IELTS or 'International English Language Testing System’ is an international standardised test of English language proficiency. It is jointly managed by University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations, the British Council and IDP Education Pty Ltd, and was established in 1989.
IELTS tests are held in over 500 centres with tests up to four times a month. IELTS respects international diversity and is fair to anyone who sits the test, regardless of nationality.
You can choose from two types of IELTS test: Academic or General Training, depending on whether you want to study, work or migrate. Both modules are made up of four parts – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. IELTS results are graded on the unique IELTS 9-band scale.
To help you prepare, IELTS provides samples and practice tests. The test covers the full range of ability from non-user to expert user. You are not limited in how many times you can sit the test.
IELTS is an English Language Proficiency test that is required to be taken by non-native students for study in countries where the medium of instruction is English. Among the popular study destinations IELTS is accepted by universities in UK, Australia, New Zealand and Canada.
The good news is now USA also says YES to IELTS.
Why Choose IELTS
IELTS tests all four language skills – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. The Speaking test is a face-to-face interview with a certified Examiner. It is interactive and as close to a real-life situation as a test can get.
Research shows that IELTS motivates test-takers to develop real and well-rounded English rather than learning by rote. This means your understanding of English is improved and valid for real life in an English-speaking country.
IELTS is owned by three reputable, international organisations. It has the highest quality control and security procedures. More than 6000 organisations, including many government departments and universities, rely on IELTS. The IELTS scoring system is recognised globally, giving you a truly international result.
The TEST Format
The test has different sections:
The Listening Section - Duration: 30 minutes
Academic reading/general training reading section - Duration: 60 minutes
Academic writing/general training writing section - Duration: 60 minutes
Speaking Section: Duration: 11 - 14 minutes
Total test time: 2 hours and 45 minutes
You will receive a separate Band Score. The four Band Scores, one for each section are added together and averaged for an Overall Band Score. Each Band has a statement giving a summary of the English at that level. There are nine Band levels, from one (non-user) to nine (expert user).
The minimum score accepted for a course ranges from 5.0 to 7.5, depending upon courses and institutes you are applying to. The most common requirement is a band score of 6 to 6.5.
Test Reports have a validity of two years.
You can retake the test if you do not achieve the desired score but not before three months of the first test date.
Academic – Institutions of Higher and Further Education
The Academic format is, broadly speaking, for those who want to study or train in an English-speaking university or Institutions of Higher and Further Education. Admission to undergraduate and postgraduate courses is based on the results of the Academic test.
General Training – for school, work or migration
The General Training format focuses on basic survival skills in broad social and workplace contexts. It is typically for those who are going to English-speaking countries to do secondary education, work experience or training programs. People migrating to Australia, Canada and New Zealand must sit the General Training test.
For more details you can visit any of the nearest BRITISH COUNCIL or BRITISH LIBRARY.