Preparing for your test can be discouraging and leave you in a feeling where you are overwhelmed about where to begin, so we have put together a series of useful steps to get you started.
Take a practice test
Guide your preparation, by taking a practice test and identify your weaknesses. This is a critical part of your initial preparation that will help establish your strengths and weaknesses. Not only is it necessary to improve your weaknesses, but it is also essential to build up your strengths to create a solid foundation for the examination.
However, if you struggle to abstain from these mistakes or are not able to clearly identify them, you surely require an expert opinion for this situation. Most of the candidates consider buying an IELTS preparation course, which is one of the easiest ways to practice for the test because it focuses entirely on preparing you for the IELTS exam.
Understand the test format
Before you begin practising, it’s extremely important for you to know about the test format. Make yourself familiar with it by reviewing the content of the test, as well as the type of questions and tasks for each section.
Remember the key to success for any examination and not just IELTS is that you should be familiar with the test pattern and format.
Be aware of the exam time limitation.
The clearer understanding you develop regarding the test structure, the higher your chances are to complete it successfully within the allocated time frame.
Conduct your preparation under timed conditions, so you become familiar with the pace of the test.
Don’t forget that the IELTS test has a time limit boundary and you will only have the time given for each section. If you are unable to complete the modules within the allocated time or if you fail to concentrate accordingly due to the timing pressure, you wouldn’t be able to clear the exam.
All practices done in classes of a preparation course are conducted under the same timed limitations as the exam, so you’re ready for the pace of the IELTS test.
Develop your English capabilities and IELTS strategies
One of the biggest mistakes students make is that they only focus on IELTS. They do more practice on IELTS practice tests but they skip to improve their English.
You have to keep in mind that learning IELTS is a procedure. Approximately it takes 12 weeks to gain a score band by one point.
Start preparing at least 3 – 6 months before the exam. We suggest that you find an institution that helps you develop your English skill and IELTS strategies for preparation.
Multitask when listening in English
It’s nothing to be kept as a secret that the IELTS test is demanding and the listening module is nothing different from it. You will have to provide answers to 40 questions by listening to 4 recordings and the recordings will be played only once. Complex questions with sentence completion, summary completion, form completion and multiple choice.
It is not surprising if you lose concentration during a conversation, but you have to recover fast or you will lose track and not able to attempt all the questions afterwards. This would be a disaster. That’s why, it is required to understand that how to follow a conversation, even if you miss something and how you can recover and continue answering the next questions.
Develop a wide range of reading skills
The main purpose of the reading module is to test a broad range of reading skills. Reading for detail, reading for main ideas, reading for gist, skimming, understanding logical argument, and recognizing the writers’ opinions, their attitudes and purpose.
Test takers have to give short answers, match information, complete sentences, match headings or complete diagram labels.
Ensure your practice includes broad types of questions so that you become habituated to each type.
Timing is the essence of the reading portion and you simply will not have the time to go through the texts several times. There are the strategies to help you to avoid this situation.
Use appropriate, assertive and attractive English words when writing.
A practice test course will tell you the different types of essays that usually come on IELTS such as: Agree or Disagree, Discuss two Opposing Opinions, Problems and Solutions, Benefits and Drawback, Causes and Effects, Causes and Solutions.
Speak with fluency or harmony in direct communication
This test is no longer than 15 minutes and is divided into three parts. The first 5 minutes are booked for the introduction part and common topics between the exam taker and the examiner. In the second part, the examiner assesses the candidate’s ability to speak about a random topic on a task card. And the last part only adds complexity to the second. At this level, the examiner will also pay attention to pronunciation, lexical resources and fluency.
When you don’t really know the answer then you should practice answering the questions. Remember that your knowledge has not been assessed but your English language proficiency is.