in the correct places), and your coherence (how well organized your sentences are, and if you accurately use a wide range of grammar and vocabulary)
As well as saying what you think about a particular topic, you will need to be able to explain why you feel that way. You should also be able to analyse, discuss and speculate about topics the examiner asks you about.
Remember to listen for 'key words'
'What do you think about ...' invites you to analyse
'Do you think...' invites you to speculate
'What can you tell me about ...' invites you to outline
There are many other key words - in each case, remember to think about what the examiner is asking you do do.
If you are asked whether you like horror movies, you must reply with an opinion. You should not (for instance) start outlining the story of the last horror movie which you saw.
Remember you can give yourself a bit of extra time with 'verbal nulls'. Practise a variety of these so you do not use the same ones every time. (Verbal nulls are phrases and sentences which do not really mean anything, but give the speaker time to prepare his answer.)
Examiner: What is your opinion of modern pop music?
Candidate: Modern pop music? Do I like it? well, let me see ... as a matter of fact, I think I do. Well, that is generally speaking.'
(This reply means the same as 'Yes.' But it will impress the examiner a lot more.)
Practice giving reasoned opinions.
After you have made sure you understand what the examiner wants from your answer, you can use verbal nulls to prepare, but after that you have to give a reasoned response.
If that response is an opinion, make sure that you support your opinion with some reasons, and it will also help if you 'balance' your opinion by giving some reasons why other people might not agree.
Examiner: Do you like English-style fish and chips?
Candidate: Well, I can't say this is my favourite food. The chips are too thick, and I prefer fries. Also, I don't think cooking in fat like that is very healthy. But some of my friends really like it, and if they want to have fish and chips, maybe I'll have some as well.
Remember to use a general-specific answer style. So start with a general answer, and then be more precise.
Examiner: Is fashion very important to you?
Candidate: No, I don't think so. (General) I'd prefer to have the latest computer rather than the latest fashion in shoes or shirts (specific).
Remember You do not need to know the technical stuff about how you talk (i.e. words like coherence, structure, handling of abstract concepts). That's the examiner's job. Nor do you have to be completely fluent in English to do well in the test. A good, relaxed conversational style will make up for the occasional error in grammar. You should not concentrate on your score but on keeping your side of the discussion clear, smooth and understandable