picture on London with English bus

How to succeed in the IELTS Speaking Test part 3

picture on London with English bus For more than two decades, the IELTS test has been evaluating the English level of people learning English worldwide in the four communicative skills, namely Listening, Reading, Speaking, and Writing. Though all four skills are important, many employers and universities consider the Speaking test as the more crucial part as communicating verbally is essential if you want to work or study in an English speaking country. Hence, performing well in the Speaking test is very important. In this article, you will learn more about the IELTS Speaking Test Part 3 including common topics and questions the examiner could ask and helpful IELTS speaking tips so that you can do well in the exam.

The IELTS Speaking Test

The full IELTS speaking test is about 15-minute long and has three parts - the Introduction, the Long Turn, and the Discussion. As the test progresses, the questions become a little more challenging. While the interview is not as academically difficult as the Reading or Writing exams, IELTS Speaking can be difficult for students due to lack of practice speaking or unfamiliarity with the IELTS Speaking topics that could be asked.

Learn about part 3 of the IELTS Speaking test: the Discussion

The IELTS Speaking part 3 is the last and most important part of the Speaking exam.  In this portion, more difficult questions are asked as the examiner aims to fully gauge the test taker’s fluency in English, vocabulary, and grammar.  Although the answers required are not as long as the Long Turn (Part 2), the questions are broader in scope and usually more in depth. The questions asked in part 3 of the speaking test are usually related to part 2 of the exam, the the Long Turn.  So, if in part 2 you talked about clothing, then one can expect to receive Discussion questions about clothes, fashion, or beauty.  However, the examiner can also choose to redirect the questions as needed. One scary part of the IELTS Speaking part 3 is that whatever you say can be challenged or questioned further as the examiner has more leeway to inquire about what a person knows in the Discussion.  Therefore, you should not just blurt out whatever comes to mind. Make sure that what you say is logical based on what you believe to be right.

What is the IELTS Examiner Looking for?

In the IELTS Speaking test part 3, there are some key things the examiner is looking for: the ability to discuss more complex topics; the ability to defend one’s answer; and good vocabulary and grammar.
  • Discussing Complex Topics
As earlier mentioned, the questions in the Discussion become broader in scope and usually requires the test taker to compare and contrast more abstract topics.  The questions are no longer about YOU, they are about the world around you. For example:  

How different is transport today compared to transport 20 years ago?

What can government do to improve public transport in your area?

Do you think media has done enough to shed light on the transportation issues?

How are transportation problems affecting the environment?

So what can you do to prepare for this part of the speaking exam? Practice, practice, practice!   There is no other way but to try to answer such complicated questions, especially if you need a 7.0 or above.
  • Defending One’s Answer
In IELTS Speaking part 3, the examiner is able to “interrogate” you.  This means they can challenge what you say, which is something quite normal in a regular conversation. For example:         Interviewer: In some countries, smoking is banned in public places.  Is this okay?

Test taker:    Yes. I think it is alright.  They say that second-hand smoke is actually more dangerous to those who do not smoke, so banning smoking will protect people’s health and rights.

        Interviewer: But doesn’t the smoker have the “right” to smoke too? If the examiner asks this question, the test taker may be thinking, “Did I choose the wrong side?!” The answer to this is “No.” Regardless of what side you choose or what the examiner personally thinks, the IELTS test is meant to test your fluency in English, so that is exactly what the examiner is doing. Therefore, you should answer the best way you can to defend what you say, such as:

Test taker: Though a person has the right to choose or not choose to smoke, if his or her actions negatively affect others, like through second-hand smoke, then the person loses the right.

A good speaker will be able to reply appropriately.  A lower level candidate may end up tongue tied or confused.
  • Wide Vocabulary and Good Grammar
Similar to Part 2 of the test, IELTS Speaking part 3 requires much better vocabulary and grammar to do well.  Since the questions are more complicated, the test taker is really asked to use a variety of words. Proper comparison and contrast also means usage of the different tenses (past, present, future) and a host of other complex sentences. The solution again is to practice, practice, and practice! Now let’s look at some of the common IELTS Speaking topics and questions that are asked in the IELTS Speaking part 3.

