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How IELTS Is Scored In 2021

by | Sep 3, 2021 | 0 comments

Reading Time: ( Word Count: )

The Test Report Form provides your overall band score and band scores for each of the four sections: Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking.

Overall band score

The overall band score is the average of the four sections scores, rounded to the nearest whole or half band. The sections scores are weighted equally.

Some examples:

Test taker A 6.56.55.07.06.256.5
Test taker B4.03.54.04.03.8754.0
Test Taker C6.56.55.56.06.1256.0

If the average of the four sections ends in .25, the overall band score is rounded up to the next half band, and if it ends in .75, the overall band score is rounded up to the next whole band.

Section band scores

Listening

The IELTS Listening test contains 40 questions. Each correct answer is awarded one mark. Scores out of 40 are converted to the IELTS nine-band scale. Scores are reported in whole and half bands.

Reading

The IELTS Reading test contains 40 questions. Each correct answer is awarded one mark. Scores out of 40 are converted to the IELTS nine-band scale. Scores are reported in whole and half bands.

The Academic and General Training Reading tests are graded on the same scale. The distinction between the two tests is one of genre or text type. However, Academic Reading tests may contain texts which feature more difficult vocabulary or greater complexity of style. It is usual that a greater number of questions must be answered correctly on a General Training Reading test to secure a given band score.

The tables below indicate the average number of marks required to achieve a particular band score in Listening, Academic Reading and General Training Reading.

Listening
516
623
730
835
Academic Reading
515
623
730
835
General Training Reading
415
523
630
734
838

Writing

Examiners use assessment criteria to award a band score for each of the four criteria:

  • Task Achievement (for Task 1), Task Response (for Task 2)
  • Coherence and Cohesion
  • Lexical Resource
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy

The criteria are weighted equally and the score on the task is the average.

Speaking

Examiners use assessment criteria to award a band score for each of the four criteria:

  • Fluency and Coherence
  • Lexical Resource
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy
  • Pronunciation

The criteria are weighted equally and the Speaking band score is the average.

Versions of the assessment criteria for Writing and Speaking have been developed to help stakeholders better understand the level of performance required to secure a particular band score:

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