International English Language Testing System’
IELTS is an internationally owned and globally
recognized direct English Language assessment
of the highest quality and integrity readily
available throughout the world.
IELTS is a bench marking for those seeking international
education and desire global mobility.
IELTS is a comprehensive test for English language
proficiency designed to assess the ability of
non-native speakers of English who intend to
study in the medium of English.
IELTS is required in order to pursue academic
or non academic training. The test is designed
so as to judged the various areas which one
can encounter during his/her medium of English
IELTS is accepted by most in Australia, Britain,
Canada and New Zealand’s academic institutions.
IELTS is accepted by many professional organizations
including the New Zealand. Some universities
in U.S.A also accept IELTS such as Harvard B.S.
Immigration Services, the Australian department
of immigration and Multicultural affairs, the
Australian Medical Council, the UK Medical Council,
the UK ministry of defense and UK Nursing Council.
The test is jointly assessed and run by Cambridge
E SOL, IELTS Australia : IDP Education Australia.
A revised version IELTS was introduced in
All the vocational & training programmes
in UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada require
The examination in India is conducted by British
Council and IDP. There are centres located
all over India. Any student seeking the examination
can contact the nearest test centre or can
go to the local British Council office / IDP.
He/She should contact the test centre to find
out the date of next test and collect the
IELTS handbook and an application form. The
filled application form should be seat back
to the test centre with the test fee. According
to the availability of seat he/she will be
given a date and time of the test.
The candidates are tested in Listening, Reading,
Writing and Speaking. There are two levels:
Academic and General level. All candidates
take the same Listening and Speaking Modules.
There is a choice of Reading and Writing Modules
according to whether a candidate is taking
the Academic or General version of the test.
Academic Reading and Writing modules are suitable
for those seeking admission to undergraduate
and post graduate courses. General Reading
and Writing modules are suitable for candidates
who are going to English- speaking countries
to complete their secondary education or to
undertake work experience or training programmes
not at a degree level. The general modules
are also used for immigration purposes.
The Results are available on the net within
a week. All four modules are equally weighted.
Individual module score and overall score
are of equal importance. The IELTS results
are reported on the nine band scale. Most
universities and colleges accept 6.5 or 6.0
for entry to academic programmes, but different
institutions accept different IELTS scores
for different types of courses.
The test modules are taken in the
4 sections, 40/42 questions 30 minutes.
Academic Reading General Reading
3 sections, 40 questions, 60 minutes 3 sections,
40 questions, 60 minutes
Academic Writing General Writing
2 tasks, 60 minutes 2 tasks, 60 minutes
11 to 14 minutes
Total test time
2 hours 44 minutes
The test report have a validity of two years.
How to prepare for IELTS
hints may help in the preparation of IELTS.
Gamming is not an effective study
technique. As there is no prescribed text
regular practice is essential. The skills
require a period of time to build up.
2. Remember each of four
modules carries the same weight so they should
be treated equally.
3. Plan your time table.
Use your time efficiently.
4. Give break between your
5. Should know the procedures
and length of the test. The order of sections,
length and time is of great importance. There
are many resources available to help
you to practice these skills.
6. A study group is an excellent
idea. Individual may raise issues that you
may not have considered.
7. Try to mark your weak
section and then lay more stress on it.
A good examination technique is always helpful
in achieving a good score.
Remember that every section is marked independently.
Do not jeopardize your performance in one
section just because you believe that you
have done badly in another. Do not under estimate
or try to predict your outcome. You may, in
fact, might have done better than you imagined.
Focus on what you know rather than on what
you don’t know while you are doing the
Ensure that you adhere to time. Time management
is very important as it correspond to the
numbers of marks given for a particular question.
As there is no negative marking it is a good
idea to write down an answer guess wisely
even you are not sure of it. Some students
omit an answer to come back on the end but
do not have enough time.
for Listening Module test tape
In the Listening part of test is played only
once. Therefore a number of skills are required
to tackle it. The recording is played for
30 minutes. Listening, reading and writing
have to be synchronized as the three things
have to be done at the same time.
