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IELTS Speaking Section-all that you need to know

IELTS Speaking Section-all that you need to know

Speaking Section- IELTS

IELTS comprises of four sections, i.e. listening, reading, writing and speaking. The test measures the English Language Proficiency by assessing reading, listening, writing and speaking skills of a person who intends to study, work, train or migrate to a native English speaking country.

Speaking section measures the ability of a person to communicate and fluency in the English language. It intends to assess a wide range of speaking skills of the candidate.

For preparation and to score well in this section, it is important to understand what exactly this section is all about.

About the test

In the speaking test, the candidate interacts with a certified examiner. It is a discussion and as close to as a real-life conversation. The conversation between the examiner and the candidate is recorded. The test takes about 11 to 14 minutes. The content of the test is same in both IELTS academic and IELTS general. The speaking test comprises of three parts.


The marking is done throughout the conversation. It is done on the basis of fluency and coherence, grammatical range and pronunciation.

Purpose of the test

The speaking test intends to measure a wide range of speaking skills of the candidate. It assesses:

  • How well the candidate can communicate over everyday topics and how well he/she is able to give basic information.
  • When a topic is given, how well the candidate can speak at a stretch.
  • How well the candidate can coherently communicate ideas and opinions.
  • How well one can justify their ideas and analyze and discuss over the same.
  • The extent of fluency and command over the English language.

Preparation of the test

As fluency and pronunciation are crucial elements of the test, the applicants must practice reading out loud and record as they read. This will help them understand where they are going wrong while pronouncing a word and how fluent they are while speaking english. The speaking must be natural and not in a made up accent.

Practice tips

  • You need to find a study partner or ask someone who could help you practice the conversation. You can have a conversation with that person and record your interaction.
  • All the parts must be practiced together without taking any break. As this help with the flow of the test.
  • The recordings can be heard later and you can review your performance.
  • Keep in mind that the accent should be natural and fluent. There should be clarity in speech and spontaneity.

Sample questions

Part 1

This part is based on general introduction and questions are from familiar topics like home, family, friends and interests of the candidate. It will always start with introduction.

Possible questions:

  • Where are you from?
  • Tell me more about your home town?
  • What is it that you like the most about that place?
  • Who all are there in your family?
  • What do your parents do?
  • What are your interests? or What do you like doing in your free time?

Part 2

This part is based on speaking at a stretch. A task card will be given with a topic written on it. You will get 1 minute to prepare and make notes. Then you will have 2 minutes to speak about it.

Topic: Describe a place you had visited as a child.

Things to include while speaking:

  • Which is that place?
  • With whom you went there?
  • What did you do there?
  • Would you like to visit that place again?

Examiner may ask:

  • Did that place laid any impact over you?
  • If you visit that place again what would you do there?

Part 3

In this part, the examiner will ask general questions about the things discussed earlier. This can be related to the topic discussed in part 2.


  • So for example the candidate told the examiner that he visited the place with his parents as a child, and then the examiner might ask: Did you enjoy going out with your parents? Do you still go out with your parents?
  • How well connected are you with your parents or family?
  • Tell me about the best childhood memory you have with your parents?

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