IELTS Exam 2023: Everything You Need to Know
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“Planning to study abroad? IELTS exam is your ticket to success! Learn everything about the IELTS exam 2023, including the format, scoring, and preparation tips“
The IELTS exam is the standardized test of English language proficiency, which allows aspirants to study or work in a foreign country where English is one of the languages of communication. Go through the page to know the IELTS exam details and the latest IELTS exam updates.
Introduction: What is the IELTS Exam?
The International English Language Testing System (IELTS), established in 1989, is the most popular English language proficiency test for work, study or migration. It is an exam, accepted by most of the academic institutions and professional institutions in countries like America, Canada,
IELTS is the only secure English Language Test approved by UKVI for visa customers applying both, from outside and inside the UK, i.e., UKVI IELTS is designed to assess the English language ability of applicants who plan to study or work in a foreign country where English is one of the languages of communication.
IELTS Exam Overview
|IELTS Full Form||International English Language Testing System|
|Sections||Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking|
|Types||Academic and General Training|
|Mode of IELTS||Paper and Computer Delivered Test|
|Duration||2 hours 45 minutes|
|Number of Attempts||Up to four times a month|
|Grading||9-band scale (1 lowest, 9 highest)|
|Results||Available within 2-5 days after the test|
|Accepted By||More than 10,000 universities|
|Official Website of IELTS||https://www.ielts.org/|
Check: IDP V/s British Council
IELTS Exam 2023: Latest Updates
IELTS Academic changes for 2023
From August 10, 2023, the IELTS Academic test takers will no longer need to achieve a minimum 6.0 score in all individual test skills. Now just a 6.0 overall band score is required, making it easier to choose IELTS Academic to prove your language proficiency.
IELTS Fee Increase
The IELTS exam fee has increased to INR 16,250 for both pen and paper-based and computer-delivered exams starting April 2023. The exam fee for IELTS Life Skills (A1 and B1) has also increased to INR 15,350, while the exam fee for IELTS for UK Visas and Immigration has increased to INR 16,500.
IELTS Demand Surges in India
As per the latest reports, the IELTS booking has grown by 10-15% post-COVID and the IELTS coaching registration has gone up by 56% in tier-II cities. Even the IELTS test centers have increased to 74 locations across India.
IELTS One Skill Retake
Previously, test takers had to retake the entire IELTS exam if they did not achieve their desired score in any module. However, IELTS has introduced a new One Skill Retake provision in March 2023 in India, which allows the test takers to retake only the module in which they scored the lowest. This means that they will no longer have to retake all four modules of the IELTS exam.
IELTS in India to be administered by IDP
IDP has acquired 100% stakes in the British Council's IELTS business in India, which means that IDP is now fully responsible for administering the IELTS test in India. The change was implemented back in August 2021.
Check: IELTS to be Managed by IDP
IELTS Exam 2023 Types
The IELTS exam is available in two formats: Academic and General Training.
IELTS Academic is designed for students who want to study at an English-medium university or college. The exam assesses your ability to understand and use English in a university setting.
IELTS General Training
IELTS General Training is designed for people who want to work or migrate to an English-speaking country. The exam assesses your ability to understand and use English in a range of everyday situations.
IELTS Exam 2023 Modes
- Paper-Based Test: The Listening, Reading, and Writing sections will be paper-based, while the Speaking test will be conducted face-to-face with the IELTS examiner. In the paper-based test, users have to transfer answers to an answer sheet.
- Computer-Based IELTS: The Listening, Reading, and Writing sections will be on a computer, while the Speaking test will be conducted face-to-face with the IELTS examiner. Timings vary from the paper-based test. When answering directly on a computer, there is no need to transfer the answers. You will receive the results within 5-7 days.
IELTS Exam 2023: Exam Pattern
The IELTS test is divided into four sections: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking and the IELTS syllabus is based on these 4 sections.
Each section tests a different skill, and the overall score is calculated by averaging the scores from each section.
