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Your test day

What to expect on your IELTS test day.

When you do your IELTS test you will do the Listening, Reading and Writing sections all in one day, without a break. Watch the video to find out more about what to expect, then read the advice below.

Getting to the test centre
Before the day of your test, check the start time of your IELTS test and make sure you know how to get to the test centre on time. The last thing you want is to arrive feeling rushed or stressed, so it’s a good idea to plan your route in advance and even visit the test centre in the days before your test is due.

Arriving for your IELTS test
Make sure you’ve read and understood IELTS test terms and conditions as they contain important information about your test day. These can be found in the Test Takers Information part of your application form.

If you arrive late to your IELTS test, you might not be allowed to participate. Turn off your mobile and any other electronic devices. These will be kept outside the test room along with other personal belongings.

The Listening, Reading and Writing tests take 2 hours 40 minutes altogether. There are no breaks. You can’t bring food or drink into the test room, apart from water in a transparent bottle, so make sure you have breakfast before you go!

Your identity documents
IELTS staff will check your identity upon your arrival. If you arrive without the correct ID you will not be able to take the test. For security purposes, IELTS staff will also take a photograph of you before you sit the test. This is the photo that will appear on your Test Report Form. In some countries, you may also be asked to provide a finger scan.

During your test
You are only allowed to have a pencil, pen, your ID, and an eraser on your desk. If you want to ask a question during the test, or if you need to use the toilet, put your hand up to attract the invigilator’s attention so you don’t disturb other test takers.

When it’s time to take the Listening test, check that you can hear the recording clearly. If you can’t, raise your hand and inform the invigilator. After the Listening section, you will have 10 minutes to fill in the answer sheet. However, you do not get any extra time after the Reading section, so be sure to write your answers on your answer sheet as you work through each section.

At the end of the test
Stay in your seat until the invigilator gives you permission to leave the test room. If you believe that your performance may have been affected by any issues, inform the invigilator straight away. If you want to make a complaint about your test day, you must do this within one week of the test date by filling in the Complaint Form.

Special arrangements
If you requested special arrangements as a result of a disability or other condition, adjustments will be made for you on the day of your test. You can find out more about this here.

Finally, keep calm, try to relax and do your best!

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Understanding IELTS: Reading

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FutureLearn - Learning For Life

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