CPE Key Word Transformations

For many people key word transformations is the trickiest part of the Use of English part of CPE (C2 Proficiency). I am no exception. My test is tomorrow, and at the moment I am trying to make the final preparations and, as Hindus would say, open my third eye. I am not sure if writing this post will help me in this, and I don’t quite remember how I coped with the pre-exam stress 8 years ago, when I was taking CAE, but now I’ve got this blog and, hopefully, this entry will help both me and my CPE taking readers to focus on one problematic task – key word transformations.

Dear reader, don’t worry! You can and will do this! It’s been a long long road, and you’ve achieved so much on the way to you well-deserved C2 certificate. Just relax now, and do what you can do best – English… Do you feel the third eye opening? ūüėČ Great! Let’s get down to work.

# 1

I was about to leave the office when Tim phoned.

point

I _________________________ when Time phoned.

# 2 

I have been told that you have been late for work every day this week.

brought

It _________________________ that you have been late for work every day this week.

# 3

The news that the Prime Minister has resigned came as a great shock to everyone.

aback

Everyone _________________________ Prime Minister’s resignation.

# 4

Don’t let her relaxed manner deceive you; she’s an extremely shrewd businesswoman!

taken

Don’t let _________________________ her relaxed manner; she’s an extremely shrewd businesswoman!

# 5 

Werner found it hard to get used to the fact that he’d lost his job.

terms

Werner found it hard _________________________ the fact that he’d lost his job.

# 6

Simon does not intend to visit his aunt again.

has

Simon _________________________ his aunt again.

# 7 

The treasurer called a meeting to discuss the club’s finances.

purpose

The treasurer’s _________________________ to discuss the club’s finances.

# 8

It may seem strange, but the composer has no formal training in music.

lacks

Strange _________________________ kind of formal training in music.

ANSWERS AND COMMENTS

  1. I was on the point of leaving the office when Tim phoned. If you are on the point of doing something, you are about to do something: I was on the point of leaving when the phone rang. He was on the point of saying something when someone screamed. Note that we say “at this point” if we mean “a this moment in time:” At that point we all got up and walked out of the room.
  2. It has been brought to my attention that you have been late for work every day this week. If someone brings something to your attention, they make you take notice of something (often something causing problems): This is a campaign to bring human¬†rights abuses to the government’s attention. Thank you for bringing this to my attention.¬†
  3. Everyone was taken aback by the news of the Prime Minister’s resignation. If you are taken aback, you are¬†shocked or surprised, especially by something that someone says or does to you: Bill was taken aback by the girl‚Äôs directness. Roland was taken aback by our strength of feeling.¬†
  4. Don’t let yourself be taken in by her relaxed manner; she’s an extremely shrewd businesswoman! If you are taken in by something, you are deceived, tricked into believing something: Don‚Äôt be taken in by their promises. I¬†married in my late teens and was taken in by his charm, which soon vanished.
  5. Werner found it hard to come to terms with the fact that he’d lost his job. If you come to terms with something, you¬†learn to accept and deal with an unpleasant situation or event, especially after being upset or angry about it for a long time: She needed time to come to terms with her grief. My dad needed to come to terms with the fact that I had become an adult. Note that if you come to terms with someone, you¬†make an agreement, or¬†end an argument with them: We need to come to terms. I finally came to terms with my sister after all¬†those years of not speaking to her.¬†
  6. Simon has no intention of visiting his aunt again. If you have no intention of doing something, you don’t plan to do that: We have no intention of giving up. I had no intention of hurting his feelings.¬†
  7. The treasurer’s purpose in calling a meeting was to discuss the club’s finances. Our purpose in doing something, is our aim: Her sole purpose in being here was to kill some time. My purpose in learning English is to increase my chances of getting a good job in a multinational company.
  8. Strange as it seems/appears, the composer lacks any kind of formal training in music. Strange as it seems = although it (may) seem strange:¬†Strange as it seems, I haven’t come to terms with my past yet. Strange as it appears, I haven’t decided which¬†career to pursue.¬†

Before wishing you good luck in your exam, I’d like to remind you that doing this part of the test, we must use between 3 and 8 words, including the word given. You already know that, but don’t forget to count the words after filling in the gaps.

If you have any questions, please ask them in the comments below. Thanks for reading and good luck!

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