IELTS Exam Pattern: A Complete Guidance for Better IELTS Preparation

The IELTS exam follows a simple pattern. It has four different sections:

  1. Reading
  2. Writing
  3. Speaking
  4. Listening

Listening and Speaking Modules are same for everyone.

Facts To Know Before Starting IELTS Preparation

People who want to go to English speaking countries for secondary education, work experience or training programs can give this test. IELTS is mandatory for migration to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK. Following is the IELTS exam format

  • For both IELTS Academic and IELTS General, listening and speaking are the same. The subject matter of the reading and writing section differs though.
  • The listening, reading and writing components of all IELTS tests are completed on the same day, with no breaks in between them.
  • The speaking section can be completed up to a week before or after the other tests.
  • The total test time is 2 hours and 45 minutes.
  • The IELTS exam fee is INR. 13,250

1. Listening Section

  • Listening test consists of 4 sections mainly and there are ten questions in each section.
  • Sections 1 and 2 are based on social survival in an English speaking country and sections 3 and 4 are based on a more educational and training orientation.
  • The actual tape lasts for about 30 minutes and then you have 10 minutes at the end of the listening in order to transfer your answers to the answer paper.

Listening Test Sections

Section 1

Here you will listen to a conversation between 2 people. The conversation is divided into 2 parts. You will answer ten questions. At the start of section 1, you will have an example read out to you and then explained. This is then repeated when the listening starts properly.

Section 2

Here you will hear a monologue though it may include a second speaker asking questions in order to stimulate the monologue. The monologue is divided into 2 parts. You have to answer 10 questions based on what you hear.

Section 3

Here you will listen to a conversation between 2, 3 or 4 people. The conversation is divided into 2 parts. You have to answer 10 questions based on what you hear.

Section 4

Here you will hear a monologue though it may include a second speaker asking questions in order to stimulate the monologue. The monologue is divided into 2 parts. You have to answer 10 questions based on your hearing.

Note for Listening Section

The listening tape is only played once. So, it is recommended that you pay full attention to it. As there is no video shown so even lip sync can’t help. Therefore, it must be known to every candidate that conversation is to properly listen. In IELTS preparation you should practice.

Sample Question for IELTS Preparation

  • Multiple choice
  • Sentence completion
  • Notes/ summary/ diagram/ flow chart/ table completion
  • Labelling a diagram with numbered parts
  • Classification
  • Matching lists/ phrases

IELTS Academic Test

This includes three long texts which range from the descriptive and factual to the discursive and analytical. These are taken from books, journals, magazines and newspapers. They have been selected for a non-specialist audience but are appropriate for people entering university courses or seeking professional registration.

IELTS General Training Test

This includes extracts from books, magazines, newspapers, notices, advertisements, company handbooks and guidelines. So, these are materials you are likely to encounter on a daily basis.

The time slot here is 60 minutes.

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