Understand the test format
Familiarise yourself with the format of the test by reviewing the content of the test, as well as the question and task types for each section. It’s also important to read through the IELTS rules and regulations. These are laid out in the Notice to Candidates and Declaration which are included in the application form.
Practise with sample test questions
Completing sample test materials is helpful in preparing for your test. These will give you an idea of what to expect in the Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking tests.
Official IELTS practice materials
You may find it helpful to do a practice test. IELTS has developed two sets of official practice materials, designed to help you understand the test format and the types of test questions.
Both volumes of the practice materials offer samples of the Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking tests with sample answers and examiner comments. The CD in Vol. 1 offers samples of the Listening test and the DVD in Vol. 2 shows test takers taking the Speaking test. These are the only IELTS practice materials endorsed by the IELTS partners. You can purchase official IELTS sample materials from Cambridge University Press (click on the links above), or from an IELTS test centre.
Consider a preparation course
If you would like assistance with test preparation, IELTS centres and language schools around the world offer IELTS preparation courses. You don’t have to attend a preparation course, but many test takers find that doing so helps them improve their performance. Talk to your local IELTS test centre to find out more.
Register as soon as possible
When you feel you are ready to take the test, you need to register for a test date with an IELTS centre. We have over 1,100 test locations in more than 140 countries. The number of test takers who can take the test on a particular date may be limited, so contact the centre as soon as possible. You will need to pay the test fee when you register.