IELTS comprehensive guide
IELTS, the International English Language Testing System, is designed to assess the language ability of candidates who need to study or work where English is the language of communication. IELTS is jointly managed by the University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations (Cambridge ESOL), British Council and IDP : IELTS Australia. IELTS conforms to the highest international standards of language assessment. IELTS is recognized by universities and employers in many countries, including Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and the USA. It is also recognized by professional bodies, immigration authorities and other government agencies.
There are four sub-tests, or modules, to the IELTS test:
Listening duration-30 minutes plus 10 minutes transfer time.
There are 40 questions. A variety of question types are used. Chosen from the following.
* Multiple choice
* Plan/Map/Diagram labelling
* From completion
* Note completion
* Table completion
* Flow-Chart completion
* Summary completion
* Sentence completion
* Short-answer questions
Test parts-4 sections:
Section 1: A Conversation between two people set in an everyday social context (e.g. conservation about accommodation)
Section 2: A monologue set in an everyday social context (e.g. a speech about local facilities or about arrangement for meals during a conference)
Section 3: A conservation between up to four people set in an educational or training context (e.g. a university tutor and a student discussing an assignment, or a group of people planning a project)
Section 4: A talk (e.g. a university lecture)
Top 5 approved listening tips
* All the beginning of each section read the questions for that section carefully, before the recording starts. This will help you to follow the recording and identify the answers.
* After completing a section, it is better to look ahead and read the questions for the next section then to worry about the last section.
* You will sometimes have a list of options to choose from as answers. The possible answers may be listed in alphabetical order and not necessarily in the order you will hear them.
* Be careful to note word limits. If there is an instruction: Write no more than two words’, writing ,more than two words will mean OU WILL RECEIVE NO MARKIS AT All FOR YOUR ANSWER, EVEN IF SOME OF THE WORDS WERE CORRECT.
* Try to listen for key words or synonyms (words that have the same or nearly the same or nearly the same meaning as another word) from the question to help you identify the answer. For example, in the recording you might hear; “she likes going to the gym and playing tennis”. On your answer sheet, this could appear as “she is an active person”.
Writing duration 60 minutes
Task 1 : You are required to write at least 150 words
Task 2 : You are required to write at least 250 words
Task 1: You are presented with a graph, table, chart or diagram and are asked to summarise and report the information in your own words. You may be asked to select and compare data, describe the stages of a process, describe an object or how something works.
Task 2: You are asked to write an essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem. Task 2 contributes twice as much as Task 1 to the Writing score. The issues raised are of general interest to, suitable for and easily understood by test takers entering undergraduate or postgraduate studies or seeking professional registration.
Task 1: You are presented with a situation and are asked to write a letter requesting information or explaining the situation. The letter may be personal, semi-formal or formal in style.
Task 2: You are asked to write an essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem .The essay can be less formal in style with a more personal response than the Academic Writing Task 2 essay. Task 2 contributes twice as much as Task 1 to the Writing score.
Top 5 approved writing tips
* In your Writing test there are no right or wrong answers or opinions. The examiners are assessing how well you can use your English to report information and express ideas.
* Analyse the questions carefully to make sure your answer addresses all the points covered by the question.
* Notice the minimum word limit. If you write less than 150 words for Task 1 and less than 250 for Task 2, you will lose marks.
* Be careful to use your own words because the examiner will not include words copied from the question in the word count.
* You must write both your answers in full, not in note form or in bullet points. You must arrange your ideas in paragraphs, to show the examiner that you are able to organise your main and supporting points.
Reading duration 60 minutes
There are 40 questions. A variety of question types are used. Chosen from the following multiple choice. Identifying information(TRUE/FALSE/NOT GIVEN).
* Matching information
* Matching headings
* MATCHING FEATURES
* MATCHING SENTENCE ENDINGS
* SENTENCE COMPLETION
* NOTE COMPLETION
* Table completion
* Flow-Chart completion
* Diagram label completion
* Short answer questions
Test parts-4 sections:
Section 1: The texts are all real and are taken from books, magazines and newspapers. They have been written for a non-specialist audience and are on academic topics of general interest, which means you need specialist knowledge to do well.
Section 2: The texts are appropriate to, and accessible to, candidates entering undergraduate or postgraduate courses or seeking professional registration.
Section 3: Text ranges from the descriptive and factual to the discursive and analytical. Text may contain nonverbal, materials such as diagrams, graphs or illustrations.
Section 4: If texts contain technical terms, then a simple glossary is provided.
General Training Reading Sections
Section 1: contains two or three short factual texts, one of which may be composite (consisting of 6-8 short texts related by topic, e.g. hotel advertisements). Topics are relevant to everyday life in an English-speaking country.
Section 2: Contains two short factual texts focusing on work-related issues (e.g. applying for jobs, company policies, pay and conditions, workplace facilities, staff development and training.
Section 3: Contains one longer, more complex text on atopic of general interest. You will be reading real passages taken from notices, advertisements, company, handbook, official documents, books, magazines, and newspapers.
Top 5 approved reading tips
* To improve your performance in the Reading test you need to practise reading a variety of English texts. This will help you develop the ability to read quickly, as is required under text conditions.
* Read every question carefully first before reading the passages. This will make it easier for you to find the answers. Underline possible answers as you go.
* When you come to read the passage, READ IT QUICKLY THE FIRST TIME IN ORDER TO GET A general idea of what it’s about. Don’t worry about words you do not understand. Then read each question again to remind yourself which parts of the passage you will need to read again in detail.
* If you are coping words from a question or reading passage to use in your answer, remember that your spelling must be accurate.
* If you are asked to label a diagram, you will find the words you need in the text. Be sure to copy them carefully from the text with the correct spelling.
Speaking duration 11-14 minutes
Test parts-3 sections:
Task 1: Introduction and interview (4-5 minutes). The examiner introduces him/herself and asks you to introduce yourself and confirm your identity. The examiner asks you general questions on familiar topics (e.g. family, work, studies, and interests.
Task 2: Individual long turns (3-4 minutes). The examiner gives you a task card that ASKS YOU TO TALK about a particular topic and which includes points you can cover in your talk, and you are given a pencil and paper to make notes. You have one to two minutes on the topic. The examiner then asks one or two questions on the same topic.
Task 2: Two-way discussions (4-5 mi9nutes). The examiner asks further questions that are connected to the topic of Part 2. This gives you an opportunity to discuss more general issues and ideas.
Top 5 approved speaking tips
* In the lead up to the speaking test., make sure you take the time to practise speaking English – with friends, at work and on the phone. You should also consider recording yourself, so that you are confident speaking English during your test.
* There are no right or wrong answers in the speaking test. The examiner will assess you on how well you can express your ideas and opinions in good English.
* It will help you to feel relaxed if you imagine you are talking to a friend. Remember that you are not being assessed on your opinions, rather on your use of English.
* Try to avoid repeating the word used in the examiner’s question. Use your own words to show the examiner your full ability.
* Speak clearly and at a natural pace. If you speak too quickly, You May make mistakes or pronounce words incorrectly.
Exam pattern and New Batches
The following table shows the IELTS exam pattern
4 sections, 40 questions
2 Writing tasks
3 sections, 40 questions
3 part one-on-one conversation