What is IELTS?

IELTS, the International English Language Testing System, is the world's most popular high stakes English language test. Since the past 25+ years, it has been a leader in testing the 4 skills of English language. Even today, it has set the benchmark for English language proficiency. Over 10,000 organisations accept IELTS score as a proof of English. In India, IELTS can be taken at over forty locations.

IELTS is accepted for the following purposes:

  • Study abroad – Students planning for overseas education need to take an English language test that approves their proficiency. IELTS IDP India helps you gain admission to institutions abroad.
  • Work abroad - IELTS is the world's top English language evaluation, acknowledged by employers and professional bodies from English-speaking counties globally and also some universities in non-English speaking countries require and IELTS score, where courses are taught in English.
  • Immigration – If you are planning to immigrate to an English speaking country, it is mandatory for you to take IELTS. Migration authorities in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, US, and the United Kingdom use IELTS to process immigration.

IELTS Test Format

For more information on IELTS, you need to know about the test format. Whatever version you opt for, you will be required to test for the following skills in English:

  • Listening – The listening component lasts for 30 minutes and is divided into 4 sections. These 4 sections include a total of 40 questions, all of which test your ability to understand, monologue opinions, ideas, information, conversations, objectives, and developments. Since the test will include different accents, it is suggested that test takers practice well. This is to ensure we are not deviating from Listening component objective and keep key details identical so as to not confuse candidates. This includes the following:
    • Recording 1 – A discussion between two people set in an everyday social context.
    • Recording 2 – A speech or a monologue that is set in an everyday environment, e.g. a speech about local facilities.
    • Recording 3 – a chat between a group of people (up to 4) set in an educational or training setting, e.g. a university tutor and a student discussing an assignment.
    • Recording 4 - a monologue/lecture/speech on an academic subject, e.g. a university lecture.

    You’ll be assessed on your ability to understand the ideas and the detailed factual information, the views and stances of speakers, their purpose and your ability to follow the development of ideas.

  • Reading – The Reading component consists of 40 questions, designed to test a wide range of reading skills. These include reading for gist, reading for main ideas, reading for detail, skimming, understanding logical argument and recognising writers' opinions, attitudes and purpose. The testing questions differ in Academic and GT module.
    • IELTS Academic test - This comprises of 3 long texts. These may be descriptive, factual, discursive and analytical and are taken from academic journals, books, magazines and newspapers appropriate for people joining university courses or seeking professional accreditation.
    • IELTS General Training test – The GT module includes extracts that concern daily life, mostly taken from books, magazines, newspapers, advertisements, notices, company handbooks, manuals, guidelines, etc. These materials test you on the basis of situations you are likely to encounter on a regular basis in an English-speaking environment.
  • Writing – The writing component of 60 minutes comprises of 2 tasks. This may include writing personal opinion and understanding of a particular stance, formal and informal both.
  • IELTS Academic Test
    • Topics are of general interest to, and suitable for, test takers entering undergraduate and postgraduate studies or seeking professional registration. There are two tasks:
      • Task 1 – Herein, you will be provided a graph, table, chart or diagram and will be asked to describe or explain the information in your own words. The questions may range from explaining data to describing the stages of a process to how something works or simply describing an object or an event.
      • Task 2 – This will include writing an essay in response to a view, issue, argument or a problem.

      The responses to both the tasks must be in a formal style.

      IELTS General Training
    • Topics are of general interest. There are two tasks:
      • Task 1 - A situation will be presented and you will be asked to write a letter requesting information, or explaining the situation. This may be personal, semi-formal or formal in style.
      • Task 2 – Herein, you will be asked to write an essay in response to a view, argument or a problem. The writing style can be fairly personal in style.
  • Speaking– The duration of the speaking component is 11-14 minutes comprising of 3 parts. This is the only test which is a face to face interaction with the examiner and is delivered in such a manner that test takers cannot rehearse for response in advance. All responses are recorded in the speaking test.
  • Detailed information for each Part of the speaking component –

    • Part 1 - The examiner will ask general questions like telling him/her about yourself, your home, family, work, studies, interests, etc. This part lasts between four and five minutes.
    • Part 2 - You will be given a card that asks you to talk about a particular topic. You will have one minute to prepare before speaking for up to two minutes, much like extempore sessions. Following this, the examiner will ask one or two questions related to the same topic.
    • Part 3 - You will be asked further questions about the topic in Part 2. This will mostly be about discussing more abstract ideas/views and extracting information of your view point. This part of the test lasts between four and five minutes.

IELTS Modules

  • General Training – This test is accredited for daily use of language and is mostly applicable in cases of immigration.
  • Academic – This particular test is taken by students who are aspiring for education abroad or professionals who are exploring work opportunities overseas.


  • Trusted Experts – IELTS is the most trusted name when it comes to English language proficiency test. It is developed by Cambridge experts and is well supported by a strong research and development team.
  • Frequency of Test – Due to the easy availability of the tests, it is known to be the most convenient for test takers. It is available on 48 dates of the year i.e. upto 4 dates a month.
  • Accepted by most organisations – More than 10,000 organisations abroad accept the score as a validation of language proficiency.
  • Face to face Testing – It is known to be the fairest of all tests and is the only one that includes a face-to-face interaction.

For further information about IELTS, you may visit www.ieltsidpindia.com