The first word that Eliot talks about is “integral”. It means that something is fundamental, essential to something else. So, for example, you might say that honesty is integral to a healthy relationship. Without honesty, you simply can’t have a healthy relationship.

Some words with a similar meaning to “integral” would be “essential” and “fundamental”. These would be good synonyms in cases where you get paraphrases in the IELTS reading or listening questions. These are excellent words to know when trying to locate answers if they are testing you on your knowledge of the word “integral”.

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There are also some more difficult synonyms you could use. These would be “vital” and “crucial”. Both words mean “very important”. For instance, the words that you are learning right now are crucial and vital to your success on the IELTS, the GRE, or another language or aptitude test required for business school admission.

Another word that might come up in both English exams is “elaborate”. It is also an adjective and the basic meaning of this word is “detailed”. If something has a lot of details, you could describe it as being elaborate. The more difficult synonyms of elaborate are “convoluted” and “tortuous”. However, they both have negative connotations. “Convoluted” is something that is too complex. “Tortuous” means something extremely winding and twisting, so it is elaborate in a negative sense.

By following the same process to learn other English words that can often be encountered in language and aptitude tests, you will be able to improve your vocabulary and, consequently, your test score.

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