IELTS

International English Language Testing System

Free English Test Prep Masterclass: 29 May 2024 | 6PM (IST)

About IELTS

There are a few optional English proficiency tests for those who want to study abroad. However, there most popular and reliable test is the IELTS, or International English Language Testing System. Acknowledged as a frontrunner in English language research, it boasts endorsement by over 11,500 organisations across 140 nations which comprise educational institutions, governmental bodies and various other entities.

The IELTS evaluation comprises four distinct components: Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Each contributing to an independent score that collectively determines the outcome which is then delivered with an overall presentation. IELTS test scores are valid for two years from the date of your test, and they are given on a scale of 1 (lowest) to 9 (highest) band scores.

There are two IELTS exams— IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. The choice of test depends on your purpose. In essence, IELTS Academic evaluates if your English level is suitable for an academic setting which in turn reflects features of the academic language whereas IELTS General Training measures English proficiency in a practical, everyday context — typically mirrored by work settings or social environments.

Purpose of IELTS ?

IELTS evaluates the four essential skills a candidate must possess to be able to communicate in English. The skills assessed are Listening, Speaking, Reading, and Writing. The test provides a comprehensive assessment of the candidates’ ability to comprehend, communicate, and interact effectively in English across different situations and contexts.

Types of IELTS Tests

There are different tests provided by IELTS and students have the flexibility to choose the right test for their needs.

The two test types are the IELTS Academic and IELTS General. Both these tests evaluate the four basic skills (LSRW) and while the speaking and listening sections are the same, the reading and writing sections are different. These sections have been designed to test the language ability of the candidates across the specific sector relevant to the candidate.

Apart from the above test types, Life Skills is a test that is approved by the UK government – Secure English Language Test (SELT). This test assesses only the speaking and listening skills of the candidates.

IELTS Academic

If you are planning to study in a country where English is the primary language of communication, then IELTS Academic is the right test for you. Through this test, you will be assessed if you are ready to begin your study in English and whether you are familiar with the vocabulary in an academic setup. This test may also be a requirement if candidates want to register with professional bodies.

IELTS General

If you are planning to migrate to countries where English is spoken or you wish to train or study a course below the degree level, then IELTS General is the right test. This test assesses the English language skills you will have to possess in social situations and workplace environments.

IELTS Life Skills

If you are applying for a family visa, extension to family, spouse or partner visa, or indefinite leave to remain or obtain citizenship, then the IELTS Life Skills (SELT) test would be the right test for you. Candidates need to prove their English-speaking skills as a part of the UK Visa and immigration application (UKVI).

IELTS Test Format

Module# Sections# QuestionsDurationScenario/ Situation
Listening44030 mins +10 mins (transfer responses)Part 1 & 2: Daily life situations
Part 3 & 4: Educational and training situations
Speaking3NA11-14 minsPart 1: Personal conversation
Part 2: Specific topic
Part 3: General discussion
Reading3Approx. 1360 minsNarrative, descriptive, argumentative text with diagrams, graphs or illusions.
Writing21Task 1 – 20 mins
Task 2 – 40 mins
Task 1: Describe visual information (150 words)
Task 2: Discuss a point of view, argument or problem (250 words)
Module# Sections# QuestionsDurationScenario/ Situation
Listening41030 mins +10 mins (transfer responses)Part 1 & 2: Daily life situations
Part 3 & 4: Educational and training situations
Speaking3NA11-14 minsPart 1: Personal conversation
Part 2: Specific topic
Part 3: General discussion
Reading3Approx. 1360 minsSec 1: Notices, ads and timetables
Sec 2: Work topics
Sec 3: General topics
Writing21Task 1 – 20 mins
Task 2 – 40 mins
Task 1: Letter writing (150 words)
Task 2: Discuss a point of view, argument or problem (250 words)
CategoryLevelTasks
Family of a settled personLife skills A1Describe, give opinions, state preferences, comment, ask for information etc.
Extension to a family, spouse or partnerLife skills A2Includes tasks under A1 and compare, prioritize, plan and persuade.
Citizenship or indefinite leave to remainLife skills B1Includes tasks under A1 & A2 and narrate, showing contrast, cause, reason or purpose, ask about past or future events, express future certainty or possibility.

IELTS Scoring Pattern

The overall band score received on the IELTS is the average of the four sectional band scores rounded to the nearest half band. The band score ranges from 0 to 9 where 0 indicates the candidate did not attempt the test and 9 indicates the candidate to be an expert.

ModuleMarks/ CriteriaQuestions Right/ Weightage
Listening
  • Band score 5
  • Band score 6
  • Band score 7
  • Band score 8
  • 16
  • 23
  • 30
  • 35
Speaking
  • Fluency and coherence
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy
  • Pronunciation
Equal weightage is given to each criterion.
Reading – Academic
  • Band score 5
  • Band score 6
  • Band score 7
  • Band score 8
  • 15
  • 23
  • 30
  • 35
Reading – General
  • Band score 4
  • Band score 5
  • Band score 6
  • Band score 7
  • 15
  • 23
  • 30
  • 35
Writing
  • Task achievement
  • Coherence and Cohesion
  • Lexical Resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy
Assessment of task 2 carries more weightage in marking that task 2.

MetaApply’s Assistance in IELTS Preparation

Crack your IELTS Test and Score Great Band Score with MetaApply

Counselling:

We begin your journey of cracking the English proficiency test by providing you with relevant information regarding the test, how to prepare, and what are the basic requirements for the same.

Coaching

In the next step, our team of counsellors prepare you for the IELTS test in just 45 days. With our team of experts, you can quickly learn the English language skills to crack your IELTS exam easily.

Test Booking

Finally, with MetaApply, you not only get the chance to learn but also to book your test with our professionals to secure at least a 7-band score, which is good for your study abroad journey.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the eligibility criteria for the IELTS exam?

The only eligibility criteria required for the IELTS exams is that the candidate should be 16 years of age. There is no upper age limit for candidates to take the IELTS exam.

Sometimes, a candidate can find the IELTS exam a bit difficult to crack. The various levels or parts of the exam like reading, writing, speaking, or listening can be overwhelming but with MetaApply’s assistance, you can get a great band score.

There is nothing as such about a good IELTS score or a bad IELTS score. The score band is from 0-9, where 0 means a candidate did not attend the IELTS exam and 9 states that the candidate is an expert.

Like every other thing, IELTS scores also have an expiration date. The validity of your IELTS is two years from the exam date. After two years, the exam score expires, and if you wish to go abroad, you must take the IELTS exam again.

When it comes to preparing for the IELTS test, you have to have flawless English language skills, from reading and writing to listening and speaking. To prepare for your exam, you can either begin by practicing the skills yourself or use MetaApply’s assistance in coaching you for the exam.