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Sample test questions

Prepare for your IELTS test by practising with free sample questions

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. Make sure that you prepare for the correct version of the test.

Using the practice materials in this section will enable you to:

  • familiarise yourself with the test format
  • experience the types of tasks you will be asked to undertake
  • test yourself under timed conditions
  • review your answers and compare them with model answers.

Listening

Duration: 30 minutes

The Listening test is the same for both Academic and General Training versions of IELTS and consists of four recorded monologues and conversations.

The following IELTS Listening sample tasks are to be used with the Answer Sheet and MP3 audio files and/or transcripts. Each answer sheet indicates which recording to listen to, or if a transcript is provided.

Listening sample test 1
Listening sample 1 task - Form completion (PDF, 59KB)
IELTS listening recording 1 (MP3, 1.2MB)
Listening sample 2 task – Multiple Choice (PDF, 16KB)
Listening recording 2 (MP3, 402KB)
Listening sample 3 task – Short Answer (PDF, 25KB)
IELTS Listening recording 3 (MP3, 574KB)
Listening sample 4 task – Sentence Completion (PDF, 17KB)
IELTS Listening recording 4 (MP3, 549KB)
Listening sample 5 task – Matching (example 1 – PDF, 21KB)
IELTS Listening recording 5 (MP3, 2.8MB)
Listening sample 6 task – Matching (example 2 – PDF, 21KB)
IELTS Listening recording 6 (MP3, 2.1MB) 
Listening sample 7 task – Plan/Map/Diagram Labelling (PDF, 25KB)
IELTS Listening recording 7 (MP3, 2.7MB) 
Listening sample 8 task – Note Completion (PDF, 59KB)
IELTS Listening recording 8 (MP3, 4.18MB)
Listening Recording 8 Answer Sheet (PDF, 16KB)
Listening Sample 9 Task – Short Answer (PDF, 25KB)
IELTS Listening Recording 9 (MP3, 11.8MB) 
Listening Recording 9 Answer Sheet (PDF, 17KB)


Listening answer sheet
Listening answer sheet (PDF, 233KB)

Find out more about the Listening test

Academic Reading

Duration: 60 minutes

Texts for the Academic Reading test are taken from books, journals, magazines and newspapers.

A variety of tasks is used, including: multiple choice questions, identifying information, identifying writer’s views/claims, matching information, matching headings, matching features, matching sentence endings, sentence completion, summary completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, diagram label completion, short-answer questions.

Downloadable Academic Reading sample tasks
Academic Reading sample task – Diagram label completion (PDF, 61KB)
Academic Reading sample task – Matching information (PDF, 35KB)
Academic Reading sample task – Identifying writer's views (PDF, 56KB)
Academic Reading sample task – Matching features (PDF, 22KB)
Academic Reading sample task – Matching headings (PDF, 26KB)
Academic Reading sample task – Multiple-choice questions (PDF, 21KB)
Academic Reading sample task – Table completion (PDF, 59KB)

Academic Reading answer sheet
IELTS Reading answer sheet (PDF, 130KB)

Find out more about the Academic Reading test

Listening Answer Sheet
Listening Answer Sheet (PDF, 233KB)

General Training Reading

Duration: 60 minutes 

A variety of tasks is used including; multiple choice questions, identifying information, identifying writer’s views/claims, matching information, matching headings, matching features, matching sentence endings, sentence completion, summary completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, diagram label completion, short-answer questions.

Downloadable General Training Reading sample tasks
General Training Reading sample task – Flow Chart Completion (PDF, 40KB)
General Training Reading sample task – Identifying Information (PDF, 99KB)
General Training Reading sample task – Matching Information (PDF, 43KB)
General Training Reading sample task – Matching Features (PDF, 32KB)
General Training Reading sample task – Matching Headings (PDF, 31KB)
General Training Reading sample task – Sentence Completion (PDF, 19KB)
General Training Reading sample task – Short-Answer Questions (PDF, 18KB)

General Training answer sheet
IELTS Reading answer sheet (PDF, 130KB)

Find out more about the General Training Reading test

Academic Writing

Duration: 60 minutes

The Academic Writing tests consist of two writing tasks of 150 words and 250 words.

In Task 1, test takers are asked to describe some visual information (graph/table/chart/diagram). They need to write 150 words in about 20 minutes. In Task 2 test takers are presented with a point of view or argument or problem. They need to write their response in 250 words in about 40 minutes.

Below are samples of Task 1 and Task 2.

Please note that test takers for IELTS Academic take a different Writing test in IELTS General Training.

Downloadable Academic Writing samples
Academic Writing sample task 1 (PDF, 257KB)
Academic Writing sample task 1 (PDF, 411 KB)
Academic Writing sample task 2 (PDF, 249KB)
Academic Writing sample task 2 (PDF, 249KB)


Academic Writing answer sheets
IELTS Writing answer sheet task 1 (PDF, 700KB)
IELTS Writing answer sheet task 2 (PDF, 400KB) 


Academic Writing sample script
IELTS Academic Writing sample script (PDF, 1.4MB)

Find out more about the Academic Writing test

General Training Writing

Duration: 60 minutes

The General Writing test consists of two writing tasks of 150 words and 250 words.

In Task 1, test takers are asked to respond to a situation by writing a letter, for example, requesting information or explaining a situation.

In Task 2, test takers write an essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem. 

Below are samples of Task 1 and Task 2. 

Please note that test takers for IELTS General Training take a different Writing test in IELTS Academic.

Downloadable General Training Writing samples
General Training Writing sample task 1 (PDF, 21KB)
General Training Writing sample task 2 (PDF, 11KB)

General Writing Answer sheets
IELTS Writing Answer sheet task 1 (PDF, 700KB)
IELTS Writing Answer sheet task 2 (PDF, 400KB)

General Training Writing sample script
General Training Writing sample script (PDF, 869KB)

Find out more about the General Training Writing test

Speaking

Duration: 11–14 minutes

In the Speaking test, you have a discussion with a certified examiner. It is interactive and as close to a real-life situation as a test can get.

There are three parts to the test and each part fulfils a specific function in terms of interaction pattern, task input and test taker output.

In Part 1, you answer questions about yourself and your family. In Part 2, you speak about a topic. In Part 3, you have a longer discussion on the topic.

The Speaking test is the same for both Academic and General Training versions. Each of the three parts is designed to test a different aspect of your communication ability.

Downloadable Speaking Sample tasks
Speaking sample task part 1 – Prompt (PDF, 21KB)
Speaking sample task part 1 – Recording (MP3, 631KB)
Speaking sample task part 1 – Transcript (PDF, 12KB)
Speaking sample task part 2 – Prompt (PDF, 20KB)
Speaking sample task part 2 – Recording (MP3, 762KB)
Speaking sample task part 2 – Transcript (PDF,11KB)
Speaking sample task part 3 – Prompt (PDF, 18KB)
Speaking sample task part 3 – Recording (MP3, 1.2MB)
Speaking sample task part 3 – Transcript (PDF, 13KB)

Find out more about the Speaking test

Listening

Academic Reading

General Training Reading

Academic Writing

General Training Writing

Speaking