Why do we need IELTS?

Why do we need IELTS?

English skills are in demand globally. What’s more, estimates suggest that around 1.5 billion people around the world are learning English. The IELTS provides learners with a fair and accurate way of showing their English proficiency. 

According to the British Council, more than 11,000 organizations globally use the IELTS. For those taking the exams, the qualification proves to universities, employers, and professional bodies worldwide that they have skills in English reading, writing, listening and speaking. 

What are the reasons for IELTS?

There are three reasons why you should take the IELTS:

1. For pursuing a career

If you’re hoping to pursue a career in an English speaking country, you first need to obtain a visa which permits you to do so. One of the steps in obtaining a visa is providing evidence that you are proficient in the English language.

If you want to succeed in your career, language skills are essential and by taking the IELTS, you’ll be fully prepared. Each country requires a certain score on the IELTS, for example, in the UK, applicants must score at least 6.5 on each of the four components of the test (Reading, Speaking, Listening and Writing). And different occupations have different requirements too, with some demanding a higher score than others.

2. Higher Studies

Many English speaking universities require international students to take the IELTS as a condition of their initial application and acceptance. If you’re looking to do an undergraduate or postgraduate course that is taught in English, an IELTS can not only help you get on the course, but will also help you to succeed within your studies. The better your English language skills, the better you’ll do on your course.

3. For Immigration

If you would like to obtain citizenship in an English speaking country, many countries require good English in order for you to obtain permanent residence. Knowing the language of your country is a great indicator of how well you will integrate and how likely you are to successfully work in said country.

How many types are there?

There are two types of IELTS tests; IETLS Academic and IELTS General Training. While both are used to assess your English language skills, there are some slight differences between the two:  

  • The IELTS Academic. Focuses on English listening, reading, writing and speaking for those wanting to study at university or in an academic environment. Many students hoping to study overseas in an English speaking country take this test. 
  • The IELTS General Training. Also focuses on English listening, reading, writing and speaking, but is more suited to those applying to study below degree level. Those seeking employment or who are migrating to Australia, Canada, New Zealand or the UK also take this test. 

It’s important to know which IELTS framework is best suited to your needs before you begin studying for the test. 


How can I give the IELTS test?

IELTS can be attempted in two modes:

  • This version is a normal paper-based test wherein aspirants attempt Listening, Reading and Writing on sheets provided at the test centre. Speaking is conducted within a week before or after the paper-based test.

  • This version can be attempted only on a computer in an authorized test centre where all modules are tested in the sequence of Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Both versions – Academic as well as General Training – are available on computer. The Listening, Reading and Writing sections of all IELTS tests are to be completed on the same day, without any breaks in between them. The Speaking test, however, will be conducted up to a week before or after the other tests. Total time given for the test is 2 hours and 45 minutes.

What's in the exam?

Paper Content Time
40 questions
Approximately 30 minutes (plus 10 minutes’ transfer time)
40 questions
60 minutes
2 tasks
60 minutes
3 parts
11-14 minutes

General Training

For immigration or work purpose.


Choose this if you wish to migrate to an English-speaking country, (e.g. Australia, Canada, New Zealand, UK) or if you wish to train or study at a below-degree level. Find out what’s in the IELTS General Training module.

Learn more

Academic IELTS

For study purpose


Choose this if you wish to study at undergraduate or postgraduate levels, or if you are seeking professional registration, e.g. doctors and nurses. Find out what’s in the IELTS Academic module.

Learn more