IELTS Cue Card Sample 603 - Describe a time when you needed to use your imagination

IELTS Speaking Part 2: IELTS Cue Card/ Candidate Task Card.

Describe a time when you needed to use your imagination.

You should say:

  • what the situation was
  • why you needed to use imagination
  • what the difficulties were

and explain how you felt about it.

[You will have to talk about the topic for one to two minutes. You have one minute to think about what you’re going to say. You can make some notes to help you if you wish.]

Model Answer 1:
Thank you a lot for letting me talk about a time when I had to be inventive to accomplish something. I will tell you when it was, why I was in a situation to use my imagination, what hurdles I faced and my overall impressions of the whole event.

To commence with, it happened approximately a year ago when my family shifted to a new apartment. My previous room was comparatively smaller than the one I got at that new flat and I had only a small number of furniture back then. The new room, on the contrary, was large and I had to plan to decorate it carefully. I wanted to give my room a delightful ambience and to do so, I had to face a big challenge. While I was in the planning phase, my elder sister had already tidied up her room in an adorable fashion. This made my challenges even more complicated.

I had few savings of my own and I bought two oil-paintings, a large rag, a new sofa set and some pot plants. Then appeared the real challenges or placing them in the perfect position. My imagination was already at work and it took me two days to finish decorating my room. I must have been very creative as my father, who scarcely appreciate, remarked very emphatically. I felt quite relieved and exhilarated at the same time for this achievement. My imagination, choice and creativity to prepare my room in a way inspired me to plan everything beforehand from that time.

I am sure my elder sister had never agreed but with the pot plants, oil painting and stylish sofa, my room looked better than her room!

Sample Answer 2:
I was the student of history at the University of Calcutta. Being a careless student, I did not complete my studies regularly and had to use my imagination during the exams. Many of such events took place in my student days when I used my imagination to answer the academic questions. During the semester ending exam of my third academic year, I used my imagination while writing answer of the Mughal Empire. This is a lovely cue card task for me and I am happy with the nice questions. The rest of the answers are here.

Honestly, I did not study the textbooks at all before the exam. In fact, it was a habit for me to skip studies at home. I knew I would cross the exam barriers and thus only tried to get some ideas about the topics. But this time I could not get the ideas too. So, I needed to use my pure imaginations while writing answers to the questions. I made some stories on my own and simply wrote them in the answer script.

The number of difficulties I dealt with was huge. Firstly, I did not have any idea what I was writing. I had some knowledge about the empire and used them to expand the stories. I explained many of the matters by my own imagination. I stuck to some questions and thought how would the situation be in those days and explained them in my point of view. It might sound hilarious that I passed that particular exam with average marks.

Later, I felt guilty inside. I could have a better result if I studied the courses well. I promised to do better in the next semester and changed my habit of skipping reading. I learned a good lesson from this event.

Model Answer 3:
This is quite an interesting topic for me and I would like to profoundly thank you for allowing me to describe an event when my imagination saved my day.

It was roughly two years ago when the quote by the greatest scientists of all time, Albert Einstein-  “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited, whereas imagination embraces the entire world, stimulating progress, giving birth to evolution” - was proven correct once again in my life. I was in a job interview and the COO (Chief Operating Officer) of the company threw a tricky question at me. If I recall everything precisely, it was my second job interview after my graduation and I was apprehensive to face interviews at that time. The question the COO asked was nothing I was prepared for. He asked me whether I did my homework about their company and products and as soon as I said ’yes’, his next question came to me as a shock. He told me to describe a few negative aspects of this company or things they are doing wrong. He also asked me to prose a solution to the problem.

I was silent for around 5 – 10 seconds and noticed that every one of the interview panels was looking at me very seriously. And that made the whole situation more challenging for me. I took another 10 seconds to start talking and I decided to express my true feelings about the downside of their company. I had to be very imaginative and creative and I decided to express some faulty ways they were operating their business. Talking about poor customer management system they have and how their competitors have gained more market share over the past few years was not easier and I did not tell everything from my knowledge, rather I let my imagination take control. Proposing the solution to this problem was not an easier task but when I let my imagination take control, I noticed some interests in the eyes of the interviewers. This all happened in a blink of an eye, or maybe this is what I felt. The interviewers' eye contact with each other persuaded me that I was on the right track. The interview prolonged for another twenty minutes or so and I felt the room with a great deal of confidence than that of my previous interview with another company.

I felt positive and confident and all thanks go to my timely imaginative power. I believe our imagination is related to our knowledge and experience and it can often be more powerful than we think it actually would be.

Before I end my answer to this cue card topic, I would like to inform you that I actually was offered the position in this company and I still work for them.

More Ideas to talk about this Cue Card topic:

Cue Card Topic: Describe a time when you needed to use your imagination.

1. During the last semester of my academic exam, I had a project to complete on artworks for children. I needed to use my thought in that case. I imagined deeply and made some fine works for children. Finally, the project was approved.

2. I was telling stories to my niece. But I did not know how to tell a tale, especially to a smart kid who can anticipate the story! Then, I used my fancy. I formulated some stories with my imagination. I told stories about adventure and at last, it was amazing and the kid liked it a lot.

3. I work for a multinational company in Paris and last week I needed to make a presentation in my office. I had to devise some potential perspectives and how they would be. With the imagination, I completed the presentation and it was appreciated.

4. Writing is hard if the writer lacks imagination. I wrote a short story about the socio-economic status of poor people living in Athens. I imagined how they lead their lives and dealt with the ordinary issues. The story was published in a local newspaper.

5. Before starting a garden project in front my residence, located in Shinjuku, Japan, I had to use my imagination and use my creativity. In fact, there was less empty space in front of my one-storied residence than I actually needed for the garden. So, I needed to imagine everything – how the garden will look like etc.

6. Working as a graphic designer needs to use creativity, imagination and experience. Recently, I had to take advantage of my invention skills before starting the new project. It was about designing a television show background for a children’s event.

7. I have less imaginative skills but needed to apply that last Monday while describing my plan to my superior authority. In fact, I was not ready with the ideas and instantly generated them with my imagination.

8. Blessed are those who have an extraordinary creative skill. But I also need to demonstrate the skill (though I do not have much) while answering a critical question. I was asked to set a strategy to increase sales boost for a software company. Seems like my idea was not bad as others appreciated what I presented to them.

9. Taking part in an art competition is tough. And I understood that when I took part in such a competition held at my college in Mumbai, India. A topic was given and the contestants had to create a painting on the theme.

If you can talk about this cue card topic, you should be able to answer the following topics as well:

1. Talk about a time when one of your ideas was appreciated.
2. Describe a situation when someone gave a great idea.
3. Describe a creative idea that you used once.
4. Describe something unusual you did recently.

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