Familiarize yourself with the test format: The first step towards IELTS preparation is to become familiar with the test format. Once you are aware of the test format, you know what to expect in each section making it easier for you to attempt your questions.
IELTS tests you on the four skills of English language i.e. Speaking, Reading, Writing, and Listening. The four sections are explained in detail below:
Listening – The listening test will be for 30 minutes and is segregated into 4 sections
Reading – The reading test comprises 40 questions, all divided into 3 sections. The time duration for this section is 60 minutes.
Writing – The writing test will have 3 tasks and will be for 60 minutes.
Speaking – The speaking test consists of 3 parts of 11-14 minutes.
IELTS Life Skills at CEFR Level A1 takes 16–18 minutes, A2 no more than 20 minutes and at B1 level 22 minutes.
Candidates take the test with an examiner and with one other candidate. Candidates are assessed on Speaking and Listening at the same time.
IELTS Life Skills at Level A1 and A2 have two parts. IELTS Life Skills at Level B1 has three parts.
Part 1: candidates ask and answer questions and have short discussions on everyday subjects, such as:
· Personal details
· Family and friends
· Buying goods
Part 2: candidates listen to a task played on a CD. They have to listen for the general meaning and detail. They say their answers aloud, although they can make notes on paper while they listen. There will then be a discussion on a theme related to recording on the CD.
Part 3 (Level B1 test only): plan an activity with the other candidate.
Candidates will get one of two results: pass or fail. A fail results means that the test cannot be used for a visa application.
Candidates are assessed on their ability in four areas:
· Obtaining information
· Conveying information
· Speaking to communicate
· Engaging in discussion.
The performance of the other candidate taking the test at the same time does not affect the scoring.