6 IELTS Preparation Tips to Help You Ace the Test
Choosing your dream course and study destination might be exciting, but are you fully prepared for IELTS test?
While you might be thinking that it is just another English test, the IELTS is much more than that! Understanding how to prepare for IELTS is vital as it assesses your language ability through four test sections:
Whether you are confident in your preparation for the IELTS or starting to read up on the test, we have compiled a list of tips to help you ace the test!
Tip 1: Familiarise Yourself with the Test Format
Knowing the test format is not only crucial to understanding how to prepare for it but also helps to calm any nerves you might have.
With four different sections of the test comes various aspects that you would need to be familiar with. Understanding the different types of questions and tasks required of you beforehand will allow you to strategize how to allocate your time and pay extra attention to your areas of weakness.
If you’re planning to take the computer-delivered IELTS, why not experience it first with the free sample test questions.
You can learn more about the exact test format here as well!
Tip 2: IELTS Reading Tip - Be Exposed to a Range of Topics
From TED Talks on YouTube to magazine articles and news articles online, it is essential to get exposed to a variety of topics that include current events and popular topics such as history, business, and lifestyle.
Tip 3: Know What to Expect
One of the best ways to be prepared is to know what to expect on test day! Especially for test takers who opt for computer-delivered IELTS, the familiarisation test is a valuable support tool. What’s more, it’s free and you can do it from the comfort of your own home!
Tip 4: Practice Speaking Naturally
While you might be tempted to rehearse for the Speaking section, don’t! It might come across as unnatural and will cause you to make even more mistakes, not to mention feeling even more nervous in the process.
A better tip is to practise speaking naturally with family and friends regarding a wide range of topics. Go back and forth with them over questions and answers and learn to let the conversation flow naturally.
You do not need to be an expert on the topic assigned to you. Your examiner will be assessing your ability to communicate smoothly and coherently.
Putting the right words into the proper context is key when it comes to the Writing section. One step you can take to ensure you use the right words is to improve your vocabulary.
To improve your vocabulary, start to read as extensively as you can to expose yourself to as many words as possible. Pay attention to words that you do not know but avoid spending too much time learning words that might be too specialized.
While learning new vocabulary, take this chance to write and form sentences consistently with a word count above the required length for the IELTS test. This will help to increase your writing speed and ensure your answers stay within the necessary word count zone.
Tip 6: Practice Your Listening Skills
To prepare for the Listening section, team up with a friend and read to each other passages from a book or a magazine (preferably about current affairs).
Then get your friend to quiz you on the passage by asking you questions which you will answer to the best of your ability.
To take this a step further, wake up every morning to the English news and wind down your day with an evening news session to improve your listening skills and pay attention to the facts conveyed by the newscaster.
Bonus tip: Practice Makes Perfect
Remember that consistency is the key to success, from improving your vocabulary through reading to writing down sentences, practising every day before your test is the best preparation you can have.