Babybliss and IELTS

Babybliss here. I recently took an IELTS exam. IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System (IELTS), which is one of the most popular English language proficiency exams. You can register at either of the two testing centres, namely the British Council or the IDP. These two institutions are most popular in administering the test. However, there are actually more than 500 IELTS test centers worldwide, and most of them are located in big cities.

ielts test

IELTS Preparation

I helped prepare for the IELTS with my tutor in Singapore. He helped me with writing and speaking as I was pretty OK in other areas. So I recommend his tuition services!

About The IELTS Test

The exam is accepted by over 9,000 organizations, universities, government agencies,multinational companies, and professional bodies worldwide. There are two versions of the IELTS test, namely the Academic and General Training. The former is ideal for individuals who want to study in an English-speaking country. The latter, on the other hand, is for those who want to work , migrate, or attend training programs in an English-speaking country.

General Idea About The Exam

IELTS has four sections – listening, reading, writing and speaking tests. The listening test can last for 30 minutes while the reading exam takes 60 minutes. The speaking test can take 11 to 14 minutes and the writing section is 60 minutes. The overall test time can be completed at the maximum of 2 hours and 45 minutes.

How To Register For IELTS

ielts test centers

The first step in registering for IELTS is to find a local test center. By going there, you will be able to get some advice about choosing the general training or academic test. You will be provided with an IELTS application form, which can also be downloaded online. Complete the application form and secure the necessary requirements such as your passport. Return the IELTS application form to the testing center together with your payment. The typical cost of the IELTS test is S$320, but you need to get in touch with your local testing center to verify the cost. Once the entire registration process is completed, your examination date will be set.

What To Expect On The Test Day

ielts test day

Upon your arrival at the test center, you will be assisted by a staff. Make sure that you arrive on time because missing your appointment may require you to re-register and pain again. Bring your requirements such as the identification document that you used during the registration. The exam may last for a whole day. You will be required to first take the listening test, then the reading test, writing, and then finally the speaking exam.

Follow the instructions carefully. Always remember that you are not permitted to use a mobile phone or other devices during the test. You will only be allowed to use a rubber and pencils. Candidates are also not allows to talk to other test takers, eat, drink, copy other’s answer, or leave the room.

IELTS Test Facts And Tips

ielts test sections

Writing

The writing section of the IELTS test usually lasts for 60 minutes. It has two parts, namely the task 1 and 2, each of which requires different text types such as report, discussion, description, opinion text, and argument. Task 1 is about graphic or pictorial information, which you will need to write about in at least 150 words within 20 minutes.  Task 2 will require you to provide a written argument of at least 250 words within 40 minutes.

Make sure that when you answer the exam, you do not write less than the words required. However, you should also not write too much and strive to produce quality from your work. Do not forget to plan and review your answer, and to spend more time in task 2. Write and organize your answers clearly, and make sure that you use a variety of sentence structure.

Speaking

IELTS speaking section involves a one-to-one interaction between you and the examiner. There are three parts of this recorded conversation, and you will be made to utilize a range of different speaking skills. This, as mentioned above, lasts for 11 to 14 minutes.

There are different strategies in increasing your performance during the test. Practice every day as this helps improve your fluency as well as reduce your risk in being nervous during the actual test. Make sure that you avoid just saying a yes or no answer. Extend your answers as it allows the examiner to determine whether you are capable of speaking the English language or not. Stay on the topic and do not wait for the examiner to ask you to elaborate your answers.

Establish and maintain eye contact and just maintain enough levels of confidence. Do not show off just to impress the examiner by using vocabulary and grammar structures you are clearly unsure about. Listen carefully and do not forget to be on time.

ielts test format

Reading

The reading section takes 60 minutes, and contains three to four reading passages. The level of difficulty of these passages typically increases as you go on with the test. There will be 40 questions that you need to answer in the answer sheet.

In this part of the test, you need to ensure that you use the skimming and scanning techniques. Skimming means getting an idea of what the text is about through quick reading. Scanning, on the other hand, pertains to finding a particular piece of information. Read the instructions carefully, and review your spelling and grammar. If you don’t know the answer, move on to the next question and just return to it if you have extra time. Do not forget to highlight the keywords in the text as well as to be mindful about the synonyms. If there are words that you don’t understand, just guess its meaning. Try to understand the main ideas

Listening

The listening section has four parts, and each part contains 10 questions. The questions become harder as you go on with the test. There are a total of 40 questions, which you need to answer in 30 minutes.

One of the best ways to do well during the listening test is to simply predict the topic and questions. Look through every section and be mindful about the question order. It is also best that you look at two questions at once and move on to the next question if you miss an answer. Look out for paraphrasing as synonyms are often used in the test. If you encounter unfamiliar words, don’t linger and just move one. Underline the keywords and make sure that you get the right spelling and grammar.

Scoring And Results

Scoring

A banding system is used in calculating the IELTS score. There is an overall band score that ranges from 0 to 9. The highest band that test takers can achieve is 9, which means they have completely function use of the English language. The overall band score is the average of every band score obtained from the writing, reading, listening, and speaking sections.

ielts band score

Results

The results, which often come in a test report form, are released 13 days after the test date. This form will contain the score for each section and the overall band score. There are also other things included in the form such as the date the test was taken and the personal data of the candidate. There are centers that allow you to check your results online.

Retake, Re-mark, And Others

ielts test retake

The IELTS test can be re-taken any time without limits. However, you need to pay the fee every time you take the test. If you think that there’s something wrong with the results, you can file an application for IELTS re-mark. You will get a refund if your score is increased. You can also cancel or postpone the exam date, but you need to do this 5 weeks before the test schedule or else you will not get a refund. If you cancel within 5 weeks, you will only get a refund if you have a medical certificate.

How To Select An IELTS Tutor

ielts test preparation

One of the most important steps that test takers can take is to simply get an IELTS tutor. Getting an IELTS tutor can help you stay on the right track during preparation, identify and strengthen your weaknesses, and increase your chance in passing the exam.

IELTS Tutor Versus English Teacher

In selecting the right IELTS tutor, make sure that you don’t confuse an IELTS teacher with an English teacher. The latter can be highly competitive too, but does not specialize in the IELTS test. An IELTS tutor has all the experiences, knowledge, skills, and resources such as study materials that are relevant for IELTS classes.

ielts tutor

IELTS Tutor With High Test Success

Get an IELTS tutor who has been teaching test takers for many years. It is similarly important that you ensure the tutor you are eyeing on has a proven track record in helping students pass the IELTS test. IELTS teachers who have high exam success rate are more likely to have the ability to help you perform well and have high band scores.

ielts test strategies

With thorough IELTS preparation, you have a great chance in passing the IELTS exam. You need to prepare for months before you take the test. Nowadays, it has become very easy to prepare for the test due to the availability of information and educational tools online. All of these resources are very useful when combined with the teachings or lessons given by a reputable IELTS teacher.