7 Simple Steps To IELTS Success

For many PR aspirants, IELTS scores can be the biggest hurdle in their PR journey. Here are 7 simple steps you can take to overcome the IELTS challenge.

My IELTS test was scheduled during the first week of March. All my preparations had been steadily building up. I came to rely heavily on the Barron’s book and online practice tests. The Barron’s would give me all the tips and methods I needed to succeed and the online tests would give me all the slash dash practice I needed.

The day of the exam finally turned up, and I went in thinking I was fully prepared. The test pattern was straightforward, but the test paper was something I had never seen before. You cannot turn your answer paper over to answer the previously completed section. What? How does it matter, you’ll think. But apparently, its considered cheating. 

When the writing test began, I thought the questions were rather easy. 20 minutes later, my Part-A was still not done and my fingers were cramping up into some twisted horror story. That’s when I clearly misread Part-B and all hell broke loose. Half-way through Part-B, I realized that the question was asking something else entirely, and I had to redo big chunks of the content. 

The next day, I took the speaking test. Straightforward as it could be. I

Weeks later, when the results came out, I was super happy to see my LRS scores were high enough, and appalled to see that I had scraped through writing with a difficult seven. Half a point less in writing and I would have lost an army of CRS points. Close call!


Here are 7 steps you can take to score well on your IELTS test

  1. Buy the Barron’s 4th Edition IELTS book. Hands down the best book out there in the market with structure, tips, training and outcome.
    Canadian Residents >> Barron’s IELTS (affiliate link)
    Indian Residents >> Barron’s IELTS (affiliate link)
  2. Spend the first three days understanding the exam pattern. Barron’s has an incredible introduction to each question type. They’ll teach you tips, tricks and common mistakes that many people make. They even guide you in understanding the question, skimming while reading, listening for key words, etc. I was initially scoring in the 34–36 range for listening and reading, and after reading this book, I was consistently hitting 38–40. This makes a huge difference to your morale and your CRS points.
  3. Take a General IELTS test to evaluate where you are. Don’t give excuses about why you lost points. If you made silly mistakes in the practice test, you’ll make it in the main exam again. Most people score between 32–35 and then excuse themselves by saying if not for silly mistakes they would have scored 39–40. Yeah, don’t do that
    • If you hit CLB 7 or CLB 8 in your practice test, then you’ll need an hour of practice daily. One listening, one reading and one writing test.
    • If you hit CLB 6 and below, you’ll need to put in two hours of practice daily. Atleast two listening, two reading and two writing tests daily.
  4. Practice tests are available at these places. Online tests especially are great for instantaneous results. You can keep practicing for hours.
  5. Learning how to speak is a tricky thing. They’ll check for your pronunciation, intonation, vocabulary, sentence formation, etc. The best way to prepare for this is to go through many YouTube videos where sample speaking tests have been conducted. Remember, a good speaking score comes from covering all of the evaluation parameters. Many people find that simulating a speaking test with a friend or a mirror is incredibly helpful. DO NOT under-estimate this.
  6. Writing is where most people eventually fall. The Barron’s book is very useful in this section. They’ll guide you on how to organize your thoughts quickly, how to craft a meaningful write -up and how to avoid common mistakes. As of this moment, make it a point to be grammatically correct (including Punctuation) in your emails, WhatsApp chats, SMSs and any other forms of written communication. Install Grammarly plugin for Chrome – this will help identify your mistakes in real-time while you write on the desktop.
  7. This is the most important one: none of the above will set you up for the real test day as much as mock tests will. Sign up for at least 3–5 mock tests at your nearest IELTS coaching institute to get a feel of how the real exam feels like. This will help you immediately course correct your preparation effors.

All the best!

My scores: L – 8.5, R – 8.5, S – 8, W – 7

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5 thoughts on “7 Simple Steps To IELTS Success

  1. Hi,
    Its really informative to get started with the immigration process. My wife and I are planning to move to Canada soon. We were also thinking of getting our cats along with us(2of them).
    Since you mentioned about your dog migrating with you, we wanted some tips on this.

    Best
    Sparshad

    Like

    1. Thanks for writing in. Check out my most recent post on moving with your dog to Canada. The process should be mostly the same, except that I think you can carry your cat inside the cabin with you as the weight is bound to be less than 6kgs

      Like

  2. Astonishing indeed!! First of all, I would like to say “THANK YOU” for crafting this wonderful blog. It helps a lot to many, including me, who are following the path that you already went through. I am lagging a little on score side which I am trying my hard to get through. Tips you have mentioned here are blessing, really. I wish to meet you one day in Canada, once I will be there. Thanks again.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Astonishing indeed!! First of all, I would like to say “THANK YOU” for crafting this wonderful blog. It helps a lot to many, including me, who are following the path that you already went through. I am lagging a little on score side which I am trying my hard to get through. Tips you have mentioned here are blessing, really. I wish to meet you one day in Canada, once I will be there. Thanks again.

    Like

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