What is IELTS ? IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System. This test is used to test the required English language efficiency of the candidates for study abroad or Immigration. The test consists of 4 modules, i.e. Reading, Listening, Writing and Speaking. The first three modules takes place on a single day while speaking is held on a different date.
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IELTS has got 2 modules:
IELTS Academic & IELTS General
IELTS Academic module is for the students who want to go abroad for higher studies.
IELTS General module is for the professionals who want to migrate to a native English countries. There are four sections of each module and they appear in the test in the following order:
|Section||Sub-Section||No. Of Questions||Time|
|Listening||4 tasks||40||30m. + 10m. (answer transfer)|
|Reading||3 (academic) & 4-6 (general) passages||40||1 hr. (no answer transfer time)|
|Writing||2 tasks||2||20m. + 40m.= 1hr.|
|Speaking||3 speaking tasks||10+1+6||11 – 14 minutes|
IELST LISTENING (Academic or General) 4 audio clips are played once and one has to answer the objective questions based on the information provided in the audio. Total 40 marks ; 1 mark for each correct answer. Punctuation mistakes are considered wrong answer. Following types of questions are asked; Fill the forms, note completion, short answer questions, multiple choice questions, flow chart completion, diagram completion, map completion, table completion etc.
IELTS READING: ACADEMIC 3 long passages of about 2200 t0 2800 words are asked with 13 to 14 questions based on each passage. Questions are objective in nature. Total 40 marks; 1 mark for each correct answer. Punctuation mistakes are considered wrong answer. Following types of questions are asked; Match the headings, short answer questions, true/false/not given, yes/no/not given, sentence completion, summary completion, diagram/flow chart/table completion, classification etc.
IELTS READING: GENERAL 4 to 6 passages are asked; the last passage is the same as academic but other passages are different and a bit easier than academic. Total 40 marks; 1 mark for each correct answer. Punctuation mistakes are considered wrong answer. Following types of questions are asked; Match the headings, short answer questions, true/false/not given, yes/no/not given, sentence completion, summary completion, diagram/flow chart/table completion, classification etc.
IELTS WRITING ACADEMIC Task-1: In this task, a candidate has to write the description of a pictorial or graphical illustration in 150 words in 20 minutes. It shares about 25 – 30 % marks of the written segment. Task-2: In this task, a candidate has to write an essay on the given topic in 250 words in 40 minutes. It shares about 70-75 % marks of the written segment.
IELTS WRITING GENERAL Task-1: In this task, a candidate has to write a letter or application on the given situation in 150 words in 20 minutes. It shares about 25 – 30 % marks of the written segment. Task-2: In this task, a candidate has to write an essay on the given topic in 250 words in 40 minutes. It shares about 70-75 % marks of the written segment.
IELTS SPEAKING (Academic or General) There are 3 rounds in speaking. It is like one to one interview. Round 1- General introductory questions are asked in this round. 3 topics are taken to ask 3 -4 questions on each topic. Time taken is 4-5 minutes. Round 2- A topic card is given to the candidate with a topic and 3 -4 questions on the topic. 1 minute is given to prepare the answer and then a candidate has to speak for 1-2 minutes. Examiner may ask additional questions to complete 2 minutes. This section takes 3-4 minutes. Round 3- This is an extended discussion/conversation on the topic given in the topic card where the candidate has to give his opinion by supporting it logically. This section takes 4-5 minutes.
Why IELTS ? IELTS tests are held in more than 120 countries and are taken by around 1.5 million each year. The test is recognized by the leading universities and colleges in many countries including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK and USA. IELTS is also recognized by the professional bodies, immigration authorities and other government agencies.
WHO conducts the IELTS ? IELTS is jointly managed by the University of Cambridge, British Council and IDP. Currently, there are more than 1000 centres in more than 100 countries. The IELTS Academic test is administered on 48 fixed dates each year and general training module is administered on 24 fixed dates per year.
How to get registered for IELTS ? To register for IELTS, you can fill the application form online on the website of Cambridge English or British Council or IDP or you can also download the copy of the IELTS application form. You may also ask your test centre for a copy of the form. You will need to return a completed and signed application form, a photocopy of your passport, and two identical, coloured and passport size photos that should not be less than 6 months old.
Validity period of the result The IELTS Test Report Form (TRF) is valid for two years. At present, IELTS score is valid for a three year period for Australian General Skilled Migration (GSM) applications. Result will be sent to you in 13 days from your test.
Can you chaallange the score of IELTS ? Yes, if you are not happy with your IELTS scores, you may request for re-evaluation of IELTS scores. You will be required to pay an enquiry fee, which will be refunded if your band scores changes. You will be required to make request for re-evaluation within 6 weeks of the test date on the Test Report Form. The results will be processed within 6-8 weeks. You will receive a letter through an email which confirms your final score from your test centre. Once you have re-marked the scores, no appeals would be entertained and the decision would be final. During the period of remarking your test results, you would not be required to apply for a university or send your scores to an immigration office.
VALIDITY OF IELTS FOR IMMIGRATION PROCESS IELTS scores will be accepted by the Department of Immigration for up to 3 years prior of lodgment. The only exception is for functional English which requires testing to be done at most 12 months before lodgment.
Interpreting the scores of IELTS
The IELTS Band Scores IELTS is a multi-level exam. You get a score between 1 and 9 for each section. Half scores such as 6.5 are possible. Universities often demand an IELTS score of 6 or 7. They may also demand a minimum score in each of the 4 sections. You can use this
IELTS Band Score Calculator to convert your reading and listening scores.
IELTS Listening marking schemes
|Score / 40||39-40||37-38||35-36||32-34||30-31||26-29||23-25||18-22||16-17||13-15||10-12||8-10||6-7||4-5|
IELTS General Reading marking schemes
|Score / 40||40||39||37-38||36||34-35||32-33||30-31||27-29||23-26||19-22||15-18||12-14||9-11||6-8|
IELTS Academic Reading marking schemes
|Score / 40||39-40||37-38||35-36||33-34||30-32||27-29||23-26||19-22||15-18||13-14||10-12||8-9||6-7||4-5|
IELTS Writing marking schemes The two writing questions are marked out of 9 according to the following criteria: • Task Achievement • Coherence and Cohesion • Lexical Resource • Grammatical Range and Accuracy
IELTS Speaking marking schemes The speaking test is also marked out of 9 according to the following criteria: • Fluency and coherence • Lexical resource • Grammatical range and accuracy • Pronunciation