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How To Book Your IELTS Test: Everything You Need To Know

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Written by  Harminder Singh, MBA

Reviewed by  Priyanka Bhargava, MBA - Marketing and HR

Published on Fri, April 28, 2023 2:49 PM   Updated on Fri, April 28, 2023 2:49 PM   13 mins read

One of the world’s most well-known examinations of English language proficiency is the International English Language Testing System (IELTS). 

The IELTS test can be a critical step in accomplishing your goals, regardless of whether you want to study abroad, immigrate, or work in an English-speaking nation. 

We’ll walk you through scheduling your IELTS exam in this article. We will also review the various IELTS test formats, their significance, and what they test for.

IELTS Testing: What Is It?

IELTS test
Source: Canva

An assessment tool for non-native English speakers’ language skills is the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), which is widely used. The test evaluates candidates who intend to study or work in an English-speaking nation on their four primary language skills: speaking, listening, reading, and writing. 

The British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia, and Cambridge Assessment English work together to manage the IELTS exam.

Over 140 nations worldwide offer the IELTS exam, and over 10,000 employers recognize IELTS results as evidence of English language proficiency. The test measures the proficiency of non-native English speakers in academic and professional English communication.

Why is it Crucial?

Why is IELTS crucial
Source: Canva

Non-native English speakers who want to study, work, or immigrate to an English-speaking nation must take the IELTS exam. The test result helps to assess a candidate’s English proficiency level. It also checks the capacity for productive communication in academic and professional settings. 

Admission to undergraduate and graduate programs at universities and colleges in the UK, Canada, Australia, and New Zealand requires IELTS results. Some professional and skilled worker visa programs in Canada and Australia also require the test as a requirement.

Employers frequently use the IELTS test to determine how well their workers speak English, particularly those who work for global corporations. The exam results help gauge how well job prospects communicate and how well they can work with clients and colleagues from around the globe.

IELTS Test Types

IELTS Test Types
Source: Canva

The IELTS Academic test and the IELTS General Training test are two different IELTS examinations.

Academic IELTS Test

Candidates who wish to pursue undergraduate or graduate studies at a university or college should take the IELTS Academic exam. The test gauges a candidate’s ability to communicate in academic settings like lectures, seminars, and research.

The test has four sections: speaking, writing, reading, and listening. Academic material comprises the listening and reading parts, including lectures, scholarly publications, and research papers. 

Candidates must finish two problems in the Writing section: Task 1, in which they must describe visual data, and Task 2, in which they must compose an essay on a predetermined subject. Interviewing an examiner face-to-face makes up the speaking part.

General Training Test for IELTS

Candidates who intend to immigrate to an English-speaking nation or pursue employment in a field that requires proficiency in the language should take the IELTS General Training test. The test measures a candidate’s ability to communicate in various settings, including social and professional ones.

The test has four sections: speaking, writing, reading, and listening. Conversations and newspaper articles make up the available content in the listening and reading parts. Candidates must do two writing assignments for the Writing section: Task 1, in which they must write a letter, and Task 2, in which they must compose an essay on a predetermined subject. Speaking involves interviewing an examiner face-to-face.

What is Measured by the IELTS Exam?

What is Measured by the IELTS Exam
Source: Canva

The four primary language abilities—listening, reading, writing, and speaking—are assessed in the IELTS test. The test-taker receives a score for each talent and an overall band score after evaluating each skill individually. Scores range from 0 to 9, with 9 representing the best possible result. The average of the four individual scores is the band score.

1. Listening

Examining applicants’ comprehension of spoken English in academic and social contexts is done in the listening portion. Candidates must respond to questions based on the content of four recordings of native English speakers in this segment. The candidates get time to read and respond to the questions before going on to the next tape, which features a variety of accents and topics.

2. Reading

The reading portion of the exam evaluates students’ comprehension of written English in social and academic contexts. This part has three reading sections, each with 13–14 questions. The texts, which address a variety of subjects, are drawn from scholarly publications, books, and newspapers. Candidates have 60 minutes to finish the reading portion of the exam.