Common IELTS Speaking Topics for Part 3

The following are some questions you can practice on: Art
  •         Do you think artists are better paid today than in the past?
  •         How important are artists to society?
  •         Do you think photography is an art?
  •         What kind of person appreciates abstract art?
  •         Do the people in your community prefer smaller or taller buildings?
  •         How different are the buildings in your area now compared to 20 years ago?
  •         What do people consider when they construct a building?
  •         Should government control the appearance of buildings?
Communication Technology
  •         How has communication technology affected personal relationships?
  •         Is it good that communication technology is improving almost every year?
  •         Is it better to have a cell phone or a tablet?
  •         What kind of communication devices do you think we will have in the next decade?
Exercise and Sports
  •         How different are the sports now to the sports of the past?
  •         How can the working adults be encouraged to exercise more?
  •         Why do some people choose to enroll in a gym while others exercise elsewhere?
  •         How can sports be improved in your country?
Family Life
  •         How different is family life now to family life 20 years ago?
  •         What do you think are the biggest challenges to families today?
  •         How can government better improve family life?
  •         How has the media affected family life?
  •         How popular is history with young people in your country?
  •         How can history class be made more interesting?
  •         Is it more important to know local history or international history?
  •         How does knowledge of history affect people’s daily lives?
  •         Are politicians well respected in your area?
  •         What are the characteristics of a good politician?
  •         Is it easy to get into politics where you live?
  •         Is it easier to be a mayor or a senator?
School and Studies
  •         In your country, is it better to be in a public school or a private school?
  •         How useful is the library to the youth today in your country?
  •         Is it fair to have courses where only a select few can get in?
  •         How can the public education in your country be improved?
  •         Do most people in your area believe that taxes are important?
  •         How can taxes be improved in your area?
  •         Why do you think that different countries have different tax laws?
  •         Do you think nations will have the same tax rules in the future?
  •         How have television programs changed over the years in your country?
  •         Are young adults more interested in television or the internet?
  •         How can the local TV stations be improved in your area?
  •         Why do many people dream of being on TV?

5 Tips for the IELTS Speaking Test Part 3

1. Practice the Different Topics

- Of the three sections of the IELTS Speaking test, Part 3 has the widest scope.  You need to practice a variety of topics, especially the ones you are not so familiar with.  Ask a friend or your English teacher to help you so he or she can challenge you and give you good feedback.

2. Do NOT Memorize Complete Answers

- Since so many things may come out in Part 3, it is not a good strategy to try to memorize answers to questions.  Practicing on a variety of questions is better than memorizing a select few. However, it is a good idea to memorise a few phrases which help you express or defend an opinion. Examples

I believe that…..

My own feeling on the subject is that ...

I hold the opinion that…..

From my point of view, ….

3. Be Yourself as You Answer

- Since it is expected that the examiner will challenge a lot of what you say in Part 3, just be yourself as you answer.  If you believe something, then defend it, but also take note of the conversation flow. If you realize that you are mistaken, then it is okay to correct yourself as needed.  Even in normal conversations with friends, opinions are shared and challenged so don’t take it negatively in Part 3.

4. Clarify if Needed

- Since the questions in Part 3 are complex, there may be times when you get confused by the question.  If needed, ask for a clarification: “Can you please rephrase the question?  I’m not quite sure what you mean by that.”  But only do this is you are really confused.  If you keep doing it, especially if you just plan on having more time to think, you might hurt your vocabulary score.

