This paper looks at some of the online resources that have been created specifically for students preparing for English language exams, in particular IELTS (International English Language Testing System), Cambridge First Certificate (FCE, B2) and Cambridge Advanced (CAE, C1), and, to some extent, resources for Cambridge Preliminary (PET, B1) and Cambridge Proficiency (CPE, C2) students. Although the resources are aimed at exam students, clearly they can prove useful in General English classes as well.
There are numerous websites out there claiming to help those who are studying for English exams and, to some extent, it is a matter of personal preference which ones students and teachers decide to use. Some of them contain good resources but you have to subscribe and pay to use them. Some are full of adverts which can make the site confusing or annoying to use. Some contain useful resources that are free, but mostly need to be to downloaded and printed. These could be useful for teachers to use in class as you would use resources from any printed source. However, the websites I focus on here provide resources which are interactive or in some other way exploit the potential of digital technology and therefore offer something different from the standard classroom experience. Students tend to engage well and benefit from such interactivity and these methods lend themselves well to self-paced study.
However, it is important to remember that currently most English tests taken in the UK are done so using the traditional paper format. So, when it comes to mock exam exercises you still need to give students the opportunity to practise under conditions that more closely mimic the exam environment, i.e. with written test papers to be completed by hand.