IELTS Listening Section
- The IELTS Listening section assesses your listening comprehension skills in English. You will listen to four recordings, each with ten questions, and answer questions about what you have heard. You will have 10 minutes to transfer your answers after 30 minutes.
IELTS Reading Section
- The IELTS Reading section assesses your reading comprehension skills in English. You will read three passages, each with a variety of question types, including multiple-choice, short-answer questions, diagrams, and graphs. You will have 60 minutes to complete the section.
Check: IELTS Reading Practice Test
IELTS Writing Section
- The IELTS Writing section assesses your ability to communicate effectively in English in two written tasks (Academic Task 1, General Task 1, and Task 2). IELTS Writing Task 1 Academic requires you to write a factual description of a graph, chart, or diagram, whereas IELTS Writing Task 1 General requires you to write a formal/ semi-formal/ informal letter. IELTS Writing Task 2 requires you to write an essay in response to a given topic
Check: IELTS Writing Practice Test
IELTS Speaking Section
- The IELTS Speaking section is a 12-14 minute face-to-face interview with an examiner that tests your ability to communicate effectively in English. The test has three parts.
- Part 1: The examiner will ask you general questions about yourself, such as your family, work, and hobbies.
- Part 2: The examiner will give you a topic to speak about for two minutes. You will have one minute to prepare your response.
- Part 3: The examiner will ask you questions about the topic you spoke about in Part 2.
Check: IELTS Speaking Practice Test
IELTS Exam 2023: Why is it Required?
The IELTS exam is a required criterion for most academic institutions and work organizations that accept international students and employees who do not speak English as their native language. These universities, organizations, and even visa granting authorities want to make sure that you have a good understanding of English and will not have any communication problems while staying in their country.
The IELTS exam is the only English test that is approved by the UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) for visa candidates applying both from inside and outside the UK. Therefore, a good score on the IELTS exam will demonstrate that you have no difficulty communicating in English.
Check: IELTS Mock Test Free
IELTS Exam 2023: Is it compulsory?
The IELTS exam is not required for all foreign universities, but it is advisable to take it to improve your chances of getting a visa and admission to top universities.
Some foreign universities do not require the IELTS exam, but visa authorities may be doubtful about your English proficiency without the IELTS scores. And since most top universities require an IELTS score, it is advisable to take the exam and aim for a score of at least 6 bands overall.
IELTS Exam 2023: Eligibility Criteria
There are no specific eligibility criteria for the IELTS examination. The only criterion may be that the candidates who wish to attempt the examination must be 16 years or above.
However, in Canada, the Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has confirmed the change from age limit 18-54 to 14 - 64. For the rest of the world, there is no upper age limit, but the lower age limit is 16.
IELTS Exam 2023: Registration
Candidates intending to register for the IELTS online test, can either go online or visit their nearest IDP branch. The official IDP IELTS India website is the best place to register online. However, here are the steps on how to do the IELTS registration online:
Step 1: Firstly, you need to visit the IELTS official website.
Step 2: There will be a Register for test option, click on that option.
Step 3: Select the test that you are going to attempt, test type and date on which you will be appearing for the test.
Step 4: Fill in your personal details including details of registration.
Step 5: Upload your passport copies.
Step 6: Select the list of colleges for which your score has to be sent.
Step 7: Before submitting or making payment, crosscheck the details that you have uploaded.
Step 8: Make the test fee payment and once the payment is done, take the printout of the receipt.
Once the registration is done, your IELTS test centre will send you a confirmation with the date and time of your IELTS test.
Note: Keep your passport next to you during the IELTS registration process, as you’ll need your passport number at the time of registration. Those below 18 years of age should have their parents or guardian do the registration process for them.
IELTS Exam Fees
There are two ways to pay the IELTS exam fees: online and offline.
- You can pay the fees online using a credit or debit card (Visa or Mastercard) or net banking.
