IELTS Exam FAQs : Clear Your Common Doubts

Students who appear for the English Language Proficiency tests particularly IELTS i.e. International English Language Testing System have many queries regarding the same. Below are some frequently answered questions which will give the students a clear idea of the structure and format of the same.

  1. What is IELTS?

IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System which is used to measure the language proficiency of people wanting to study or work abroad. It uses a 9-band scale to identify the levels of proficiency.

  1. Which skills are tested in IELTS test?

The skills which are tested in IELTS are listening, reading, speaking and writing.

  1. What does the test consist of?

The test has four different sections for Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking.

  1. Who accepts IELTS scores?

The IELTS score is accepted worldwide. It is also recognized by over 9000 organizations worldwide right from the employers, educational institutions, governments, professional bodies to the immigration authorities.

  1. Is there a break between reading and writing test?

The Listening, Reading and Writing components of all IELTS tests are completed on the same day, with no breaks in between them. The Speaking component, however, can be completed up to a week before or after the other tests.

  1. Can I use a pen for my test?

In IELTS reading and listening you must use a pencil for filling in the answer sheet. This also means that you need to take an eraser along with you as well. Whereas in the IELTS writing section you can use either pen or pencil.

  1. How many times can I take my IELTS test?

You can appear for IELTS as many times as you want to but it is not recommended because if you appear for it very frequently then the scope of improvement in the score is not much.

  1. How long is an IELTS score valid?

The IELTS score is valid for two years.

  1. How much does it cost?

The British Council IELTS costs around INR 11,300.

  1. How do I register for my test?
  • Firstly you need to find your nearest IELTS test location.
  • Secondly, register for the IELTS test and pay online or download an application form and submit it at the local test center. Also provide a copy of your valid identity document which will be presented on the day of the test.
  • After your application is processed the center will send a written confirmation of the time and date of your exam.
  1. What if I need to postpone or cancel my applications?
  • If you postpone the application or cancel it more than 5 weeks before the test is scheduled then you will receive a refund from which 25% local administration charge will be deducted.
  • In case you cancel the test within 5 weeks of the test then you will be charged the full fees unless there is a medical reason because of which you cannot make it.
  • If you provide a medical certificate within 5 days of the test date then you are bound to receive a refund minus 25% local admin cost.
  1. How do I get my IELTS results?

The result of your test will be available 13 days after your test is complete. You can pick it up in person or have it posted to your address. The results will also be available online for 28 days. The result can be viewed at one of the following websites:-

  • British Council network of test centers
  • IELTS USA network of test centers
  • IDP IELTS Australia network of test centers
  1. Do I take all the parts of my test on the same day?

The Listening, Writing and Reading components of the test are completed immediately after each other without any break. You will be required to take the speaking test up to 7 days either before or after the test date as informed to you.

  1. What are the test rules?

The test rules and guidelines can be found on the IELTS Application Form. There is also the Information for Candidates Booklet so that you understand the format and know what to expect on the day of the exam.

  1. Which part do I take first?

The listening component should be done first followed by the Reading and Writing sections of the test. The Speaking Test may be taken up to 7 days before or after the test date, depending on the test date.

  1. What can I take into examination room?

You can take pens, erasers, and pencils. You also have to bring the passport or the national identity card which is used on the IELTS Application Form to your test. You are supposed to leave everything else outside the exam room. All the electronic equipment should be left outside the exam room.

  1. How are test marked?

IELTS is marked using a 9-band scoring system in order to measure and report the test scores. Individual band score is also used for listening, Writing, Reading and Speaking and an overall band score on a band scale from one to nine.

  1. What is IELTS TRF?

The Test Report Form is the result which is printed 13 days after the test day. You need to bring the form of identity which you have used to register for the test in order to pick up your TRF. It is an important document and one must keep it properly.

  1. When will I receive my test results?

The test report form is available to you for 13 calendar days after your test date.

  1. How long is the result valid for?

The IELTS Test Report Form is valid for two years presently, IELTS score is valid for three year period for the Australian General Skilled Migration (GSM) applications

  1. How soon can I retake the test?

There is no limit on taking the retest. But it is recommended that you do an additional study before taking the test again.

  1. What if I am not happy with my results?

In case you are not happy with your results you can apply for an Enquiry on result at your test center within six weeks of the test date. You will have to pay an enquiry fee which will be fully refunded if the band score changes.

  1. If I retake the test, which result can I use?

You can use whichever test score that you want to as far the score is valid.

  1. What are the similarities and differences between IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training?
  • IELTS is available in two versions one is Academic and the other is General Training.
  • Academic is for people applying for either higher education or professional registration.
  • General Training is for those who are migrating to Australia, the UK or Canada or applying for secondary education, training programs and some work experience in an English-speaking environment.
  • Both the types provide a valid and accurate assessment of the four language skills which are listening, reading, writing and speaking.
  1. What is IELTS score range and what do the bands mean?
  • The Score range for IELTS is 0-9 bands
   Score Skill level
Band 9 Excellent
Band 8 Very good
Band 7 Good
Band 6 Competent
Band 5 Satisfactory
Band 4 Limited
Band 3 Extremely limited
Band 2 Low
Band 1 Extremely Low
Band 0 Not attempted

The students can consult the professional IELTS coaching in Nagpur for more inputs on the same. The professionals in the industry like Krishna Consultants can help the students with their doubts and also provide coaching for the same. So prep up and All the Best!