5. Be Conscious of Your Tenses

- Many times the Part 3 will require you to compare past, present, or future events.  Be conscious of your needed tenses if you want a high score. Again, practice with a friend who can listen to your usage of tenses and grammar structures. The IELTS Speaking Test Part 3 is challenging but it can also be a fun conversation, especially if you are doing well and feel confident. Again, it is important to be yourself and talk about what you know. If you are unsure of questions, remember to clarify. But most importantly, practice, practice, and practice a lot with a multitude of topics so that you are prepared for exam day. If you follow these tips and strategies in this article you should do very well in part 3 of the IELTS speaking test.
student going to do the ielts speaking exam

Tips and Topics for the IELTS Speaking Test part 2: the 'Long Turn'

student going to do the ielts speaking exam The IELTS exam continues to be an important requirement for work or study in other parts of the world. As English becomes more and more important, the numbers of students taking the exam is increasing rapidly.  One of the more challenging areas of the IELTS exam is is the Speaking test where many test takers mess up because they were not ready for it. In this article, you will learn all about the IELTS Speaking Test Part 2. You will learn some common IELTS Speaking topics for part 2 of the exam and also some helpful IELTS speaking tips so that you can do well in this part of the exam.

The IELTS Speaking Test

The IELTS Speaking test is the shortest of all the tests.  It is a one-on-one interview which lasts between 11-14 minutes where the IELTS examiner tests your level of spoken English.  There are three parts to the speaking test, namely the Introduction, the Long Turn, and the Discussion. Each part becomes more challenging than the first as the examiner gauges your Fluency in English, Vocabulary, Grammar, and Pronunciation.  The interview is also recorded to have an official record for your benefit.

Learn about the IELTS 'Long Turn'

The second part of the IELTS Speaking Test is called ‘The Long Turn’. It is an important part of the exam and lasts 3-4 minutes.  If you would like to get a very high score (Band 7.0 and above), then you must do well in this section.  The IELTS Speaking Test Part 2 is similar to an extemporaneous speech, a talk with very little preparation time.  The test taker is handed a topic card and given one minute to think and write notes about it.  After that, the test taker must speak for up to two minutes about that topic. Basically, IELTS Speaking Test Part 2 tests how well you can talk for an extended period of time.  A two minute answer is quite long compared to the answers expected in Parts 1 or 3 of the test. When written down, a good answer is around 220 to 270 words long, just like part two of the Writing exam!

Learning More About the Long Turn Topic Card

On every topic card there is a main question followed by sub-questions.  The main question is the most important one so every test taker should consider that first.  The sub-questions are just there to help guide your answer. Example: Describe a hotel that you have visited.
  • Where is it located?
  • When did you go there?
  • Who did you go with?
  • What did you like about it?
When answering, it helps to answer in order as your response will make more sense that way.  However, it does NOT have to be like that. You can change the order; choose not to answer one of the sub-questions; or even add something different.  What matters is that you can answer the question well in a fluent and coherent way, while reaching the required time limit. Here’s an example of a good answer for the question above:

"The hotel that I visited before was the Lucky 7 Hotel.  The last time I went there was last year during my colleague’s birthday party.  It was a dual celebration for her because she had just been promoted, so she held the party there.  I went with my wife, but not the kids. It was a semi-formal affair so I didn’t want my kids running around.  I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the celebration if I had to keep an eye on the children all the time.

As for the hotel, I thought it was nice.  It wasn’t a five star hotel but the service was still very good.  The employees were nice and accommodating. I remember that I asked to be moved to another table since we were seated quite far from the stage.  They immediately found my wife and I another seat. The food was surprisingly good. It looked like food you would see in a cheap buffet. But when you ate it, each mouthful was packed with flavor.  I remember having thirds. My wife had seconds for dessert. Another thing I liked was their bathroom. You can often tell the kind of service you’ll get by the way they maintain their bathroom. It was spacious and clean.  It even smelled good! It spoke volumes about the kind of management they have, especially since it wasn’t a fancy hotel. Overall, it was a good place." (243 words!)

The answer is a very clear response with good vocabulary.  It has a lot of details about the person’s experience at the hotel.  The guide questions were generally followed, though the first sub-question (location) was skipped. Other details were added like why the children were not brought along and how many times they went back to the buffet.  

What is the IELTS Examiner Looking for?

In IELTS Speaking part 2, there are some key things the examiner is looking for: a clear and coherent answer; minimal pauses and repetition; and good vocabulary and grammar. Give a Coherent Answer

Many test takers don’t do well in this part of the test because their story does not make sense.  This usually happens when the test taker does not know the topic well and decides to make up an answer.  Since they are NOT telling the truth, they end up with a very unclear answer.

