Is IELTS Hard?

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Is IELTS Hard?

Is IELTS hard or easy to crack? It must be the biggest concern for an aspirant who wishes to clear the IELTS test and move Abroad for a better career and life. Well, the answer depends entirely on the candidates. You might have heard about several people sharing their worries about attempting the test and obtaining a desirable result as a non-native English speaker. However, even if you start your preparation from scratch with a proper practise and study approach, cracking IELTS won’t be as challenging as it seems to be. Begin by understanding the format and structure of the test, and then create a study plan that suits your learning style. Throughout the preparation process, the goal is to remain focused and disciplined.

 IELTS (the International English Language Testing System), is the world-renowned proficiency test that assesses the English language skills of non-native speakers all across the globe. Many educational institutions, immigration authorities, and employers consider IELTS an eligibility criterion for candidates who wish to move abroad for educational purposes, work abroad, or settle abroad.  

In accordance with its purpose, IELTS can be divided into two categories: IELTS Academic and IELTS General. While IELTS Academic is taken by students who wish to enrol at an international university where English is the primary medium of instruction, IELTS General is for candidates who are seeking employment or PR status as well as for students who wish to enrol in an international institution below undergraduate level. IELTS Academic assesses the individual’s academic language competency rather than just conversational abilities and determines whether the candidate is prepared to study at an international university.

Aspirants can opt for either a computer-based IELTS exam or a paper-based IELTS exam to prove their proficiency in reading, writing, speaking, and listening modules within a proctored time limit. The difficulty level of the exam varies according to individuals and their skills as well as their expertise. However, with proper preparation and practise, anyone can achieve an impeccable score. The IELTS score is calculated on a scale of 0 to 9. Most educational institutions and immigration authorities ask for a minimum score of 6.5 bands. You can take IELTS exams as many times as you want until you achieve a satisfactory result since the exam is conducted four times a month.

So how can one obtain a high band score and secure their overseas dream? Well, the most simple answer is that practise makes everything perfect. In order to bag a perfect score, one must go through the modules and realise their strengths and weaknesses. For example, while some people struggle with the writing module, someone else might find it their forte. Also, the candidate’s knowledge and preparation time for IELTS are helpful in obtaining a high score. Before that, it’s better to get an understanding of all the modules of IELTS.

IELTS modules

The IELTS exam consists of four sections: reading, writing, and listening, and the test duration is 2 hours and 45 minutes with an extra 10 minutes to transfer the answer. 

IELTS reading 

The reading section comprises a set of 40 questions with 1 mark each, and the total time duration is 60 minutes. The questions cover a wide range of topics, from factual and descriptive to analytical and argumentative. The academic reading module may be more difficult than the general training test.

One of the common concerns candidates raise in the reading section is that the texts are too long to be read. In order to overcome this, one must apply specific reading strategies right from the start of IELTS preparation

  • Go through the sample questions, check which types of questions are difficult for you, and practise accordingly.
  • Practise reading by scanning and skimming through newspapers and books. It also helps you improve your vocabulary while enhancing your reading speed.
  • When you skim through the text, underline the most important phrases. This will save you from wasting time searching for answers.
  • If you come across an unfamiliar word, don’t waste your time worrying about it. Instead, look at the sentence or paragraph in general and try to guess its context.
  • Any words that have special features such as capital letters, underlining, or italics are likely to be important, so pay attention to them.

IELTS writing

The writing section consists of two questions. In the first question, you’re required to write a descriptive analysis in 150 words. The question will be based on graphs and diagrams, and the duration will be 20 minutes. In the second question, you will be asked to write an essay of 250 words within 40 minutes. Many candidates find it extremely challenging to finish two questions within the time limit. However, if you learn to manage your time and distribute it accordingly, it won’t be as difficult as it seems to be.