Understanding and following the instructions
is very important. They are both written on
question paper and spoken on the tape. You
must read and listen to the instruction carefully.
Ensure that you follow then exactly and answer
the correct way.
The listening module has four sections. They
are either a monologue or a dialogue. An announcer
will usually briefly outline the topic, situation
and who is talking.
Before the recording begins 30 seconds are
given to read and become familiar with the
questions. This helps in preparing to listen
for the exact information required. After
each section 30 seconds are given to check
your answers. Check that all the answers correspond
with the given instructions.
The first suggestion is to write the answers
as you hear them. Waiting could be a mistake
because later you will not remember the answer
as you won’t get the chance to listen
to the same piece again. As you get the chance
to read the questions before listening, you
will be able to concentrate your attention
just to the part you are interested in. don’t
lose time trying to understand everything.
You always have to know what questions you
are waiting for. When you hear the answer
write it at once or if you do not understand
it, start reading, the next question and wait
for the answer.
hints for previewing & predicting
1. Read instructions carefully, do
not just glance them. They are not always
the same as in practice or previous tasks.
2. Often the speakers will
give you an answer and then correct themselves.
Watch out for this. It is a common trick.
3. Try and anticipate what
the speaker will say. This requires concentration.
4. Small errors can lead
to low score such as spelling, omitting(s)
or incomplete times eg. 1.30.
5. Don’t panic if
you think the topic is too difficult or the
speaker is too fast. Relax and tune in.
6. Don’t leave blanks,
you might as will guess, you won’t be
7. May have to change the
parts of speech of the words they hear in
order to grammatically match the gap on the question
At the end of the test you get 10
minutes to transfer your answers to the answer
sheet. Check carefully that you have transferred
your answers correctly to the answer sheet.
Try to write something in all the 40 spaces
even if you are not sure of the correct answer.
A wrong answer is as wrong as no answer: so
try. You could be lucky.
for the Reading Module
The Reading Module is divided into
Academic and General. Here the main problem
is time. You are supposed to read 3 passages
and to give a total of 40 answers. Therefore
20 minutes for each passage, which is sometimes
not enough. If you are nor able to complete
pass on to the next section. Remember you
are not given any extra time at the end of
the test to transfer your answers to the answer
sheet. Many candidates think so because they
have extra time in listening.
Second : read the questions
carefully before reading the passage, this
is very important. If you read the passage
without knowing the questions you will waste
your time usually, but not always, you find
the answers in order.
Third : read the instructions
given carefully. You must ensure that you
understand exactly what is required and in
what form. If you are asked to write only
three words stick to it. Sometimes students
write four or five words which is wrong. This
does not fetch any marks.
The questions are given to test the various
ability of the students. They are
Matching headings to paragraphs.
Identifying the writer’s view
Matching causes and effects
Interpreting the instructions and questions.
When you are looking for a question look at
ways paragraphs are organized. Don’t
panic if you don’t know anything about
the passage. All the answers are in the passage
and you don’t need any specialist knowledge.
Try and predict content of paragraph from
the opening sentence. Leave a question if
you can’t answer. To spend a long time
on one answer is disastrous. Go back later
if you have time and guess if you have too.
Don’t concentrate on words you don’t
know. It is fatal and wastes valuable time.
Careless mistakes costs many marks. Check
spellings. Be careful with singular and plural.
After you have completed your answers
for each section, you need to check them.
Check that you have followed the instructions
exactly. Transfer the answers after completing
each passage so that if run short of time
at least all the answers attempted are on
the answer sheet. If you have time, return
to the answers you marked because you were
ensure and see if the answers you have given
are the best ones.
Do not leave any answers blank you do not
lose marks for incorrect answers.
for writing Module
There are two tasks and has to be
completed in an hour. The first is a visual
analysis and second a composition about an
argument of general interest: it is usually
suggested to spend 20 minutes for task I and
40 minutes for task II but you have to decide
on your strategy on the basis of your ability.
