IELTS Exam Information

What is the IELTS® exam?

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is designed to measure language proficiency of people who would like to work or study in places where English is the language of communication.

The IELTS exam is available in two test formats:

IELTS Academic

This test is designed for those planning to study in higher education (undergraduate and graduate studies) or those seeking professional registration. The IELTS Academic assess whether a person is well-equipped to begin studying or training in an English-speaking environment.

IELTS General Training

The IELTS General Training test should be taken by those who are going to complete secondary education in places where English is the language of communication or to participate in work experience or training programs. The IELTS General Training may be required for migration to Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the UK.

IELTS Academic vs. IELTS General Training

The listening and speaking sections are the same for both tests, whereas the reading and writing sections differ. Find out more about the format of each exam below:

IELTS Academic IELTS General Training
Test Length 2 hours, 45 minutes 2 hours, 45minutes
Speaking Section 11-14 minutes. Face-to-face interview with an examiner, including an introduction and discussion on a familiar topic.   11-14 minutes. Face-to-face interview with an examiner, including an introduction and discussion on a familiar topic.  
Reading Section 60 minutes. 3 long texts taken from books, journals, magazines and newspapers. Selected for a non-specialist audience, with topics of general interest.   60 minutes. 5-6 texts taken from notices, advertisements, company handbooks, official documents, books and newspapers. Materials likely to be encountered on a daily basis in an English-speaking environment.  
Writing Section 60 minutes. Students will be asked to describe a table, chart or diagram (at least 150 words) and write a short essay (at least 250 words) in an academic, semi- formal/neutral style. 60 minutes. Students will be asked to write a letter (at least 150 words) and a short essay (at least 250 words) in a personal, or semi-formal/neutral style.  
Listening Section 30 minutes plus 10 minutes’ transfer time. 4 sections containing 10 questions each. The first two deal with every day social contexts. Sections 3 and 4 deal with educational and training contexts.
 
30 minutes plus 10 minutes’ transfer time. 4 sections containing 10 questions each. The first two deal with every day social contexts. Sections 3 and 4 deal with educational and training contexts.
 
Scoring An individual band score of 1-9 for each skill section. The average produces your overall band score of 1-9.   An individual band score of 1-9 for each skill section. The average produces your overall band score of 1-9.

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