Use a maximum of five minutes to read the question to understand its content and what you are asked to interpret from the graphic data. Take up to 10–12 minutes to write the answers, by ensuring that you have included an overview and have properly described and compared the relevant details. Make sure to use the last 2–3 minutes to check your answers by paying specific attention to correcting any avoidable mistakes like tenses and spelling.

As for the essay part, use 5-8 minutes to create an essay plan and structure by making a list of points that need to be included. Take 25 to 30 minutes to write and 5-8 minutes to check your essay for possible errors.

  • Use unique terms and sentence constructions rather than reusing the words from the questions.
  • Try to improve your understanding of how to organise ideas and words by practising with the help of sample essays and letters.
  • Stick to 350 words and make sure to stay on the topic. 

IELTS listening

The listening section consists of audio recordings of conversations of native English speakers, and questions will be asked based on the recordings. You have to attempt to answer 40 questions within 30 minutes.  

Since you hear the recordings only once, concentration plays an important role in this module. However, don’t panic if you miss the questions. 

  • In order to get accustomed to the audio of native English speakers, listen to news, documentaries, television shows, and podcasts, as well as IELTS listening prep tools. 
  • Also watch out for the negative terms (not, never, none, no one, barely, hardly, scarcely, etc.).

IELTS speaking 

The speaking section involves an interaction with the examiner where you have to speak on a specific topic for a certain time limit. Most of the candidates may find the speaking module difficult, as many of them might not be having their conversations in English on a regular basis.

In the first part of the speaking module, the examiner engages you in a conversation, and it’s not necessary for you to get enough time to think about what to say. However, in the second part, where you were asked to speak for 2 minutes, you will get one minute to prepare the topic based on your cue card.

  • Use the one-minute preparation time to note down the points that you’re going to make.
  • Try to showcase your knowledge of vocabulary instead of using common words and terms. For example, instead of saying ‘loving and caring person,” you can use the word “affectionate or considerate person’. 
  • Don’t be concerned about grammar or vocabulary. Focus on answering the questions.
  • Be mindful of your body language. 
  • Always stick to the topic and ask the examiner to repeat the question if you don’t understand it. 

Additionally, it’s important to stay calm and composed during the exam and not get overwhelmed by the pressure. Remember to read the instructions carefully and allocate your time wisely. Don’t spend too much time on one question, as this may lead to a lack of time for other questions. Instead, move on to the next question if you’re unsure of the answer and come back to it later if you have time. Finally, make sure to review your answers before submitting your exam to ensure that you haven’t made any careless mistakes. With these tips in mind, you’ll be well-prepared for success in your exam modules.

 So, is IELTS tough to crack?

The IELTS exam is not tough or easy, as it is a test designed to assess your English proficiency in various modules, and all you have to do is practise well. If you are well prepared, then you can ace the exam with a high band score. 

Always try out mock tests and practise time management for better results. Every candidate has their own strengths and weaknesses when it comes to the exam modules, so it’s better to focus on how well one manages time and knowledge in paraphrasing. Invest your time in practising the sample tests by attempting mock tests under the guidance of an expert trainer. This will help you identify your weak areas and work on them.

Make use of various resources such as practise tests, sample questions, and study materials to enhance your skills in all four sections of the test: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. It is also important to practise time management skills during the test to ensure that you complete all sections within the given time limit.

Consistency is key when it comes to IELTS preparation, so make sure to dedicate a sufficient amount of time each day for studying and practising. Lastly, stay motivated by setting achievable goals for yourself and tracking your progress along the way. With dedication and hard work, you can definitely achieve your goal of clearing the IELTS test and pursuing a better career and life abroad.

Texas Review is the flagbearer for IELTS preparation courses for professionals and students. As an emerging leader in test preparation, we take pride in maintaining a higher success rate for the last 9+ years. We have assisted thousands of students to achieve their dream careers by securing high scores in IELTS through quality education. Our multiple consultancies and coaching centres all across the country strive to facilitate the best training for our thousands of aspirants.

Please contact us for further details regarding our services at 9100444920 or email us:

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