WHAT IS IELTS ? – All you need to know

A brief Introduction about IELTS

Today many of the people are planning to move to Canada, New Zealand, the UK, Australia and USA etc., for different purposes like higher studies, job, migration etc .So here is the importance of IELTS arise. International Language Testing system (IELTS) is the gateway to these countries. English is one among the most spoken language around the globe. So English is essential to demonstrate or convey ideas or information effectively.

IELTS is designed to evaluate the knowledge of the applicant English who is planning to study or work in an English-speaking environment.

If IELTS is your dream ,then this blog will help you to know more about it and will guide you how to reach your goal.

International Language Testing system (IELTS)

International Language Testing System(IELTS) is basically an examination conducted to evaluate the skill of the applicant to use English language. For this reading, writing, speaking and listening is assessed. IELTS is owned by British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge Assessment English. IELTS is mainly of two types they are

  1. IELTS Academic
  2. IELTS General Training

IELTS Academic

What is IELTS

IELTS Academic is for students who are planning to study in an English-Speaking environment or in a university where English is the mode of learning. The test ensures that the applicant is able to study in English medium .IELTS Academic can also be done for professional registration also. In this test 4 categories are there

  1. Listening
  2. Academic Reading
  3. Academic Writing
  4. Speaking

IELTS General Training

IELTS General Training is suitable for applicants planning to study below graduation level and also it can be taken for work experience. In this test four categories of tasks are there

  1. Listening
  2. General Training Reading
  3. General Training Writing
  4. Speaking

General Test structure of IELTS

  • Listening
  • Academic Writing
  • General Training Writing
  • Academic Reading
  • General Training Reading
  • Speaking

Listening

Listening test is a thirty minutes task. In this section four recorded audios of native English speakers will be played ; the candidate has to answer the questions based on these audios. All the four recordings will be of different topics. They are

  • Conversation between two individuals
  •  A speech regarding a general subject
  • A conversation between more than two individuals regarding educational or training topics
  • A lecture regarding an academic context

The listening test is evaluated by certified markers .After the first step of evaluation, the answers are revaluated by Cambridge Assessment English. The audio will be played only once the candidate has to listen and answer the questions according to each audio accurately. From each section there will be ten questions in the task. In this section the ability of the candidate to understand the information, opinion of the speaker and ability to recognize the complete audio is assessed.

In Listening test Six types of questions are to be answered by the candidate.

They are

  1. Multiple Choice
  2. Matching
  3. Plan, Map, Diagram labelling
  • Sentence Completion.
  • Short Answer questions

Multiple Choice

In this task a question followed by three possible answers the candidate has to select the most appropriate answer from it. In some cases, a list of options will be provided ,from this the candidate have to select more than one correct answer

Matching

In this task from a numbered list of items from the audio played to the list of options given in the question paper

Plan, Map, Diagram labelling

In this the candidate has to complete labelling on a Plan, a Map or a Diagram. The answers are usually selected from the question paper    

Form, Note, Table, Flow-Chart, Summary completion

It is a task to fill the gaps in the outline of the audio or the complete audio played for the listening test. The outline will be focusing the core idea of the text. The text may be a Form,  Table, Flow-Chart or a Summary

Sentence Completion

In this task the aspirant is asked to read a set of sentences summarising the key information of the listening text or part of it .then have to fill the gaps in the sentences from the text with appropriate words .There will be  word limitation.

Short Answer questions

A question will be provided in this section. The candidate has to read it and prepare short answer according to the information from the audio played, there will be word limitation in this section also.

Academic Reading

Sixty minutes is allotted for Academic Reading test .In this section the candidate has to answer 40 different types of questions from three passages. Texts are taken from different sources like  newspapers, magazines, books, etc. The texts provided will be of different types like descriptions, Narration, etc. Some times there will be non-verbal contents  like diagrams and graphs will be included in the text and also if any technical terms or words are there in the text, then a glossary will be provided for reference. The applicants have to write the answers the questions in the specified time. No additional time will be provided .In this category mainly 11 types of questions are given. They are

  1. Multiple choice
  2.  Identifying Information
  3. Identifying Viewers views/claims
  • Matching Heading
  • Matching Features
  • Matching sentence Endings
  • Sentence Completion
  •  Summary, note, table, flow-chart completion
  • Diagram label completion
  • Short-answer questions

Multiple choice

In this task the candidate has to select the correct answer from the list of options given . if 4 options are given only one answer can be selected and if there are 5 or 7 options provided then the candidate has to select 2 and 3 answers respectively from the option list given.

Identifying Information

In this section some statements are given based on the text .The candidate has to state whether the statement is TRUE or FALSE according to the text.

