How To Score Well In IELTS?
- March 4, 2023
- Posted by: admin
- Category: Study Abroad
The IELTS (International English Language Testing System) tests the proficiency of non-native English speakers. It is a crucial test for education abroad / works. Here is a guide on how you can score well in your IELTS;
What skills do you need for the IELTS test?
The IELTS examination tests four skills namely Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. One should be equally adept at all of these skills to score well.
The entire IELTS exam lasts 2 hours and 45 minutes.
- The Listening section consists of 40 questions with 30 minutes time duration.
- The Reading section consists of 40 questions with 60 minutes time duration.
- The Writing section will have two writing tasks with 60 minutes time duration.
- The Speaking section lasts between 11 and 14 minutes and will be in three parts. During the speaking part, you will engage in conversation with an examiner.
How to approach Exams and score well
1. Listening Test
- Improve your listening skills by not using subtitles while watching any English movies, series, and documentaries
- Practice guessing the meaning of an unknown word depending on its context and glance in the dictionary.
- Read the instructions in the test booklet carefully to know the number of words you must write on the answer. You will lose points if you write more words than required.
- Before you listen, read the questions. 30 to 60 seconds are given for reading the questions and instructions.
- Don’t judge the answers quickly; listen until the end of the conversation and interpret the answer.
2. Reading Section
- Practice different reading techniques, such as skimming, summarizing, and scanning.
- Practice reading in a specific time frame as you must be able to read quickly to complete all three passages and answer 40 questions in 60 minutes.
- Highlight important information and make notes while reading the passages.
3. Writing Section
- Analyze model IELTS essays online for tasks, essay structure, coherence, vocabulary, and sentence variety.
- Understand the ‘essay question.’ Are you asked to express an opinion, compare and contrast, discuss causes or effects, or present problem solutions?
- Provide the exact answer, and do not deviate from the topic.
- Instead of using the words/sentences from the question, frame your sentences.
- Keep track of time while writing essays for reviewing in the last 2 minutes.
4. Speaking Section
- Do not worry about grammar or vocabulary. Concentrate on answering the questions as best you can.
- Give extended responses to the questions, and do not rush words.
- Make sure your answers are direct and clear in good English. Do not show off there by using wrong words or wrong pronunciation.
- Don’t memorize answers for the speaking test. Just go with the natural flow like a normal conversation.
- Ask the examiner if there is anything you do not understand to clarify or repeat the question.
- Use the time given during the conversations to think of a good scenario.
- The reviewer will ask the same question again and again.
For e.g.: Do you like sweets,
If you answer yes and gave a reason for that.
They’ll ask why?
Give another reason.
They’ll ask why again?
Give another reason for the reason.
- Pay attention to your body language and avoid using gestures excessively and don’t panic.
Understanding Assessment Criteria
1. Listening Section
Test attendees listen to 4 recorded texts and have to answer the accompanying questions. Each recording is played only once. One mark is awarded for a correct answer. Grammar and spelling mistakes are penalized.
2. Reading Section
This section is divided into three sections. Test takers must read a series of texts ranging from 2,150 to 2,750 words, similar to the listening section. In this section also, one mark is awarded for a correct answer.
3. Writing Section
This section includes 2 tasks.
In Task 1: Attendees are asked to describe some information (graph/ table/ chart/ diagram) and to present a summary of this information in their own words at 150 words.
In Task 2: Attendees are presented with a point of view, argument, or problem and asked to provide a solution / justify the argument/compare and contrast the evidence in about 250 words.
Examiners trained and certified by the British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia or IELTS USA assess writing performance.
4. Speaking Test
The Speaking test consists of an interview between an interviewee and a trained and certified examiner. This section includes 3 parts; Introduction, Individual long-term, and 2-way discussions.
The test attendee is assessed based on fluency, grammar, spelling mistakes, no repetition, stammering, etc.
Expert Tips for scoring well
1. Master English Grammar
There are no separate grammar tests in the IELTS module grammar is tested in the Speaking and Writing test. It is one of the 4 marking criteria assessed by the examiner to grade the performance. There are many excellent online and print resources available for practicing grammar. There are other ways such as writing and re-reading the content help in identifying the missing gaps.
2. Practice Speaking
Converse in English wherever the opportunity shows up and this will help in coming across new words and sentence framing that will help in mastering fluency in the language. Record yourself speaking by noticing pronunciation, grammar, and fluency. It will help in speaking confidently in front of the examiner.
3. Strengthen Reading Skills
You will have 60 minutes to answer 40 questions in the IELTS Reading test. There will be approximately 2,500 words, so there won’t be much time to read the entire text carefully. Practice your speed reading skills daily by scanning the key points; this will help to understand the general idea.
Each paragraph delivers only one idea, though paragraphs may often relate to one another. Once you understand the central idea behind each paragraph you will quickly get the gist of it. It will help in understanding the entire chapter much faster.
4. Improve Vocabulary
A good grasp of vocabulary is crucial for scoring well on the IELTS exam. It constitutes 25% of the score in writing and speaking tests. Read newspapers, books, academic articles, and journals. If you’re familiar with any words, look them up in the dictionary.
Understand the meaning of a word, try to incorporate it into your daily conversation, and improve your vocabulary by adding meaningful and correct words and framing sentences.
5. Attend Practice Tests
Start practicing with full-length tests in realistic situations several weeks before the test date. It will give a fair idea of the test module, how to manage time, and effectively answer the questions.
Exam preparation is a continuous process that takes time and effort. Every practice effort will increase your confidence for the IELTS exams. Don’t know where to start? Get in touch with Kavitta Mehtta at 3RDiConsulting for IELTS mentorship and score well in the modules.