IELTS Remarking Success Story

Can your IELTS score change after remarking? This is one persons story about remarking and the amazing results that followed. Below is Najada’s story.

My IELTS Remarking Story

Hello everyone.

I took my IELTS Academic module on the 8th of December 2018 in Melbourne Australia. I have been living and working in Melbourne for nearly 2 and a half years, which means English has become part of my life everyday communication.

I needed to sit my IELTS in order to apply for a registration to work as a Physiotherapist in Australia. The minimum score required is 7 in each module and overall band score 7. ​I was very lucky to come across IELTS Liz website. I solely studied from Liz’s website. I did most of the lessons, read all the tips, followed all updates and of course purchased the Advanced Writing lessons. ​I strongly recommend to all students to purchase the advanced lessons as they are ABSOLUTELY fantastic. Liz’s explanation and advice are very comprehensive and clear.​I could not afford having a tutor to study so Liz’s website and affordable advanced writing lessons saved my life!!!​​

I received my IELTS score as the following:

  • Listening: 7.5
  • ​Reading: 8.0​S
  • Speaking: 8.5​
  • Writing: 6.0

​​I was absolutely disappointed with my writing score as I was pretty sure I did better than 6. In Task 1 I had two line graphs and Task 2 a problem solution essay. I did follow Liz’s advice on how to organise paragraphs and ideas, did my planning before starting writing!!!! VERY IMPORTANT​ I used a variety of complex sentences (Liz’s lessons for complex sentences are fantastic). I was as careful as possible. I felt that something was wrong with the score, so I started checking online about the remark option.​ The majority of the websites mention that there is a possibility to get a change in the score, with a 0.5 increase being the most common and in rare cases a 1.0.​ What they also mention is that if there is a major difference between each component (like my case) they will ask for a second examiner to mark it just to be sure. ​So I thought they might have done that with mine too.

But still my gut feeling said to me that something is wrong. I did better than 6.0. ​So I decided to apply for a remark. The remark fee is quite expensive, 176 AUD to be precise, so if there is not a change you lose your money, but if there is a change you get a full refund.​ I decided to take the risk because as I said before I did study very hard for my writing, which was my weakest part.​​

After 4 weeks I received an email saying that there has been a change to my writing score. And that change was……. 7.5. I COULD NOT believe it. That’s a 1.5 increase. So my final score is overall band score 8 with:

  • Listening: 7.5
  • ​Reading: 8.0​
  • Speaking: 8.5​
  • Writing: 7.5

Even the staff at the English Centre  where I took my IELTS were absolutely surprised by this remark change. ​If you have a doubt about your results, while you are confident that you have done better than this, go for the remark. You might receive your desired score.​​

I would also like to say that please do read well all Liz’s pages as they contain crucial information about the test. I literally followed her advice for each part of the test.​

What I would like to add about speaking is…. SPEAK ENGLISH AS MUCH AS YOU CAN. I was very lucky to practice my English everyday. Living and working in Australia have allowed me ​to interact with people. I was asking colleagues and friends to correct any errors I made with my speaking and, believe me, that helped me a lot.​ You can only improve if you are aware of your weak points and you are determined to study hard. Nothing comes easy without hard work.​​Unfortunately for permanent residency I need a minimum of 8 in each component, so I have to sit the IELTS again but i can finally practice my profession. I am continuing to practise my listening, speaking, writing and reading and also my spelling as I am pretty sure some of my listening errors were spelling mistakes.​

Thank you Liz for your absolutely amazing hard work and your kindness, Najada.

Comment: Very well done! It’s a great score. I would like to thank you for sharing your story because it really shows people the importance of sticking with your convictions. If you feel your score should be higher, try a remark. However, I hope everyone realises that Najada was aware of the band score requirements. she did understand IELTS techniques and did have a strong level of English (as could be seen by her speaking score of 8.5). For this reason, her gut instinct was right.

I wish you lots of luck in the future, Najada !! 🙂

And good luck to you all taking your IELTS test!

All the best, Liz


  1. Robert Yusay says

    Wow. That’s great news!!!

  2. Hi – can anyone please advise should I go for a remark on below result.

    Lis: 7.5
    Reading 7.5
    Writing: 7
    Speaking: 7

    I need 8 in listening

  3. Hi Liz,

    I took IELTS recently and my score is
    S 8
    R 9
    L 9
    W 6.5
    My score are because I followed your website and I am very thankful to you for it.
    However, I made a mistake of mentioning “in my opinion” for a advantage & disadvantage essay in the introduction paragraph. I am now wondering is that the reason for my low score in Writing. Also, I have applied for remark for Writing.
    Can I ask your opinion about my remark results. Do you think it will increase?

