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A lot of students look for us every year with questions concerning TOEFL and IELTS exam. That is why we came up with the idea of this blog: we aim at helping candidates with ideas, discussions, tips and tricks for both exams. We also hope to answer some of the most questions candidates have, such as ‘which is easier, TOEFL or IELTS?’ ‘ should I take the academic or general training IELTS?’, ‘how do I apply?’, ‘what grade do I need’,, among others. So, let´s get started!

In this post, we will talk about the IELTS test. The International English Language Testing System (IETLS) is an overly taken and accepted test. Only last year, 2 million people all over the world took the test. It is an English proficiency test, which assess four skills – listening, speaking, reading and writing. The score of the test is used for higher education and world migration.

IELTS in a nutshell:

  • It is available at 59 locations in the US, about 900 worldwide and recognized by over 9,000 organizations worldwide, including educational institutions, employers, governments, immigration authorities and professional bodies;
  • It has four parts and it takes the candidate around 2 hours and 55 minutes to finish it;
  • You cannot fail the test. You will score at any of 9 “bands,” or levels of proficiency;
  • Cost varies widely even within the same country; usually is about 200 USD.
  • Your ‘Test Report Form’ will be valid for a recommended period of two years. More than two years report forms should only be accepted if it is accompanied by proof that you have actively maintained or tried to improve your English.
  • Book IELTS with the British Council online. Check the availability at takeielts.britishcouncil.org. However, before booking it, be sure to read our post about the differences between academic and general training IELTS.
  • In the speaking part, you are assessed by having a real-life conversation with a real person. Overall Score

The Academic and General Training papers are graded in the same way. You will be given a score from 1 to 9 for each part of the test – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. The average score of the four components produces your overall band score, which is rounded to the nearest whole or half band. You can score whole (e.g., 5.0, 6.0, 7.0) or half (e.g., 5.5., 6.5, 7.5) bands in each part of the test.

For example: If you achieve 7.5 for Listening, 5.5 for Reading, 5.5 for Writing and 6.5 for Speaking, you will be awarded an Overall Band Score of 6.0

As a general rule, a good band score is 6 because that is the band you need in order to be able to get into university to study academic subject. However, each institution has different requirements. It is essential that you check the minimum requirements before applying.

In our next post, we will talk about the difference between the Academic and the General Training IELTS. Don’t miss it!


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