You may already know the significance of performing well on the reading and listening parts if you are studying for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) test. These parts might be complex, but you can raise your score with the appropriate approaches. The top 10 strategies for the IELTS reading and listening portions are covered in this post to assist with exam preparation.
What is IELTS?
The International English Language Testing System is known as IELTS. It is a globally recognised test of English language ability for non-native English speakers. The exam, frequently taken for immigration, employment, and study purposes, evaluates a candidate's proficiency in reading, writing, listening, and speaking English.
Over 10,000 organisations, including colleges, companies, immigration agencies, and professional associations, recognise IELTS in 140 countries. There are two test formats available: Academic and General Training.
There is an Academic format for people wanting to enrol in college or another higher education facility. There is a General Training format for those wanting to work, relocate, or enrol in non-academic training programs in an English-speaking nation.
The IELTS (International English Language Testing System) exam consists of four sections: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. The total test time is 2 hours and 45 minutes.
The Listening section lasts for 30 minutes and includes four recordings, each with a set of questions. The recordings are played only once, and the questions become increasingly difficult.
The Reading section lasts for 60 minutes and includes three academic passages with a total of 40 questions. The passages are selected to reflect the reading material that students would encounter in a university setting.
The Writing section also lasts for 60 minutes and includes two tasks. In Task 1, students are presented with a graph, table, chart, or diagram and are required to summarise and compare information. In Task 2, students are asked to write an essay responding to a specific prompt.
The Speaking section lasts 11-14 minutes and consists of three parts. In Part 1, the examiner asks general questions about the student's life and interests. In Part 2, the student is given a prompt and asked to speak for two minutes. In Part 3, the examiner asks follow-up questions related to the topic of Part 2.
The IELTS exam is available in two versions: Academic and General Training. The Academic version is intended for students who wish to study at the university level. In contrast, the General Training version is designed for those who plan to work, train, or study at the secondary level or below or who wish to immigrate to an English-speaking country.
Also, Read IELTS Exam Preparation
Why take IELTS?
The IELTS exam assesses your proficiency in English in formal and informal settings. The exam has four components: speaking, writing, reading, and listening. You are evaluated on your written and spoken English comprehension in the reading and listening portions.
You have 60 minutes to complete the reading portion of the test, consisting of three readings and 40 questions. Four recordings are in the listening portion, and you have 30 minutes to respond to the 40 questions. To do this effectively, it is crucial to comprehend the structure and format of the exam.
Tips to Ace the Reading Section:
- Skim the text: Before diving into the questions, quickly skim the text to understand the topic, style, and tone.
- Read the questions carefully: Be sure to read the questions carefully and underline or circle any keywords or phrases. This will help you focus on the relevant parts of the text and avoid getting distracted by irrelevant information.
- Use context clues: If you encounter unfamiliar words or phrases, try to use context clues to figure out their meaning. Look for clues in the surrounding text or use your knowledge of the topic to make an educated guess.
- Practice time management: The reading section is timed, so good time management is essential. Try to answer the more straightforward questions first and save the more challenging ones for later.
- Pay attention to detail: The reading section often includes questions that require you to pay close attention to detail, such as identifying specific words or phrases.
Tips to Ace the Listening Section:
- Practice active listening: Active listening means focusing your full attention on what's being said, taking notes, and asking clarifying questions.
- Familiarise yourself with different accents: The listening section may feature various accents, so it's essential to familiarise yourself with these before taking the test. Listen to podcasts, watch TV shows or movies, or practice with online resources to get used to different accents.
- Follow along with the transcript: The listening section often includes a transcript of the audio, so be sure to follow along as you listen. This will help you catch any words or phrases you have missed.
- Pay attention to context: Like the reading section, the listening section requires you to pay attention to context to understand what's being said. Listen for keywords, phrases, and tones to help you answer questions accurately.
- Practice good time management: The listening section is timed, so it's essential to practice good time management. Take notes as you listen and try to answer the more straightforward questions first, saving the more challenging ones for later.
Best IELTS preparation platform online
There are many online platforms available to prepare for the IELTS exam. Here are some of the best ones:
- IELTS Online is an official IELTS preparation course offered by the British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia, and Cambridge Assessment English. It includes practice tests, study materials, and expert tips.
- Magoosh IELTS - Magoosh offers a comprehensive online IELTS preparation course that includes video lessons, practice questions, and full-length practice tests.
- Road to IELTS - This is another official IELTS preparation course the British Council offers. It includes practice tests, study materials, and interactive activities.
- IELTS Advantage - IELTS Advantage offers an online course that includes video lessons, practice questions, and personal feedback from experienced IELTS tutors.
- Kaplan IELTS - Kaplan offers an online IELTS preparation course that includes video lessons, practice questions, and full-length practice tests.
- IELTS Liz - IELTS Liz is a popular website that offers free IELTS preparation materials, including practice tests, study guides, and video lessons.
- E2Language - E2Language offers an online IELTS preparation course with video lessons, practice questions, and personal feedback from experienced IELTS tutors.
- IELTS Mentor - IELTS Mentor is a website that offers free IELTS preparation materials, including practice tests and study guides.
- IELTS.org - The official IELTS website offers a range of free resources to help you prepare for the exam, including practice tests, study materials, and expert tips.
How can I prepare for the IELTS reading?
- Familiarise yourself with the exam format.
- Practice regularly
- Skim and scan the text
- Highlight keywords
- Use context clues
- Read English books or articles
- Take mock tests
What are some effective listening strategies for the IELTS exam?
Some effective listening strategies for the IELTS exam include:
- Listening carefully
- Predicting the answers
- Taking notes
- Focusing on the main ideas and essential details
- Identifying transition words
How do I enhance my vocabulary for the IELTS exam?
To enhance your vocabulary for the IELTS exam, you should:
- Read English books, articles, and newspapers
- Listen to English songs, podcasts, and radio shows
- Use vocabulary-building apps
- Learn new words in context
- Create flashcards and review them regularly
How should I use my time wisely during the IELTS test?
The best way to manage time during the IELTS exam is to:
- Familiarise yourself with the exam format
- Answer the easy questions first
- Leave enough time for the difficult questions
- Check your answers before submitting the exam
How can I reduce exam anxiety during the IELTS exam?
To reduce exam anxiety during the IELTS exam, you can:
- Visualise yourself performing well in the exam
- Get enough sleep and rest
- Eat a healthy diet and stay hydrated
- Arrive at the exam centre early to avoid last-minute stress
The IELTS exam can be challenging, but with the proper preparation and strategies, you can perform well in the reading and listening sections. Familiarise yourself with the exam format, practice regularly, skim and scan the text, highlight keywords, use context clues, listen carefully, predict the answers, use your time wisely, improve your vocabulary, and care for your health.
Remember, consistent practice and hard work are the key to success in the IELTS exam.