    • That would not account for your score. There are many factors that are taking into consideration for getting below band 7. Your remark will be successful if the senior examiner thinks you fulfilled the requirements for band 7.

  4. Hello Liz
    If we request a remark on the speaking score or writing score will it decrease? Or just either increase or stay the same?

    • Your score should not decrease from a remark. It will either remain unchanged or increase. However, I always think it is something you should discuss with your test centre before submitting the remark application.

    • I had a similar experience and received a writing score I consider ridiculous.

      L: 8.5
      R: 9.0
      S: 8.0
      W: 7.0
      I am sure something is very wrong with the marking. I will certainly apply for a remark and let you know how it goes.

  5. Hi Liz,
    I recently got my scores and got a 6.5 in speaking(L8.5,W8,R7). I was shocked to get this score as I thought I did very well in speaking. In fact I thought I will get a 8 or 8.5 easily. I live in US and speak English daily, and I know I do not make any grammatical mistakes. I use good vocab. I asked other students who took ielts to evaluate my speaking by taking my speaking test just as an examiner would. Having recently taken the test themselves, they knew how well they did and they got scores of 7.5 – 8. They rated my speaking better than theirs and said I will easily get a 8 at the very least. I am starting to think IELTS examiners sometimes give a 6.5 in either writing or speaking just to extract more money from students (still not out of the shock!). I will be submitting my scores for remark. After reading Najada’s story, I feel I might be another one of those who get a score update of more than 0.5!!

    • The examiners do not know your writing score and do not award 6.5 automatically. You should be careful asking other students to evaluate your IELTS speaking based on the marking criteria for IELTS. The band score descriptors are written in a vague manner and it takes training to be able to use them effectively to hit on an accurate band score. IELTS examiners are trained and have on-going evaluations to keep their skills of assessment accurate. Certainly, I would recommend you to go for a remark and hopefully your score will change as a result. If it doesn’t get back in touch with me for help.

    • Hi
      What was your EOR result??

  6. Hello liz,

    I received my score today and I got 6.5 in speaking? Do you advise that I’ll go for remarking? I still don’t know what to do. I need 7 to be qualified in my application for USA.

  7. I also have a small success story to share. Hope Liz finds it useful enough for others. 🙂

    I took CBT (GT) in early Jan and end up with 9/8.5/6.5/7.5 (LRWS). I was naturally sad with my writing score, though decided not to appeal (I wrote 254 words for the essay and I had a feeling my paragraphs were not fully inflated). So I took the test again; this time I was confident with my writing, though I end up writing 404 words!. The results; 8.5/7.5/6.5/8 (LRWS). I appealed this time, and within two weeks, I got it remarked to 7!. I now have enough for my purpose, and feel relieved. Liz’s website was so much helpful towards my scores, and thank you for it, Liz. 🙂

    My advice to everyone who is upset with their writing score is to go for the remark, especially if you feel something is wrong with the initial marking.
    I can’t help but feel that IELTS have some “agenda” to push the writing to below 7, whenever there is a borderline case. They remarking procedure is inherently designed to be repulsive, with long waiting times and extra fee.

    I also have a question, that hopefully Liz could clarify. In the listening test, when we have to choose 2 or 3 options from a list of 5 or 6; does the audio always proceed from the first option to the last in sequence? or the audio could mention the given options in a random order? The test I took had such a question, and I was waiting for the audio to talk about the first option (thinking it would be in order), but to my horror, it came quite late after going through the later points!. I had to regroup and make some guesswork then. 🙁

    goof luck to all the takers. Do remark, it’s worth doing it.

    • Thanks for sharing and well done with your remark. No, with a multiple choice question, the options are not given in order. Questions come in order, but not the options (a / b /c ). For this reason, you need to have already identified the keywords and be ready for the random order of information in that particular question.

  8. Hi Liz. I want to prepare for the IELTS exam in march and I’m very new to this. I am just fortunate to have come across your page. Kindly advise me on how to start preparing and how to get study materials. Thank you.

    • The 300 pages of free tips and lessons are all accessed through the RED BAR at the top of the page. Start learning wherever you want. Choose a section of the test to focus on and start learning information and practising skills.

  9. Many many congratulations Najada…. I m also practicing since 1year..but few months ago my one friend suggested me to follow Liz ….and really Liz is doing a wonderful job….some time I break my tempo of studying… How could I continue it again ???any tips regarding this….it’s very difficult for me to get time for study at day time because I have a very tough life ….having 5 children and also a teacher….I know that its all is a matter of wisely and courageously u study then u can achieve a high band….please any one who can share his planning study timetable and techniques…. So this will be highly appreciable….Liz u r doing a great job…God blessed u always

  10. Hi Najada,

    Congrats on your increased score! Stories like yours are really boosting our confidence in ourselves to give a try at remarking if we’re not happy with our scores. Thanks!

