The International English Language Testing System can help you certify your English language level and assist you in your study, work, or visa goals. You will have approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete the test, and the test offers many dates and exam locations worldwide. Like all tests, it is important to study in order to do your best.
The IELTS is broken up into reading, writing, listening and speaking portions with a different amount of time allotted for each section. It is graded on a scale from 0-9 and is accepted in many parts of the English-speaking world. Here a few tips so you can be prepared when you take the test:
- Understand the format of the test. This will help reduce your level of anxiety and allow you to become familiar with its contents. You can also try to time yourself so you can be efficient when you take the test.
- Know which version of the test you need. The general test is better for work or visa processes, while the academic test is best for those who plan to study abroad.
- Listen to as many materials in English as you can. The IELTS attempts to be neutral and only tests the English language, not just English from a specific area (New Zealand, Canada, UK, US). It will help if you try to get used to different accents of spoken English through podcasts, music, TV shows, film and conversations with native English speakers or students.
- Read as much as you can. This also depends on the reason why you’re taking the IELTS to begin with. Since you will be tested on your reading level, try to read articles, books, recipes, and even song lyrics.
- Study English grammar. Some native English speakers may need to take this test, and they don’t always do as well as they expect because they don’t always study grammar. Studying grammar will ensure your tenses are correct, that you use the right word order, and that you are better prepared for the writing portion of the test.
- Join a conversation or ESL group. Studying with others who share your goals will help you stay motivated and helps make it easier to learn new skills. Other students might be strong in areas where you are weak, and you might be able to help someone else as well. Plus, it’ll also give you an excuse to be social while you study.
- Get a tutor. If you are able to get a tutor or do 1-to-1 studying you can be sure that your tutor or teacher will help you be better prepared for the IELTS. A tutor can help you identify areas in which you need to work and can make plans that are tailored to your needs.
Last but not least, make sure you get enough sleep and remember that there are plenty of test dates to choose from so you can form the best plan.