So, tell the truth.  If you are not familiar, you may say so at the start then try your best to answer.  For example, “Well I haven’t been able to visit a museum before.  The closest one is five hours away from my town so it is too difficult and expensive to visit.  But I have seen the museum before on the internet so I’ll tell you about what I think about it when I saw it online…”

Too Many Pauses or Repetition

Another error is trying to sound like an expert in a topic you are unfamiliar with.  When you do this, you will either pause too much or repeat yourself since you do not know what to say next.

For this, you should speak from personal experience.  For example, for the question, “Describe an important building in your city,” a good answer may sound like this, “Hmm. In my view, an important place for me is the downtown mall.  I think almost everybody goes there at least once per week. It has ...”

Since the test taker knows the place well, it is easier to answer.  While others may say that city hall or the power plant might be more important places than the mall, the question does NOT require that.  This is not a test where the person has to study something in advance and give a textbook answer. Just answer from what you know.

In addition, it also helps to look at the topic card and your notes.  Sometimes test takers skip a sub-question which is why they end up repeating themselves.

Wide Vocabulary and Good Grammar

Of course, the examiner looks at the vocabulary and grammar.  Since a two minute answer is required, it is important that vocabulary is changed and that correct grammar is sustained. As mentioned earlier, tell the truth and choose something you are familiar with.  If you do, you will know what vocabulary words to use.

Now let’s look at some of the common IELTS Speaking topics and questions that are asked in the IELTS Speaking part 2.

Common IELTS Speaking Topics for Part 2

The following are some common questions you can practice on: Describe a gadget you would like to buy.
  • What is it?
  • How much does it cost?
  • Where can you buy it?
  • Why do you want it?
Describe your favorite pair of shoes.
  • What are they like?
  • How did you get them?
  • How often do you use them?
  • Why are they your favorite?
Describe your dream car.
  • What does it look like?
  • Where can you buy it?
  • Why do you want it?
  • How easy will it be to get it?
Describe a friend that has helped you.
  • Who is he/she?
  • How did he/she help you?
  • How did he/she know you needed help?
  • How did you thank him/her?
Describe a family member that you think is funny.
  • Who is he/she?
  • How often do you see each other?
  • What makes him/her funny?
  • Do your friends or family also think he/she is funny?
Describe a politician that you admire.
  • Who is he/she?
  • How did you find out about this politician?
  • Why do you admire him/her?
  • Do your friends or family admire him/her too?
Describe a bank that you go to.
  • Where is this bank?
  • How often do you go there?
  • What do you like about its services?
  • What would you like to improve?
Describe a gym that you know about.
  • Where is this gym?
  • How affordable is it?
  • What facilities does it have?
  • How popular is it with other people?
Describe a popular school in your hometown.
  • What is this school like?
  • What kind of facilities does it have?
  • Why is this school popular?
  • Would you like your family to attend this school?

5 Things to do to prepare for the IELTS Speaking Test Part 2

1. Practice the Different Topics

- As you do not know what you will get, it is important to practice with a variety of topics.  If you know you have difficulty in some areas such as environment, media, or architecture, then practice answering questions related to them.

2. Do NOT Completely Memorize Answers

- Unfortunately, some weaker candidates try to memorize answers, thinking that if they talk for two minutes then they will be safe.  The examiner is wise and will know if you are repeating something you memorized, especially if it has nothing to do with the topic card.  This will NOT help you.

3. Speak from Experience

- As mentioned earlier, if you make up an answer or try to sound like an expert, you will just make a mistake.  Speak from experience so you will know what to say and have better control of grammar and vocabulary.

4. Look at the Questions and Your Notes

- It is OK to look at your notes. This is the purpose of the time you are given to prepare. By looking at the sub-questions and your notes you will avoid repetition.  If you miss something, you are allowed to go back to it.

