The IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System, an exam started in the year 1980. It is now among the globally recognised English language proficiency examinations used for higher education, work visas and immigration. It has become the preferred language assessment methods for countries such as US, UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand.
In this post, you will find A to Z of IELTS from its full form, types, format, test modules, and registration process to login, scores, results, online tests, and difference between Paper-based and Computer-delivered IELTS.
Before diving into the path of IELTS success, let’s first have a look at some key highlights:
|IELTS Full Form||International English Language Testing System|
|Purpose of IELTS||For migration, study or work visas in native English speaking countries – UK, USA, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada|
|IELTS Exam Types||Pen & Paper-based, Computer-delivered|
|IELTS IDP Contact Information||IDP Head Office|
|IELTS BC Contact Information||British Council|
0120-4569000 / 0120-6684353
|IELTS Band Scores||Ranges between 0 (lowest) and 9 (highest)|
IELTS Exam Full Form
The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is the full name of the English language competency test that was created and is administered by the British Council in collaboration with IDP Education and Cambridge Assessment English.
Types of IELTS Test
- IELTS Academic: People who want to enrol in undergraduate and postgraduate courses, as well as those who want to gain work experience at the graduate or postgraduate level, take the Academic IELTS.
- IELTS General Training: The General Training IELTS is taken by those who want to complete their secondary education, work experience, or training programmes in an English-speaking nation, or who want to emigrate to the United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, or New Zealand.
This website prepares you for both the IELTS Academic and General Training. The Listening and Speaking modules are the same for both the test versions, but the Reading and Writing modules are different.
Which version of English?
Because the IELTS is commonly utilised in the United Kingdom and Commonwealth countries, it is written in British English. Anyone who has studied English in an English-speaking country will understand its vocabulary and syntax completely.
However, you are not required to use only British English. You can use either one of British or American English accents during the exam.
Who owns the IELTS?
IELTS test is collectively owned and conducted by:
- British Council
- IDP-IELTS Australia
- Cambridge ESOL
These organisations jointly conduct the IELTS in over 1,000 test centres across 140 countries. These test centres oversee the test’s local administration and recruit, train, and monitor examiners. Besides, these organisations also certify tutors to teach at various IELTS coaching institutes.
IELTS with IDP:
The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) has wide acceptance for work, study, and migration purposes. More than 11,000 organisations rely on IELTS as a credible assessment of actual English communication competence.
IDP IELTS has over 1,400 test centres in 56 countries. This contains over 260 computer-delivered IELTS testing centres.
IELTS with British Council:
The British Council’s high profile work in English, the Arts and Education and Society helps hundreds of millions of people worldwide.
Every year, thousands of candidates visit BC test centres to take an exam to advance their studies or careers. British Council provide tests ranging from Young Learners to Cambridge Preliminary, First, Advanced, and Proficiency, as well as the IELTS test and particular British professional exams such as ACCA or CIMA.
IELTS Exam Format
IELTS test has 4 modules – Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. Have a look at the table below to know more about the format of the test:
|IELTS Module||Total Time||Tasks|
|Listening Section||30 minutes||– Listen to 4 audio tracks (2 conversations, 2 monologues)|
– Answer all 40 questions (10 questions per track)
|Reading Section||60 minutes||– Read 3 passages for Academic Test and 5-6 passages for General Test|
– Answer all 40 questions (13-14 per section)
|Writing Section||60 minutes||– Task-1: Describe information given in a chart, graph, table or diagram in at least 150 words in Academic Test. Write a letter in at least 150 words in General Test|
– Task-2: Write an essay in response to an opinion or a question in at least 250 words
|Speaking Section||11-14 minutes||– Answer topics about yourself and some familiar questions in a face-to-face interview with the examiner|
– Answer a cue card topic and the set of follow-up questions
The modules of Listening, Reading, and Writing will take place taken on the same day, in that order, with no breaks. The IELTS exam duration is 2 hours and 45 minutes. The Speaking module can be scheduled on the same day as the previous modules, or up to a week before or after.
