Today, I am going to share my experience of IELTS –GENERAL TRAINING test. I will also share how you can get good score by following what I have done right and what I have failed to do.
I teach at a school and spend my 8 hours staying at school. By the time I reach home, I get exhausted.
I tried to spend 30-40 minutes every day for practice but not able to do it religiously.
I got the following band in my IELTS GENERAL TEST:
Booked Test: 31st December 2022
Exam Date: 15th March 2023
How to prepare?
Book the Test
First thing that make you committed and serious about your test is booking your test. Take a time duration of 3-6 months to prepare for IELTS. Imagining that time duration in mind, book your test. When you pay for your test, then you become more serious about the preparation.
Know the pattern of the test
To get good score in the test, you need to know the test pattern, the number and type of questions asked. The British Council website have detailed information about that. Here, I am writing in brief, the essential information you need for the test.
Time: 60 minutes
Number of Questions: 40
- Multiple Choice
- Identifying information
- Identifying writer’s views/claims
- Matching information
- Matching headings
- Matching features
- Matching sentence endings
- Sentence completion
- Summary, note, table, flow-chart completion
- Diagram label completion
- Short answer questions
- First section: Social Survival (2 or 3 short texts)
- Second section: Workplace survival (two texts)
- Third section: General reading (one long text)
Number of Passages: 3
Number of Questions: 40
Time: 60 minutes
11 Different Question Types
Time: 60 minutes
Task 1: Writing a letter based on a situation (at least 150 word)
Time: 20 minutes
Task 2: Essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem (at least 250 words)
Time: 40 minutes
Time: 11-14 minutes
Part 1: General Question (4-5 minutes)
Part 2: Card with a particular topic
1 minute to prepare
2 minutes to speak
Will be asked 1 or 2 questions on the same topic
Part 3: Further questions about topic of part 2
Time: 4-5 minutes
If you want to know in detail, you can go to the British Council link below:
Follow one specific channel
There are thousands of Youtube channel for IELTS preparation. First spend some time finding the Youtube channel you can trust and be comfortable with. Then stick to that particular channel. I started my preparation with E2testprep.com
Practicing the free mock tests available online will definitely help you in getting good score in IELTS test. Though I registered for E2testprep free mock test but I didn’t get enough time to attend their free classes on their platform and free mock tests for practice but trust me, practice will surely help you in getting good score.
What went good?
I used to spend 30-40 minutes everyday (not regularly) watching videos related to listening, reading, speaking and writing.
First I watched video explaining the different sections of the IELTS General Training test.
Practice is very essential
During Practice, I was able to know the type of questions that were difficult for me. Slowly after practice, I was able to overcome those challenges in certain type of questions.
I was able to understand the listening type of questions and was able to get 80-90% of questions correct in the practice test after following these practice videos with explanation.
I started reading books available in the mini library of the school. I had chosen books with around 160-170 pages and finished four books with fast reading in whatever time I had.
I started watching Australian, American and British news channels (was only able to get a few videos due to time constraints) to know their accents as you could hear conversation from different native English speakers in your test.
I watched the video for preparing speaking test with the practice video.
What went wrong?
I only got a chance to practice writing one time in three months gap. I was not able to remember completely the steps I learned on the exam day due to lack of practice. If you think you are not good in writing then you should practice writing more. Even if you think you are good in writing, practice will help you in getting good score and will prevent you from getting shocked.
I was not able to practice speaking using a timer. I finished my second question very fast. So, practice your speaking parts with a timer using different topics. You can use the following topics for practice of your speaking.
I lost focus at the end of listening test due to my 10 hours bus travel and no rest before exam. Make sure, you get enough rest before exam.
Follow these steps and I bet you would get your desired IELTS score in 3 months of practice without taking paid lessons or classes:
- For listening, subscribe to CNN, BBC and One more news Channel from Australia. Listen 3-5 minutes stories by these channels.
- Fast read a book with around 150 pages during your preparation days.
- Practice the online writing or Live writing practice with feedbacks available in the end of the video.
- Practice Mock test once a week at least after following above three unavoidable things to do.
- Practice speaking with a friend using a list of questions already prepared once a week and ask the feedback from your students by giving him/her the rubric.
Benefit of online test
- If you think your handwriting is not good, you can choose online IELTS test, this will also help you in working on complete focus in your listening part.
- You don’t need to look at your watch every time, you will have timer on your screen.
I might miss other points but I have covered the points that I think can get you at least 7.5-8 overall band for sure.