IELTS Start for Success Package

At IELTS, we are here for you. We’re here to help make your experience smooth and simple. We share with you how we test and what’s really important. We help you prepare for it

We want you to succeed. That’s why we share with you how we test and what’s really important.

Before you start on your IELTS preparation journey, we’d like you to know that we are here to support you. If you are not sure about something, if you need some personal advice, or you’d want to talk to a person: let us know. The IELTS Test Centres around Australia are happy to talk to you face-to-face. You can also chat with our IELTS Customer Support team live.

Let’s start with your preparation!

Step 1

Get to know IELTS and check tools and tips to help you prepare.

Access the IELTS Support Tools pack

Step 2

Apply what you have learnt and try the free IELTS practice tests

Try the free IELTS practice tests

Step 3

Now that you’ve practised IELTS, do the check and get an indicative band score.

Get an IELTS Progress Check

Step 4

Book your test (and get a 30-days free online IELTS preparation course).

Find a test centre

IELTS Start for Success Package explained

Step 1: Get to know IELTS

Why do we recommend this to you?

IELTS is an English language test. Just like any other exam, preparation is key to success. We recommend that even native English speakers practise for IELTS before taking the test. For example, during your preparation you will learn that your Writing test is scored across four marking criteria that will test how well you write a response, organise your ideas, and
use a range of vocabulary and grammar accurately. Even if your grammar is flawless, but you don’t answer the task you could miss out on marks. That’s why understanding the test is important.

Understanding the IELTS test format

Your first step is to get to know the test format so you’ll know what to expect on the day. In this step of your preparation you’ll get to:
  • Study the test format to make sure you don’t face any surprised during your test
  • Have a look at the content of each part of the IELTS test: listening, reading, writing and speaking.
  • Get to know the different types of questions that you may be asked in each part.


Step 2: Try the free IELTS practice tests

Why do we recommend this to you?

Once you understand how IELTS works, the different test components, and have read through some test tips, it’s a good idea to practice what you have learnt. During Step 1, you would have come across an important tip for your Writing test: “Notice the minimum word limit. If you write less than 150 words for Task 1 and less than 250 for Task 2, you will lose marks”. With a bit of practice, you will know exactly how quick you can write a response for IELTS so you’re not surprised during your test.

The IELTS free practice tests

In this step of your preparation you’ll get to:
  • Practice completing the tasks under test conditions. Our tip is to set a time to complete tasks within the allocated time frame.
  • Get to know the different tasks and what to expect on test day. The more familiar it becomes, the more confidence you’ll have!
  • Review your answers to the model answer sheet to see how you went.

Can you identify your strengths and weaknesses? Now that you know this, it’s time to move onto Step 3.

Step 3: Get an indicative band score with IELTS Progress Check

Why do we recommend this to you?

You’ve done Step 1, so you know how IELTS works. Great! You’ve also practised a bit with some free test material in Step 2. Fantastic! Now it’s time to see how you would go in a real IELTS test in Step 3. The IELTS Progress Check provides official, computer-based IELTS practice tests that are assessed and scored by official IELTS markers. This is not a free practice tool, but we recommend it because you will get an idea of your progress. If you get your desired scores in the IELTS Progress Check, you’re ready to book your real test. If you didn’t get the scores you were hoping for, you can study a bit more (which is always better than booking a real test and not getting the scores you need).

The IELTS free practice tests

In this step of your preparation you’ll get to:
  • Practise your writing, reading, speaking and listening skills
  • Get an official feedback report which includes an indicative band score for the overall test and for each section of the test
  • Know what you are doing well and, more importantly, where you need to focus your efforts to improve.

When you’ve received your desired score in the IELTS Progress Check, it’s time to book your test.

Book an IELTS test near you

Need more practice or support?

What should you do if you need more practice or support?

When you’ve completed your 3-Step Start for Success practice but you need some more help getting ready for your test, there’re a few things we can do to help you.

More free practice

We want you to do well. We also want you to get your IELTS score the first time you sit your test. That’s why IELTS offers more free preparation than any other language test. When you’ve completed Steps 1, 2 and 3, you could have a look at the our 3 steps to Boost your Score. These tips are designed for people  who’ve done IELTS before and need to increase their score. Don’t worry though, they will also help first-time test takers.

Need support?

We know IELTS is important for study, migration or work. If you are worried about your test, your preparation, or your results, let us know. Our webchat IELTS Customer Support team have all done an IELTS test before, so they can tell you from experience what it is like. If you prefer to speak with someone over the phone, get in touch with your local IELTS test centre. Our staff are happy to speak with you. Of course, you can also get in touch with us via email.