Paper-Based v/s Computer-Delivered IELTS
If you’ve taken the pen and paper test before, you may notice some major changes between it and the computer based test. Here are the key differences between Paper-based and Computer-delivered IELTS:
- Pencil v/s Keyboard: In Paper-based IELTS, you’ll be provided with a pencil and an answer sheet. You must write your responses on the answer sheet before the timer runs out. On the other hand, you type your answers into the corresponding boxes on the screen in Computer-based IELTS.
- Test venue: Paper-based IELTS exams are frequently conducted in a larger hall. Sometimes at a university or a centrally placed hotel. Whereas, Computer-delivered examinations are administered in smaller, custom-built rooms that are new and less crowded. Everything in the test area will make you feel at ease.
- Quality of the Headphones: The majority of headphones in the Paper IELTS are relatively old, and hence the quality has degraded. On the other hand, because computer-delivered IELTS is new, the infrastructure is modern. The noise suppression headphones allows you to focus better on finding the answers in the recording.
- Test results: The paper based IELTS results are available after 13 days of the test, while, the results will be available in 3-5 days in CD IELTS.
- Test availability: The Paper version of IELTS held up to 48 days per year (on Thursdays and Saturdays). On the contrary, Computer version of IELTS is available up to 7 days a week and up to 3 times a day.
- Shorter Listening: The Listening module takes about 32 minutes in Computer-based IELTS test which includes extra 2 minutes to review your typed responses. Whereas, the Listening module takes about 40 minutes in Paper-based IELTS which includes extra 10 minutes to write your answers on the printed sheet.
- Convenient Writing: In a computer-based IELTS test, the word count will display at the bottom of the screen during the writing test. So, you do not need to bother about counting the words after the test; instead, you may focus entirely on the substance. In paper-based IELTS, you must count or guess the words after completing the task. As a result, the process is time-consuming and lengthy.
How to Register for IELTS exam?
You can easily book your IELTS exam by following this IDP step-by-step guide:
IELTS Eligibility Criteria & Age Limit
The IDP or BC IELTS examination has no explicit eligibility requirements. The only condition may be that candidates who intend to take the examination must be at least 16 years old. This is the only condition they will consider.
The cost of the IELTS exam varies in India depending on the IELTS test type. The table below provides comprehensive information on IELTS exam costs in 2023:
|Test Type||Exam Fees (Rs.)|
|Computer-delivered IELTS (UKVI)||16,500|
|IELTS Life Skills||15,350|
|Pen and paper-based IELTS||16,250|
|IELTS for UK Visas & Immigration||16,500|
Exam Cancellation & Rescheduling fees in IELTS
- If you cancel or reschedule the exam more than 5 weeks before the test date, the candidate receives a refund, deducting an administrative fees.
- If you cancel or reschedule the exam within 5 weeks of the test date, you will be charged the full fee unless you have a serious medical reason.
- In case the candidate registers and stay absent during the exam, no amount will be refunded.
- If any candidate produces a medical certificate within 5 days of the test, the amount will be refunded deducting some administrative fees.
- If you cancel your IELTS test up to five weeks before the Paper-based test date, you will receive a refund minus a 25% administration fee.
- There will be no refunds for IELTS if there is less than 5 weeks time remaining in the test. However, a severe disease or a medical incident, bereavement or trauma etc; are exceptions to this policy.
- If a medical certificate confirming illness on the date of the test is provided within five working days of the test date, together with the submitted cancellation request on the Test Taker Portal, the fee is refundable, deducting an 25% administration fee.
- If you need to reschedule the date of your test from the date you originally booked, you can request a test day transfer from British Council up to five weeks before the test date for IELTS on Paper, free of charge.
- In cases of illness, a transfer is possible if an original medical certificate is provided within five working days of the test date, together with the Test Date Transfer Form.
To cancel your IELTS test, please log in to the Test Taker Portal and submit a cancellation request, along with an upload of supporting documentation/evidence.