- To pay online, you will need to create an account on the IELTS website and provide your personal information.
- Once you have created an account, you can select the exam date and location and pay the fees.
- You can pay the fees offline by visiting any ICICI bank branch.
- When you pay offline, you will need to provide your passport or government-issued ID and the exam registration number.
Go through the table below to check the updated IELTS exam fee details.
|IELTS Exam 2023||Updated IELTS Exam 2023 Fee|
|IELTS Exam Fee 2023 (Pen and paper-based & Computer-delivered IELTS exam)||INR 16,250|
|UKVI IELTS||INR 16,500|
|IELTS Life Skills
(A1 and B1)
|IELTS for UK Visas||INR 16,500|
|IELTS Cancellation Charge||25% of test fee|
|IELTS Rescheduling Fee||INR 3312|
|IELTS Test Center Change Fee||INR 3312|
|IELTS Rechecking Fees||INR 8475|
|IELTS Score Sending Fee||INR 250 (Per University)|
IELTS Exam Fee: Refund Policy
- Cancellation before 5 weeks: If you cancel your IELTS exam application more than 5 weeks before the test date, you will receive a refund, minus a 25% administrative fee.
- Cancellation within 5 weeks: If you cancel your IELTS exam application within 5 weeks of the test date, you will not receive a refund.
- No-show: If you do not appear for your IELTS exam, you will not receive a refund.
- Medical emergency: If you are unable to take the IELTS exam due to a medical emergency, you may be eligible for a refund, minus a 25% administrative fee. You must provide a medical certificate within 5 days of the test date.
IELTS Exam: Rescheduling fees
If you need to change your IELTS test date, you can request a test day transfer at least five weeks before your already booked test date. The new test date must be within three months of the original test date. There is an administrative charge of INR 3,300 inclusive of all taxes for changing your test date.
IELTS Exam Dates
- The IELTS exam is conducted up to 4 times a month and almost 48 times a year.
- The Academic version is available on all 48 dates in a year, and the General Training version may be available on 24 dates a year.
- The candidates can appear for the exams as per their convenience and can attempt it as many times as they want, keeping in mind the university examination dates.
- But, every time they attempt the IELTS examination they’ll have to pay the registration amount of INR 16,250.
- It is advisable to choose an exam date that’s at least 2-3 months before the application deadline.
IELTS Exam Dates 2023 - Paper-Based Test
|Month||IDP Exam Dates 2023|
|September 2023||02, 09, 14, 23.|
|October 2023||07, 12, 21, 28.|
|November 2023||04, 09, 18, 25.|
|December 2023||02, 07, 09, 16.|
IELTS Exam Dates 2023 - Computer-Based Test
|Month||IDP Exam Dates 2023|
|September 2023||All days of the week and up to 3 sessions a day.|
Check: IELTS Exam Dates
IELTS Test Centres India
IELTS has exam centres all across India, so while choosing your centre, you should select it based on your location and travelling convenience, so that on the day of the exam there is minimal time spent on commuting to the centre. The IELTS Test Centres are located in the cities tabulated below:
Check: IELTS Test Centres
IELTS Exam 2023: Scoring and Band Scale
Test takers receive a score for each test component – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. The individual scores are then averaged and rounded to produce an overall IELTS Band Score.
Basically, when you get your score report, you’ll be evaluated for each of the four skills on a band of 1 - 9 and you’ll also score an overall band score.
IELTS Exam 2023: Evaluation
You will be assessed based on the following four criteria:
- Task Achievement
- Coherence and Cohesion
- Lexical Resource
- Grammatical Range and Accuracy.
These are also called as band descriptors or performance descriptors.
IELTS Exam 2023 Results
For a computer-delivered test, IELTS results are released between 5–7 days. For a paper-based test, a Test Report Form is posted to test takers 13 days after their test. The Test Report Forms (TRF) are valid for two years since the result posting.
After taking the IELTS exam 2023, you can get your IELTS results in two ways: offline and online.
