Ultimate Guide to IELTS Preparation: Tips from a Band 8 Student

So, you’ve discovered that the IELTS test stands between you and your dream university or job. The journey can be overwhelming, but worry not. This comprehensive guide will provide you with essential insights into your IELTS preparation journey.

Many questions come up:
– What should I expect from the IELTS test?
– How long should I prepare for?
– I need a 6,0 band, is that hard to achieve?

I’ve been there these past few months and didn’t know where to even start my preparation for the IELTS test.

What to Expect from the IELTS Test

  • The IELTS test consists of various components, each demanding unique skills and strategies:
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40440 in total
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The IELTS test parts

Understanding IELTS Scoring

  • Familiarise yourself with the IELTS scoring system, which ranges from 1 to 9 bands. While 9 is the highest score, many institutions require a minimum band of 6 in each task. In 2019, only 4% achieved an overall 8 band, indicating that bands 6 and 7 are commendable achievements. Mastering the scoring system helps you focus on the right areas for improvement.
  • In 2019 only 4% got an overall 8 band, whereas 17% of people taking IETLS for pursuing higher education got bands 5.5 & 6. This is to show that a 6,0 or a 7,0 is a statistically good result to achieve and something you should be proud of. If you know how IELTS is marked and what you need to focus on to achieve band 6 or 7, you’ll study smarter.

Develop your Strategic IELTS Plan

  • IELTS evaluates not only your English proficiency but also your ability to provide coherent responses. Construct well-organized answers with precise language using the following structures:IELTS does not only test how good your English is, but also how you can answer questions following a logical structure, using the most precise language you know.
  • Here are some useful structures:
    • For speaking:
      – In Parts 1/3 you should answer examiners questions in about 2-4 sentences maximum and show off your vocabulary and idiomatic language.

      – In Part 2 you get a topic to talk about for 2 minutes and have 1 minute to prepare. A good structure here is key!
    • Here is the structure I used to get an 8.5 band in my speaking test:
      1. Today I would like to speak about…
      2. Let me paint a picture for you. There are 2 key points related to this.
      3. Firstly…., Secondly…
      4. In brief, …
      5. I hope that…

Harness Resources for Effective IELTS Preparation

  • Utilise practice tests to familiarise yourself with the test format.
  • Enhance vocabulary through podcasts, videos, and memorization.
  • Embrace speaking and writing structures for fluency and coherence.

Official IELTS Practice Tests

Take official practice tests from “takeielts” for a feel of the actual test environment. This helps you identify areas needing improvement and adjust your strategy accordingly.

Enroll in Preparation Lessons for IELTS

If you have the funds, I recommend you take IELTS preparation lessons. My teacher really helped me see where my problems lie and what I should focus on. I booked online lessons with a qualified teacher on iTalki.

Immerse Yourself in the IELTS Mindset

Take the free full IELTS Academic Familiarisation Test from “takeielts” repeatedly to become comfortable with the exam setting and rhythm.

Tailoring Your Preparation Time to your English level

Your preparation timeline depends on your current English proficiency:

  • For mastering structures and practice tests: Allocate a minimum of 2 weeks with daily study.
  • For enriched vocabulary and natural language usage: Dedicate a few months for a rewarding journey.

Reach Out for Support

For personalized guidance, feel free to reach out with your questions via email or messages. Benefit from someone who has walked this path before!

Discover Comprehensive IELTS Resources

Explore my Notion Page for an organised repository of resources, tips, and tools to ace your IELTS Academic journey.

Have more questions? Send me an Email or a message, I’m here to help and answer your questions because I’ve been there! 🙂

Want to get an even more structured approach to IELTS Academic learning and see all of the information and resources you’ll need in one place?

Then make sure to check out my Notion Page with lots of resources and tips you’ll need to prepare:

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