Brainstorming FCE Speaking Part One questions

Brainstorming typical Cambridge First Certificate (FCE) Speaking Part One topics and tenses

(with speculating practice for other parts of the speaking)

Brainstorm at least one present and one past or future question for these topics that might be in the exam. As in the exam, the questions should be ones that anyone can answer with one or two sentences. You can use language like that above to discuss how likely they are to actually be exam questions.

Other languages

Using English

Studying English (including self-study)

English language exams, including FCE

Other studies

Free time/ Hobbies



Useful language…seems…/ …looks…I guess/ I imagine…

…is obviously…


…might/ may/ maybe/ perhaps…


I’m not sure exactly but…

…appears…/ …looks like…

I reckon…/ I suppose…

I’m fairly sure…

I get the impression that…/ My initial impression is…

…is almost certainly…


…could (possibly)…

I’m pretty confident that…

I expect…

I know for sure that…/ I know for a fact that…

Look at another group’s questions and say how likely they are to be in the exam, using phrases like those above.

Compare to the suggested answers below, then practise in an exam format.

Use the speculating language to describe some FCE Speaking Part Two photos (just single photos to start with).

First Certificate (FCE) Speaking Part One topics and tenses

Other languages

Do any of your friends speak other languages?

Is there a language which you would really like to learn in the future?

Using English

Do you use English on holiday?

Tell us about the last time you used English outside the classroom.

Would you prefer to have a job where you could use English more often?

Studying English (including self-study)

Do you study English every day?

Do you use the internet to study English?

Do you spend a lot of time studying English?

Tell us about the last English language book you bought.

Do you have any plans to study abroad in the future?

English language exams, including FCE

Do you prefer to study English for exams, or just for pleasure?

Do you plan to take any other English language exams?

Other studies

Do you like studying any particular subjects?

How do you prefer to study?

What was your favourite subject when you were younger?

Is there anything you would really like to study in the future?

Free time/ Hobbies

What’s the most interesting thing about your main hobby?

Do you have the same hobbies as your parents?

Do you think you will have more time for your hobbies in the future?

Underline typical FCE Speaking Part One question stems above.

Optional extension

Use those question stems to write similar questions about these topics.

–       Arts and media

–       Daily routine

–       Food and drink

–       Friends and family

–       Health and fitness

–       Home

–       Technology

–       Transport and travel


 PDF version for easy printing: brainstorming typical FCE speaking part one topics and tenses

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