International English Language Testing System or IELTS, as it is commonly known, is an examination that assesses your proficiency in the English language. It consists of four sections- listening, reading, writing, and speaking. Thereby, IELTS takes a comprehensive examwhich measures the proficiency in English language, in all of its aspects. IELTS ws established in 1989 and is managed by the British Council, IDP Education Pty. Ltd, and the University of Cambridge ESOL examinations.
IELTS: General and Academic
There are two variants of IELTS, which a person can choose from, on the bass f their requirement. The Academic one, as the name suggests, is for academic purposes. If you want to go to the UK, US, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand for studies, then you are required to write the IELTS as they assess your proficiency with the English language as that is the one which is used in the countries mentioned above. General version is, however, absolutely non-academic. It is required for immigration purposes in English-speaking countries.
The general version does not require you to undertake the reading and writing sections same as that of the academic one. Instead, you have to prepare differently for the reading and writing sections. However, the listening and speaking sections remain the same in both the cases. The academic writing and reading sections are tougher than the general ones. The total duration of the exam is under 3 hours.
Choosing Between Academic and General
If you need to get a student visa at a university or college for a degree level course, then you need to take IELTS Academic. In addition to that, if you are aiming to begin with a professional career in any of the English-speaking countries, then you too are required to take the same. The different universities and colleges may differ in their requirements of an IELTS score. Usually, a standard 7 pointer is demanded form the prospective students. However, this may vary from college to college and you are advised to find it out from the college website.
Now, if you want to migrate to any country where English is the primary language of communication, then you must take the IELTS General. This test will measure your English skills based on a practical and everyday life usage of the language. If you want to go for a secondary education or study at a college below degree level, then too, this should be your bet.
Process of Preparation
No matter how vague the IELTS requirements sound, the process of preparation for the exam needs one to be constantly agile regarding the same. You should take out some time daily to polish your English skills, in all the four aspects of reading, writing, speaking and listening. You should also assess as to which section can be your weak link and try to work on it more intently. You may further contact different IELTS review centers as they would be able to help you gauge your strengths and weaknesses, and guide your further accordingly. You should also scan the internet and look for other sources from where you can grab knowledge about the IELTS, so as to be more and more familiar with the exam.
For further details, you can contact IDP IELTS, at ieltscanadatest.com. IDP IELTS manages a network of over 200 test locations in 45 countries worldwide, including 16 official test centres with testing in more than 25 locations across Canada.