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The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is the world’s most popular high-stakes English language proficiency test. IELTS is applicable for study, work and migration, with more than three million tests taken in the past year. IELTS results are recognised by more than 10,000 organisations, including educational institutions, employers, professional associations and governments, in more than 140 countries around the world. IELTS test content is developed by an international team of experts and undergoes extensive research to ensure the test remains fair and unbiased. This promises every candidate a fair chance, regardless of factors like nationality, background, gender, lifestyle or location. You can take IELTS Academic or IELTS General Training, depending on the organisation you are applying to and your plans for the future.

Understanding how IELTS testing works

Be Better Prepared For Your Test, Get Familiar With IELTS Test Format To Get The Best Testing Experience.


IELTS test can now be taken on a computer and as well as on a paper.

Test takers opting for IELTS on paper will take the Listening, Reading and Writing sections on a paper with either pen or HB-pencils. The Speaking test is carried out face-to-face with a trained IELTS examiner. The results of the paper-based IELTS test are announced after 13 calendar days.

Test takers opting for IELTS on computer take the Listening, Reading and Writing sections on a computer. The Speaking test remains face-to-face with a trained IELTS examiner. Computer-based IELTS gives you the convenience to choose from more test dates and results are announced within 3-5 days.

Test Types

IELTS is the tried and trusted test for English language proficiency across the globe. IELTS test is best suited for those who want to use English language as a proof to pursue an academic or professional career internationally.

Anyone who wants to study, work or migrate to the UK must take the IELTS test approved for UK Visas and Immigration purposes also known as IELTS for UKVI.

IELTS Life Skills is for those who need to prove English speaking and listening skills at Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) Levels A1, A2 or B1.

IELTS for UKVI Academic and General Training and IELTS Life Skills tests are approved Secure English language tests (SELT) by the UK Home Office for visa applications to the UK.

Test Sections

IELTS assesses your ability to understand English; the IELTS test comprises of four components Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. The total duration of the test is 2 hours and 45 minutes and your Listening, Reading and Writing tests will be conducted on the same day, without any breaks. However, the speaking test can be scheduled up to a week before or after other tests. Your IELTS test centre will inform you of the date and time of your speaking test.


IELTS has two test types - IELTS General Training and IELTS Academic. IELTS Academic is suitable for candidates who require IELTS for academic purposes, mostly to study at undergraduate or postgraduate levels or for professional registration in an English speaking environment.

IELTS General Training is suited for those who need English language proficiency to show qualifications to study below a degree level, employment and migration to English speaking countries such as Australia, the UK, the USA, Canada, New Zealand, Ireland, etc.

Useful For

Students (IELTS Academic)
It is taken by students who wish to enrol for undergraduate or postgraduate courses in universities and colleges in an English-speaking country. If you have been planning to pursue higher education abroad or seeking professional registration, then IELTS Academic is for you. This test is meant to assess how ready you are to begin studying or training in an environment where English is a primary language of communication.

Professionals (IELTS General)
This is meant for those who are applying for secondary education, professionals seeking work experience and people seeking immigration in some countries like Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the UK. ELTS General Training test measures your proficiency in English language proficiency in a very every day, practicalcontext. It is suited for candidates wanting to pursue studies in a high school or a vocational training program. It is mandatory for candidates planning to migrate to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK


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An IELTS Test Report Form (TRF) is valid for two (2) years.

A candidate may resit the IELTS test at any time.

IELTS Test is not recommended for candidates under 16 years. However, if they wish to take the test, they may.

IDP IELTS Test Centres India administers tests which are available on 48 fixed dates a year – up to four times a month, depending on local demand. Please refer to the National Test Dates for test dates and test cities. Please note that new cities are added on a regular basis.

Test results are normally available within 7 days of your test.

You will receive one copy of the IELTS Life Skills Test Report Form.

Free test samples will be available here shortly.

A certificated IELTS Examiner will assess your performance throughout the Speaking and Listening test based on the following criteria

  • obtaining information
  • conveying information
  • speaking to communicate
  • engaging in discussion

No, you will be assessed on your Speaking and Listening skills at the same time.

IELTS Life Skills at CEFR Level A1 takes 16-18 minutes and Level B1 is 22 minutes.

The new test has been designed to meet specific immigration requirements for which applicants only need to demonstrate speaking and listening skills.

TWe will be announcing dates for registration and testing here shortly. IELTS Life Skills tests are available throughout the world, in locations specified by UK Visas and Immigration. The IELTS Life Skills test centres will also be announced here shortly.

To find out whether you need to take an approved test, what level you need to achieve, and which test you can use, you should contact UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI). For more information, please visit Guidance on Applying for UK Visa – approved English language tests.