Identifying Viewers views/claims

In this section some statements are given based on the text. The candidate has to answer that whether the statements agree the views or claims of the writer. If agreeing YES & NO for not agreeing should be marked in the boxes given. If the statement is not present in the text, then Not Given should be marked.

Matching Information

In this section the candidate is asked to find specific information within the lettered paragraphs from the texts given. Sometimes a reason, an explanation, etc. are asked to find . Then the letter representing the paragraph has to be marked in the answer sheet.

 Matching Heading

A list of headings denoted by roman letters( i, ii, iii …)will be provided the candidate has to match it with the most appropriate paragraph or text

Matching Features

In this  candidate has to match a set of statements to a list of options. The options are a group of features from the text.

Matching sentence Endings

In this task first half of a Sentence based on the text is given, then the candidate has to complete the Sentence by selecting the most suitable options from the list

Sentence Completion

The applicants have to complete the sentence using a specified number of words taken from the text. Clear instructions regarding the number of words to be used will be provided.

Summary, note, table, flow-chart completion

In this section a summary of a part of the text is given and candidate is asked to complete it using the information from the text . The information provided will be in the form of  a summary, Note, Table or a flow-chart

Diagram label completion

The candidate has to fill labels on the diagram .Proper instructions will be given to convey clear information about the word limit,

Short-answer questions

In this section the aspirants have to write short answers based on the factual information in the given text . There will be word limit in each answer. If the applicant uses words more than the specification then it may cause mark lose to the candidate.

General Training Reading

Sixty minutes is allotted for General Training Reading test .In this section the candidate has to answer 40 different types of questions from three passages. Texts are taken from different sources like  newspapers, magazines, books, etc. The texts provided will be of different types like descriptions, Narration, etc. Sometimes there will be non-verbal contents  like diagrams and graphs will be included in the text and also if any technical terms or words are there in the text, then a glossary will be provided for reference. The applicants have to write the answers the questions in the specified time. No additional time will be provided .In this category mainly 11 types of questions are given. They are

  1. Multiple choice
  2.  Identifying Information
  3. Identifying Viewers views/claims
  4. Matching Information
  5. Matching Heading
  6. Matching Features
  7. Matching sentence Endings
  8. Sentence Completion
  9.  Summary, note, table, flow-chart completion
  10. Diagram label completion
  11. Short-answer questions

Academic Writing

In this category the candidate has to complete two writing tasks .The total time allowed is 60 minutes. The topics will be based on general topics which are aiming candidates planning under graduation or post-graduation.

Task 1

In this task the candidate is asked to write a description about a visual information (Graph, Chart, diagram ) in their own words. The maximum word limit is 150.Task 1 is mainly assessed on the basis of the following criteria Task achievement, Coherence and cohesion, Lexical resource & Grammatical range and accuracy

Task 2

In this task the candidate is asked to respond to an argument or a problem.  The maximum word limit is two fifty. Task 2 is mainly assessed on the basis of the following criteria Task response, Coherence and cohesion, Lexical resource & Grammatical range and accuracy

General Training Reading

In this category the candidate has to complete two writing tasks .The total time allowed is 60 minutes. The first task is to respond to a situation by writing a letter and the second task is to write an essay in response to a view point ,argument or a problem.

Task 1

In this task the candidate is asked to write a personal response based on a situation provided , in the form of a formal, informal or semi formal letter with at least 150 words. The applicant should not spend more than 20 minutes in this task. Task 1 is evaluated on the basis of these criteria

  • Task achievement
  • Coherence and cohesion
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy.

 Task 2

In this task the candidate is asked to write a formal, informal or semi -formal discursive essay. The essay should contain at least 250 words. The applicant will be penalised if the specified word count is not achieved and also if the essay is off-topic or not fully written . Task 2 is evaluated on the basis of these criteria

  • Task response
  • Coherence and cohesion
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy.

SPEAKING

The test is done to assess the candidates English speaking ability. The entire speaking test is recorded. The test mainly consists of three tasks they are Introduction and interview, Long turn & Discussion.    Each task is structured for different fulfilling specific functions.

Introduction and interview

In this section the examiner introduces themselves and  checks the identity of the aspirant, then general questions related to family, home, studies and work are also asked. This section is focused to evaluate the ability of the candidate to communicate everyday topics or information in the day today life.

Long turn 

In this section a task card is given ,the candidate has to speak about the topic for two minutes. One minute will be given to the candidate for preparing the speech. This task is to assess the ability of the candidate to speak for a span of time continuously without break.

Discussion

In this section a discussion is done between the candidate and the evaluator about the subject in the second section. This task focus on the ability to express opinions, discuss and speculate ideas about a specific topic .

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