Mode of Payment
The payment modes for IELTS test fee in India are:
- Visa/Master Credit or Debit Card
- Internet banking
- Demand Draft (DD) drawn in favour of IDP EDUCATION INDIA PRIVATE LIMITED, Payable at New Delhi.
- Cash deposit in ICICI/HDFC bank branches through a customized deposit slip.
Test Centres & Exam Dates
IELTS has exam centres all over India, so choose your centre depending on your location and travel convenience, so that you spend as little time as possible going to the centre on the day of the exam.
This is vital so that you do not have to rush into the examination hall and are fresh and ready when you arrive.
IELTS Scoring & Test Results
Each IELTS component — Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking is graded on a scale of 0 to 9, with 0 being the lowest and 9 being the highest. The overall band score takes into account the average scores earned in all four distinct test components. This overall score might be a full or half band.
Each band corresponds to a global description that summarises the nine levels of English proficiency. Typically, the band scores required for admission to a UK university course range from 6.0 to 7.5 and above.
Remember that there is no pass/fail or negative marking in the IELTS exam. So, you can take your chances with confidence.
If we talk about the test results, in Pen & paper based IELTS, your results TRF will be available online after 13 days from the L,R,W test date. Whereas, results TRF will be available in 3-5 days for Computer-delivered IELTS.
The TRF and EOR are two common terms associates with IELTS test results. Let’s understand them one-by one…
TRF Full Form in IELTS
The TRF full form in the context of IELTS is Test Report Form. A Test Report Form is a crucial document provided to IELTS test-takers, detailing their test scores and overall performance.
It gives the overall band score as well as a breakdown of the results for the Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking sections of the test. This document is essential for individuals who have taken the IELTS test and need to submit their scores to academic institutions, employers, or immigration authorities as proof of their English language proficiency.
You can either obtain your Test Report Form via mail or pick it up at the Test Center. You can also have the option of requesting up to five copies of your Test Report Form to send them directly to listed colleges and universities.
In short, the TRF is an official and standardized report that helps institutions and organizations assess a candidate’s language skills and qualifications.
EOR Full Form in IELTS
The EOR full form in the context of IELTS is Enquiry on Results. EOR is a service offered by exam conducting organisations to test-takers who have received their Test Report Form (TRF) and wish to have their test scores re-evaluated.
If a candidate believes that their IELTS scores do not accurately reflect their performance, they can request an EOR. The process involves a detailed review of the test components, including Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking.
There is one thing we should mention though…
During an Enquiry on Results, trained examiners re-evaluate the test, and if a score change is warranted, the candidate is issued a revised Test Report Form. It’s essential to note that there is a fee associated with this service, and not all test centers offer EOR, so candidates should check with their local test center for availability and specific procedures regarding the Enquiry on Results.
How to get band 7+ in IELTS?
Getting a high band score probably in the range of band 7, 8 or 9 is an uphill task that requires hard work, consistency, and good use of English vocabulary. So, here we present you some important tips on how to get band 7 and above in the IELTS exam:
- Answer every question in Reading & Writing modules: To begin, make sure you answer every question in both the Reading and Writing modules. Even if you are well prepared for IELTS, you may find yourself missing some of the answers on the Listening module or running out of time on the Reading module. Because timing for the Reading module is quite tight.
If you have a few questions that you haven’t been able to fully answer, it’s better to guess and increase your chances of getting 7+ band score than to leave them unanswered.
- Read the question statement carefully in Writing module: Make sure you read the question carefully in the Writing module, double-check that you understand what you’ve been asked to accomplish, and answer the question as accurately and completely as possible.
For example, if you are asked in Task 2 “To what extent do you agree or disagree?”, you should address how much you agree or disagree with the statement, not how much other people agree or disagree with it.
- Make sure that you write enough words in Writing module: In addition, you have to make sure that you write enough words. For Task 1, you must write at least 150 words and for Task 2, at least 250 words. If you write less than these numbers, you scores will be deducted.
