A very good morning to all of you! So, it’s going to be a day full of colours and fun?

A lot of inquiries come to me for IELTS. So today let me tell you a little about this test. International English Language Testing System is the full form of IELTS. Initially, it was a prerequisite for securing admission to the British, Australian, Canadian and the New Zealand universities, but now many other countries like the USA, South Africa and Germany have also started accepting it.Whether you want to work or study in these countries, you have to clear IELTS. The test checks your ability to communicate in English. IELTS is divided into two parts — ‘Academic’ and ‘General’. A candidate can select either, depending on the requirements of the sponsor or the receiving university.

IELTS has three modules:

•  Reading
•  Writing
•  Listening and Speaking

The last module, ‘Listening and Speaking’, is common to both ‘Academic’ and ‘General’ categories. But ‘Reading’ and ‘Writing’ sections are different for the ‘Academic’ category candidates.

There is no pass or fail here. Candidates are tested for their language using abilities and given a score. The score ranges from 1 (minimum) to 9 (maximum) —‘1’ denotes a ‘non user’ and ‘9’ an ‘exceptional user’.

Now let’s take up one section at a time:

Reading — RC or reading comprehension is perhaps the toughest section in any entrance examination. It’s so because the passages are very long and not too interesting. It is very difficult for a reader to maintain his/ her concentration for long. RC tests your aptitude to comprehend diverse subjects, and at the same time, your capacity to scan and skim passages.

You get 60 minutes for the The Reading Section and there are 40 questions. But, luckily, there is no negative marking. However, one must not spend too much time on any one question; one can always come back to it later.

How to prepare for the Reading  Section?
•  Get used to reading — newspapers, magazines, novels. Select topics that you don’t like. This will increase your ability to concentrate on subjects that you find boring.
•  Try to increase your reading speed by scanning paragraphs.
•  Learn to take notes and find key words and phrases.
•  Practice as many IELTS mock tests as possible.

I shall take up the other sections in the coming articles.

No home-work this time. Enjoy your Holi. Take care…

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