How to Prepare for IELTS: Essential Steps

Learn how to start preparing for your IELTS test by following the 15 most important steps. This video lesson will explain exactly what steps you must take before you enter the exam room and how to prepare successfully for your IELTS test.

IELTS Preparation Steps

Learn about the IELTS Test

Academic or General Training Test?

Having Realistic Goals

  • decide which band score you want
  • get your English level assessed
  • check that your level of English is enough for the band score you want
  • if your level is too low, you must work to improve it
  • develop your IELTS skills
  • make sure you have enough time to get the right level of English and strong exam skills

Know the Requirements of Your Band Score

Questions and Topics for IELTS

Practice and Develop

Practice Tests

  • Buy the Cambridge IELTS books 1-9 (use the most recent books 7-9)
  • Practice tests under exam conditions as well as to develop skills


  • Get your speaking and writing assessed by an experienced IELTS teacher
  • Get feedback on technique and language problems

Get Professional Training

  • Either get training online or in an IELTS school
  • All students need to be trained in IELTS to fulfill the requirements of the test

When to Take your Test

  • Take your test when your English level matches your required band score
  • Take your test when you fully understand the IELTS test
  • Take your test when you are frequently scoring your required band score

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  1. Hi Liz,

    I used all of your great videos and material and just received a balance score of 8. Thank you very much, your work is much appreciated!


  2. Muhammad Ijaz says:

    if i want to writ in lower cases words like..
    garden==is this correct ?


    Garden==is this correct?

  3. Hello Liz, could you please have a look at my essay below and grade it?

    Blood sports in general terms means a fight in which animals are involved , and in a few circumstances even results in the death of some. This kind of sporting activity has been there since olden days and has increased greatly with regards to the degree of violence the animals are enduring . In my opinion, such kind of inhumane and uncivilized forms of activities should be prohibited .

    Animals are being used not just as a source of clinical research , but also for the entertainment of a section of the society. There are various kinds of such barbaric acts and to name a few I would say, bull-fights or cock-fights. It has evolved into a huge money minting business. In some countries ,such events are held in a grand manner trying to draw more public attention , and thus indirectly more financial gain. Some sections of the society support their action on religious grounds. I feel whatever might be the purpose behind such gruesome acts, subjecting
    animals to such kinds of both physical and mental violence is barbaric and should be banned at any cost. Most important point to consider here is , some animals actually succumb to the injuries inflicted on them during these fights and are left to die.

    Animal welfare organisations such as the PETA and the Blue Cross are trying their best to put an end to such deadly and horrific sports. Considering all these, I strongly feel that more social awareness is needed to stop this kind of thoughtless and violent activity towards the lesser developed species.

    In conclusion, all I can say is government should put into practice stringent laws prohibiting all such forms of violent activities towards animals.

    Thank you so much Liz , for giving everyone such a good platform.

  4. Mohammed Rashid says:

    Dear Liz ..

    Thank you too much …
    your posts very very useful and helping out … would you please give me a site or a link that i can manage all the rule of ILETS ..
    best regards .

  5. Hi Liz !

    I’ve just began to prepare for the IELTS test and I’m following your instructions and you your videos , but I’d like to ask you a few questions ? Can take the academic IELTS in two months from now ? Also what should I do in this short time ? What’s the best way to do ? How many hours I need to study a day ? Is the Academic test for those who graduated or it can be for under graduated too ? and my accent is american (north america ) is it okay ?the last one how I pay for the test and get my money back ?

    Thank you !

    • Firstly, after watching the above video, I’m sure you realise how many things you need to learn: question types, skills, each section of the test etc. All this must be learned and practiced before the test. You must plan your own time to cover each type of question in each section and then develop your skills. When you get the score you want in practice tests, it is time to book your real test. The academic test is mostly for people who want to enter university for any course. You must decide which IELTS test is suitable for your requirements – you can find that information on the official BC website or IELTS official site. The test is international which means American English is accepted.
      All the best

  6. PRIYANTHI says:

    Dear Liz
    I would like to ask you to find a teacher for me to correct my IELTS writing task 1 and 2.
    If you can help me with this requirement, please send me an email.
    I look forward to hearing from you.
    Kind Regards

    • Unfortunately, I don’t have a list of IELTS teachers to offer you. It’s best if you search online to find a teacher. Make sure you get a teacher who understands the band score thoroughly and, if possible, has done the IELTS examiner training.
      All the best

  7. Hello Liz,
    Could you please help me in what should be writtened in body paragraphs of this question? ( i cannot produce ideas about this argument )

    Some people think that schools are merely turning children into good citizens and workers, rather than benefitting them as individuals. To what extent do you agree or disagree

    • Hi,

      I’ll post some ideas for this essay question on Tuesday as a lesson. Just follow my blog lessons to get the ideas when they are posted.
      All the best

  8. satwik murari says:

    dear mam,
    thank you for sending me ielts vedio classes, it really helpfull for me

  9. Ayman Kenawy says:

    My IELTS test was yesterday,I followed the techniques described in your lesssons,however my word count may be just under the required ,despite good linking,lexical resource and grammatical accuracy,I’d like to ask if I still can get a score of 7 or more if the word count, for example 145 in task 1 and 245 in task 2 , with every thing else is ok.?

    • It is possible. There is usually a window of about 10 words below the limit which is allowed. So, you might still do well. Lets wait to see your results.