- For offline or paper-based tests, you will receive your results within 13 calendar days from the day of your exam.
- You will receive your results by post or through your registered email address.
- Candidates will receive the results of computer-delivered tests within 3-5 days.
- On the day of your result, you will receive an intimation from your Test Centre about the results. You can simply log in to your IELTS account with your ID, password, passport number, and test date information to view your result.
- From the time of declaration of the result, your results will be available online for the next 28 days.
The IELTS is Not a Pass/Fail Exam. So, your score will be based on your performance in each of the four skills: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. The scores for each skill are then averaged to give an overall band score.
The IELTS cut-off score will vary depending on the college or university you are applying to. Each institution has its own requirements for English language proficiency, and they will specify the minimum IELTS band score that you need to meet in order to be considered for admission.
Top Universities Accepting IELTS Score
If you are an international student who is planning to study at a top university, you will need to take the IELTS and achieve a certain score in order to be admitted. The required IELTS score will vary depending on the university and the program that you are applying to.
Here is a list of some of the top universities in the world that accept IELTS scores:
|Country||University||Minimum IELTS Score (Undergraduate)|
|United Kingdom||University of Oxford||7.0|
|United Kingdom||University of Cambridge||7.0|
|United Kingdom||Imperial College London||7.0|
|Canada||University of Toronto||6.5|
|Canada||University of British Columbia||6.5|
|United States||Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT)||7.0|
How to Send Your IELTS Scores to Universities?
You will receive a Test Report Form (TRF) containing your IELTS scores within 13 days of attempting the exam. There are three ways to send your TRF to universities:
- During registration: If you request to send your TRF to universities during registration, you will need to provide the names and addresses of the universities when you book your test on the website of the test center or fill out an application form with up to 5 universities and send it to your nearest test center.
- Within one month of taking the exam: You can also request to send your TRF to universities within one month of taking the exam. To do this, you will need to log in to your IELTS account and select the universities you want to send your scores to.
- After one month of taking the exam: If you want to send your TRF to additional universities after one month of taking the exam, you will need to fill out an application form called Application for the Issue of Additional TRFs. You will be charged an additional fee for each TRF that is requested after one month.
Mode of Delivery: You can choose to have your scores sent to universities electronically or by paper. To send your scores electronically, you will need to provide the universities with your email address.
To send your scores by paper, you will need to pay a fee and the universities will be sent a physical copy of your TRF.
IELTS Coaching Centre
IELTS coaching centres can provide you with the skills and knowledge you need to succeed on the IELTS exam. They can help you improve your listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills. They can also teach you how to manage your time effectively and how to deal with the stress of taking the exam.
There are many different IELTS coaching centres available, so it is important to choose one that is right for you. Some factors to consider include the instructor's qualifications, the class size, the ielts mock test they offer and their curriculum.
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Check: IELTS Coaching Centers
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Frequently Asked Questions
1. When to take IELTS for fall 2023?
If you're aiming for the Fall 2023 intake, it's advisable to complete the test in August or no later than September. It's important to note, though, that the specific deadlines for the Fall intake can differ based on the university and country of your preference.
2. Do we get to choose a date for our IELTS Exam?
Yes, we get to choose a date for our IELTS Exam when we register for it.
3. Do we need any kind of specific documents for the exam?
Yes, a passport is required for the exam and you will be told to bring it on the day of your test, both for speaking and the rest.
4. Do we write the exam on paper or take it on a computer?
You can choose to write the exam either way. You can take it on paper or on a computer depending upon the city you live in.
5. What is an IELTS certificate?
The IELTS certificate is nothing but the Test Report Form (TRF) containing details about the results obtained by a candidate in an IELTS exam.
Frequently Asked Questions
Why do we write the IELTS exam?
Do we get to choose a date for our IELTS Exam?
Do we need any kind of specific documents for the exam?
Do we write the exam on paper or take it on a computer?
How long is the IELTS Test?