IELTS reading score

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The IELTS reading score is graded from 1-9 scale in increments of 0.5 with band 9 being the highest grade and band 1 being the lowest score. There are 40 questions in the reading section and each question will be given 1 mark. Thus the mark obtained out of 40 will be converted into the band score. The band score can be a whole or half band. This article provided you a brief explanation about the band score calculation, IELTS reading score chart, IELTS reading band descriptors, etc. 

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How IELTS reading band score calculated?

The IELTS reading band score is calculated based on the number of correct answers given out of 40 questions and converted on the band scale of 1-9. Each correct answer carries 1 mark and the total mark for the reading section will be 40. The raw scores obtained out of 40 will be graded between 1-9 bands. The scores can be whole bands  like 4, 5, 8, 7, etc and half bands like 5.5, 7.5, 6.5, etc. These band scores will represent your English reading proficiency level as you will be reading the given passages and answering the questions in 60 minutes. The reading score calculation for the IELTS general reading test and the IELTS academic reading scores are the same. 

IELTS reading band score descriptors

The IELTS reading band score descriptors are used to reveal your English reading skills. The band score is depending on the number of questions answered correctly and the raw scores are converted into bands. From the below given table, you can check your English competence level. 

S no Band scores
Skill level
Description
1 9
Expert user
Shows you have a complete understanding of the language and are able to use it fluently and accurately without grammatical errors. Having full operational command competency. 
2 8 Very good user Has a good operational command but lacking in few unfamiliar situations. Occasionally some unsystematic inaccuracies may occur. Capable of handling complex and detailed argumentation. 
3 7 Good user Having operational command over the language with occasional inaccuracies, inappropriate usage and misunderstandings in some situations. Able to understand detailed reasoning and can handle complex language.
4 6 Competent user Effective command of the language is exhibited along with few inaccuracies, misunderstandings and inappropriate word usages. In similar situations, capable of using and understanding the fairly complex language. 
5 5
Moderate user
Partial command over the language. Though mistakes are likely to happen, capable of understanding the overall meaning in most of the situations. Can handle basic communication in their own field.
6 4
Limited user
Has basic competence only to the familiar situation. Cannot handle the complex language and faces difficulty in understanding and expressions.
7 3 Extremely limited user Communicates with frequent breakdowns. Can understand and convey only in familiar situations with a general meaning. 
8 2 Intermittent user High difficulty level in understanding in spoken and written English. Knows only a few selected words or phrases that are used in familiar situations. 
9 1
Non user
Has no ability to use the English language. Knows only a very limited number of words or phrases.  

IELTS Band score chart for Academic reading

You can appear for the IELTS academic reading test, if you are planning to join any graduate program in the universities of English speaking countries. Your English proficiency to survive in the program is tested using the IELTS academic test. The academic reading passages are taken from books, articles, journals and publishings, related to the educational background. 

In the academic reading test you will be facing 3 reading sections with 40 questions. You will be scored based on the number of correct answers given and the raw scores obtained will be converted into the band score. You can find the IELTS band score chart for academic reading below, 

IELTS Band Score Chart for Academic Reading Test
S no Band Score Raw scores  Skill level
1 9 39-40 Expert user
2 8.5 37-38  
3 8 35-36
Very good user
4 7.5 33-34  
5 7 30-32
Good user
6 6.5 27-29  
7 6 23-26 Competent user
8 5.5 19-22  
9 5 15-18 Moderate user
10 4.5 13-14  
11 4 10-12 Limited user
12 3.5 8-9  
13 3 6-7 Extremely limited user
14 2.5 4-5  
15 2 2-3 Intermittent user

Read IELTS academic reading scores, for more information regarding the academic reading marking criteria. 

IELTS band score table for General training test

The IELTS General test is taken by individuals who are looking for job opportunities or planning to settle in English speaking countries like the USA, UK, Canada, Australia, etc. The general test tasks are intended to check the language proficiency level in your day-to-day life experience in the country. The reading passages will be related to work-survival, social survival and general interest. 

The general reading test also consists of 3 sections with 40 questions to be answered in the 60 minutes. Each question will be given 1 mark and the total marks obtained out of 40 will be converted into the band scale of 1-9. The band score conversion for the general test will be different from the academic test. The IELTS band score table general training test is given below. 

IELTS band score table for General training test
S no Raw scores
Band score

Band descriptor
1
 40
9 Expert user
2
39
8.5  
3 37-38 8 Very good user
4 36 7.5  
5 34-35 7 Good user
6 32-33 6.5  
7
30-31
6
Competent user
8
27-29
5.5  
9 23-26 5 Moderate user
10
19-22
4.5  
11 15-18 4 Limited user
12
12-14
3.5  
13 9-11 3
Extremely limited user
14 6-8 2.5  
15
3-5
2
Intermittent user
16
1-2
1
Non user

Read IELTS general reading scores, for more information regarding the general reading marking criteria. 

Also read: How to calculate the overall IELTS band score ? 

