IELTS Exam: Pattern, Eligibility Criteria, & Registration Process

The International English Language Testing System, commonly known as IELTS, is a standardized test aimed at evaluating the English language skills of individuals whose native language is not English. It is typically undertaken by individuals seeking to study, work, or immigrate to specific countries. The administration of the IELTS exam is a collaborative effort between IDP : IELTS, The British Council, and Cambridge Assessment English.


Administration of IELTS Examinations

The governing councils that conduct the International English language test (IELTS) are:

  • International Development Program (IDP)
  • British Council
  • Cambridge English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)

In India, the IDP and the British Council are the primary organizations through which candidates register for the IELTS exam. While there might be discussions about the validity of results from each, it is important to note that there is no actual difference in the results provided by either council. Candidates are free to choose either the IDP or the British Council for their IELTS registration, and they can also access IELTS practice tests through these organizations. The test procedure and the credentials of the results are the same with both. Successfully passing the IELTS exam, potentially aided by practicing with these tests, qualifies an individual to study, work, or migrate to English-speaking countries.

Registration Process for IELTS

Whenever they plan to appear for IELTS, a crucial step in their IELTS preparation, candidates must first register for the test. This can be completed online or offline. The IELTS is available up to four times a month, allowing candidates to choose from any of the 48 days it is conducted annually. If they are not satisfied with their score, they can reattempt the test. However, it is important to remember that the IELTS score is only valid for two years. Below are the steps to register online for IELTS.

Step 1: First thing first, you must visit the official website of IELTS.

Step 2: Click the “Register for Test” Option.

Step 3: Select your preferred time, date, and location.

Step 4: Provide your name, email, mobile number, and date of birth.

Step 5: Provide your registration details such as the location of the test, the country one intends to migrate to, and the number of years one is studying English.

Step 6: You must select the name of the colleges where the Test Report Form will be sent.

Step 7: Check the information you have put.

Step 8: Make your payment via credit or debit card.

Step 9: Once done, candidates can print out the acknowledgment receipt.

On the other hand, for those opting to register offline, the process involves downloading and printing the application form from the IELTS website. This completed form should then be submitted at the nearest IELTS exam center. Additionally, candidates are required to provide a copy of their passport at the time of submission, which they must also carry with them on the test day.

IELTS Exam Pattern

For those preparing for the IELTS exam, possibly with the aid of IELTS coaching online, the test is divided into four sections: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. The first three sections – Listening, Reading, and Writing – are conducted on the same day. The Speaking section, however, can be scheduled either in the week before or after the other sections, as decided by the respective test centers. The total duration of the exam is 2 hours and 45 minutes. IELTS scores are rated on a band scale from 0 to 9, where a score between 6 to 8 is generally considered average.

Section Duration Number of Questions Details
Listening 30 Minutes [Plus 10 minutes transfer time] 40 4 sections with 10 questions each. You need to listen to the recordings and note down the answers to the questions.
Reading 60 Minutes 40 Includes 3 passages with a variety of questions.
Writing 60 Minutes 2 There exist two writing tasks and both must be completed.
Speaking 11-14 Minutes 3 Parts An oral interview is recorded.


What Are The IELTS Eligibility Criteria?

IELTS doesn’t have any particular IELTS Exam Eligibility criteria. But irrespective of other factors, students who are 16 years old and older are qualified.

For those seeking international education and planning to take the IELTS exam, registration is essential. There are two available options for registering for the IELTS exam: online and offline.


  • Visit the official website of IELTS.
  • Select the “Register for IELTS”.
  • Select the date, test type, and test city you are undertaking from.
  • Complete filling the details such as name, contact details, etc. after choosing the slot.
  • Provide a copy of your first and last page of the passport.
  • choose which universities you wish to submit your IELTS score results to
  • Check all the details for the information you have provided before paying the test fee.
  • You will receive an acknowledgment for the same either via email or phone.



  • Visit the IDP office in India
  • Either fill in the application form available at the office or download the form online and then fill.
  • Finish up the details and pay the exam fees either via ICICI deposit slip, credit or debit card or even demand draft. Once done, you will get the confirmation for the same.

IELTS Exam Eligibility for USA

To study in USA, you need to have at least an English proficiency of at least an IELTS 5.5 Score. However, the eligibility depends on the different exams and universities. Here are some of the top universities in USA that accept IELTS:

University IELTS for Undergraduate IELTS for Postgraduate
Massachusetts Institute of Technology 7.0 7.0
California Institute of Technology 7.0 7.0
Harvard University 7.0 7.0
Princeton University 7.0 7.0
Yale University  7.0 7.0


For more information on IELTS exam, Contact our overseas education consultants at +91-8595338595 or email us at

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