- Speak as much as you can in Speaking module: If you’re a quiet and shy person, you should know that the examiner can’t take this into consideration, so you need to speak as much as you can.
Some candidates believe that there is a ‘right’ and a ‘wrong’ answer and that they will be evaluated based on this. This is not the case; the examiner is primarily concerned with how you articulate your ideas in English, regardless of what those ideas are.
- Make the most of this website: The final tip for attaining a high IELTS score is to make the most of this website. Read our Listening Tips, Reading Tips, Writing Tips, and Speaking Tips. This website is jam-packed with online IELTS practice tests that will help you become acquainted with the various types of questions.
Vocabulary for IELTS
Vocabulary is the foundation of any language. It is to language what life is to humans. In IELTS Writing and Speaking, vocabulary accounts for 1/4th of the total marks, not to mention its importance in the Listening and Reading modules.
A conversation could soon get annoying if you keep repeating words on paper and in your speech. To help you with this, IELTS Progress has a dedicated section on the latest IELTS Speaking cue card topics. Have a look!
How IELTS is different from other English proficiency exams?
IELTS v/s CELPIP
IELTS is used for education, employment, and immigration. It recognises both British and American English accents for spelling, word choice, and grammar. IELTS is offered in over 140 countries and is broadly classified into two sections: IELTS Academic (for study permits) and IELTS General Training (for permanent residency). The IELTS General Training test is essential if you are taking IELTS to apply through Express Entry.
CELPIP, on the other hand, stands for Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program. It was created expressly to assess key language abilities required for permanent residency and citizenship in Canada. The test is written in Canadian English and permits both British and American English accents. You can apply through Express Entry after taking CELPIP exam.
IELTS v/s TOEFL
The full form of TOEFL is the Test of English as a Foreign Language. IELTS and TOEFL are mostly comparable, with four fundamental areas of proficiency. However, the test designs differ significantly. The following are some key differences:
|Test Administrators||British Council, IDP, Cambridge||Educational Testing Service (ETS)|
|Test Format||Paper-based and Computer-based||Computer-based or Paper-based|
|Test Sections||Listening, Reading, Writing, Speaking||Reading, Listening, Speaking, Writing|
|Scoring||Band scores (0-9)||Total score on a scale of 0-120|
|Test Duration||Approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes (vary by module)||Approximately 4 hours|
|Test Results||Results available in 13 days||Typically available within 10 days|
|Test Purpose||Widely accepted for study, work, and immigration globally||Typically used for study in the USA|
|Test Content||Academic and General Training modules||Single test for academic purposes|
|Test Availability||Offered on various dates throughout the year||Frequent test dates and locations globally|
|Test Cost||Cost varies by country and test center||Cost varies by location and test type|
|Re-scoring Option||Available for a fee||Not available|
|Exam Locations||Numerous test centers worldwide||Test centers in various countries|
Please note that the specific requirements of institutions and immigration programs may influence your choice between IELTS and TOEFL, and it’s essential to consider those when deciding which test to take.
IELTS v/s PTE
When used in relation to IELTS, PTE stands for Pearson Test of English.
For academic and immigration-related purposes, the Pearson Test of English is a different English language competence test that is occasionally substituted for the IELTS test. It is created and operated by Pearson, a large worldwide education organization, and evaluates non-native English speakers’ language proficiency in a number of areas, including reading, writing, speaking, and listening.
Although PTE is a different evaluation from IELTS, it fulfills a similar function by enabling people to verify their English language proficiency for activities like studying abroad or submitting an application for immigration in English-speaking nations.
