This is a 1 hour test in 3 sections with 40 questions based on 1 reading text per section (ie: 3 reading texts). The length of the Academic reading test will be between 2000 and 2750 words. Candidates are given a question paper and an answer paper. They may write on the question paper but they may not remove it from the test room after the test. All answers must be put onto the reading answer sheet before the end of the hour - there is no extra time after the 1 hour set for the academic reading test for the transfer of answers to the answer paper.

A variety of question types is used. Questions types that you will see will usually come from the following list:

Texts are taken from magazines, journals, books and newspapers. Texts are for an undergraduate or postgraduate readership but assume NO specialist knowledge of the subject. All reading passage topics will be of general academic interest. At least one text will contain a logical argument. One text may include a diagram, graph or illustration. If there are any words or terms of a specialist technical nature, which candidates would not be expected to know, then a short glossary will be provided.

For further information, click here to access the reading tutorial.


The AC writing test is of 1 hour duration. Candidates are required to do 2 tasks.

The Academic Writing Task 1 asks the candidate to describe in his or her own words factual information given to the candidate in pictorial form(s). The pictorial form(s) could be a line graph, a bar chart, a pie chart, a table or a picture describing a process. There could be a combination of these input forms. Candidates must write a minimum of 150 words.

The Academic Writing Task 2 asks the candidate to write an essay on a general academic topic. Candidates must write a minimum of 250 words.

For further information, click here to access the free academic writing tasks


The IELTS Academic Speaking Test is the same for both the AC and GT modules. The test is conducted with 1 examiner and 1 candidate. The Academic Speaking test is recorded. The Academic Speaking Test is divided into 3 sections.

Section 1 The Academic Speaking Test Section 1 begins with some general introductory questions. This is followed by some questions on personal information similar to the type of questions one would ask when meeting someone for the first time. Finally the examiner asks a series of questions of 2 topics of general interest. (4 - 5 minutes)

Section 2 The Academic Speaking Test Section 2 is a monologue (1 person speaking) by the candidate. The examiner will give the candidate a card with a subject and a few guiding questions on it. The student must talk for 1 to 2 minutes on this subject. The examiner decides on the exact length. The student has an optional 1 minute in order to prepare for his talk and is provided with some paper and a pencil in order to make some brief notes. After the candidate's talk the examiner will ask 1 or 2 brief questions in order to finish off the section. (3 - 4 minutes)

Section 3 In the Academic Speaking Test section 3 the examiner will ask some more questions generally related to the subject spoken about in section 2. These questions will be more demanding and require some critical analysis on the part of the candidate. (4 - 5 minutes)

For further information, click here for the free academic speaking tutorial.


The IELTS Academic Listening Test is the same for the AC and GT modules. The candidates will listen to a tape and answer a series of questions. The tape will be played ONCE only. The Academic Listening Test is in four sections with 10 questions in each (ie: a total of 40 questions) and will last for about 30 minutes with an extra 10 minutes at the end to transfer answers to the answer sheet.

A variety of question types is used in the Academic Listening Test. Questions types that you will see will usually come from the following list:

For further information, click here to access the free academic listening tutorial.

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