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IELTS Academic vs General Training: Which one should

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a standardized test to evaluate English language proficiency (both written and oral) in non-native English speakers. There are 2 different versions of the test - Academic Version and General Training Version. Each of the versions is intended for different purposes, so IELTS applicants need to opt for the right version, as per individual requirements. Oftentimes, when it comes to choosing between Academic and General Training, test takers find themselves in great dilemma. If you are confused about choosing the right IELTS version, we have listed below comprehensive information on IELTS to help you decide better:

Purpose of IELTS Academic & IELTS General Training:

IELTS Academic -- For studying in Higher or Further Education

The IELTS Academic test is for those who wants to study in an English-speaking university or institutions for higher or further education. The Academic score is preferred for admission into undergraduate or postgraduate programs. Also, if you are planning to join a professional organization in an English-speaking country, IELTS Academic score may be a requirement.

IELTS General Training -- For Migration, Work and School

The IELTS General Training is focused on general survival skills in broad workplace and social contexts. It is basically intended for those who wants to take up secondary education, gain work experience, planning to take up non-academic training programs or for immigration purposes. However, if you are planning to migrate to countries such as Australia, Canada and New Zealand, you will require to take up the IELTS General Training test.

Test Pattern for IELTS Academic & IELTS General Training:

Let s start with the IELTS test sections which are same for IELTS Academic and General Training. These are Listening and Speaking components/sections. It is the Reading and Writing components that differs for IELTS Academic and General Training.

IELTS Listening Test

The IELTS Listening test consists of four recorded texts, monologues and conversations by a range of native English speakers. Test takers need to listen and answer to a series of questions. The Listening test evaluates a candidate s ability to understand main ideas, factual information, understand opinions & attitudes of speakers, purpose of utterances and ability to follow development of ideas.

The total duration for the Listening test is 30 minutes. There are 10 questions for each of the four recording sections which is a total of 40 questions for the entire Listening section.

IELTS Speaking Test

The Speaking test lasts around 11 -- 14 minutes which consists of three parts. This section is also same for the Academic and General Training modules. The Speaking section assesses a candidate s use of spoken English and it is set in such a way that candidates are not allowed to set responses in advance. All the three parts are recorded.

Part I: A one-to-one conversation between the candidate and the examiner. It lasts for 4 -- 5 minutes and questions are generally based on family, work, interests and studies.

Part II: In this part, a candidate will be given a card and needs to talk on a particular topic. He/she will be given one minute to prepare and 2 -3 minutes to speak about the same topic. At the end, the examiner will ask one or two questions on the same topic.

Part III: This section lasts around 4 -- 5 minutes where the examiner asks further questions connected to the topic in Part II. This part of the test will give a candidate - the opportunity to discuss more abstract ideas and issues.

IELTS Reading Test

The Reading component is different for IELTS Academic and General Training. This section consists of 40 questions with a variety of question types to evaluate the candidate s wide range of reading skills. It includes reading for - main ideas, gist and details, skimming, recognizing writers opinions, purpose & attitudes and understanding logical argument.

IELTS Academic Reading Test

The Academic Reading test consists of three long texts which range from descriptive & factual to the analytical & discursive. The passages are selected from books, journals, newspapers and magazines. The passages are for non-specialist audience but are appropriate for candidates who are entering university programs or seeking for professional registration. The test duration is 60 minutes and are more academically oriented.

IETLS General Training Test

The General Training Reading test requires candidates to read from magazines, newspapers, notices, company handbooks and guidelines. This section tests on materials that a candidate is likely to encounter on a daily basis in an English-speaking nation. The section lasts for 60 minutes and has three different sections.

IELTS Writing Test

The IELTS Writing test consists of two tasks for both Academic and General Training versions and lasts for 60 minutes.

IELTS Academic Writing Test

There are two tasks in the Academic Writing test and topics are basically of general interest and suitable for students enrolling in under-grade and post-grade programs or seeking for professional registration.

Task 1: In this section, a candidate will be asked to describe, explain or summarize the information presented in the form of a table, chart or diagram and graph. The total description provided by the candidate should be more than 150 words.

Task 2: The Task 2 section will require a candidate to write an essay on a general topic in response to a point of view, argument or problem. A candidate s response to both the tasks should be in formal style. The essay should be more than 250 words.

IELTS General Training Writing Test

The General Training Writing test consists of two tasks which are basically based on general topics.

Task 1: In this section, a candidate will be presented with a situation and asked to write a letter requesting information or explaining the situation. The letter can be written in personal, semi-formal or formal style.

Task 2: Here a candidate will be asked to write an essay in response to an argument or problem and point of view. The style of writing can be more personal than the Task 2 of Academic Writing test.

Choosing the right IELTS test version is important, so that candidates can prepare for the exam in the right direction.


