Advantages and Disadvantages of IELTS Test

Category: Education


IELTS stands foe International English Language Testing System. With TOEFL (Test of English as Foreign Language), IELTS is one of the most taken English Language test in the world. IDP, British Council and Cambridge English jointly own it. More than 3 million candidates take IELTS in 140 countries around the world.

IELTS has four modules: Reading, Listening, Writing and Speaking. All the modules are scored on the scale of 0-9 “Bands”, and the collective average of all the modules is an overall IELTS score. The institutions and Universities across the world has a minimum score requirement as eligibility criteria. The admission requirements for IELTS bands change with courses and Universities.


1. Worldwide acceptance

The best thing about IELTS is, the acceptability in the Universities abroad. The test has been up to the international standard for years, and that makes universities across the world adaptable towards the test. The most preferred English Speaking countries like US, UK, Canada and Australia all of them accept IELTS. Over 9000 institutions in the world accept IELTS as the proof of English Language Proficiency.

2. Types of Questions

IELTS is a pen and paper exam. It has number of types when it comes to the types of questions. While TOEFL is all about MCQ, IELTS is about understanding and comprehension. There are number of ways a question can be asked. Some of the examples are true or false question, three word answers and descriptive answers.

3. Shorter exam duration

Compared to TOEFL’s 4-year duration, IELTS test duration is 2 hours and 45 minutes. IELTS reading and writing takes 60 minute, and the Listening part is of 30 minutes. All three modules are done in one sitting, and that is what makes the IELTS a compact and time saving English Language Test.


1. Pen and Paper Exam

IELTS, as we mentioned earlier, is a pen and paper examination. This IELTS pattern makes it necessary for you to have a better / legible handwriting. If you are someone who is habituated to computers and online tests, you will have to practice more. The pen and paper for some candidates, is also time consuming. So better practice in real time if pen and paper is not your thing.

2. Speaking Interview

If you are someone who gets nervous in personal interviews, IELTS might be intimidating. Now, IELTS speaking interviews are not as tense or hard as other personal interviews, but it is still a test of you speaking one-to-one in a room. A little more familiarity in speaking with real people will help you overcome your fears. The duration of the interview is 11-14 minutes, which is considerably short.

3. Two Part Exam

IELTS is a two-part exam. As we have mentioned, the reading, listening and writing modules of the IELTS Exam pattern are done in one sitting. IELTS speaking is done on the separate day, which can be a week before or after the other modules. Candidates are informed a week before the exam for the venue and schedule of the IELTS Speaking test.