3. Writing

The exam’s writing portion evaluates students’ proficiency in English writing in academic and social contexts. There are two tasks in this section: Task 1 and Task 2. Candidates must describe the information presented in a diagram, chart, or graph as part of Task 1. In Task 2, candidates must produce an essay on a specified topic expressing their viewpoint or solving a dilemma. Candidates must finish the writing part in 60 minutes.

4. Speaking

The speaking portion of the exam evaluates candidates’ proficiency in speaking English in social and academic settings. A face-to-face interview with an examiner makes up this section. The interview has three sections: an introduction and interview, a long turn for each person, and a discussion. The interviewer will inquire about the applicant’s background and hobbies during the introduction and interview. The candidate is given a topic and instructed to talk for 1-2 minutes during their turn. The examiner and the candidate will discuss the topic during the conversation.

How do you Book the IELTS Exam?

For non-native English speakers who desire to study, work, or immigrate to an English-speaking nation, the IELTS exam is a crucial criterion. Learning how to schedule your IELTS test if you intend to take it. We will walk you through scheduling your IELTS test in this section.

Step 1: Look Up The Closest IELTS Testing Facility

Find the closest IELTS test center as the first step in scheduling your exam. The British Council, IDP Education, and Cambridge Assessment English are the three institutions administering the IELTS exam. 

Each firm has several test centers spread throughout many countries, cities, and regions. By visiting the websites of these organizations and looking for the IELTS test centers in your nation or region, you can choose the test center that is closest to you.

Location, accessibility, and exam dates should all be considered while looking for a testing facility. Pick a test location that will be easy for you to reach on the day of the test. The test facility will also let you know if your selected test day is available by visiting their website or contacting them personally.

Step 2: Select The IELTS Test Type

Selecting the type of IELTS test you must take is the second step. IELTS assessments come in two types: Academic and General Training.

  • People who want to enroll in undergraduate or graduate programs or professionals who want to register with professional associations in English-speaking nations should take the IELTS Academic test. It will evaluate your proficiency in the language in academic contexts like lectures, seminars, and research.
  • Those seeking employment or immigration to an English-speaking nation should take the IELTS General Training test. The exam gauges how well you can converse in English with people you know, like coworkers, friends, and government representatives.

Selecting the appropriate IELTS test type to achieve your goals for taking the exam is critical. You can ask your institution, employer, or the exam center for advice if you need clarification on what test to take.

Step 3: Test Costs And Payment Choices

Considering the test costs and payment methods before scheduling your IELTS exam is crucial. Test costs may change depending on your location, facility, and test type. The test center’s website lists the exam costs, or you can contact them there.

The test center and your location may also affect the available payment methods. While some test centers also accept cash or bank transfers for in-person registration, most only accept credit or debit cards for online registration. Before scheduling your test, reviewing the payment alternatives and due dates is crucial to ensuring you can make the payment on time.

Some test facilities may also provide discounts or promotional incentives for early registration, group reservations, or repeat test takers. When signing up for the test, you can visit their website or ask them about these possibilities.

Step 4: Sign Up And Schedule Your Test

The following step is to register and schedule your test when you have located the closest test center, decided on the IELTS test type, and reviewed the test dates. You can sign up and schedule your exam online, over the phone, or in person at the testing location.

Booking Online

You must go to the company’s website that administers the test in your nation or region to register and schedule your test online. You must establish an account, provide your personal and contact information, select the IELTS test type, choose the test center and date, and pay the test money. After completing the registration and payment, you will get an email, which will contain your test information as confirmation.

Booking Via Mobile

You must call the test center to register and schedule your test over the phone. You must give your name and contact information, choose the IELTS test type, test center, and test day, and then pay the test fee. You will get an email after completing the registration and payment that will contain your test information as a confirmation.

In-Person Reservation

It is necessary to personally go to the examination venue to complete the enrollment form, furnish your individual and communication details, select the type of IELTS exam, the examination venue, and date, and pay the examination fee. After the reservation and payment, you will receive a confirmation email containing your examination details.

