What is IELTS?
IELTS is an International English Testing System. This evaluates your English on the basis of receptive and productive skills. The receptive skills are Reading and Listening, and the productive skills are Writing and Speaking.
There are two categories of IELTS, that is General and Academic. The General Test is taken by people who are planning to move to English speaking countries for the purpose of PR or jobs; whereas the Academic test is taken by people or are planning to study further in universities or doing any course. So please make sure you register for the right course.
Listening which is your first test comprises 40 mins. Then comes Reading and Writing both for 60 mins and last is Speaking that is for 11-14 mins. Listening, Reading and Writing are going to take place in one day at a stretch. That means for two hours and 40 mins you won’t have any break between the test. Speaking test occurs seven days before or after the Reading, Listening and Writing test depending on the schedule you get from the IDP and the British Council; whomever you register with.
Listening will be your first test. The test will have four questions in the order of difficulty. The answers are supposed to be written in the question booklet. It’s a simultaneous process of listening and writing. You have to answer 40 questions as you listen to the audio.
Now let’s come to the reading. Reading is different for general and academic tests. It has three sections. It is different for General and Academic tests. General would have 2 texts in each section where 40 questions need to be answered. On the Academic test, there is one long passage for each section.
Writing will have two tasks. In General, you would have a letter in task 1 and an essay in task 2. This letter could be formal, informal or semi-formal. In the academic test, you have to summarize a text and write an essay. The summary would be on the basis of charts, graphs or a diagram.
The word limit of task 1 is 150 words and task 2 is 250 words. There are 20 mins for task 1 and 40 mins for task 2.
Speaking has three sections in all. Section 1 has a brief introduction followed by a short question and answer. In section two you will have a minute to prepare to speak on a topic. Section 3 questions about the topic given in section 2 It is a one to one interaction between the examiner and the candidate which is recorded.
|Band 9 = Expert User||You have full command on the language, Your English is appropriate and fluent|
|Band 8 = Very good User||You have operational command over the language but sometimes your language use can be inappropriate and inaccurate.|
|Band 7 = Good User||Generally, you understand the language well and are able to understand detailed reasoning though you have inappropriate language use.|
|Band 6 = Competent User||You are able to cope with the overall meaning in most situations. Generally, you have an effective command over the language.|
|Band 5 = Modest User||Your command on the language is partial. You tend to make mistakes but are able to understand the basic communication|
|Band 4 = Limited User||The basic competence is very limited. There is a problem of comprehending complex situations and the inability to use complex language.|
With this scale, the examiners can judge the English Language proficiency of a candidate. Normally 7.5 and above is considered to be a good score.
IELTS is not a very difficult exam because it is simply used to test your level of English. However, it requires thorough preparation. There is no fail and pass in IELTS but one should aim for a score of 7.5 or above. It will be the same level no matter where you take the test. You are not supposed to change your accent or be very conscious about your speaking. Just make sure you are clear and confident. In writing test the word limit is important so act accordingly. Thousands of educational institutions, employers and professional bodies accept IELTS because it is fair and of good quality. There are around 1100 test locations in 140 countries. So, get registered for IELTS today and explore the opportunities it can give you.
IELTS is easy to pass if you have a basic understanding of the English Language. In order to register for IELTS, you need to find the test location near you. You can either fill in the application online or print the form and fill it then submit it to your local test centre. Once your application is processed you will get the date and time for your test. For further information contact your local IELTS test centre.
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