IELTS General Training test

  • By Kanan Team
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IELTS general training test is the English proficiency test conducted to measure your language skill in everyday context. The unique feature of the general test is that the tasks are framed in a way that it reflects in your social life and worklife. The general test is comparatively easier than the academic test. The IELTS general test is conducted by the British council, IDP and Cambridge. 

The General test is mandatory for the individuals who are planning to travel abroad to countries like US, UK, Canada, Australia, etc. for secondary school education, job opportunity, etc. All your basic language skills, reading, writing, listening and speaking skills are tested in the IELTS general training test. In this article, you will be reading about the IELTS general test format, the individual sections details, preparation tips, etc. 

Who should take the IELTS General training test

You can appear for the IELTS general training test, if you are among the following list.

  • If you are going to pursue any course that is below the degree level or school level.
  • If you are planning to go for vocational training in any English speaking country.
  • Seeking job opportunities or have been placed in the overseas organisation.
  • Migrating to an english speaking country

What is the IELTS General training test format

Before starting your preparation, you must have a clear idea about the IELTS general training test format. There are four sections in the general test namely,

  1. Reading,
  2. Listening
  3. Speaking
  4. Writing

You will be given 2 hours and 45 minutes to complete the entire test. You can either take the computer test or the paper test, as per your comfortability. If you are taking the IELTS test on paper, you will schedule the speaking test time ahead of the written test and in the computer IELTS test, you can choose the speaking time of your choice. 

The IELTS general reading band score will be scaled from 0-9. Based on the number of correct answers, you will be given a raw score and the score will be graded into the band scores. The scaling for the general reading test and the academic reading test will be different. Know more about the IELTS academic vs IELTS general test difference. 

The IELTS general test format for each section is explained below for your reference.

IELTS General reading test

Your overall English reading ability is tested using the IELTS general reading test. In the reading task, you will be given passage from the newspaper, advertisements, official documents, magazines, etc. You have to read the passages and answer the questions within the time limit. You have to read the passage quickly and at the same time must be able to grasp the main idea and the keywords to answer the questions within the time limit. 

Format

The content extracts taken from the materials that we use in our day-to-day activities are used in the IELTS general reading test. This is used to test how well you can understand the language in your daily life. You have to read the passages and answer the questions that are given below. Here you will be given three passages and 40 questions.

  1. Section 1: Content related to Social survival in an English speaking country is used.
  2. Section 2: Work life survival related content is used as the reading passage.
  3. Section 3: This is the longest and the most difficult passage section in the reading test. The passage is on any general interest topic. 

Skills assessed

  • Basic understanding of the content
  • Finding the main idea behind the content 
  • Locating the keywords
    Responding ability
  • Detailed reading practice

Task duration

The IELTS general training reading test will be conducted for 60 minutes. The candidates have to read the passage and answer the questions within the stipulated time. 

Number of questions

There will be 40 questions in the 3 sections of the reading test. 

Task types

In the IELTS reading test there are 13 different types of questions. Your overall reading skills are tested using these question types.

  1. Matching headings
  2. Locating information
  3. Summary completion
  4. Matching sentence endings
  5. Flowchart completion
  6. Notes completion
  7. Multiple choice questions
  8. True false not given questions
  9. Yes no not given questions
  10. Short answer questions
  11. Sentence completion
  12. Matching features
  13. Table completion

Total marks

Each correct answer will be awarded 1 mark. Thus the total score for the reading section will be 40. 

Marking criteria

The marking criteria for the reading test will be based on the number of correct answers. The marks obtained will be converted into band scores. To score high in the reading section, you must have good reading and time management skills.

IELTS General listening test

In the IELTS general listening section you will be listening to the audio of native language speakers and will respond to the questions based on the audio. You have to pay attention and take notes while listening to the audio as it will be played only once. Listening section will be the same for both academic and general training tests. 

Format

In the listening section you will be listening to 4 audio clips to answer the questions. They are as follows.

  1. Recording 1: You will be hearing a conversation between two people in any everyday social context.
  2. Recording 2: monologue about any social content will be played.
  3. Recording 3: A group of 4-5 people talking about any educational topic will be given. They will be discussing about any university, its facility, etc.
  4. Recording 4: A university lecture or any other academic related monologue will be given. 

Skills assessed

  • Specific information identification.
  • Main content identification.
  • Response development to a conversation.
  • Understanding of the words, accent, etc.
  • Recognizing the purpose and attitude of the speaker,

Task duration

The listening task will be conducted for 30 minutes. You will be given an extra 30 minutes to write the answer.

Number of questions

The IELTS general test listening section consists of 40 questions.

Task types

The Listening question type includes, 

  • Matching
  • Table completion
  • Note completion
  • Multiple choice questions
  • Sentence completion
  • Short answer questions
  • Summary completion
  • Flowchart completion
  • plan/ diagram labelling
  • Form completion

Total marks

Giving each correct answer one mark, the overall score for the IELTS general listening test will be 40 marks. There are no negative marks given for incorrect answers. 

Marking criteria

The final score for the listening section will be given in the band score format. You will be awarded a band score between 1-9, based on the number of correct answers given. 

IELTS General speaking test

Your communication skills play an important role when you are travelling abroad. Thus IELTS test comprises a speaking section where your speaking skills will be assessed. Here you will be speaking with a trained speaker and the scores will be given in accordance with your response rate, language used, grammar, etc. The speaking test will be conducted on a separate day as per the examiner availability.  

