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IELTS Test explained

Written by on May 21st, 2013.      0 comments

We often get asked – what exactly is IELTS and why would you need to sit the IELTS test?
We’d like to share our answer with you.

The IELTS (International English Language Testing System) is a test that measures the applicant’s ability to communicate in English for applicants who need to study or work in a country where English is used for communication.  Four language skill areas are tested – listening, reading, writing and speaking.

There are 9 levels of language ability that are measured in this test.
9 – Expert user
8 – Very good user
7 – Good user
6 – Competent user
5 – Modest user
4 – Limited user
3 – Extremely limited user
2 – Intermittent user
1 – Non user

The test grades results which can then be used to determine whether the applicant meets entry prerequisites for university entry, or for work or visa purposes.

More than 6,000 education institutions, faculties, government agencies and professional organisations around the world recognise IELTS scores as an indicator of an applicant’s ability to communicate in English.

There are two modules of the IELTS test – Academic and General Training.  The Academic module is suitable for candidates planning to undertake higher education study.  The General Training module is suitable for candidates planning to undertake non-academic training or work experience, or for immigration purposes.

There are 4 parts of the IELTS test – listening, reading, writing and speaking.  The Listening test is a 30 minutes test where applicants are required to listen to recordings and answer 40 questions.  In the one hour Reading test applicants must read 3 reading passages and answer 40 questions.   In the Writing test applicants must complete two pieces of writing in 60 minutes.   The speaking test is a face-to-face interview of approximately 11-14 minutes and applicants are required to answer short questions and speak on a familiar topic.

Understanding the format of the test and learning essential test strategies to complete the required tasks, will help an applicant to complete the test more successfully and with minimal stress.