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Today we’ll be talking about the importance of properly preparing for your IELTS test with a mock exam.

We’ll give you an overview of what the IELTS is, the different versions of IELTS, and why you should prepare for your test, where you can find mock exams conveniently online.

This is a great first step to getting the score you want on your IELTS test, so let’s get to it!

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Two Types of IELTS Tests – Which One Is Right for You?

IELTS stands for The International English Language System. It is available in over 1,600 testing locations all over the world in two different versions: Academic – for those applying to study in higher education in English – and General Training, for those intending to move to a major English-speaking country, applying for secondary education, or training or work programs in English.

The IELTS Academic test will tell you if you are ready to pursue higher education in an English-speaking environment. It tests all four language skills: listening, reading, writing, and IELTS Speaking test – focusing on subjects likely to be encountered in an academic setting.

The IELTS General Training test is required if you intend to move to Australia, Canada, New Zealand, or the UK. The test material is a wide variety of social and professional situations in all four language skills.

What Is the Goal of Both Tests?

The goal of both versions is to offer a complete assessment of your level of English. The contents of the test use a variety of different English accents and dialects, so it is fair to all test-takers.

After you take the test, you will receive a score from 1-9, and is valid for two years, depending on your organization. Be sure to verify with your organization or sponsor that your score hasn’t expired yet! Test centers are free to set their own price to administer the IELTS, but the average price is around $225.

Two types of IELTS tests – Which one is right for you?

Where And How Can You Find An IELTS Mock Test Online?

When you learn to drive a car, you must practice driving extensively in a real car before your exam date. Similarly, your best bet is to practice taking IELTS mock exercises before your actual date. There are IELTS preparation courses offered in many language schools and testing centers all over the world that offer in-person or distance learning programs. The official IELTS website offers a list of testing centers in the USA.

1. GlobalExam

GlobalExam offers a free, complete IELTS mock test that includes a built-in timer to simulate an actual test. Track your progress using GlobalExam’s personal statistics feature where your answers are saved. In addition, we also provide handy study guides to boost your English vocabulary and grammar. We’ve got everything you need to practice taking the IELTS and earn your dream score!

On our site, you can decide to take a full mock test to see where your current result is and what your weakest score is. You can follow up by focusing on individual papers such as IELTS Listening, Reading, Writing test and Speaking.

Each paper can be timed, if you wish to practice under exam conditions, or you can take your time to make sure you understand and focus on working faster later on. You can study corrections and sample answer sheets. After all, we learn from our mistakes and at GlobalExam we provide explanations of not only why an answer is correct, but why the incorrect ones are incorrect!

By working with complete practice tests and focusing on the individual parts, you can guarantee that your result will improve. To finish, you can take another complete practice test to track your progress. Our platform is 100% online therefore you can study when it suits you best.

2. The official IELTS website

The official IELTS website offers a list of testing centers in the USA. The website also offers a practice test you can access free of charge there. It is organized into the listening section (remember, this is the same for the Academic and General Training test format), and both Academic and General Training Reading test, with answer correction. The Academic and General Training Writing and Speaking tests let you practice writing and speaking with sample questions, and provide sample answers for self-correction.

Mock Exercises To Prepare For The IELTS General Exam

One of the best ways to prepare for the IELTS General Exam is to use mock exercises and sample tests. The more familiar you are with the test, the easier it will be.

There are three sections, each one slightly harder than the previous one. You should spend approximately 20 minutes on each text. It’s very easy to lose points quickly with IELTS, as they take spelling into account when correcting, as well as being very strict about how you answer the question.

For example, if the instructions say “Answer using one word and one number” and you write “fifty people”, your answer is incorrect! You should write “50 people” in numbers and words. Make sure you are familiar with all the different types of questions.

Section 1

The first section of the Academic Reading Test is normally the easiest. You should spend about 20 minutes on it maximum. Otherwise, you will not have time to finish the rest of the test.

exam sample question

When reading the text, try to identify the subject as quickly as possible.  It will help you to understand the questions and locate answers faster.

multiple choice question

For this question, you need to understand the main theme and choose between A, B, C or D. Even if you don’t know the answer, you should write your response.  There is no negative marking in IELTS.

Section 2

The second text is usually related to the workplace, perhaps a new innovation or trend.

In this particular example, the text is speaking about “fringe benefits” – the extras that come with a job, which can include a company car, health insurance or childcare for example. The second text is more difficult than the first. Already you can see vocabulary like “perks”, “sick pay” and “overtime”. You will not see such vocabulary in the first text.

multiple choice question sample

Also note that each paragraph has a letter. A very common IELTS question involves adding a heading to a paragraph:

exam question example

If you’re not used to this type of question, it can be very challenging so make sure you practice!

Section 3

The final section of the Reading paper is the most difficult – keep an eye on the clock! You should not spend 45 minutes on Sections 1 and 2 and only have 15 minutes for the final text. It is not a great idea to have a low score on the Reading section.

a long text

The final text usually has quite a general subject – in this example it’s tourism:

As you can see, the text is giving you results and they’re in reverse order. Be careful as if you try to read too quickly, it is very easy to misunderstand the information they’re giving you. Remember that you do not need to understand every word. Your objective is to find the answers to the questions.

an answer to a multiple choice question

possible answers to a multiple choice question

For this question you need to connect the correct city with the information – don’t try to understand everything. Locate the information you need and continue working on the next step.

The Most Important Reasons to Prepare for the IELTS Exam

Once you register to take the IELTS, it is strongly recommended to prepare for the test thoroughly. Preparing will allow you to know where your English level is currently so you know in which areas you should focus on training.

Once you have an idea of your current level of English and which section or sections you need to improve on, preparing to take the IELTS will help you to gain time on the day of the test. Remember, the test is standardized, which means it has a time limit. If you find you are taking too long on a particular section, try to complete that section quicker each time. Practice makes perfect!

Also, training for the test will, of course, result in a better score overall. If you have a good idea of what the IELTS will entail, you’ll be on track to gain confidence in yourself, fine-tune your test-taking strategies, and eventually earn as high a score as you can. You can then for example send your score to US universities mandatory for your application.

Practice and Receive Your Free IELTS Mock Test Online With Globalexam

The IELTS practice materials and tips for listening, reading and writing sections available to you on GlobalExam are everything you need to help you achieve your IELTS goal. We have areas for language development, learning and practicing correct exam skills, the ability to track your progress, and work on areas that need more development, and you can take a full IELTS exam under exam conditions! You can also take a look at our blog which is full of articles on exam techniques, vocabulary and grammar practice, testimonies, and general tips to help you study and succeed!

GlobalExam can help you not only with IELTS online tests, but with 27 other tests, including TOEFL, DELF, TCF and TOEIC. We have over 30,000 questions, which are regularly updated to make sure you get the result you want.

The secret to getting the result you need is preparation and GlobalExam knows what it takes to prepare for exam day. You can enter your test date, your target band score and we will help create a revision plan for you – everything you need for exam success. Let GlobalExam lead you to success today!