Format

The IELTS general speaking test consists of 3 rounds. The rounds are as follows,

  1. Round 1: In this self introduction round you will be introducing yourself to the examiner, where you can speak about your skills, interest, educational background, etc. 
  2. Round 2: here the examiner will be giving you a cue card to choose a topic. Then you will have time to prepare the topic. After your preparation, you will be presenting your idea, opinion and solution about the topic before the examiner.
  3. Round 3 : In this discussion round, you will be having a discussion with the examiner about the topic you have spoken about in the second round. 

Skills assessed

  • Appropriate language usage.
  • Idea organisation according to the topic
  • Opinion justification with examples
  • Speaking confidence
  • vocabulary.

Task duration      

The IELTS GT speaking test is conducted for 11-14 minutes.

Number of questions

You will be given 3 questions in the IELTS general speaking test.

Task types

The task types includes

  1. Self introduction 
  2. Long turn speech on any topic
  3. Discussion round.

Total marks

The scores for the speaking test will be in band scores. The examiner will be marking you between the score band 1-9 based on your skill.

Marking criteria

The marking criteria for the IELTS speaking test will be assessed based on your performance in the speaking test. Your response rate, attitude, vocabulary, opinion, etc are judged for scoring your performance. 

IELTS General writing test

Two writing tasks will be given to check your writing skills in the writing test. You have to complete the writing task within the stipulated time. While writing you must be able to present your views in a clear and error free manner. The spelling and grammar mistakes will reduce your scores.

Format

The IELTS general writing test is given below for your reference.

  • In Task 1, you will be writing a letter about a situation or asking for an explanation about the situation. The task 1 must have at least 150 words. 
  • In task 2, you will be writing an essay about an argument or problem. You have to express your opinion or solution in 250 words. The second task is considered to be more important than the first task.

Skills assessed

  • Quality of the written response.
  • Idea or solution generation.
  • Use of vocabulary
  • Spelling and grammar.

Task duration

The task duration for the writing task will be 60 minutes. The first 20 minutes must be used for task 1 and the remaining 40 minutes for task 2. 

Number of questions

There are 2 questions in the writing task. You must practice well to manage your time and complete the tasks within the time limit. 

Task types

The IELTS general writing task types will be letter writing and essay writing. 

Total marks

The writing task will be scored in band scores between 1-9. 

Marking criteria

The writing task will be marked based on your vocabulary, grammar, ideas presentation, etc. You must make sure the content is readable and your ideas are presented with suitable examples. 

A clear knowledge about the IELTS general test format is required before starting your preparation. As the syllabus and the test format are updated regularly by the official IELTS conducting boards, you have to keep yourself equipped with the latest format, while preparing for the exam. 

How to prepare for the IELTS General training test?

You use the following tips while you are preparing for your IELTS general training test. These tips have helped a number of students to score above 8 in their final exam. 

  • Practice as many tests as possible to improve your reading, writing, speaking and listening skills. 
  • You must pay equal attention to all the 4 sections while preparing for the exam as the final score is given as a cumulative score of each section. 
  • Understand the test format and prepare yourself to answer all the question types.
  • Use the best study materials to prepare for your exam. The preparation materials must cover all the topics given in the syllabus.
  • Self-evaluate yourself with regular tests. This evaluation will reveal where you need to focus to score more.
  • Learn time management, as all the IELTS general test sections are timed. Thus while practising you must learn to manage your time as per the sectional time limit.
  • Your vocabulary plays an important role in clearing your IELTS exam. Thus you must enhance your vocabulary through regular practice. 

For more details check IELTS preparation tips.

FAQ

1. Is the IELTS exam difficult for the General training type?

No, the IELTS general training test is considered to be easier than the academic test. The speaking and the listening sections are similar for the tests, whereas, the writing and the reading sections will be different. 

2. What is the passing score for the IELTS general test?

There is no passing or qualifying score for the IELTS general test. You will be awarded a band score between 0-9 based on your performance.

3. Which section is considered to be the difficult section in the IELTS general test?

The writing section is considered to be the most difficult section in the IELTS general test. Here you will be writing 2 essays, in 150 words and 250 words within 60 minutes.

4. Which IELTS is required for the Canada PR?

The IELTS general training test is required for the Canada PR to prove your English proficiency.

5. Do universities accept the IELTS general test?

Though the IELTS academic test is mostly preferred by the universities, there are few universities that accept the IELTS general test also. Both the IELTS versions are accepted by nearly 3300 American and European universities based on the course choice and course duration.

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Global Headquarters

Kanan Intl EdTech Inc

Ph-1, 220, George Street, Toronto Ontario, Canada M5A 2N1

India Headquarters

Kanan International Pvt. Ltd.

D-wing, 2nd Floor, Trident Complex, Ellora Park Vadiwadi Road, Vadodara, Gujarat 390007

IT/ Digital Campus

Chennai Office

132, Habibullah Rd, Satyamurthy Nagar, T. Nagar, Chennai, Tamil Nadu 600017

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kanan-ftr-phoneadmissions@kanan.co

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About Kanan International

A truly global higher education partner to learners and education institutions. Supports learners at every point in their global education journey with its reliable services, products and solutions.

Copyright © 2022 KANAN INT EDTECH INC. All rights reserved.