IELTS: Overview and Tips from IDP Education

An IELTS preparation product by IDP Education, featuring more than 40 minutes of IELTS tips, presented by IELTS Expert, Don Oliver.

0:51 Did you know?
5:02 Preparing for IELTS
9:05 IELTS test format
11:36 How your skills are assessed
15:37 FAQs about the Writing test
21:08 FAQs about the Reading test
25:04 FAQs about the Listening test
27:40 Watch a sample Speaking test
32:39 FAQs about the Speaking test
37:41 What to expect on test day
39:08 How you receive your results
41:46 Questions and answers
43:40 Next steps

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Low IELTS score?

Disappointed you didn’t get the IELTS score you need?
Here is a helpful step-by-step guide from IDP to put you on the right track to IELTS success.
It can be frustrating and disappointing when you don’t achieve the IELTS score you were hoping for. It can also be very tempting to rush into booking another IELTS test. But before you register for another test, save yourself further time and frustration by considering the friendly advice presented in the following video including:
– Using your IELTS test results to identify areas you can improve on
– The most effective methods of IELTS test preparation
– Becoming familiar with the IELTS test format
– Understanding the skills you need to achieve your desired IELTS band score
– Ideas for practicing and improving your English skills
Remember, taking the time to understand IELTS test requirements and improve your English will help you to achieve the IELTS band score you need!

Join R. J. English Academy and you will get anywhere between Band 7 to Band 9. Guaranteed.

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Managing your time in the IELTS exam

Two useful videos from the IELTS Official YouTube channel:

Listening and Reading tests:

Writing and Speaking tests:

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Here’s why you got a score of Band 9 in the IELTS Speaking Test

What speaking ability does a score of IELTS Band 9 represent?

Watch this Speaking test sample, where Anuradha from Malaysia talks about ‘Famous people’. Here’s why this performance was given a Band 9:

This test taker speaks fluently, with only rare repetition or self-correction. Any hesitation is not to search for language but to think of ideas. Her speech is coherent, with fully appropriate cohesive features (if you’re talking about; other than that; I think it’s more; as you can see).

She uses vocabulary with full flexibility and precision in all topics with a wide range of idiomatic language (have a tendency; be exposed to; the world is becoming more globalised; the norm; strikes a chord; communication tool; actors that sponsor; materialistically; cool gadgets; grasp of people’s mindset).

Her grammatical structures are precise and accurate at all times. She uses a full and natural range of structures and sentence types and makes no noticeable errors.

She uses a full range of phonological features with precision and subtlety. The rhythm of her language is sustained throughout and stress and intonation are invariably used to good effect. This and her very clear production of individual words and sounds result in her being effortless to understand.

[Source: http://www.youtube.com/IELTSofficial ]

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See also:

Here’s why you got a score of Band 5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 5.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 6 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 8 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 8.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test

Here’s why you got a score of Band 8.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test

What speaking ability does a score of IELTS Band 8.5 represent?

Watch this Speaking test sample, where Kenn from Singapore talks about ‘Famous people’. Here’s why this performance was given a Band 8.5:

This test taker speaks fluently for most of the time and develops topics coherently and appropriately, with only slight content-related hesitations as he engages with the topics.

His vocabulary is precise and sophisticated throughout this part of the test (prominent businessmen; emulate; a growing number of television celebrities; to promote charitable causes; endorsing a cause; negative repercussions; conscious of body image; susceptible to; prevalent).

He uses a wide range of grammatical structures naturally and accurately, with no noticeable error. He also uses a full range of pronunciation features to convey precise and subtle meaning such as emphatic stress (one example that comes to mind is celebrities) and contrastive stress (it’s not necessarily for causes … it’s also for celebrity behaviours). He sustains this flexible use of features of connected speech throughout and is effortless to understand.

