ABOUT IELTS

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a test of English Language proficiency of non-native English speakers. The test scores are a pre-requisite for getting addmission in UK, Australian, New Zealand and Canadian colleges and universities. Of late American universities too have started accepting IELTS scores. This test is an important step forward for those seeking to study or work in a foreign country.

Who administers IELTS?

The three main institutions that manage IELTS are the British Council, IDP IELTS Australia and the University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (Cambridge ESOL).

IELTS Test Format

There are two versions of the IELTS exam - Academic and General. Students must know in which category they are supposed to take the test.

The first three parts of the tests i.e. Listening, Reading, Writing have to be taken on the first day without any break. While the Speaking test can be taken either on the same day, or 7 days before or after the Listening, Reading, Writing test. Listening and Speaking tests are same in both the versions of the test.

Speaking

The Speaking section consists of six tasks: two independent tasks and four integrated tasks. In the two independent tasks, test-takers answer opinion questions on familiar topics. They are evaluated on their ability to spea spontaneously and convey their ideas clearly and coherently. In two of the integrated tasks, test-takers read a short passage, listen to an academic course lecture or a conversation about campus life and answer a question by combining appropriate information from the text and the talk. In the two remaining integrated tasks, test-takers listen to an academic course lecture or a conversation about campus life and then respond to a question about what they heard. In the integrated tasks, test-takers are evaluated on their ability to appropriately synthesize and effectively convey information from the reading and listening material. Test-takers may take notes as they read and listen and may use their notes to help prepare their responses. Test-takers are given a short preparation time before they have to begin speaking. The responses are digitally recorded, sent to ETS's Online Scoring Network (OSN) and evaluated by three to six raters

Writing

The Writing section measures a test taker's ability to write in an academic setting and consists of two tasks: one integrated task and one independent task. In the integrated task, test-takers read a passage on an academic topic and then listen to a speaker discuss the same topic. The test-taker will then write a summary about the important points in the listening passage and explain how these relate to the key points of the reading passage. In the independent task, the test-taker must write an essay that states, explains, and supports their opinion on an issue, supporting their opinions or choices, rather than simply listing personal preferences or choices. Responses are sent to the ETS OSN and evaluated by four raters.

IELTS Academic

This test is for those who plan to study English in a university to test their understanding and use of complex academic language. IELTS Academic is divided into four sections.


Listening

The test is of 30 minutes and 10 minutes are given extra for transfering answers to the answer sheet. The candidates are tested on monologues and conversations.

Reading

The test is of 60 minutes in which students are tested on reading passages with tasks, text from descriptive and factual to discursive and analytical, diagrams, graph, text from books , journals, and newspapers.

Writing

The test is of 60 minutes, which comprises of writing task of 150 words, descibing tables, graphs, charts, diagrams and a short essay of 250 words.

Speaking

Speaking test is of 11 to 14 minutes. In this test, candidates are put through face to face interview, short questions, speaking on a familiar topic and a discussion.



IELTS General Training

This test is meant for those who require a more general level of English for college, high school, employment or immigration purposes. IELTS General Training is also divided into four sections.


Listening

The test is of 30 minutes and 10 minutes are given extra for transfering answers to the answer sheet. The candidates are tested on monologues and conversations.

Reading

The duration of this test is 60 minutes in which three reading passages with tasks will be given.
Section 1 will be based on two or three short factual texts.
Section 2 will be based on two short factual texts.
Section 3 will be based on one long text on general topic.
(The extracts will be authentic as it will be taken from books, newspaper etc.)

Writing

Writing section will be of 60 minutes in which candidates will be asked to write a letter of 150 words and short essay of 250 words..

Speaking

Speaking test is of 11 to 14 minutes. In this test, candidates are put through face to face interview, short questions, speaking on a familiar topic and a discussion.

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