However, remember to read both titles before
you start writing. In this way your sub-conscious
will start thinking about the second task
while you are writing the first task.
About 20 minutes can be spent on
this task as a visual task there to be converted
into words. You are asked to present in about
150 words the diagram, table, graph or short
piece of text. There are three important steps
you should follow: preparation, writing and
editing. Highlight the key words, clearly,
divide the paragraphs and don’t repeat
the ideas in different ways. Learn to recognize
how long is 150 words in your hand writing.
You don’t really have time to count.
When discussing the date presented in the
task, identify significant trends and give
examples that relate to the given information
to support your statements.
Remember that the use of verbs should be correct.
Ensure your ideas are arranged logically.
Concluding sentence (optional)
two (common for Academic and General)
Don’t rush Task two, it’s longer
and carries more weight. Stick to the topic.
Paragraph simply with one idea in each paragraph.
Get used to re-reading several times and make
corrections. Try to avoid grammatical mistakes
and make a composition in order: the paragraphs
have to be clear. Leave a line between them.
Remember the illegible handwriting will reduce
your final score.
You may wish to spend about 5-7 minutes
working out exactly what you are going to
do. The writing style should be formal &
academic. Candidates should make sure that
they read and answer the question fully. Candidates
purpose is to develop his point of view in
a convincing way. He should ensure that they
are arranged in a logical order. Candidates
should write at least 250 words.
How long does it take?
Candidates are asked to spend not more than
40 minutes on this task.
On what one they tested and assessed.
Their ability to present the argument clearly
giving evidence and argument or examples to
support their ideas are assessed. They are
also assessed on how will their ideas are
organized and the accuracy of the language
they use. They should make sure that all of
their ideas are relevant to the question.
Short answers will be penalized. Candidates
will not be penalized if the answer is longer.
However, if they write long answer they may
not have time for checking and correcting
at the end. Candidates should plan their ideas,
select most relevant ones and organize these
so that they are presented as clearly and
accurately as possible within the time allowed.
Candidates must use their own words when writing
Examiners assess the answers according to
1. Task Response
2. Coherence and Cohesion
3. Lexical Resources
4. Grammatical Range and
Candidates must write their answers on the
answer sheet provided.
Training Writing Task – I
Candidates need to write an informal or semifinal
or formal personal letter of at least 150
A situation or a problem is given and they
need to request informative and/ or explain
To do this they may
1. Ask for and/or provide
general factual information.
2. Express needs, wants,
likes or dislikes.
3. Express opinions or complaints.
4. Make suggestions / recommendations
The problems or situations are about the common
What style must candidates write in?
It depends who they are asked to write to
and how will they are supposed to know them
i.e audience. They need write in a style that
is appropriate for their audience and that
will help them to achieve their purpose for
writing eg. Writing to friend (informal)
Writing to a manager (formal)
Candidates do not need to include addresses
on their letters unless they are specifically
asked to do so or unless the need for an address
is implied in one of the bullet points.
for Speaking Module
Speaking consists of a conversation between
the candidate and the examiner for 10 to 14
minutes. Its test the ability to communicate
effectively not just the grammatical accuracy.
You must speak more than the examiner.
The test is divided into three sections.
Part one - The examiner will ask you question
Part two – The topic for your talk will
be written on a card which the examiner will
hand you. Read it carefully and then make
some brief notes. You have 1 to 2 minutes
to think about what you are going to say.
Think of all what you know.
Part three – Once your talk in part
two is over, your examiner will ask you further
questions related to the topic in part two.
Don’t be afraid to take initiative in
part three of the speaking test. This is the
chance to show your fluency, your opinion
and your vocabulary.
Remember whenever you are asked for your
OPINION about ANYTHING you can always give
both the positive and negative aspects of
the subject in question. You will get a better
score if you have made a comparison of the
subject. Remember the examiner has had a long
hard day, and is a human too so be interesting,
try to keep eye contact and stop fidgeting
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