      • Ayman Kenawy says:

        Thanks for your reply,irrespective of what my results will be,I acknowledge that your lessons (content and method of presentation) were of great help to me.

  10. Hi Liz
    Good day ! I read all your tips in how to have a high score in ielts especially on essays and it is really great. I everyday look forward for your new topics. It is ok if you assess my essay and advice me how to improve it because I know that I am not really good in writing an essay and I need a score of 7. Thank you very much.

    • Hi,

      Feel free to post an essay is you want. I don’t have time for error correction but I will find time to comment on it. It usually takes me 1 to 4 days to comment. When you post it, remind me of your band score aims.
      All the best

      • Hi Liz!
        Thank you. Here is my essay.

        The exploration of development of sfe alternatives to fossil fuels should be the mass global priority. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

        Fossil fuels are one of the sources of energy that we need in our daily life. The researchers are trying to find safe alternatives in fossil fuels, some agree that it must be a priority. In this essay I shall discuss why I agree that development of safe alternatives must be prioritize and cite some examples.

        To begin with, it seems to me that the exploration of the study in alternatives of fossil fuels must be done soon. Fossil fuels has some harmful effects in environment and it will increase in future. Also there are some machines that use fossil fuels such as vehicles and in factories that the smoke from that machines will lead to health problems. One good example is my uncle who died of lung cancer. He worked as a driver for almost 30 years and his everyday life exposed to air pollution but he did not smoke. The doctor said that the smoke coming from vehicles can be the cause if his disease.

        Moving on, there are some safe alternatives to fossil fuels that we can be used such as solar energy and wind energy with less effect in the environment and in people. For instance, there is a new invented car that uses a solar energy. Although it is not fast as an ordinary car but it does not emit harmful pollutant.

        In conclusion, the production of safe alternative to fossil fuels must be prioritized globally because we should be aware of the dangerous effects of fossil fuels in society. Moreover, the sources of the alternative fuel can be ssen everywhere and it will not cost lots of money to develope.

        Thank you very much Liz.

        • Hi,

          It’s a good essay on the whole and would probably get about band 6.5. Here are some tips:

          1. In your thesis statement in the introducution, don’t tell the examiner what you plan to do in the essay, just answer the question. Of course the examiner knows you will explain your idea and give examples. What the examiner wants to know is your opinion. So just write “In my opinion, I agree that the development of safe alternatives must be prioritized because of the dangers of using fossil fuels.”
          2. Use the right linkers “moving on” is not really appropriate. You can use “Another point to consider is…”
          3. Don’t give examples about people you know. Write about the world in general “For example, some long term drivers suffer from lung cancer as a result of ….”.
          4. You have two body paragraphs – each contains a central topic. Each body paragraph should be equally well-developed.
          5. Grammar – this is an issue. “Fossil fuels has some harmful effects in environment and it will increase in future.” = “Fossil fuels have some harmful effects on the environment and it will increase in the future” (three grammar errors in one sentence). This will reduce your score. Other sentences also contain errors.

          • Hi Liz!
            Thank you very much for your time on assessing my essay and it is really a great help for me. Maybe in the near future I will meet you personally to thank you..

            Thank you very much Liz!!!

  11. Blood sports become a hot topic for debate in recent years .As society develops it is increasingly seen as an uncivilized activity and cruel to the helpless animals that are killed.
    Blood sports should be banned.To what extent do you agree and disagree??
    Blood sport is a sport category which involves blood shedding and since centuries one instance of such sport is involvement and use of animals.
    Nowadays Blood sport is a very hot topic for debate, and supporters of this sport desire for constant support and attention for it,while opponents says it is an act of cruelty and brutality against poor and helpless animals which needs to be banned.
    i am agree with second view which says ,Blood sport is ruthless act against helpless animals and have to be forbidden promptly.
    Firstly,I think involvement of animals in Blood sport is a sort of deliberate abuse to animals rights and Law for animals rights has not permitted it,moreover call it an act of mistreatment and aggression toward animals.For instance ,animals which are used have no special language to communicate and tell us,they are mistreated and still every year in many western countries this sport is put in the way and considerable number of people use animals for entertainment while using different means how to treat animals ruthlessly and finally their life is shortened and killed.
    Secondly,from religious point of view many religions do not allow any single individual to treat animals brutally and yet we have had many instances of praise and honor for those who have behaved animals with kindness and compassionate.For example, a lady is praise with praised with heaven for sake of irrigating only one dog or in another occasion a Prophet is praise with honor and dignity because treating a sheep compassionately.
    Finally it is concluded that ban authorization on Blood sport which will be a civilized act and will protect animal`s rights undoubtedly.( the Essay consist of 276 to 280 words)

    • Hi,

      Before I give you feedback, please go through all my model essays to learn the correct paragraphing for an IELTS essay – particularly the introduction. Please check all capital letters. Also make sure each body paragraph should explain why you think blood sports should be banned. This would probably only get about band score 6 at present. Try to work on your main IELTS skills and techniques.
      All the best

  12. hello liz! how can i get my speaking assessed ? is there a forum for such?

    • Unfortunately, I don’t know any teachers online for assessing speaking. It’s quite important that you get assessed by an ex-examiner or even current examiner if possible rather than just a teacher because you need accurate feedback.
      All the best

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