Prepare for IELTS

Be better prepared for IELTS by following the key steps below. Read through examiner approved tips. Understand the test format and rules. Take advantage of the official free practice test materials.

Step 1: Improve your English

It takes time to learn a language and one of the very best ways to learn is to take an English language course.
  • Use your English every day. Read, speak, listen and write in English as often as you can. This is a proven way to improve your English and therefore your IELTS score.
  • Speak English with your friends and family.
  • Listen to English language radio, television and film. Try to listen to a variety of English accents including American, Australian, British, Canadian and New Zealand.
  • Read English publications wherever possible.
  • Write letters, emails or notes in English to practise your written skills.

Step 2: Understand the test format and rules

Familiarise yourself with the test format so that you know what to expect on test day. Remember that there are two versions of IELTS – IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. The Listening and the Speaking components are the same for both tests but the Reading and the Writing components are different.
  • Read all the information literature provided to you by your test centre carefully. It is designed to share essential information about how to respond correctly to each part of the test.
  • Understand the test format as well as the scoring criteria for the test.

Step 3: Practice sample questions

Download and practice taking sample IELTS exam questions. As IELTS is timed, it is critical that you practice as many sample exam questions as possible and work to build up your speed.
  • Practice the test using free IELTS test sample questions available on this site.
  • Use the Official IELTS Practice Materials (two books available) which you can purchase from your local test centre.
In addition to practicing sample questions you may also wish to consider attending a Free Masterclass Session.

Step 4: Try to feel relaxed on the day before your test

On the day before your test, take the time to refresh your memory of the test rules, test format and location so that you feel as relaxed as possible.
  • Make sure you know the test rules.
  • Get plenty of rest the night before your test.
  • Plan your journey − ensure you are familiar with the location of the test venue and know how you are going to get there so that you arrive on time.

IELTS Preparation