The International English Language Testing System, popularly known as IELTS, is one of the top English proficiency tests. According to reports by IELTS, over 4 million people take the IELTS exam each year, making it the top choice for students aiming to study abroad and individuals who wish to migrate globally.

IELTS is primarily run and developed by three official partners: the British Council, IDP Education, and Cambridge Assessment English.

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What is the IELTS Exam?

If you wish to study or work in an English-speaking country, you need to prove your proficiency with the language. For studies, it should be evident that you can understand lectures delivered in English, while for work, you need to demonstrate comfort in an English-speaking environment to understand everything and work accordingly.

For this purpose, various governments and countries have authorized a few English proficiency tests. These tests are designed to assess your speaking, reading, listening, and writing proficiency in the English language. One of these tests is the IELTS exam.

Why is the IELTS Exam Important?

As mentioned above, if a person aims to study or work abroad in an English-speaking country, they need to provide valid proof of their proficiency with the language. Most countries accept IELTS band certification as evidence because it tests proficiency in four key skills: Listening, Speaking, Writing, and Reading. So, taking the IELTS exam is important if you wish to study in an English-speaking country.

Who Should Take the IELTS Test?

People usually take IELTS for two main purposes: studying abroad and working abroad. To cater to these purposes, IELTS has introduced two different types of tests: the IELTS Academic test and the IELTS General Training test.

The IELTS Academic test is for those who wish to study abroad in an English-speaking country. On the other hand, the IELTS General Training test is for people who wish to work abroad in an English-speaking country.

If you wish to explore the differences between these two IELTS tests in detail, you can read our blog on the IELTS Academic Test vs IELTS General Training Test here.

What is the IELTS Test Format?

As discussed above, IELTS tests your key skills in the English language for various aspects, including Listening, Speaking, Writing, and Reading. Therefore, the IELTS Exam format consists of these four sections only. When attempting your IELTS exam, you take tests for all four sections on the same day, one after another. Sometimes, the speaking test may be scheduled for another day, depending on your test center. The total time for your IELTS exam is approximately 3 hours.

How much is the IELTS Exam Fee?

The IELTS exam fee varies depending on various factors such as the IELTS test type and your country. The IELTS exam fee in India is INR 17,000 for almost all exam types besides the IELTS exam fee for the Life Skills Test (A1 and B1). This IELTS exam fee in the USA ranges between USD 280 and USD 340, depending on the test type and location. Similarly, the IELTS exam fee varies depending on the location and IELTS exam type.

How is the IELTS Exam Scored?

The IELTS exam is scored in terms of the number of bands awarded for each section and then for the overall test. The lowest score in IELTS is 1, and the highest score is 9. The average of your band scores from all the sections forms your overall IELTS total score. Your scores can also be in half; for example, 5.5, 6.5, 7.5, and so on.

What is the Minimum Required IELTS Score?

The minimum IELTS score for Canada PR is 6 overall. The IELTS requirement for the USA is between 6 and 6.5. This way, the IELTS score requirement varies for different countries and also for different purposes. For example, the minimum IELTS score for Canada as a highly skilled worker can be as high as 8. Check out our blog on minimum IELTS scores for different countries to explore this in detail.

How to Register for the IELTS Test?

Registering for the IELTS exam is quite convenient now. Here is a step-by-step guide:

  1. Registration: Visit the official IELTS website and select the option to “register for the test”. Now, you will be asked to choose between an Academic Test or General Training Test. Pick an option and select if you wish to take it on paper, computer, or possibly online in the near future.
  2. City Preference: Now, select your preferred city to take the test. This won’t be an option once the IELTS online test is available.
  3. Date and Time: After choosing the city, you will be asked to pick a date and time that suits you.
  4. Application Form Details: Once chosen, you will be asked to fill the online IELTS application form. Click submit when you are done and upload a clear picture of your passport.
  5. Application Fee: Pay the application fee and wait for a confirmation mail or text.


Here, we have provided all the basic information about the IELTS test. However, if you still have questions and need help beginning your study abroad journey, you can contact VIS to book a free consultation call with our expert IELTS trainer.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the full form of IELTS?

IELTS full form is the International English Language Testing System.

What are the Different Types of IELTS Tests Available?

IELTS Academic test, IELTS General Training test, and IELTS Life Skills test are three types of IELTS tests available.

What is the duration of the IELTS Exam?

The total time taken to attempt all sections of the IELTS exam is around 3 hours.

What are the different sections in the IELTS Exam?

There are four different sections in the IELTS exam; Reading, Writing, Speaking, and Listening.

What is the minimum IELTS score ?

Minimum IELTS score varies for different countries and purposes. For example, the minimum IELTS score for Canada PR is 6. Whereas, it can go as high as 8 for highly skilled workers.

What is the IELTS Exam Fee in India?

IELTS Exam fee in India for Academic and General Training tests is INR 16,250.

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