IELTS Preparation Strategy & Study Plan 2021

Updated by: Nidhi bahl on Aug. 20, 2021, 3:07 p.m.

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IELTS Preparation Tips

Want to learn how to stay on track with your IELTS preparation? Want to know the tips and tricks to score well in IELTS? Well, here's a complete guide on how you can make your own IELTS study plan. Usually, candidates who have a good command over the English language find it easier to score well in the test. But lack of preparation and practice can cause trouble, even for the smartest candidates.

There are plenty of options available online that you can use to prepare for IELTS. If you need IELTS coaching, you can refer to practice test materials for IELTS like videos, audio and articles available on the Internet for free. With these, you can prepare well for all the IELTS sections including listening, reading, writing, and speaking. Follow the detailed tips and guidelines for IELTS test preparation given below to secure an overall good IELTS score.

IELTS is an important exam to test English language skills of candidates looking to be accepted for undergraduate or graduate programs in leading universities abroad such as Harvard University, University of Westminster, Hofstra University, University of Manchester, University of Kansas and University of Massachusetts

Want to Know How to Achieve a High IELTS Score?

Also Read:

IELTS Academic vs IELTS General: What’s the Difference? IELTS or TOEFL? Which Exam Should You Take to Study Abroad?
Minimum IELTS Score You Need for Admission in Top B-Schools Abroad Average IELTS Scores at Popular USA Universities

IELTS Study Plan

IELTS is divided into 4 sections and each section is equally important to score well in IELTS. IELTS Test Score reflects the overall band as well as individual scores in Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing. If you are planning to take IELTS, then you must prepare well for each of these component. A strategic study plan will enable you to give your best on the day of the test. 

You can refer to the following study plan to score well in IELTS. Following IELTS study plan has been created keeping in mind that the student has at least 30 days to prepare for IELTS. You must ensure that you register for IELTS well in advance in order to have enough time for IELTS preparation. One month is sufficient time for a candidate to prepare for IELTS if he/she has a good command over English language, grammar, vocabulary, tenses, etc.                                    

Plan Your Day

Once you know your IELTS test date, you could plan your preparation days accordingly. Figure out your potential and divide each hour of the day to practice different questions from the IELTS practice papers. Make an ideal plan for each day i.e. do not overdo your per day target and get enough rest. Keep physical and other recreational activites in your daily dschedule. 

Work a Little Extra on Your Weaknesses

You may or may not be equally good in all the sections of IELTS. Therefore, you must figure out the topics or components of IELTS that you ned to work on a little more. Those areas may require your extra time and attention. Suppose, you are not very good at English vocabulary. For this, you can create an additional task of making a list of English words each day and learning how to use them in sentences. 

Revise Notes Regularly 

Make it a habit to create notes of important points while you prepare for IELTS. For example, you can note down important rules on tenses, words and their meanings, incorrect sentence formation, etc. Keep revising these notes on a regular basis. 

Practise IELTS Test Papers Daily 

The IELTS test is timed and ultimately you need to take the test in one go. Therefore, it is important to enhance your speed of attempting questions and also improve your focus to perform well in IELTS. This can be improvised by taking IELTS practice sets. Ensure that you practice enough IELTS Test Papers as it follows the same format as the original IELTS test. 

Read Good Books 

You must make it a habit to read good English books daily. It will enhance your vocabulary and will also help in using correct grammar and sentences while writing or speaking English. Choose good books from popular authors and select the genre you are interested in. These extra small steps will definitely help you become well-versed in the English language. 

Also Read: Top 10 Books to Polish Your English Language Skills

General Preparation Tips for IELTS

Along with a well-planned study schedule, you need to consider a few general points that will help you in preparing for IELTS. You can keep in mind the following points while preparing for the IELTS 2021 test:

  • Make sure you have gone through the latest IELTS exam pattern, syllabus and format.

  • Stick to your IELTS study plan. Prepare a study plan wisely that you can follow practically. Figure out your proficiency level in English and make a study plan accordingly. 

  • Take IELTS practice papers seriously. Attempt them in one go without any distraction.

  • Analyse your performance after taking each IELTS practice test to figure out your strengths and weaknesses in the English language. Review answers and compare them with the answer sheet provided.

  • Refer to some good English books and authentic IELTS practise papers.

  • Above all, factors like your confidence, focus, physical and mental stability are equally important on the IELTS test day. 