5. Add Details to Your Answer

- Finally, do not just rush through your answers. Remember that you need to speak for up to two minutes.  Be descriptive and give details to your story. Details add vocabulary and they ensure you will hit the two minutes.

The IELTS Speaking Test Part 2 is a very, very important part of the test if you want a high score.  Try to speak from experience and practice a lot, especially on topics that you don’t really like.  If you follow the tips and strategies in this articles then you should do very well in the Long Turn.   Best of Luck!
student studying for the ielts exam

Everything you need to know to prepare for the IELTS Speaking Test Part 1

student studying for the ielts exam As the most trusted English exam in the world, every year millions of people take the IELTS exam. While many people do well, others often need to repeat the test. Lack of practice and unfamiliarity with the IELTS test are two common reasons that cause them to miss the mark. In this article, you will find out more about the IELTS Speaking Test Part 1; common IELTS Speaking topics; and helpful IELTS speaking tips so that you can prepare better for the exam and get the score you deserve.

Introduction to the IELTS Full Speaking Test

The full IELTS Speaking test is quite short and takes no more than 15 minutes.  It is a one-on-one interview with an IELTS examiner, who is an expert in the English language.  There are three parts to the test: Introduction, Long Turn, and Discussion. The difficulty of the speaking test increases as the interview progresses with the examiner grading you according to Fluency, Vocabulary, Grammar, and Pronunciation.  The interview is also recorded for reference (in case you have complaints) and for quality assurance (which is why it is the number 1 test globally!).

Learn about the IELTS Speaking Test Part 1

The Introduction portion of the Speaking test serves as a warm up.  The IELTS Speaking topics that the examiner uses are about everyday subjects (e.g. hobbies, work, school) one might discuss in a normal conversation. Good answers last around 30 seconds per question. Although this section serves as a “warm up,” it is important to do well in this part, especially for high scores like 7.0 and above. Let's look at an example question and answer. Example Question: Do your friends like the same movies that you do? - No. Most of my friends like horror for some reason or another.  I don’t understand why anybody would want to scare themselves, especially late at night.  When I see something like that, I can’t sleep so horror flicks are a big NO for me, regardless of who the actor is. Example Question: How have movies changed in your country? - Over the years I think the movies here have slowly shifted from drama to romantic-comedies. Maybe it’s because people are already emotionally burdened by all the negativity in life which is why they don’t want to spend their free time watching drama.  Everybody wants to be happy so maybe that’s why all these happy movies about love are in demand. What is the IELTS Examiner Looking for? As part 1 of the speaking exam is a warm up, the examiner wants to get an initial idea of the test taker’s level. The examiner expects to hear answers that make sense; use a variety of words; and have good grammar and pronunciation. Caution: Many times candidates are so nervous they say the first thing that comes to mind, not realizing they do not make sense. For example: What kind of transport do you normally use? - I like to use the airplane. It is fast and cheap.  It can get me places quickly like school or the grocery.  I usually go with my friends. It’s great. Obviously, one would wonder how a person could use a plane for daily use, especially if just to go to school or the supermarket! Test takers should always consider that it is not how quickly they answer or even how “professional sounding” the answer is.  The test is about expression so express exactly how you feel, even if you are unsure about the topic. A better example: How often do you read the newspaper? - Oh. I don’t read the newspaper.  I read novels and comic books but not the newspaper.  I think it’s because I can get my daily updates from social media.  If something important happens in the world I usually hear about it from someone else. This is a good answer as the person was not rattled and able to say confidently that they do not read the newspaper.  More importantly, they were able to explain why and gave other reasons to support this. Now let’s look at some of the common IELTS Speaking topics and questions that are asked in the IELTS Speaking part 1 Exam.