Comments

Share your thoughts with the community or ask a question

Sindhu 13/01/2019

Hai I'm studying BE 2 year UG ..I want to get job in Canada in future for that can wann to prepare academic or general...I gonna start my preparation now also want to write on this year just to know about that ielts...I can prepare for general

Anisha 03/11/2014

Hi Annu, To do better in the exam you need to be clear and well prepared in all the four sections. And for enhancing your English Speaking skills, you need to start talking and practice a lot. Following are tips for the IELTS Speaking Section: Make the most of your Speaking test: 1 try to talk as much as you can 2 talk as fluently as possible and be...  more » Hi Annu,

To do better in the exam you need to be clear and well prepared in all the four sections.
And for enhancing your English Speaking skills, you need to start talking and practice a lot.
Following are tips for the IELTS Speaking Section:
Make the most of your Speaking test:
1 try to talk as much as you can
2 talk as fluently as possible and be spontaneous
3 relax, be confident and enjoy using your English
4 develop your answers
5 speak more than the examiner
6 ask for clarification if necessary
7 do not learn prepared answers; the examiner is trained to spot this and will change the question
8 express your opinions; you will be assessed on your ability to communicate
9 the examiner’s questions tend to be fairly predictable; practise at home and record yourself

For general speaking skills, you need to read a wide variety of topics from different subjects, domains, products, whatever you can lay your hands on..With constant reading, your word power will increase and with constant speaking practice you can improve your speaking skills.

Thanks «less

Annu 03/11/2014

Respected Sir and Madam I am finding out for a general training for IELTS. And I Wanna enhance my knowledge and be a best English speaker.

Sections 03/11/2014

[…] IELTS General Training – For Migration, Work and School Via www.urbanpro.com […]

Deepika 30/10/2014

I am interested to appear for IELTS exam. I don't have a plan to move abroad. But , to get Certificate, i would like to take up the assessment. What should i inform to the examiners when they ask the purpose of the test? Which category will be the best choice? [ Academics/General]

Sunita | 13/10/2016

Hi Deepika,
Yes, u can give the test and while filling up the form, you can choose the option 'Other' while answering the question 'Why you are taking the test?'.
0 0

Sunita Devi 30/10/2014

Hi Dr. Pravin Wagh,The requirements in terms of experience may differ from country to country.Most of the countries generally asks for experience (no. of years may vary from nation to nation) and mostly no mandatory rule to have 2 years of govt. experience.If you want to work in UK, you need to clear the ORE (overseas registration exam) and you would...  more » Hi Dr. Pravin Wagh,

The requirements in terms of experience may differ from country to country.

Most of the countries generally asks for experience (no. of years may vary from nation to nation) and mostly no mandatory rule to have 2 years of govt. experience.

If you want to work in UK, you need to clear the ORE (overseas registration exam) and you would require a minimum of 1 yr of Clinical experience after internship.

Regards «less

chinnaiah 30/10/2014

sir i would like persue graduate diploma in addiction/counselling(level 7) course in any Newzealand university so how many bands of IELTS Required usually for such courses and what are the tips could be followed for gaining more bands please let me know

Sunita | 13/10/2016

Hi Chinnaiah,

You would require IELTS overall band score of 6.5 or above. It also depends on the University or Institute you are going to pursue the course. Few may accept with IELTS overall band score of 6.5 and other may ask for 7 or above score. You need to check with the University/Institute you want to pursue your course in advance to get a clear picture.

Scoring...  more»
Hi Chinnaiah,

You would require IELTS overall band score of 6.5 or above. It also depends on the University or Institute you are going to pursue the course. Few may accept with IELTS overall band score of 6.5 and other may ask for 7 or above score. You need to check with the University/Institute you want to pursue your course in advance to get a clear picture.

Scoring higher band in the IELTS will require your better performance in each of the sections of the exam.

Here are few more blogs that might be of help for IELTS preparation:

IELTS Tips – Master the Listening and Speaking Section

http://www.urbanpro.com/a/ielts-tips-master-listening-speaking-section

IELTS – Crack the Reading and Writing section

http://www.urbanpro.com/a/ielts-crack-reading-writing-section

How to Prepare for IELTS Exam

http://www.urbanpro.com/a/prepare-ielts-exam

All the very best!

Thanks
Sunita «less
0 0

Sunita Devi 30/10/2014

Hi Chandu,Here are few more blogs that might be of help for your IELTS exam:IELTS Tips -- Master the Listening and Speaking Sectionhttp://www.urbanpro.com/a/ielts-tips-master-listening-speaking-sectionIELTS -- Crack the Reading and Writing sectionhttp://www.urbanpro.com/a/ielts-crack-reading-writing-sectionHow to Prepare for IELTS Examhttp://www.urbanpro.com/a/prepare...  more » Hi Chandu,

Here are few more blogs that might be of help for your IELTS exam:

IELTS Tips – Master the Listening and Speaking Section

http://www.urbanpro.com/a/ielts-tips-master-listening-speaking-section

IELTS – Crack the Reading and Writing section

http://www.urbanpro.com/a/ielts-crack-reading-writing-section

How to Prepare for IELTS Exam

http://www.urbanpro.com/a/prepare-ielts-exam

Thanks «less

S.Subramanya 29/10/2014

Dear Sir/Madam
Thank you for the information, I am looking out for a general training in IELTS, also i wanted to know the validity of the completion course.

Thx

chandu 29/10/2014

I need to write ielts so pls give ur valuable tips to get the good band

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