    Hi Liz,

    Thanks for all your tutorials! I scored exactly what I wanted in Listening and Writing.
    I gave IELTS last month (Jan 2019), and I saw my results online yesterday:
    Listening: 8.5
    Reading: 7.0
    Writing: 7.5
    Speaking: 6.5

    I am not satisfied with my Speaking score and would like to submit for remarking. The link which you provided ( it does not list “United States” in the country list. So I couldn’t find my test center there. Is there any email address where I can submit my remarking request? Or do you suggest I visit my test center (it’s 20 mins. by walk) and then request for remarking in person?

  11. Hey Liz! This is Tara. I have been following you quiet lately. I am planning for my masters in Canada and one of the requirements is that I sit for IELTS at the earliest of my convenience. I am not much aware of the test pattern and also an average score holder in English language. Could you please let me know in how much time will I be perfectly prepared to score 7 and how?? I have my test slot booked in the month of March, 2019. Please help me out.
    Thank you.

    • I think you are missing the point of IELTS. This is an English language test. If your English is band 5, it will take you over one year to reach band 7. So, the first thing to assess is if your English is the right level to get band 7. This means you use a good range of language with few errors (that is a basic description). Also check your score when you do a full reading and listening test – check that it is near 7. After that it is time to gain a thorough understanding of the test which you do by extensive reading and practice tests. Use my site for information. Then develop exam skills and techniques – again you can use my site. Some people pick it up quickly, others do not.

  12. Congrats Najada for your result. Thank you liz for this website, it has helped me a great deal to practice, I followed some of the advanced lessons, and they are honestly easy to understand, and so I tried to write one essay to see if I have fully grasped the format. Please kindly help me read through this essay and let me know what band I currently stand in for writing and what I need to pay attention to. Please this will be hugely appreciated. Thank you so much.

    Question: Stress-related illnesses are becoming increasingly common.
    What do you think are the causes of this? What solutions can you suggest?

    There has been significant increase in illnesses that are related to stress. In my opinion, stress is caused by the rise in work pressure and long-working hours. However, some solutions to these problems ought to be considered.

    Firstly, one major reason for stress-related ailments is the pressure of work. The work force is becoming increasingly competitive. In other words, for companies to meet their goals and beat their competitions, employers place inconsiderable high work demands on workers. This leads to anxiety and results in conditions such as high blood pressure, mental health issues and heart problems particularly when targets are extremely difficult to attain. Secondly, stress-related illnesses are caused by longer working hours. These days, having only one stream of income is barely sufficient to pay bills and as a result, many people engage in numerous jobs in order to earn more money, thereby leading to stress-related issues.

    One solution to be considered in eradicating ailments that are gotten from stress is that employers should encourage corporation at the work place. When workers develop team working skills, they are able to collaborate to solve problems efficiently, effectively and with greater ease. Another solution is that, employers ought to increase workers income. When workers are paid reasonable salaries and have access to good incentives, they will be able to cater for their basic needs, and will therefore not need to work more than one job, but rather spend time on recreational activities such as quality time with family and taking vacations which is undoubtedly a recipe for good health.

    In conclusion, I strongly believe that excessive work pressure and longer work hours are connected to some sicknesses, however, these problems can be tackled by working in teams to reduce physical pressure and increasing workers earnings.

    • I do not normally comment on writing, but in your case I will. Your approach, your structure, your linking etc are all excellent. However, it is your ideas that I am most concerned about.
      One cause you mentioned is “work” the supporting points should be “competition, pressure, targets, long hours” – the idea of long hours is a supporting point for the pressure of work. A second cause should have been “modern life style”. Having constant access to technology means constant communication and constant interaction. People do not know how to switch off. The pace never slows down even in their free time.
      From those causes, your solutions should have been: work – reduce pressure, work collaboratively, limit the hours. And for life-style – switch of gadgets and take time to enjoy nature, reading and possibly take up meditation. You can see that these two solutions are completely different.
      As you can see, by have most distinct ideas, we do not overlap on language or supporting points. Your essay is top work focused, instead of tackling the main issue of stress in life. It is important in writing task 2, that you find distinct ideas.
      I hope this helps you.

      • Nneoma Njoku says

        Thank you Liz, for responding.
        I want to ask, why is it so difficult to purchase your advance lessons?
        PayPal keeps popping up and I don’t have an account with PayPal.

        • The only payment option is with paypal. You can use a credit or debit card, but paypal will process the transaction. You can also ask a friend to buy the lessons for you.