Common IELTS Speaking Topics for Part 1

The following are some common questions to practice on: Computers
  1. Do you like using computers?
  2. When did you first use a computer?
  3. How has the computer affected your life?
  4. Is it important for you to have the latest computer?
  1. How important is fashion in your culture?
  2. Is it important for you to be fashionable?
  3. What kind of fashion do you not like?
  4. Do you think your fashion will change in the future?
  1. Is it important to have pets in your culture?
  2. Did you have any pets when you were younger?
  3. Which is easier to care for, cats or dogs?
  4. Do you plan on having pets in the future?
  1. What was your school like when you were young?
  2. Did you like going to school when you were younger?
  3. Which subjects gave you the most difficulty?
  4. Would you like your children to attend the same school you did?
  1. How often do you play sports?
  2. What sports did you play when you were young?
  3. Are there any sports you would like to try?
  4. How important are sports in your culture?
  1. What kind of transport do you use daily?
  2. When did you start using that transport?
  3. Do most people in your community use the bus or the train?
  4. What would you like to improve about the transport in your area?
  1. Do you like to travel?
  2. When did you last travel?
  3. Do you prefer travelling with family or friends?
  4. Do your friends travel as often as you do?
  1. What kind of weather does your country have?
  2. How does the weather affect how you feel?
  3. Do you prefer hot or cold weather?
  4. Do you discuss the weather with your friends?
  1. What kind of work do you do?
  2. Have you always wanted to do that job?
  3. What do you like most about your job?
  4. What would you like to change about your job?

5 Things to do to prepare for the IELTS speaking part 1

1. Practice the Different Topics - A really good test taker can talk about a lot of topics, not just about their work and family.  So practice, practice, practice! If you know that you are weak in a certain area like sports, art, or money matters, then take the time to work on them.  You never know, they might come up! 2. Do NOT Learn Answers by Heart - Some students make the mistake of memorizing answers. It is a good idea to memories short phrases and expressions but to get a good score, you must answer naturally.  The examiners are wise. If something seems memorized, they might challenge your answers by asking, “Why?” Obviously, if you cannot reply anymore, your score will drop.   3. Practice with a Friend, Family Member or Teacher - As practice is very important, it is mentioned twice!  Aside from practicing on your own, it is necessary to practice with a friend.  Sometimes you might THINK you are doing well only to find out that you don’t make any sense when someone else is listening.  Give the other person the list of possible topics and ask them to ask you anything from the list. After a few hours of answering questions you will feel a lot more confident to talk about any of the topics. Obviously, a native speaker is the best option because they can tell if you are off topic, using the wrong tenses, or pronouncing something wrong. 4. Relax and Warm Up before the Test - To overcome nerves, it is best to practice at least two hours before to get yourself in “English mode.” Ask a friend to come along for moral support and talk to you. You need to get your 5. Be Presentable - Though it is NOT a job interview, it is still an official exam.  You should be presentable and comfortable in the clothes your choose to wear.  Some make the mistake of dressing too formally as if they were going to a fancy party.  Others dress too casually (as if they were at the beach!) only to feel embarrassed at the test venue when they see others in smart casual clothing.  If you don’t feel comfortable in your clothing, you’ll just end up fidgeting during the interview. Wear what you makes you feel good, but looks decent. To sum up, the IELTS Speaking Exam Part 1 is basically all about you, so be yourself when you take the test.  But remember, practice really makes perfect so do your part before you enter the test venue.
student on the way to do an IELTS exam

What is IELTS? An introduction to the most popular English Test

student on the way to do an IELTS exam

Do you want to study or migrate to an English speaking country? If so, then you may need to think about taking the IELTS exam.

So what is the IELTS exam? In this article we give an introduction to the IELTS exam, its different sections and its structure and how you can apply to take the exam.

What is the IELTS exam?

The IELTS exam, or ‘International English Language Testing System’, is one of the most acknowledged English language tests. It is widely recognised by companies and universities around the world as an accurate way to test someone’s level of English.  It is also the test of choice for many people who are planning to migrate to Canada, New Zealand, Australia or the UK and who need to demonstrate their abilities in English to the immigration departments.


Approximately 3 million IELTS exams are now taken each year, which shows that the IELTS exam is becoming more and more popular for potential students aiming to study or work in an English speaking country. One of the reasons for this popularity is is because the test is famous for its fairness and trustworthiness among students whatever nationality, cultural background or special needs they have. Its high-quality standards are the key to success of the test.

