IFI | What is IELTS?

IDP Education

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) measures the language proficiency of people who want to study or work where English is used as a language of communication. It is the world’s most popular English language proficiency test for higher education and global migration and uses a nine-band scale to clearly identify levels of proficiency, from non-user (band score 1) through to expert (band score 9).

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. 

IELTS is available at more than 1,600 locations worldwide, including more than 50 locations in the USA.

IELTS has and continues to set the standard for English language testing. Governments in Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the United Kingdom use IELTS to process immigration applications.

Find out which organisations currently accept IELTS.


How does IELTS work?

IELTS has been developed by some of the world’s leading language assessment experts and will test the full range of English skills needed for success in your new job or study placement 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 - for people applying for higher education or professional registration. It reflects aspects of academic language and evaluates if you are ready to start training or studying. 
  • IELTS General Training for those migrating to Australia, Canada and the UK, or applying for secondary education, training programs and work experience in an English-speaking environment. The tasks and tests measure English language proficiency in an everyday context and reflect both workplace and social situations.

Both versions provide a valid and accurate assessment of the four language skills: listening, reading, writing and speaking.