  13. Dear Liz, I’m very new to prepare myself for IELTS. I’m following your youtube channel. But as I’m new I can’t understand from where to start and how to proceed. Would you please give a suggestion how to follow your videos and website for IELTS preparation?

    • There is no particular place. Decide what you want to learn about the test and start learning. If you want to start with listening, do that. Do a full listening test from the BC website and then write down all the problems and concerns you have. Use my site to find answers and develop skills. My site is not for asking me questions – I don’t offer that. You can go to the main pages located on the RED BAR at the top of the website.

  14. Mahmoud Abdelrahman says

    very happy with the story and the remark result

  15. Nazmul Hassan says

    I am hopeful .

  16. Great Najada.You are lucky and I appreciate that you took a decision for remarking. A similar incident happened with me as well. I did my Academic IELTS test on 1st Jan 2019 and my score was
    Speaking -7
    I was applying for UK visa and their requirement was 6.5 in writing and 7 in all other modules. I also had gone through the same feelings as Najada was having and had given my writing module for remarking.
    And after 10 days I got my new results as
    Finally I could apply for UK visa. So friends if you are pretty sure about your level in the exams,try going for remarking.Even a difference of 0.5 is worth in many cases.

    Thank You.

  17. Thanks for sharing your story! I’d like to apply for a work and travel visa in Australia and, one of the requirements is that I sit for GT IELTS and get an overall score of 4,5. My doubt is, will I be given the same test as all candidates taking GT ? And if so, how do I know the percentage I need to do well while studying if everyone will be administered the same test independently of the mark needed in each case? Thank you in advance for any info you may provide.

    • There is only GT IELTS test. It doesn’t matter why you are taking it – there is only one. Your English language is currently well above band 4.5. However, to ensure you get a good score, you MUST prepare fully. That means understanding everything about the test and practising thoroughly. There are over 300 pages of lessons and information on this site – read them all. See this page for band score information: There are no percentages in IELTS.

  18. Congratulations, Najada. I had given exam on same dates and same place and my score was almost yours. I put a recheck but I got from 6 to 6.5 only. But, I am so happy for you. Thanks for sharing your story. It is really inspiring.

  19. It was a fantastic story. I like it very much and thank you so much Liz. Your job inspires a lot of people who are eager to succeed.

  20. Omg, inspiring! Well done!!

  21. Hi, congrats, Ms Liz Elizabeth, you are doing a great job in serving the humanity…I also got great help from your videos…May God bless you and show you the right path in this world and hereafter…People like you are very rare in today’s world.

  22. Parneet kaur says

    Bythe way congrats for your result

  23. Irfan Sadiq says

    Woow that is really great and motivational story. Thanks for sharing.

  24. Awesome. You deserve it and Liz, you are absolutely fantastic. I started following you last year and I just love your contents.

  25. Congrats najada👍👍

  26. Great news
    Liz, how long do remarks take on average?

  27. My story was not as successful…
    Reading -7.5
    And remarking did not help, the traumas unchanged…

  28. Najada, congratulations!
    It was your fortune that you could practice English everyday, unfortunaly in my situation it is impossible. But you also very hard worker. It’s great.

  29. Congratulations,
    For your score and after remark,
    Best wishes for resit.
    Further tips for reading?
    I have another question, Australia PR require 8 now? Or it is 7?

  30. Simon Bullock says

    One of my students had a very similar experience. She needed a minimum 7 in all parts but kept getting a 6 in Writing. I couldn’t understand it and so we appealed and the mark was raised to a 7.
    I can understand a half-band change, but to be wrong by a whole band (or, in your example, a band and a half)seems to me to show that something isn’t quite right in the marking.
    This is a common problem here in Sofia, Bulgaria. I am very wary of predicting a decent Writing grade. I have complained but, of course, they close ranks and tell you how robust their systems are etc etc.
    Very frustrating when you see ‘sample’ essays marked at, say, a 7 and then a student gets a 6 in the test.
    What can be done?

    • Same story here in Nepal. I haven’t seen a 7 in writing for a long time, honestly. Lately, I have had a number of students who, despite scoring an 8 overall, haven’t been able to cross that unholy 6.5 in writing. I am beginning to suspect if it’s a matter of institutional policy – students having to take the test again and again and them making loads of cash off of those poor students. If only there were anything we could do!


      • Almost all people who fail to hit band 7, are failing because they have not been properly trained and do not understand the band score requirements for band 7. There is no conspiracy at all. Instead of thinking in that way, start learning more about the marking criteria and the band scores. Be pro-active rather than gossipy.

  31. That’s really great. I liked this success story a lot. All the best!

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