We Go Through The Top IELTS Test Tips
Passing your IELTS test with the right score is very important when it comes to entering a top university, and for improving your overall proficiency with the English language.
At NCG, we want to make it as simple as possible for you to study English, at one of our English Language Schools, and we also offer all the help you could ask for when it comes to taking your IELTS.
Strong preparation for your IELTS test is of course essential, and there are also a number of other tips we want to share with you, which should help both before and during your test.
Tips on the day
One of the best things to do is to make sure you are fully aware of everything that will be happening on the day of your test. Make sure you prepare yourself by looking over the itinerary of the day, as well making sure you do the following:
- Getting plenty of sleep, food and drink – is of course vital. The actual test is fairly long and there is no rest time between the listening, reading a writing test. So, getting enough sleep, eating well and keeping yourself hydrated will all help you to maintain your concentration. Remember, you can take a drink into the test with you, as long as it’s in a transparent bottle.
- Wear comfortable clothes – because you aren’t going to be tested for how smartly you’re dressed. Make sure you wear something that makes you feel relaxed and confident. Remember, the exam room may be a little cold, so bring an extra layer of clothing.
- Don’t be late – sounds obvious, but if you don’t properly check how long it will take you to get to your IELTS test center, you may miss the start time and be refused entry into the exam room. Check exactly where your test is being held and set off so that you arrive with time to spare.
- Know what you’re taking in with you – because you could be disqualified if you take in something that isn’t allowed, such as a mobile phone or other electronic item. Pens, pencils and erasers are allowed, but not a dictionary or any extra paper. Remember, you aren’t allowed to take anything in except your ID, when doing your speaking test.
- Stay calm, focused and look out for the clock – as you’ll want to be heading into the exam room with a clear head, and plenty of confidence. Plus, there will be a clock somewhere in the room, so make sure you spot this before the test starts to keep an eye on the time. You won’t be allowed to take a watch in with you.
- Always listen carefully – as you will be given instructions on the day. It’s really important you listen to and follow any specific instructions that you’re given before the start of the test.
Tips for each part of the IELTS test
Listening test tips:
- If you need headphones, check they are working properly, inform someone straight away if they are not.
- If you need to listen to a recording, make sure you can hear it clearly. If you can’t, politely raise your hand and ask someone to increase the volume on the recording.
- Use any time before the test starts to read through the questions in order to better prepare yourself. Take note of how many words you can use for each answer if applicable.
- Instead of trying to understand everything you’re hearing, focus on listening out for any answers, and write your answers down as you continue to listen.
- After the recording you will be given some time to transfer your answers over to the sheet provided, so be sure to double check your spelling and grammar.
Writing test tips:
- Remember that you can plan out your essay on the question paper provided, you won’t be given any extra paper during the test. You won’t be marked on your planning.
- It’s recommended that you spend no more than 20 minutes on task 1, as you will need 40 minutes for task 2. Check the clock in the room to make sure you’re not taking too long.
- In terms of word count, you should always aim for more than 150 words for task 1, and more than 250 words for task 2.
- Make sure you clearly organise your writing for both tasks into body paragraphs, and always check your spelling.
- Keep all your writing focused and relevant, as more doesn’t always mean better. If you do run out of paper though, raise your hand and ask for some more.
- Remember, never remove any paper from the exam room.
Speaking test tips:
- Ensure that you have practiced speaking in English before the day of your test.
- Be confident, listen carefully, and answer any questions directly.
- As mentioned, clothing will not affect your mark, so wear something comfortable.
- Always try to add extra information to your answers, using a range of grammar tenses.
- Remember that vocabulary will only count for 25% of your overall mark.
- If you don’t hear a question properly, always ask the examiner to repeat it for you.
- For the second part of the test, you’ll be provided with a pen and paper to prepare what you’re going to say. Keep in mind your planning won’t be marked, only what you say will be.
You can study English with NCG by enrolling on any one of our English Language courses. And we can also make sure you have all the help and guidance you need to fully prepare for your IELTS.
Apply to study English at NCG today, or simply contact us for more information.