International English Language Testing System (IELTS)

It is likely that you need to prove your English language proficiency in order to apply for a Masters course in Germany. You can prove it by taking a test. TOEFL and IELTS are two widely accepted international standardized English language tests. If you are also planning to apply to few of the US universities, TOEFL could be a better choice. Whereas, IELTS test score is accepted by almost all the German universities. Both the tests have the same sections and similar testing styles. But in my opinion, IELTS is simpler and better option. This page will walk you through all the stages involved in IELTS test taking.

Before You Start

  1. Check the course requirements to see if taking IELTS is mandatory.

  2. Note down the minimum required score to be eligible for admission (e.g overall band 6.5).

  3. Most of the time, IELTS score card is not necessary for the admission if your bachelor’s course was taught in English. But note that you may still want to take IELTS test to fulfil your Visa requirements.

Required Documents

  1. Your Passport

  2. Credit/Debit card

  3. List of 5 universities to which test scores to be sent (optional)

Step by step guide

  1. Go to this official link for IELTS Test Registration

  2. Go to “Find Test Date” form and select following details then click on Find.

    1. Date: Select the month of your test (e.g. August 2017)

    2. Town/City: Select your nearest town (e.g. Bengaluru)

    3. Module: Academic

  3. (Find Test Date and Check Availability): Now you should be looking at a list of available dates for the above-entered criteria. If you do not see anything listed, change the city or test date and try again. You will also see the corresponding test fee. Select the suitable date and hit Apply.

  4. (Terms & Conditions): Agree to Terms and Conditions and click Continue.

  5. (Candidate Details): Now you will see a form asking for candidate details. Most of the fields are self-explanatory. Remember to fill in the details as they appear in your Passport. Then click Continue. Note: Don’t be too picky on the details like What is your occupation sector? or Why are you taking the test?. This is the way for British Council to gather candidate details for improving the test quality.

  6. (Summary): Once again review your details. Make sure IELTS Test Details read the above choices and your name and passport details are spelled correctly in Candidate details.

  7. payment details:

    1. (recommended): pay now using a credit/debit card. This is a convenient option.

    2. pay later. In this case, the fee needs to be paid within the next 3 days. You can pay at any ICICI branch by cash by filling in an ICICI challan or you can pay by a Demand Draft – Draft to be in the name of “British Council” payable at ‘New Delhi’.

After You Register

  1. You will receive an email confirming payment receipt and containing access details to the free online preparation course – Road to IELTS Points.

  2. The test center will send you written confirmation of the date, time and the test venue a week before the test.

  3. Speaking test time may be scheduled on the same day as the written tests or on a different day within a 7-day window before or after the written tests. The test center will confirm your Speaking test date and time.

On the Test Day

  1. Arrive at the right time for your IELTS test. If you arrive late, you may not be allowed to take the test.

  2. The IELTS test location staff will check your Passport when you arrive. If you do not have your Passport, you will not be allowed to take the test.

  3. Most of the test locations will now also take a photograph of you on the test day (for security purpose).

  4. Once you are at the test center, switch off your mobile phone and any other electronic devices. You will be asked to place these with other personal belongings outside the test room. You will only be allowed to have a pen or pencil, an eraser and your ID on your desk.

  5. The Listening, Reading and Writing tests take 2 hours 40 minutes and there are no breaks between each part of the test. Speaking test takes about 10-14 minutes (likely that it is scheduled on a different day).

Test Results

  1. Your IELTS score (‘band’ from 1 to 9) is the indicator of your English language proficiency.

  2. IELTS test results will be released 13 calendar days after you have completed the test. Test centers will post your Test Report Form (TRF) to you 13 days after the test.

  3. You can also preview your results online 13 calendar days after the test. Results remain online for 28 days.

  4. You need to know your test date, your date of birth, your passport number and your candidate number to access your results online.

  5. You can request up to five additional TRFs to be sent to Receiving Institutions within one month of taking the IELTS test.

Trivia

  1. It typically takes about 2 weeks to 2 months preparation time for IELTS depending on your current level of English language proficiency. Also, it takes 13 calendar days for the test results to be announced. If you need to send IELTS scorecard along with your application, plan your test date accordingly.

  2. If you are not sure whether IELTS test score is a mandatory requirement for your course, do the following. Search the university website, contact past applicants or write to the admissions department of the university asking for clarification. If you still don’t have the clear information, take the test and send scores anyway.

  3. Try to be calm and keep your anxiety in check during the test day(s). One sure way to achieve this is by taking many practice tests.

  4. You can predict your overall band score using this IELTS score calculator when you do your mock tests.

  5. Overall band of 6.5 is the minimum requirement for most of the technical courses in Germany.

  6. You can send your IELTS scores to 5 universities within a month of your test results. Contact your test center for further details. However, if you miss this chance to send the score card to universities, don’t panic. Most of the German universities accept notarized copies of the original scorecard, which you can send later along with other application documents.

  7. Your IELTS test results are valid for 2 years.

  8. You can take IELTS as many times as you like and you can send your highest score to the universities. But taking the test over and over again may not improve your results unless you work on the weaknesses identified in your test report form.

Resources

All the resources that can get you to your desired band score are already freely available online. So self-study along with some dedication should get you through. The resources mentioned below cover all the aspects of IELTS test preparation. But our suggestion is, don’t get lost in them. Pick one or two in each category and stick to them.

  1. You must make full use of the free online preparation course – Road to IELTS. It contains 9 practice tests, 4 informative e-books, advice videos from British Council IELTS experts. It will also give you insights about your strengths and weaknesses via graphs and tables.

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