Here are some of the key difference between and IELTS and PTE exams:
|Aspect||IELTS||PTE (Pearson Test of English)|
|Test Administrators||British Council, IDP, and Cambridge||Pearson|
|Test Sections||Listening, Reading, Writing, Speaking||Speaking & Writing, Reading, Listening|
|Test Format||Paper-based and Computer-based||Computer-based|
|Scoring||Band scores (0-9)||Scored on a scale of 10-90|
|Test Duration||Approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes||Approximately 3 hours|
|Test Results||Results available in 13 days||Usually available within 5 business days|
|Test Purpose||Widely accepted for study, work, and immigration purposes globally||Accepted for similar purposes in many countries|
|Test Content||General Training and Academic modules||Single test for all purposes|
|Test Availability||Offered on various dates throughout the year||Available throughout the year|
|Test Cost||The cost varies by country and test center||Costs vary by country and test center|
|Speaking Component||Conducted face-to-face with an examiner||Computer-based, recorded|
|Re-scoring Option||Available for a fee||Not available|
|Exam Locations||Available in numerous test centers worldwide||Test centers available in various countries|
How to Prepare for IELTS?
The first step in any IELTS preparation plan should be to test your current level. Take one of our online practice tests and find out yourself.
Importance of IELTS exam
- It is a proven method for assessing English language proficiency in non-native English speakers.
- Approximately 10,000 organizations accept IELTS, which include educational institutions, enterprises, government agencies, and professional regulatory bodies.
- While studying for a test, a candidate can expand his vocabulary and improve his communication abilities.
Frequently Asked Questions
IELTS full form in English is International English Language Testing System.
IELTS full form in Hindi is अंतर्राष्ट्रीय अंग्रेजी भाषा जांच प्रणाली.
The full form of IELTS in Punjabi is ਅੰਤਰਰਾਸ਼ਟਰੀ ਅੰਗਰੇਜ਼ੀ ਭਾਸ਼ਾ ਟੈਸਟਿੰਗ ਸਿਸਟਮ.
The IDP full form in IELTS is International Development Program. This program is not directly related to the IELTS test itself but refers to a broader initiative by IDP Education, a prominent organization that offers IELTS testing services.
The International Development Program consists of a number of initiatives that support global education and cross-border student and professional mobility. These initiatives may involve helping those who want to study or work overseas, supplying educational resources, and helping people with the IELTS test, which is frequently necessary for people who want to pursue further education or a job abroad.
The full form of PTE in the context of IELTS is Pearson Test of English.
The full form of UKVI IELTS stands for United Kingdom Visa and Immigration International English Language Testing System. This specific version of the IELTS test is recognized and accepted by the UK Visa and Immigration (UKVI) for visa and immigration purposes in the United Kingdom.
The UKVI IELTS test assesses an individual’s English language proficiency to ensure that they meet the language requirements for obtaining a UK visa, studying in the UK, or applying for UK citizenship.
It is essential to take the UKVI-approved version of the IELTS test when required by UK immigration authorities to fulfill visa and immigration requirements.
The IELTS exam is not difficult as such. The questions are basic in nature and are based on familiar topics. The exam is structure in a way to measure your ability to use English Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking skills.
There are no limitations on retaking the IELTS. You must, however, give enough time to finish the registration procedures anew and select an appropriate day to write the test.
The validity period of an IELTS Test Report Form (TRF) is 2 years. For instance, if you appeared for IELTS on 31 Jan, 2023; your scores will remain valid till 30 Jan, 2025.
You can take an IELTS exam for study, work, or immigration purposes, and the scores are widely accepted in over 140 countries, including the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, the United States, and Canada.
The only difference between the computer-delivered and paper-based IELTS test is your test day experience. If you’re more familiar with conventional style of writing and using pen and paper in general, you’ll find Paper-based IELTS to be easier and better.
Currently, A Computer-delivered / Pen & Paper IELTS exam will cost you INR 16,250. This is consistent across all exam centres in India.
You will only need your Passport to register for the IELTS. You are also supposed to carry your original passport on the day of your test.
Our Final Thoughts
IELTS can be a crucial step in your life if you’re serious about migrating overseas, to put it briefly. It is crucial to understand that IELTS, which is abbreviated as the International English Language Testing System, can be just as difficult as other tests.
Success isn’t too far away, though, if you put in the necessary work, listen to native accents, and practice reading, writing, and speaking English!