IFI | What is IELTS?

IDP Education

IELTS, short for International English Language Testing System, is an international test that measures the English language proficiency. IELTS is needed for everyone who wants to move to an English-speaking country for work or educational purposes. It uses a nine-band grading system; with band-score 1 for non-users and band-score 9 for experts. For more information about how IELTS band score are calculated click here

Why is IELTS important?

IELTS is trusted by over 10,000 organizations worldwide, so if you take the IELTS test, you can be sure that educational institutes, companies and governments recognize it as a reliable test of English language proficiency. 

The IELTS test is available at over 1600 locations in the world. More than 50 of these locations are situated in the United States of America.

IELTS has become the gold standard English language proficiency test that is used by the governments of Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom to process immigration applications.

Find out which organisations currently accept IELTS.


How does IELTS work?

IELTS was found by some of the world’s best language assessment experts. It was developed to test all of your English language skills that you need in order to succeed in your job or studies abroad.

You’ll be assessed on the following elements:

  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Writing
  • Speaking

Make sure you’re familiar with how the IELTS test works and find out more about the IELTS test formats.

Which test to choose

There are two IELTS tests available: 

  • IELTS Academic - this test type is for people applying for higher education or professional registration. It measures a person’s academic English skills and determines if he/she is ready to start training or studying.
  • IELTS General Training is the type of test needed for people aiming to immigrate to Australia, Canada and the UK, or for those applying for secondary education, training programs and work experience in an English-speaking environment. This test type measures a person’s English proficiency in an everyday context, such as the workplace and/or social situations.

Both test types are valid and precise in measuring the four language skills: listening, reading, writing and speaking.