Candidates seeking to work or study in English-speaking countries have to secure a minimum IELTS score. This score usually depends on the country, the chosen institution and the course.
It is accepted in more than 11,000 institutions across 140+ countries. Notably, it is accepted by numerous government agencies, training institutions and immigration agencies, industrial and professional organisations. Naturally, the level of competition is considerably high.
IELTS might appear to be a challenging test. However, with the right tips, students can figure out a suitable strategy to guarantee success in IELTS.
Ways to Ensure a High Score Band in IELTS
Here are some of the unfailing tips that can ensure success in IELTS by boosting the chances of a high IELTS score:
1. Chalk Out a Plan
The first thing that aspirants need to do is prepare a thorough plan which they should follow stringently. Candidates should fix a target and work according to the plan to achieve it. In this case, one should aim to secure a high score band, preferably 7.
Once the target is set, they should assess their English language capabilities for each of the skills: reading, writing, speaking and listening. This will give them explicit knowledge about their strengths and shortcomings, which they can use to improve their overall preparation.
Most importantly, students should create a preparation schedule and proceed as per the plan. It is essential to find out whether the schedule is helping to bring about any improvement in the practice.
So, one has to make a plan, follow it, assess the progress and make necessary changes until the target is reached.
2. Understand the Exam Format
Before beginning with the preparation, students should have a clear idea about the IELTS exam syllabus and test pattern. This will allow them to create a solid preparation strategy. The IELTS test consists of four sections: Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking. Test-takers can divide their schedule, dedicating appropriate practice time for each of the sections.
They can also understand the type of questions that are expected in each section and study accordingly.
3. Develop Time Management Skills
Each of the test sections comes with a time duration that needs to be followed strictly. Students are required to answer 40 questions in 60 and 30 minutes for the Reading and Listening sections, respectively. For the Writing section, they have to answer two essays within 60 minutes, while the Speaking test lasts for around 14 minutes.
Naturally, a candidate should use the allotted time wisely. Time management skills can be improved through rigorous practice. In case one is unable to answer a particular question, it would be advisable to move on to the next one without wasting valuable time. With better time skills, one can increase the chances of securing a higher score band.
4. Build Core English Language Skills
IELTS is more skill-based than knowledge-based. Candidates have to develop and sharpen their core language skills to ace this proficiency test. They should focus on enhancing their English language through exposure. In other words, candidates should develop the habit of reading books, magazines, journals and watching English movies and shows to enrich their vocabulary.
Moreover, they should try to incorporate newly-learned words in their day-to-day use and converse with a native English speaker to improve fluency. To develop writing skills, one should write responses to as many IELTS essay samples as possible. This way, they can become comfortable with writing any kind of task in the Writing section.
The more one becomes familiar with the language, the more they become comfortable with this test.
5. Attempt Practice Tests
One of the most practical and useful ways to assess your level of readiness and the efficiency of your strategy is to take an online IELTS practice test.
Attempting such tests are beneficial in many ways. Firstly, candidates can familiarise themselves with the test pattern and IELTS exam syllabus. They can also get first-hand experience of time management. Most important of all, test-takers will get a clear idea about their strengths and weaknesses.
A mock test will show the areas where students need to focus, thereby allowing them to modify and improve their preparation strategies.
6. Study Smart
Aspiring candidates should know that it is essential to study smart instead of studying hard. Rather than wasting effort in memorising, one should understand the marking criteria of each of the test sections in IELTS. This will help them to develop a suitable learning strategy with which they can prepare efficiently without putting in extra effort or time.
Securing a high IELTS score band might appear to be a daunting task. However, armed with the right tips, test-takers can work upon a suitable strategy to prepare the IELTS exam syllabus and thus secure the desired score band.