*Types of IELTS tests

There are two types of IELTS test you can take: Academic and General Training IELTS, serving either academic and non-academic purposes. Students decided which test to take based on what they will need it for. *IELTS Academic test: This is taken by those who want to apply for higher education, which assesses whether they are ready to study in an English speaking environment. Some sections of this exam are more focused on academic language which you are likely to encounter when studying a Degree or Masters in English. *IELTS General Training test: This test is generally taken by those who need to go to English speaking countries for work or even to do some professional training courses. It is also required for migration to Australia, New Zealand, Canada and the UK.

*What is the difference between the IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training?

The Reading and Writing sections of both tests are different, while Listening and Speaking are the same for both types of tests..

*How is IELTS scored?

Each part of the IELTS test are given ‘Band Scores’. Examiners give all parts of a band score between 0 - 9. The results scale from 1 (non-user) to the highest 9 (expert user). The table below gives you an idea of the English proficiency level associated with each ‘Band Score’. Candidates who take the IELTS test can also be given half scores (4.5, 5.5, etc.). The candidate’s overall band score is determined by calculating the average of the scores for each part of the test (Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking). Table of the different band scores for the IELTS exam (source: Writing and speaking skills are checked and assessed by certified IELTS examiners. The other two part of the test, Reading and Listening, work on a a correct answer basis. You can learn about the IELTS scoring in more detail here.

*Exam Structure

The IELTS test has four sections to be assessed: Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. The Listening, Reading and Writing sections of the IELTS test are taken on the same day, without any break in between. The Speaking can be taken up to a week before or after the other parts of the test. Now let’s look at the different sections or ‘modules of the exam *Reading section - 60 minutes - 40 questions There will be 40 questions in the Reading section and candidates have 60 minutes to complete the test.The sources of the Reading section in the IELTS test come from English publications. The Academic Module has three long reading texts ranging from descriptive to analytical. Do not worry, you do not have to the specialist to answer the questions in this section, because they are edited for the non-specialist audience. The General Module has small extracts from different publications, you will probably read on a daily basis in an English-speaking environment. *Listening section - 30 minutes - 4 recordings There are 4 recordings in the Listening section and the test lasts for 30 minutes . Dialogues and talks represent a wide range of accents in the English language. In the four recordings there are: two dialogues and two monologues which aim to assess the proficiency of your ability to understand native speakers. *Speaking section - 11- 14 minutes - 3 Parts Your Speaking IELTS exam section is recorded to be assessed by the examiner who will be conducting your exam. There are three parts in IELTS speaking test. You will be asked to talk about a specific topic for two minutes and later to elaborate on more abstract ideas related to the topic you previously spoke about. Read more about the speaking topics here *Writing section - 60 minutes - 2 tasks In IELTS Writing test you have two tasks to complete in 60 minutes.These tasks are different for the IELTS General Training test and for the IELTS Academic test. For the writing Task 1 of the Academic Test you will be given a graph or a chart or a diagram to describe, compare and summarize the information visualized.  The task 2 is to write an essay to answer the question stated in the task. For Task 1 in the IELTS General Training Test you will have to write a situational letter either personal or formal in style and for Task 2 you need to write an essay of at least 250 words to state or support an opinion or describe advantages or disadvantages of a situation. *How should you book and register for the IELTS exam? You should try to find a test location in your area. This site has a list of test centres around the world. The test centers usually provide an online application form to register for the exam. After filling in the application form, you will have to pay the IELTS exam fee. The IELTS exam fee is around 215-240 USD depending on whether the testing center will have their own IELTS certified examiner, or whether the examiner will have to travel to your location. To conclude, taking IELTS test can open up many opportunities for you with over 10,000 universities, schools, employers and immigration bodies around the world. As soon as you have finally decided to take the test, you need to start preparing intensely! It is important to study a lot before before you register for the exam and pay the IELTS exam fee. The IELTS is a tricky exam, but not impossible. We have seen many students do much better that they expected by studying and putting in effort.