Step 5: IELTS Test Preparation

You must prepare for the exam to get the IELTS score you want and perform well on test day. IELTS test takers can access many resources, including study guides, practice exams, and online courses.

You can start by familiarizing yourself with the IELTS test’s structure and content. The test has four sections: speaking, writing, reading, and listening. Each phase evaluates a distinct aspect of English language proficiency. You can discover sample test questions and answers on the official IELTS website or in exam prep materials.

You may also take a practice exam to evaluate your English proficiency and pinpoint your strengths and weaknesses. You can increase your confidence, test-taking skills, and time management by taking practice exams.

You can enroll in an IELTS readiness program either in-person or virtually. These courses offer expert guidance, feedback, and chances to practice to help you attain your target score. You can also participate in training sessions, conferences, and language immersion programs to improve your listening and speaking skills.

Step 6: Special Conditions

Let the test center know beforehand if you need any special considerations or accommodations for the IELTS exam. Particular demands could include:

  • Disabilities or health issues that necessitate specialized tools or arrangements, such as additional time, materials with larger text, or sign language interpreters.
  • Religious or cultural customs that call for particular accommodations, like a separate space for prayer or a particular diet.
  • There are additional factors, such as anxiety, dyslexia, or attention deficit disorder, that could influence how well you perform on the test.

When registering for the test or contacting them directly, you can let the test center know about any unique needs. To confirm your request, you must submit supporting documentation or certificates, such as a medical report or a letter from your spiritual leader.

They will examine your request at the testing facility, which will then decide whether it can provide the required accommodations. Additionally, they can suggest different test times or locations if it better serves your needs. Notifying them immediately and giving the test center enough time to make the appropriate arrangements is crucial.

Bottom Line

How to book IELTS test
Source: Canva

An essential step for anyone wishing to study or work abroad is scheduling an IELTS exam. It’s critical to comprehend the many test categories and select the one that best meets your requirements. 

Your chances of success can be significantly improved by studying with practice materials and requesting any necessary accommodations before the test. With the knowledge in this manual, you may confidently schedule your IELTS exam and begin working toward your objectives. 

Plan ahead, be knowledgeable about test costs and payment choices, and let the testing centre know if you have any specific needs. Good luck as you prepare for the IELTS!

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Frequently Asked Questions

How do I choose an IELTS test centre and date?

You can choose an IELTS test center and date by visiting the official IELTS website and selecting your preferred location and available test dates.

What documents do I need to book my IELTS test?

You will need to provide a valid identification document, such as a passport, national ID card, or driver’s license, to book your IELTS test.

How can i pay for my IELTS Tests and what is the cost?

The cost of the IELTS test varies by location and can be paid for online using a credit or debit card, or in-person at the test center. It is important to check the cost and payment options for your specific location.

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About the Author & Expert


Harminder Singh

Author • MBA • 10+ Years

Harminder Singh is the Assistant Manager - Visa at AdmitKard. He comes with overall 10 years experience in study abroad and the Visa industry. With his cross-functional expertise, he has worked in a variety of roles, including Senior GTE Compliance & Visa Services Officer, Senior Counsellor, and Manager, at organizations such as, Global Opportunities Pvt Ltd, LandMark Immigration, and Davesar Consultants.


Priyanka Bhargava

Expert • MBA - Marketing and HR • 13+ Years

Priyanka possesses more than 13 years of extensive experience. Having pursued a Master's in International Business from a reputed university abroad, she has first-hand insight into the entire gamut of the study abroad admissions process. She has collaborated extensively with all categories of study abroad aspirants be it for Undergrad, Master’s (technical and non-technical), MBA, MPH and PhD. She boasts of an impeccable university placement record, including top-notch global universities such as Stanford, UPenn, UCLA, UC Berkeley, UCSD, Cambridge, and several others. She has an overall perspective of the admissions process of countries such as the USA, Canada, UK, Ireland, Singapore, Hong Kong, European Union.

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