Important Facts of IELTS for Immigration or International Studies

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) was designed in 1989. It is managed and owned by Cambridge English Language Assessment, IDP Education Australia and the British Council. 

The system is aimed at helping non-native English speakers who want to study or migrate to English speaking countries. This is a requirement that you must meet to prove that you have a command in English. 

It has been incorporated in the various agencies across the world. Therefore if you are thinking of relocating to another country, you will have to pass the test. It can be a computer or paper-based test. This article is going to cover the necessary things that you have to be aware of before taking the test.  

How IELTS system works

The system is divided into four sections which you have to undertake a test in. The tests are simple and can be concluded within minutes. The sections are Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening. 

The total time to take it is 2 hours and 45 minutes. But you won't seat through the entire test at once. The writing, reading, and listening are to be completed without breaks. 

However, when it comes to the verbal section, it can be completed in a week's time before or after the primary test.  Here is what to expect when it comes to the tests;

Different Sections of IELTS

1. Reading

In this section, you are required to answer 40 questions that are made up of passages. It should be done within 60 minutes. The passages are further divided into two. They are Academic and General IELTS. 

At the academic section you will read and answer questions from journals, newspapers, and books. On the other hand, the General segment requires you to answer questions from company handbooks, magazines, notices, and advertisements. Therefore, we suggest that you get prepared yourself before the day of the test.   

2. Listening

This is an easy task as it involves listening to four recordings from native English speakers. Afterward, you are required to answer questions. It  should be done in 30 minutes.

3. Writing 

Here, there are two tasks that you need to undertake. These are Academic and General IELTS Tasks. Academic IELTS is the first task that you will do. You are required to summarize the information given from a chart or a graph into your own words. The second task under this section is to write an essay in response to an argument.

General IELTS also has two tasks to be taken. To begin the first section demands, you write a letter requesting an explanation or information about a given problem. The second task requires you write an essay in response to an argument.  This test should be completed in 60 minutes, with no added time. 

4. Speaking 

The fourth section requires you to answer general questions about yourself and different topics. You are also supposed to talk about a given topic and later answer questions about the particular item. This is supposed to be done in 11 to 14 minutes. 

Types of IELTS Test 

There are two types of examination that you can take in the IELTS.

IELTS General Training

It’s meant for persons who want to migrate to an English speaking nation to work or attain secondary education. The test is a requirement, and you have to present the General training certificate before being allowed into the country. 

This is a law that most English speaking countries have, as it proves you understand the language. Even the native speakers are required to undertake the test before migrating to English-speaking country.

IELTS Academic

The test is meant for those who want to study abroad.   They are to do the test and obtain the required points to be accepted in the institution.  

The test can also be taken if you want to join a professional body in the country whether you are hoping to enter professions such, nursing, law, engineering, or doctor's fraternity. You will be subjected to the test to prove your competence.       

The IELTS Scoring System

The kind of score you get depends on the reasons why you are applying for a visa. For example, if you are using an immigration visa to become a student. The government and the institution have a part to play in determining the results. 

The score is gotten from Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening sections. The results from each section are added and then averaged to get the Band score. Hence, it is vital that you obtain high scores in every section.

The score ranges from 0 to 9. This helps the system to grade you according to your score. Here is a breakdown of how it works.

9: Expert user

This shows you are a fluent speaker and can understand the language.

8: Very good user

It shows you are a good native speaker, but there are a few mistakes that occur when using the English language.

7: Good user

This also shows you are a skilled English user. That means you can read, write, speak, and understand it. However, you do make errors and have a hard time understanding other words.

6: Competent user

At this particular level, you are still good at English and can speak, write, listen, and read. Nevertheless, you do it when certain conditions are presented. 

5: Modest user

The skill level means that you can use the English language but to a limited point. That is having a simple conversation without straining, and can use it in your field of expertise.  This is considered as a partial command of the language. 

4: Limited user

This level depicts that you have a limited understanding of the English Language. Comprehending complex English words is a bit of a problem. Hence, you are limited to simple and basic contexts.

3: Extremely limited user

The band score shows you can understand the simplest forms of English works. But when complex words are incorporated, it will be hard to comprehend. Plus when using the language to communicate, you find it difficult most of the time.

