IELTS is one of the most distinguished standardized tests of English language proficiency in the world that can be used in most countries and universities worldwide.
There are currently more than 1200 centers in over 140 countries, which administer IELTS test for non-native English speakers. In this article, you find everything you need about IELTS; Let’s get to it:
- What are the Differences between IELTS General and IELTS Academic?
- What is Computer-delivered IELTS?
- How do They Score IELTS Exam?
- What are the Resources for the IELTS Test?
What is the IELTS Test exactly?
The British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia, and Cambridge Assessment English jointly own this test. In the US, IELTS USA manages the test’s recognition and the US network of test centers.
The word IELTS is derived from the “International English Language Testing System”. It’s an international standardized English language proficiency test for non-native English language speakers, and they established it in 1989.
IELTS test is the most popular high-stakes English language proficiency test for study, work, and migration, with more than three million tests taken just in the past year.
The IELTS Academic and General Training IELTS tests are both graded on a nine-band scale. For each test section, you will receive a score from 1 to 9. The average of this score will form your overall IELTS score.
What are the Parts of the IELTS Test?
The IELTS test assesses participants in four different skills, which include listening, reading, and writing, respectively. They hold speaking section one week before the test and sometimes after it, depending on the test’s time.
Now let’s look into each IELTS test section:
In this section, you will listen to four different recordings and answer 40 questions. This test takes about 30 minutes, and you will have another 10 minutes to transfer answers to the answer sheet. You only hear the audio once. They use a variety of voices and native-speaker accents in these recordings.
The first and second part of the test covers social issues and conversations between people. In the third and fourth parts, academic matters are concerned. A conversation between four people and a conference make up this section.
The second part of the IELTS exam is reading, and they give you 60 minutes to answer a total of 40 questions. This part includes three or four passages of increasing difficulty.
The reading tests in both general and academic tests are graded to the same level. Unlike the audio section, this section does not include extra time to write in the answer sheet.
The first part of the IELTS reading test is about daily social activities. The second part is about the educational booklets and welfare needs that have been selected for the participants. The third part consists of a long text with a general theme.
The academic reading test includes three long texts and 40 questions to answer in 60 minutes. In this section, unlike the listening test, you will not have extra time to write in the answer sheet.
The second part of this exam, contains a scientific text has been selected for the participants. In the third part, a scientific or argumentative text has been chosen for the participant; if this text contains specialized words, short dictionaries will accompany it.
In IELTS writing section, you should write about two topics. You will have about 60 minutes to answer them.
The first topic will ask you to describe a hypothetical problem in a text of at least 150 words. Keep in mind that if the number of terms used in this text is less than the minimum required, you will lose the score.
In the second topic, you must express your opinion for or against a topic; keep in mind that this part must contain at least 250 words if you use fewer words than allowed. Be in proportion to the score you will lose.
IELTS Speaking is a face-to-face, informal discussion with an IELTS examiner, and is the same for both Academic and General Training. The test duration is 11 to 14 minutes.
The test is divided into three parts and is designed to test your pronunciation, fluency, grammar, and vocabulary. The applicant must answer general and personal questions about their residence, work status, family status, and interests in the first part of the test.
In the second part, a topic will be selected for you by the IELTS examiner, and you will have about one minute to think about this topic and take a photo. Talk about it for two minutes and then answer one or two questions about it. In this part, you do not have to answer all the items on the card, but you must answer them in two minutes.
In the third part of the IELTS Conversation test, you should have a conversation with the interviewer for 4 to 5 minutes, keeping in mind that the subject you are talking about in this part is as same as the topic in the second part.
What are the Differences between IELTS General and IELTS Academic?
As you are aware, the IELTS test is divided into two types, academic and general, each of which is defined for a specific purpose. You have to choose the IELTS test according to your goal.
Perhaps the most crucial difference between these two types of IELTS test is the destination to which you will be directed by obtaining the relevant score.
IELTS general is for those applicants who intend to immigrate to English-speaking countries such as the United Kingdom, the United States, Australia, etc., and do not decide to study at English-speaking universities.
IELTS academic is for applicants who intend to immigrate to English-speaking countries to continue their studies at universities where they teach English.
Another difference between these two exams is the type of questions in the writing and reading sections.
In the reading section, the participants are faced with topics that revolve around the scientific and academic axis. In a way, it can be said that these questions are more challenging and, at the same time, more limited.
In the writing section, participants should start writing about specialized topics in scientific and academic issues. In the first part of this test, applicants must write about the graph and chart analysis topics, and in the second part, they should write their opinion about the given topic.
The number of words and requirements of this part are presented in the introduction section of the writing section of your service. The IELTS academic listening and speaking sections are no different from the IELTS General.
What is Computer-delivered IELTS?
Computer IELTS is a type of IELTS test administered to IELTS UKVI Academic in some countries. IELTS has recognized this test since March 2016.
This test has certain similarities and differences with the IELTS test in paper. Similarities between these tests include how to hold exams, time, content, type of questions, the difference is that writing, listening, and reading sections are held on the computer.
How do They Score IELTS Exam?
The scoring system of the IELTS test is in the range of 1 to 9. There is no such thing as a passing score in this test, and the score obtained by you is a certificate of your language skills.
This score is not a reason for your acceptance or rejection, but according to your desired score’s expectations, these scores will be evaluated.
In general, according to this evaluation, a score of 5 is considered an average score, and a score of 6 and above is regarded as a good score.
The result of IELTS test will be prepared in the form of a transcript delivered only to the person taking the exam. The score of all your skills is displayed separately.
What are the Resources for the IELTS Test?
These books are part of IELTS test resources, and students can use this introduced collection or use other available resources according to their tastes:
- Mindset for IELTS
- Oxford Word Skills
- Kaplan IELTS 2009-2010
- The Official Cambridge Guide To IELTS
- Get Ready for IELTS Listening
- Get Ready for IELTS Speaking
- New Insight into IELTS
- Essential Grammar in Use
- Essential Words for the IELTS
- Complete IELTS Bands 5-6.5
- Objective IELTS Intermediate
- Objective IELTS Advanced
These are just some resources. You can search on the Internet to get a more complete list of books published by reputable publishing companies.
The IELTS academic and general training tests assess reading, listening, writing, and speaking skills in non-native speakers of the English language.
This test takes about three hours to complete, and includes different section, which we discussed thoroughly in this article.
It’s a kind of paper-and-pencil examination, and each section of the exam contains a variety of exercises and questions.