The International English Language Testing System, or IELTS, is an international standardized test of English language proficiency for non-native English language speakers.
It is jointly managed by the British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia, and Cambridge English Language Assessment, and was established in 1989. IELTS is one of the major English-language tests in the world, others being the TOEFL, TOEIC, PTE, IELTS is accepted by most Australian, British, Canadian, and New Zealand academic institutions, by over 3,000 educational institutions in the United States, and by various professional organizations across the world.
IELTS is the only Secure English Language Test approved by UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) for visa customers applying outside and inside the UK. It is also a requirement for immigration to Australia and New Zealand. In Canada, IELTS, TEF, TOEFL, and CELPIP are accepted by the immigration authority.
No minimum score is required to pass the test. An IELTS result or Test Report Form is issued to all test takers with a score from “band 1” (“non-user”) to “band 9” (“expert user”) and each institution set a different threshold. There is also a “band 0” score for those who did not attempt the test. Institutions are advised not to consider a report older than two years to be valid unless the user proves that they have worked to maintain their level. In 2016, 3 million tests were taken in more than 140 countries, up from 2 million tests in 2012, 1.7 million tests in 2011, and 1.4 million tests in 2009.
In 20016, IELTS administered more than for million tests in a single 12-month period for the first time ever, making it the world’s most popular English language test for higher education and immigration.
There are two types of IELTS test to choose from, IELTS Academic or IELTS General Training. All test takers take the same Listening and Speaking tests but different Reading and Writing tests.
Preparation and Strategies to succeed with a good score for your TOEFL or IELTS
Taking the TOEFL is almost always a stressful experience. You need to get a specific score. You pay a lot to take the test. You’ve been preparing for months. The test center may be noisy or crowded. You might not have slept well the night before.
There’s nothing to be done about any of that, but beginning to prepare for the TOEFL well in advance is one of the best things you can do to reduce your level of stress on test day. Here are 5 TOEFL preparation strategies that I have found effective:
- Become a good note-taker: During the TOEFL, you only get to listen to audio clips once. You will then have to answer questions, speak, or write on the subject you heard about. Because you cannot replay the audio, you need to become a good note-taker. You can practice taking notes in your native language or in English. It is probably best to do some of both. Your goal is to learn to take notes in real-time, without missing anything the speaker is saying. Try with a variety of different audio clips of different lengths and levels of complexity, then listen to the clip again and see how accurate your notes are. Pay attention to things that may seem elementary like the layout of your notes and the legibility of your handwriting. Being able to take notes confidently and record all the important pieces of information in real-time will be a huge help to you on your TOEFL test, but also in your future studies.
- Take practice tests: When you’re preparing for the TOEFL, you’re almost always aiming for a specific score. During your TOEFL preparation period, you can only know if you’re nearing your objective by taking practice tests. Practice tests will also help you get a feeling for the test environment, question types, and constraints you’ll be faced with on test day. There are several ways to get TOEFL practice, including using our free EF SET test to track your progress. I wrote an article about the five most popular TOEFL practice test sources.
- Read every day: Even native English speakers build their vocabularies by reading. The more broadly you read, the more exposure you get to concepts and vocabulary. The more closely you read, the more you build your reading comprehension skills. Read broadly and closely to expand the range of subjects you are comfortable with in English. You never know what subjects will come up on your TOEFL test, so it’s best to have a very wide comfort zone.
- Listen to podcasts: There is a lot of English-language talk radio online, whether you like the BBC or NPR, comedy or news. Listening to native English speakers speaking English at their natural speed will develop your listening comprehension. You can also develop your speaking skills by playing back parts of the podcast and trying to mimic the pronunciation of the speaker. Understanding a recording is harder than understanding a video because there aren’t the same context clues. That makes podcasts better for listening comprehension practice than watching movies or TV shows in English.
- Learn to touch type: The writing section of the exam requires you to type your answers on an unfamiliar computer with a QWERTY keyboard. If you spend all your time struggling with the keyboard, you’re not going to have much time left to write a good essay. It seems like a simple skill, but many people forget to prepare for it. Make sure you can type quickly in English on a QWERTY keyboard well before your test date. There are lots of free online tools to help you learn touch typing.
Location and Fees
Where can you take IELTS here in Somaliland? You Cannot, but you can prepare for the tests.
A range of convenient test dates in two official IELTS test center locations across Ethiopia. You can choose to take your IELTS test on paper or on a computer. Whichever you prefer, you will need to come to a test center to sit for your test. Find out more.
Test centers offering IELTS on paper
Addis Ababa, Gondar
Test centers offering IELTS on computer
PREPARING FOR THE TOEFL TEST
Contact the British Council
To give you the quality service that you deserve and alleviate the pressure on our team, we have arranged a customer contact hour during which we are accessible through the following telephone numbers: +251 (0)11 617 4300
- Monday – Friday: 10:00 am – 03:00 pm
- Saturday: 2:00 pm – 5:00 pm
IELTS exam result collection time is from 09:00-12:00 hours on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. Please bring the identification card you used to register for the exam.