2: Intermittent user

 The score explains that you can grasp a few English words. However, in doing so, you still find it difficult.

1: Non-user

Well on this kind of score it portrays you as a person who can understand a few English words and sentences. 

0: Did not attempt the test

This is the lowest score that you can attain when the test has been averaged. You will only get it if you were unable to answer any questions on the tests.

How can IELTS help you to Immigrate or Study Abroad?

IELTS test is beneficial if you want to immigrate or study in an English speaking country. However, before selecting the test to take you must know what you are applying the visa for. Is it for study or immigration purpose? This is because the test for each category is different.

The Academic IELTS test is perfect for you when going to advance your education in a college or University. On the other hand, the General IELTS is ideal for immigration and career purposes. 

1. IELTS for Immigration

Most of the countries in the world today have incorporated the test as part of their visa program. For you to be accepted into the country, you have to attain a certain score depending on the country's overall score.

For example, if you are to migrate to New Zealand, you are required to attain a 6.5 score on Academic and General IELTS test.   

Additionally, the system enables the government to manage the influx of immigrants. It also assures that you will come to the country to promote its economy and integrate with the citizens easily.  When you have passed the test and met all the requirements, you increase your chances of getting permanent residence. 

2. IELTS for Study         

When it comes to education, the system also applies. Most universities and colleges have incorporated the system in their scholarship programs. Even if you are not on the scholarship program, you still need to take the test.

Whether it is a postgraduate or an undergraduate degree program, you are required to subscribe to the Academic test. If you are seeking an educational program in which a degree isn't awarded. We suggest that you take the General test. 

The score also depends on the kind of program you are applying for. For example, when you are seeking a degree or master's program, you need to attain a high score.  

Advantages and disadvantages of IELTS 


  • The test enables you to know your level of understanding the English language. This, in turn, boosts your motivation and help in improving your weak areas. There is no limit as to the number of times to take the test. 
  • It is needed in most countries in the world. Once you have taken and passed the test, you can use it to apply for your visa to any country. But this means you have to attain a high score. 
  • On taking the test, you are able to gain a better understanding of the English language. This helps in knowing the kind of language required for your undergraduate or postgraduate studies.
  • The system contains a database that shows the institutions where it is used. It is usually updated every time hence making your application easier since you won't have to search. Plus the scores required in every institution are shown. Therefore, you know the points to attain to join the institution.
  • The system also covers both British and American English. This means that you can migrate to either the UK, US, or any other English speaking nation. Hence you can use the same score to get accepted into different countries instead of taking another test.     


  • You must have a good typing speed since the test is timed when done online
  • If computer based, the screens will lock exactly the time mentioned no added time.
  • When done through a computer, the drawing, highlighting, and making notes is hard on the screen.
  • The paper-based test means you have to be in a room which can be crowed in some centers.
  • The paper-based test takes more time to be evaluated since it has to be sent from the center to the main officers. 

Procedure for Registering for IELTS

To begin, you will have to register yourself. This can be done through a center where the test is administered. On the other hand, you can register online or download the form and then submit to the center available.

If you are to take the test at the center, you will have to do the following

  • Located the nearest center to register to
  • Register for the examination and book a date for it.  

When the test is to be done online, you will need to 

  • Login into the IELTS site through British Council or IDP
  • Select the option ‘Register for IELTS'
  • Complete the online application and pay the fees.  
  • Get an instant seat booking and acknowledgment. 

The tests are available on 48 fixed days in the year. The days are one Thursday of the month and three Saturdays of the months as well. These are days that you have to be on the lookout for in the system. 

Even if you opt to go to the center, you can still get to do them. However, the tests are being issued depending on the demand.

When you choose to use the system, you can either apply using the paper-based or the computer-based test. Whether computer or paper-based test you will still be successful. What you need is to prepare yourself for the test. There are courses that you can enroll in. They can be done online as well.

Therefore register for one before taking the test. Moreover, there is no failure when it comes to the score. This is because you can take the test as many times as you want. But we do recommend that you practice first before enrolling for a retake.

Post a Comment (0)
Previous Post Next Post