IELTS reading score calculator

The IELTS reading score calculator is used to convert your raw scores obtained out of 40 into the 1-9 band score. The IELTS score calculator will give whole band scores like 3,5,7, etc and half band scores like 4.5, 5.5, 7.5, etc. A survey has shown that over 2 lakhs of students are using the IELTS reading score calculator for their preparatory tests to check their skill level. With the results produced, they were able to put more focus on the topics they are unfamiliar with and improve the necessary skills required to solve the topic at ease. 

Also read: IELTS reading tips

What is a good IELTS reading score?

With reference to the IELTS band descriptors, 78% of IELTS trainers feel that scoring an 8 band in the reading section will contribute to a good overall band score. 68% of the IELTS aspirants have felt that having a reading score above 7 have earned them a good IELTS score. For example, if your band score is 8, it shows that you have a good operational command over the language and have the ability to handle complex argumentation. If your score is 7, then you are capable of handling complex discussions in familiar situations with rare mistakes. 

How questions are marked in IELTS reading? What is the criteria?

The IELTS reading section is granted a band score of 0-9 ascending in 0.5 scale as per your performance. You have to answer 40 questions provided in the 3 reading sections within 60 minutes. You will be given 1 mark for each correct answer and thus the total raw score will be 40. The marks obtained out of 40 will be converted into the band score between 1-9. The IELTS academic reading bands and the general reading score bands are different. 

How non native English speakers score a 9 band in IELTS  reading?

A non native English speaker can easily score a 9 on the IELTS reading test if they have consistent practice and familiarity with all the reading topics. To make it possible, you must do some recreational reading to improve your reading stamina, speed vocabulary, grammar, spelling and time management skills. The ideal time you have to spend preparing for the IELTS reading exam is 3-8 weeks or 40 days, spending 3-4 hours a day. 

Your English knowledge can be improved by inducing a regular reading habit. The IELTS exam taker has to incorporate English in all aspects of your communication like listening, speaking and writing apart from reading. This will make you more comfortable in understanding the language and responding to the questions easily. 

Practice papers to improve your IELTS reading score

You can now improve your reading skills by taking the following practice tests. The tests are designed in a way to assess our reading skills. Evaluating yourself with these tests will make you familiar with the question types and enrich your skimming, scanning and time management skills. Check out our exercises provided based on the question types. 

IELTS academic reading Practice test based on question types

S no Question Types
1 IELTS academic reading Matching Headings practice questions
2 IELTS academic reading Locating Information practice questions
3 IELTS academic reading True/False/Not Given practice questions
4 IELTS academic reading Multiple Choice Questions practice questions
5

IELTS academic reading Summary Completion practice questions 

6 IELTS academic reading Diagram Labelling practice questions
7 IELTS academic reading Matching Sentences practice questions
8 IELTS academic reading Matching Features practice questions
9 IELTS academic reading Sentence Completion practice questions
10 IELTS academic reading Short Answer Questions practice questions
11 IELTS academic reading Note Completion practice questions
12 IELTS academic reading Flow chart completion practice questions 
13 IELTS academic reading Yes/No/Not Given practice questions
14

IELTS academic reading Table Completion practice test

 

IELTS general reading Practice test based on question types

S no Question types
1 IELTS general reading matching heading practice questions
2 IELTS general reading locating information practice questions
3

 

IELTS general reading true false not given practice questions

4 IELTS general reading multiple choice questions practice questions
5 IELTS general reading summary completion practice questions
6 IELTS general reading matching sentence endings practice questions
7 IELTS general reading matching features practice questions
8 IELTS general reading sentence completion practice questions
9 IELTS general reading short answer questions practice questions
10 IELTS general reading note completion practice questions
11 IELTS general reading flow chart completion practice questions
12 IELTS general reading yes no not given practice questions
13

IELTS general reading table completion practice questions

 

What if I’m not satisfied with my IELTS reading score?

After the IELTS results, if you are not satisfied with the IELTS reading score, you can apply for the “Enquiry on Result” in the test centre where you have appeared for the exam. This is a remark process for which you have to apply within 6 weeks from the test date. The EOR fees will be INR 11,625 which is refundable if your result has moved to a higher band score. 

Even after the remark, if you are not able to attain the targeted score, you can retake the IELTS exam. The IELTS exam can be retaken any number of times, within a year (365 days) and the retake exam fee will be between INR 12,000 to INR 15,000. If you wish to retake the IELTS reading section, you have to appear for all the 4 sections. 

For detailed information regarding the reataking, you can visit retaking the IELTS exam.

What is the IELTS reading score validity?

The IELTS reading score validity is for two years from the date of the IELTS test and can be used as a proof for your English proficiency. This IELTS score card can be submitted to the universities, and immigiration within the 2 year span after which the score card will be invalid. 

Also check IELTS score validity, to know more about the reading score validity. 

Conclusion

The IELTS reading band score is used to give an insight about your reading skills to the institutions and the immigration officials. We hope the information given in the blog will give you an understanding about the reading scores, its marking criteria and the validity. 

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Global Headquarters

Kanan Intl EdTech Inc

229, Yonge Street Suite 450 Toronto Ontario, Canada M5B 1N9

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

kanan-ftr-phone+91 63597 73959

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.