Updated: May 11
"International English Language Testing System", popularly known as ‘IELTS’, is an entrance exam for many international schools, and colleges around the world, including Universities and even for Permanent Residency applications. Aspirants take IELTS to reach their academic or professional destinations. Since aspirants plan to move to an English Speaking nation, proving English proficiency takes a centre stage.
Now let's have an overview of what you should do to prepare for this exam.
There are many key areas of IELTS that should be covered during preparations for the test to get the desired IELTS bands. Understanding what is required and how the test is marked while ensuring the practice of relevant skills and strategies can make a big difference.
The Important points that need to be covered to build the confidence and familiarity with the modules of IELTSwhich can maximize the scores on the test day is something we would be discussing today.
There are in all four Modules viz Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.
Making sure what is expected of the aspirants in the IELTS test is vital to allow them to take the best shot at IELTS. There should be complete Clarity of the stream that you wish to opt for, viz Academic or General, and by when you need your results is important. IELTS scores are set by the receiving organisations such as universities and immigration authorities and are usually listed on university and government websites under language requirements.
You can choose from IELTS on paper or IELTS on the computer, where both are available. This is an individual's choice – the content of the tests and the value of the scores are the same. If choosing IELTS on the computer, you need to have done some IELTS computer practice tests and be familiar with the system functionality and keyboard shortcuts (e.g., CTRL + V, SHIFT + A, CTRL + C). There are and we (#NishasNet) have several videos which you can go through to get familiar with the computer test.
Familiarity, like the back of your hand, with the format of IELTS is a really important aspect, along with knowing the timing, the number of parts and the types of questions and task types. Just make sure that you have done sufficient IELTS practice tests before your actual test. Giving practice tests allows you to figure out the skills needed to improve to get through with the desired score.
You should also be aware of your current language proficiency and be realistic about the time needed to improve your language skills to achieve the desired score.
There are four different types of questions which will make up your score: Reading Comprehension, Listening, Writing and Speaking Test Skills & Proficiency, so preparing for the same becomes imperative.
In order to get a good score in Reading Comprehension questions, one needs to be aware of the type of propositions and questions which are asked in the reading section as a whole. One has to be aware of how a sentence is constructed and how one can change it so that it conveys what you want to say rather than make it look like gibberish. This can be achieved only by taking writing classes which focus on grammar, punctuation and sentence construction.
Also, you need to deal with around 2,700 words and answer 40 questions in 1 Hour. You should adhere to the timing of 20 minutes for each passage. Reading skills, like skimming and scanning, which allows you to quickly locate the parts of the texts you actually need to read, are essential to know that you only read the parts of the texts you need to answer the questions. You need to learn different strategies for different question types and build your vocabulary.
The Reading section involves four types of tasks: Reading Comprehension, Written document and Text-to-Text translation. Each task has sub‑sections like phrases, clauses and whole passages.
In the Listening test, time is given to preview the questions before the audio starts. You need to use this time wisely to look for clues to work out who the speakers are and the context. This will help you get an idea of what to expect and will give you enough time to use your knowledge to predict the type of information you will hear. It’s also useful to underline keywords in the questions and look at the gaps to predict the type of information or the type of words needed. This keeps you focused and can help reduce exam nerves.
You need very good listening practice. Podcasts, Radio, Ted Talk, and discussions are some good sources to practice. IELTS being a test of International English, familiarity with different accents like Canadian, British, American, and Australian becomes important. Watching English movies, listening to podcasts, English News, etc. are crucial to getting a grasp of the accents.
For Academic writing, you will need to know the format for your responses and the specific language to describe changes in graphs. A standard essay format will include a clear introduction, body paragraphs with topic sentences and a short conclusion.
The dialogue and interview tasks form a part of the Speaking section and both these tasks require a similar skill set to that of reading.
Task 1 is the conversation in a classroom consisting of three people. One is an examiner and two are test-takers. The examiner will ask a question to one student who will be required to answer. The other two students are asked to supply words that best fit into the answer provided by the first participant and can be used as alternatives.
Task 2 deals with the evaluation of one's English skills; this involves writing an evaluation on a topic or topic of concern written by the examiner beforehand. Two parts are involved in this task, one is analysing the topic given by the examiner. The other part is to write about the topic given by the examiner in the given time.
Task 3 is an interview which involves two parts. The first part consists of a conversation between two people in a classroom and questions about the conversation. The other part is a conversation with someone in an office and first talking about this person and then asking questions from that person.
For Speaking, ensure familiarity with the format and types of tasks. You need to practice all 3 parts of the Speaking test, particularly in building up gradually to the 2 minutes monologue in part 2 and working on increasing fluency and confidence. Make sure you also download the sample speaking tasks and record yourself and listen back, identifying where you need to improve
Make sure you get lots of relevant practice and use free resources available on the web and with #NishasNet to achieve the scores you need to reach your dream destination.
To score well in such types of tasks, one needs to be able to communicate as well as translate into grammatically accurate English language.
Considering the above sections, IELTS exams cannot be taken lightly, as preparing for IELTS requires a dedicated level of preparation. With the help of an expert, we will devotedly guide you towards your desired Score. After all, it's the way to your Foreign Dream.
We at #NishasNet have well experienced, trained and certified tutors to help you get through the maze called ‘The IELTS’.