What is the IELTS?

The IELTS is an English testing system that evaluates your ability to listen, read, speak and write in English.  The IELTS is offered in over 135 countries and is widely accepted by many institutions around the globe.

There are two types of the IELTS test – Academic and General Training.  The Academic IELTS tests are for those students who are seeking education at an undergraduate or postgraduate level.  The General Training IELTS tests are for those to prove their English proficiency in the social and working contexts.

Why is the IELTS important?

The IELTS exam will help the institutions that you are applying to evaluate your English proficiency.  The IELTS are also widely accepted by many institutions around the world, including the UK and the U.S.

When are the IELTS exams held? 

The link below offers the dates in which the IELTS will be taking place:

  • Please note that the Academic IELTS are offered on every test day, but the General Training IELTS only occurs 2 times a month.

Where to register for the IELTS?The link below gives instructions on how you can register for the IELTS exam.  First, find an IELTS testing center based on your preference and fill in an application form as instructed on the website.  Then submit your application with the exam fee to the test center that you have selected.

Instructions for IELTS application:

IELTS Application Form:

To find a test center:

What IELTS score is good enough to get into my top choice schools?

Check with your institutions about the minimum IELTS scores they accept for admission.  Scores may vary among schools; however, usually a 7.0 minimum score is required.

The exam includes 4 sections – listening, reading, writing and speaking.  The speaking portion of the exam will be a face-to-face interview with an examiner that will either occur on the same day as the other three portions, or may be scheduled for any day within the same week. Despite the varying contents in the two different tests, the format will remain the same for both.

The format of the exam will be as follow:


Sections Format Number of Questions Amount of Time
Listening 4 sections 40 30 minutes
Reading 3 sections 40 60 minutes
Writing 2 prompts 60 60 minutes
Speaking Interview format 11-15 minutes


Course Code Start Date End Date Days of Week Target IELTS Test Date Schedule
IELTS 81 6 Aug, 2012 27 Aug, 2012 Mon-Friday -PM September Tests
This course has online SAGE content that is available once you register at SAGE Education for an IELTS course.