Understanding IELTS

Understanding IELTS

Those who wish to go abroad for study or employment often presume that success in competitive examinations or existing qualifications or work experience is all they need to meet their objectives. While these are important factors, they will get you only so far towards your goal. In most cases, before the admission to the place of learning or employment is granted, there will be application and other forms to be completed, and an interview and/or group discussion to get through. This means that your communications skills, both written and verbal, must be up to the mark. IELTS stands for the International English Language Testing System and is used to measure proficiency in the English of those who want to study or work in countries where English is the language used for communication. Knowledge of how IELTS works and how to prepare for it is essential to being able to do well in the test. The test covers the following areas:


Students are given printed materials from books, magazines, newspapers, instruction manuals and other things they will need to use and understand while living abroad. After reading the material given to them, they will have to answer questions to establish their understanding of what they have read. This part of the test is for 1 hour.


This section is in 2 parts. In the first part, students are asked to write a letter that explains the details of a situation that is given to them. The quality of the English, as well as the tone and style of the letter, are both evaluated. In the second part, students are required to write an essay that presents a point of view on a given subject, outlines the nature of a problem or presents an argument for or against a topic. The total time given for completing both the sections is 1 hour.


The student is asked to listen to 4 recordings in English and then answer questions about them. The objective is to evaluate the ability to comprehend spoken English. The recordings are a conversation between 2 people, a monologue, a conversation between a group of people, and a monologue of an academic nature such as a lecture from a professor. The time for this section is 30 minutes.


This section is designed to evaluate a student’s ability to communicate verbally in English. There are 3 parts to this. In the first part, the student is asked about issues related to his/her life and the responses show the understanding of the questions asked. In the second part, the student is given a topic and given 1 minute of preparation time before beginning to speak about it. After speaking a few questions will be asked to evaluate the understanding of what has been said. In the third part, more detailed questions will be asked about what has been covered in the first 2 parts. This is to evaluate the depth of understanding of the subjects already covered and the concepts behind them. The total time for this section is about 15 minutes.

The way English is spoken and used varies in different parts of the world. The English used in India may sound strange to a person from another English speaking country. Preparing correctly for IELTS is the best way to ensure that your communications skills meet the IELTS requirements. Online coaching from a reputed institute that has IELTS preparation among its courses is the best way to prepare and succeed.

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