IELTS Syllabus and Types Overview- Check for Speaking,Reading,Writing and Listening Syllabus
Overview of IELTS
International English Language Testing System, also popularly known as IELTS, tests the proficiency of a person in language English. It is managed by three organizations, The University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations, The IDP IELTS Australia and The British Council IELTS. The examination of IELTS is imperative for higher education and global migration
IELTS is the most opted and only safe English language test which is approved by UK Visas as well as Immigration. It is a great way for Australian and New Zealand immigration. In a country like Canada, IELTS is likely to be more accepted than TEF, TCF, or CELPIP.
There is no minimum requirement to pass the IELTS test. However, a test report form is given to every person undergoing the test with scores. The score varies from band 1 to band 9, band 0 is for the people who never appeared for the test. On the other hand, there is a particular validity for IELTS. After two years, the IELTS exams get expired and the person has to reappear for it.
So, let’s take a look into some of the important aspects of IELTS in order to get the better understanding before taking the plunge.
IELTS syllabus and types overview
Before appearing for an IELTS exam, it is important to be aware of the IELTS syllabus. It is regulated by administrators of the British Council, IDP, and Cambridge ESOL. There are mainly four components in the IELTS syllabus which are speaking, listening, writing, and reading. Every individual going through the IELTS examination has to go through these components.
However, the listening and speaking components of the IELTS examination is the same for both academic and general applicants. Whereas, the reading and writing components are not the same for both applicants. Each module of IELTS access the ability of test-takers depending upon aspects like grammar, sentence structure, the general use of language and vocabulary.
As mentioned above, there are two types of IELTS examination categorized as academic and general training. The academic training is for the candidates who are trying for an undergraduate or postgraduate course in a foreign land for specific reasons. Whereas, general training is for the candidates who are trying for professional programs and not for any degree in a foreign land, or because of access in secondary schools or for immigration reasons.
IELTS section-wise syllabus
Every test-taker or individual should have knowledge about their module to fulfill their purpose because the scores can’t be switched. The exam or module is of 2hours and 45minutes of time duration. There are main four sections of IELTS which are:
- Listening – the time period of this module is 30minutes. There are 4 different sections under this module where the exam-taker is supposed to answer 40questions in total.
- Reading – there are 3 sections under this module. The sections are of general concern that is connected with the applicant’s on-going programs such as graduate and post-graduate. There are a total of 40 questions and the time span offered is 1hour.
- Writing – the time given to complete writing is 1hour and there are mainly two questions. The applicant needs to write an essay of 250 words. In addition, candidates have to explain given diagrams, data, and tables in their own unique words.
- Speaking – this section is of about 11-14 minutes. It includes a personal interview with an interviewer.
IELTS writing section syllabus
The writing section involves two tasks. These tasks are given on general topics and interests. The candidates need to provide their answers for task 1 in a minimum of 150 words within the time span of 20 minutes. Whereas, task 2 is to be written in 250 words or more within 40minutes. The writing section syllabus varies for both academic and general training.
IELTS academic writing
For the academic writing section, the applicants have to undergo two tasks.
The first task is to describe a chart, diagram, maps, graphs, or drawings. The candidate has to grab the appropriate information as well as trends given in the data. The main purpose is to recognize the trends, imperative parts, differences given in the charts or graphs.
Simultaneously, the applicant has to provide a report or write significant facts, an overview of the data. The initial statement should be about a comparison of the graphs as per the question given. The last part should depict the logics which brings together everything. Also, there should be specifics as percentages, numbers, etc.
Task 2 of the writing section for academic candidates includes writing an essay. The given time span for this task is 40minutes. The topics could be related to immigration, culture, environment or technology, etc. The candidate must answer the task in the following way:
- Writing about two opposite views
- Either in an agreeing or disagreeing method
- Discussing the root of the issue and providing solutions.
IELTS general training writing
For the general training writing section, it includes mainly two tasks: task 1 involves candidates to compose a letter or otherwise explain a given condition in the test. It can be a semi-formal, formal, or personal letter. Task 2 is to pen an essay on a given topic. The essay can be written in a personal sort of way.
IELTS reading section syllabus
The reading section syllabus of IELTS is very different for academic and general training. In academic training reading, the candidates are given one hour to complete 40 questions in total including task types. Whereas, in general training reading the candidates have to go through 3 sections of reading with somewhat similar task types like academic reading.
IELTS academic reading
The academic reading section of IELTS majorly comprises of 40 questions. The candidates are tested on how they read and grab the essence of information given, how speed-read they can, how much details do they grab, whether they recognize the logical arguments or not, and understanding the opinions of a writer.
Candidates get 60 minutes or 1hour to answer all the questions included in the reading. The reading passages given are three along with questions and task types. The task types include MCQs, writer’s view, headings, etc. The passages are obtained from books, newspapers, etc. and are for non-specialist candidates. Every question carries one mark. the passages are mostly in a narrative, argumentative and descriptive style.
Around 11 sorts of tasks can be included in this reading section.
IELTS general training reading
The general training reading is a bit different from academic training reading. Mainly, the sections are divided into three. The first section includes 2-3 short texts, the second section includes 2 short texts and the third section includes one long text.
The task category is somewhat like academic reading tasks. Section one includes linguistic tasks that are very basic and involves recovering and delivering factual information. Section two includes contexts related to the workplace. Section three is related to extended prose with complicated structure.
IELTS listening section syllabus
The listening section syllabus has four sections. The candidates are given 40 minutes under the listening section. Around 40 questions are given to the candidates and every question is of 1 mark. Gradually, the questions tend to get tough as the questions go on. Timing plays a huge role in the listening section. A candidate however gets 10 minutes to transfer the answers after the completion of the test.
The format of the listening section of IELTS is similar for both academic and general training tests. Listening section judges the candidate’s capability to comprehend the ideas and comprehensive factual information, opinions as well as attitudes of speakers. It also examines the skill to grab the purpose of statement and skill to follow the change of ideas.
Section 1 and section 2
Section 1 – this section includes candidates listening to a discussion between two people. This conversation is mostly related to social topics. It can be of any topic such as planning a trip or about an event, etc.
Section 2 – the candidate will hear one speaker talking on a particular general topic. Therefore, the candidate has to listen to that speaker providing information related to an event, a service delivered, etc.
Section 3 and section 4
Section 3 – the candidate will hear discussions between 3-4 people in a training or scholastic situation. Thus, the candidate has to listen to the discussion happening between people related to an educational course or assignment.
Section 4 – section four is about a monologue on the topic related to academics or studies. The candidate has to listen to the person delivering a lecture focusing on academics.
IELTS speaking section syllabus
The speaking section syllabus of IELTS or format is the same for both academic and general training candidates. The complete test duration of the speaking module is 11-14 minutes and it is done to judge the candidate’s speaking skills in English.
The speaking test gets recorded for the further purpose of the assessment. It majorly consists of three parts. Every part stimulates a face-to-face conversation or interview.
Part 1 introduction and interview
The first part of this module includes an interview with an examiner. Various questions related to candidate’s hobbies, interests, or preferences, along with their desire to take the IELTS test, etc. are enquired. Various other topics are also discussed with the candidates, for instance, family, free time, computers, fashion, new trends, etc.
Part 2 long turn
The second part is about a detailed topic card. The candidates are given topic cards on which they are supposed to talk. Every candidate is given one minute to prepare their topic given on the card.
Part 3 discussions
The last part is about discussions between the interviewer and the candidate. The questions asked by the examiner or interviewer are linked to the topic which was given to them earlier in part two. Part three is considered inconsequential but is measured as very important and at the same time difficult to crack.