Nigerian student on a computerThe International English Language Testing System (IELTS) measures English proficiency among those who wish to study or work in a place where English is the primary language. For students, success on the Academic IELTS can lead to better chances of admission to universities in English-speaking countries. International students seeking to score high on the IELTS can enlist an Ivy Bound tutor!

Test Format

In two hours and 45 minutes, these four sections are presented:

  • Listening: Four recordings are played during this 30-minute section. Students must proficiently write answers to a series of questions about the recordings. Answers should show a clear understanding of the conversations.
  • Reading: In 60 minutes, reading skills are tested with 40 questions based on three long-form text passages. Students should show they understand the main ideas, details, writer arguments and attitudes.
  • Writing: In 60 minutes, test takers are required to complete two tasks: Summarize information presented in a graph, table or chart, and write an essay in response to an argument. Topics are suitable for students seeking higher education.
  • Speaking: In 11 – 14 minutes, the examiner will ask a series of questions that the student must respond to in English.

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Test takers are scored on a “nine-band” scale. Students can earn zero to nine points on all four sections and the scores are averaged. The final “band score” is the average rounded to the next half or whole number. For example:


For a further detailed breakdown of how each section is scored, visit the IELTS website.

Registration & Taking the IELTS

To register for the IELTS use www.ielts.org to print, fill out, and submit a downloaded application to your local test center. A copy of valid identification must also be submitted with the application and should be presented on test day too. Once the application is processed, the test taker is sent written confirmation from the IELTS with the test date and time.

IELTS Prep Assistance

Ivy Bound’s seasoned tutors are available to help international students prepare for the IELTS. We offer online tutoring services and in-person sessions to students who may be spending their summers in the U.S. To learn more about how we can help you find success on this English proficiency exam, contact us today!

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