[Source: http://www.youtube.com/IELTSofficial ]

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See also:

Here’s why you got a score of Band 5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 5.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 6 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 8 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 9 in the IELTS Speaking Test

Here’s why you got a score of Band 8 in the IELTS Speaking Test

What speaking ability does a score of IELTS Band 8 represent?

Watch this Speaking test sample, where Khush from India talks about ‘Famous people’. Here’s why this performance was given a Band 8:

This test taker speaks fluently and is able to give quite long and detailed responses without any loss of coherence. Hesitation is usually content-related and only occasionally to search for language.

She uses fillers (you know; I mean) to cover this. Linking words and markers are used very naturally (that’s not the case; I’m fine with that).

Her vocabulary resource is wide and it allows her to talk about a range of topics with some flexibility and precision.

There are plenty of examples of stylistically appropriate language (political pressure; into corruption; today’s world; offensive; promote the product; a money-making business) with only occasional inaccuracies (do a meeting; in a right/wrong manner).

She uses a wide range of structures with a high level of accuracy. She makes only occasional minor errors. She uses pronunciation well to reinforce meaning, with rhythm, stress and intonation all used appropriately (at times I do like). There are only occasional lapses in word stress and in the formation of ‘th’.

What speaking ability does a score of IELTS Band 8 represent?

Watch this Speaking test sample, where Kopi from Botswana talks about ‘Famous people’. Here’s why this performance was given a Band 8:

This candidate speaks fluently but rather slowly, with occasional hesitation as he engages with the topics. He is able to give quite complex and detailed responses without any loss of coherence, drawing on a range of markers to introduce his ideas (in that way; in some way; we have a situation in our country; in that regards; in every respect).

He skilfully uses his wide vocabulary in a sophisticated way to express himself precisely and accurately (reaching out through music; I wouldn’t put it past them; significant level; growing trend; a ripple effect), although there are a few inappropriate word forms and choices (old generation instead of ‘older generation’; have a long way instead of ‘have a long way to go’; a step back instead of ‘a backward step’).

He uses a full range of sentence forms and grammatical structures naturally, accurately and appropriately.

The test taker is easy to understand throughout the test, in spite of a slight accent. Occasional misplaced stress and vowel formation (misicians for ‘musicians’; Bread Pitt for Brad Pitt) only minimally affect intelligibility.

[Source: http://www.youtube.com/IELTSofficial ]

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See also:

Here’s why you got a score of Band 5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 5.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 6 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 8.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 9 in the IELTS Speaking Test

Here’s why you got a score of Band 7.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test

What speaking ability does a score of IELTS Band 7.5 represent?

Watch this Speaking test sample, where Aashish from Nepal talks about ‘Work, friends, food and cooking’. Here’s why this performance was given a Band 7.5:

This test taker speaks fluently and he engages with the questions without any obvious effort. There is only occasional hesitation, repetition and self-correction, which is mostly content-related and only rarely to search for language.

His relaxed delivery is supported by his flexible use of markers (I am both; basically; as well as; every now and then; that would be French).

His vocabulary is sufficient for him to engage with a variety of topics and he demonstrates an ability to use idioms and collocations with some sense of style and skill. However, he makes a number of inappropriate vocabulary choices (all over the place; that’s not just my cup of tea; someone to confront and talk to; I haven’t got a chance), which restrict his rating on this criterion.

He has a wide range of grammatical structures at his disposal and the majority of sentences are error-free. Even when errors do very occasionally occur (I work part-time as well as a student; it just does not come into me), they do not detract at all from meaning.

He uses a wide range of pronunciation features and is able to use stress and intonation effectively. There are just a few lapses and very occasionally sounds are poorly formed (bot for ‘both’; vent for ‘went’), but overall, his accent has only minimal effect on intelligibility.

[Source: http://www.youtube.com/IELTSofficial ]

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See also:

Here’s why you got a score of Band 5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 5.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 6 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 7 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 8 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 8.5 in the IELTS Speaking Test
Here’s why you got a score of Band 9 in the IELTS Speaking Test