Number five - this is the thing that always gets my students and I always warn them about when we practice...plural versus singular. Okay?
You have to listen carefully on whether you're writing down the plural with an "s" or the singular.
If the question wants me to write down: "cat", someone's talking about their cat and I write down: "cats", it's incorrect.
I would get an "X".
Okay, so it's important to be careful, to really listen: is it a singular thing, is it a plural thing?
Are they saying "store" or "stores"? Okay?
Number six - this is probably the most obvious tip, but... very important to do practice tests.
There are many, many books out there on the IELTS that have practice tests with a CD.
You can listen and you can practice.
The more you do, the better, and the better your mark probably will be.
Okay? So do as many practice tests as you can for the listening.
And again, maybe when you start, it will be very difficult.
Maybe you'll do a test and you'll do very poorly on it - a practice test - it's good to keep going.
Even if you do bad at first, I'm sure the more you practice, the more you get used to these accents - you're going to do fine. Okay?
Just keep practicing, practicing, practicing.