Section-wise Preparation for IELTS

When preparing for IELTS 2021, candidates must give equal attention to all the sections i.e. Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Each section of IELTS is designed in a specific manner and candidates should prepare for each section as per the defined format, structure and pattern. Here are some of the section-wise preparation tips for IELTS 2021, which can help candidates score well in each section.

IELTS Listening Section Preparation Tips

  • The sample practice set for the IELTS 2021 test is available for free on the official website for IELTS. It is recommended that the IELTS test takers practice the sample papers before attempting the original test.

  • When practicing the Listening section of the test, candidates must listen to the recording attentively as questions asked in this section are based on the recordings. It should be noted that the recording is played only once, therefore, attentiveness and the ability to point out key details in the recording is a must.

  • A good rule of thumb, when practicing as well as while attempting the actual test is to take notes of the important points while listening to the recording.

  • While answering the questions, candidates must cross-check their answers with the ones given in the answer sheet for any grammatical or structural errors.

IELTS Reading Section Preparation Tips

  • Questions in the reading section are asked in different formats like graphs, images, figures etc. While reading the questions, candidates must give attention to the smallest of details.

  • The answers must be precise and grammatically correct.

  • Answers are available in the passage, therefore, candidates must carefully read the passage and write the answer most appropriate and to-the-point.

  • It is always a good practice to proofread your answers for any grammatical or sentence structure mistakes.

IELTS Writing Section Preparation Tips

  • While attempting the IELTS 2021 Writing Section, candidates must utilise the limited time effectively. The topic must be written in a precise manner but should cover all the major ideas for the topic.

  • Plan the structure of your essay before writing the entire content on a specific topic. Subheadings and important points must be discussed and planned properly.

  • Redundancy in the written content must be avoided.

  • Proofreading and revision is highly recommended before submitting the writing sample.

IELTS Speaking Section Preparation Tips

The speaking section of IELTS 2021 is conducted on a separate day once the other three sections have been conducted successfully. This section is used to analyse a candidate's ability to speak fluently in English. Candidates are advised to follow the points mentioned below while preparing for the IELTS Speaking Section:

  • Candidates should practice speaking slowly and fluently.

  • Candidates must listen to the question carefully and provide an answer to the point.

  • Sentences used must be grammatically correct and be structured appropriately.

  • Candidates must be confident while answering the questions.

  • In case the question asked by the examiner is not clear, he/she must ask the examiner to repeat the question.

Need Help With Your IELTS Study Plan?

When is the Right Time to Start Preparing for IELTS?

The globally-renowned English language proficiency test, IELTS, is conducted throughout the year for all aspirants who wish to study or work abroad. An IELTS test scorecard is valid for two years, therefore, candidates can take the test anytime they want as per their convenience.

When it comes to preparation, the time required for preparation varies from person to person. Those who are proficient in English may hardly need a month to prepare for the test. However, those who do not have a good command of the English language must start preparing for it at least three months before taking the test.

FAQs

1. How much time does it take to prepare for IELTS? 

The average time required to prepare for IELTS is 3 months. However, it depends on the level of understanding and command of the candidate over the language.

2. Do I need coaching to prepare for IELTS? 

If your basic concepts in English are not clear, then you can opt for IELTS coaching. Nonetheless, It is recommended that candidates take a few IELTS practice tests to analyse themselves and then decide whether an IELTS coaching is needed or not.

3. How to prepare for IELTS?

There are several IELTS online practice test papers and IELTS preparation books available in the market and online that can be used to prepare for the test. Students may also refer to some good English language books for grammar, vocabulary and sentence formation.

4. Is there any free study material available to prepare for IELTS?

Yes, you can access the free IELTS practice paper on the official website for IELTS. 

5. How to prepare for the IELTS Speaking section?

To score well in the IELTS speaking section, you must be fluent in spoken English. You can listen to different English podcasts, speeches, audios as a part of your practice. It is also important to speak confidently and emphasise on main phrases while speaking.

6. Can I prepare for IELTS 2021 in one month?

Yes, you can prepare for IELTS in one month if you have good command over the English language. You can make an IELTS study plan for a month and follow the same.

7. How to prepare for the IELTS Writing section?

You can choose among the topics asked in the previous IELTS exam and practice writing them at home. Make sure to use the correct sentence structure, grammar and punctuations while attempting the writing section.

8. When should I start preparing for IELTS?

Based on the timeline for admissions at the universities abroad, you must first finalise the day on which you wish to take the IELTS and start preparing for it at least 3 months before the test day.

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