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IELTS : Standardised Test of English Language Proficiency

English has become a popular communication language, widely accepted all across the world. The acronym IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System. This is a standardized English language test for higher education and immigration to several countries.

Appearing for the test and submitting the test score is a mandate to make through more than 6000 organizations in 140 countries and more than 3000 US institutions and programs.

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It is recognized by universities, employers, professional bodies, immigration authorities and other government agencies where English is the mode of communication.

IELTS checks for operational command of the language in the form of four subsets or sections i.e. Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking. It is drafted by program experts to access fluency and accuracy skills at all levels of the language.

Each of its section is of utmost importance and to crack it well, one must have proper preparation and complete understanding of the grammar rules. IELTS has three international partners and is jointly managed by the British Council, IELTS: IDP Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment.


There are different formats for two versions of the tests:
-Academic IELTS test
-General Training IELTS test.

In the 2 hour 45 minutes test, subsection Listening and Speaking is the same for both the tests while a student has to go through different Reading and Writing section depending on the test enrolled for. First appears the listening section for thirty minutes. Next comes the Reading part where there are nearly 40 questions to be answered in sixty minutes. It is followed by the Writing section where 2 assignments which test different writing style have to be done in another sixty minutes. Lastly, there is a ten to fifteen minute section allocated for speaking. Sometimes, the speaking part may happen on another day as well. It is a one to one interaction with the examiner.

Applicants go for the general training module if they intend to work or live abroad.

IELTS scoring: No Fail, No Pass

IELTS scoring is done in 9 levels. 0 Stands for the minimal when the candidate fails to turn up for the test while 9 is for the expert. The topmost scorer who proves that he/she has a remarkable command over the language generally grabs 8 or 9.

Immigration Policy

The prospective migrants to Australia and Canada are supposed to attempt this test to prove their proficiency in the language. A score of 6 is mandatory in each of the module to gain permanent visa. Residents of the English speaking countries like United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, the USA, or Republic of Ireland are exempted from the test. Countries like New Zealand and Canada also use it as an indicator of your proficiency in the subject.

High Scores required for Colleges

The students applying for graduate and undergraduate study in the US, Britain, Canada and Australia need to go through the test. Also it is a requirement for healthcare professionals applying to work in US hospitals and for US permanent residency.

Ace the IELTS

Speed is most important factor about the test. Practice is the key word. The candidate must focus on their weak and mediocre sections. The different techniques of writing should be learnt because this section really plays a role for making a difference. Writing randomly will not help.  Listening to complex conversations with different accent is helpful too. Pronunciation and vocabulary are checked in the speaking section, thus one may record his/her own voice and hear to correct the mistakes one usually does. Look around for reading academic stuff to improve on the comprehension part.

More about the Test

The IELTS Test can be taken on two days of the week, Thursday and Saturday across test centers spread across 125 countries. The results take 2 weeks or more to reach the candidate.

For more details do follow the official link.

Manjulika Pramod