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Myths of the IELTS: Best ways to approach the test
5 min

Myths of the IELTS: Best ways to approach the test

Education
Dec 9, 2021
/
5 min

hand of a person writing a text on paper
A Smart Way To Approach IELTS Exam Is To Learn What's To Be Learned.

When it comes to the IELTS Exam pattern, there is a lot of misconception prevailing around the test, and for a new aspirant, it becomes almost impossible not to get affected by it. The IELTS test, or for that matter, any new exam, comes with a set of myths, and it becomes imperative for the aspirants to take note of these and not fall prey to them.

The IELTS exam is an English proficiency test, and it shouldn’t be seen as more than that as it is just a test to assess a potential student or immigrant’s ability to communicate in English. All the predominantly English-speaking countries require IELTS or some other test for jobs, education and immigration in their countries.

The test-takers need to filter the right advice from the wrong ones. Myths are slated to come in preparation, but the focused aspirant dodges the misconceptions and sticks to their guns. A two to three-month dedicated practice is all that is needed for the IELTS test. So, serious aspirants should improve their English every day instead of focusing on rumors and myths.

We will discuss some common myths that aspirants encounter while preparing for the IELTS test.

Some Common Myths in the IELTS Exam

1. Speaking in a particular accent fetch more marks

This is probably one of the worst myths that aspirants have to face, as it might appear natural on its face. Students start thinking that if they are applying for Australian immigration or to a university, they are more likely to get good marks for speaking English with an Australian accent. Students must speak fluent English, and their pronunciation also should be clear, but that does not correlate with an accent.

Talking in American, British or Australian accents has nothing to do with the score they will be getting in the speaking section. So, the focus should be on speaking clearly with the use of the correct vocabulary, and this is all that is expected from a test taker in the IELTS exam’s speaking section.

2. Sample Paper Solving is a Philosopher’s Stone

Many test-takers assume that sample papers are nothing short of a philosopher’s stone (a mythical stone that converts everything into gold once it comes into contact). Sample papers are certainly a great way to practice, and they help students get a good score band. Practicing with sample paper gives test takers the confidence to perform well and avoid last-moment anxiety.

It is of utmost importance to build confidence that helps in alleviating scores. But this doesn’t mean that it can solely help a test taker sail through the test. When it comes to the listening and speaking section, sample papers aren’t that helpful. To perform well in these sections, one needs to have a great deal of confidence that can only be built by talking to people, listening to video lectures, and other sample listening material.

To get a good score in the speaking section, one needs to speak to real people. This is solely the way to get good scores, and sample papers don’t have any role.

3. More Words Translates to More Marks

One of the worst misconceptions about the writing section is putting in more words to get more marks. Students quickly get trapped in this misconception that writing more will fetch more marks. There is a minimum word limit, and students should certainly adhere to that, as writing less than that will undoubtedly lead to fewer marks. Test takers have to complete two tasks in the writing section, which should be done within the word limit.

The word limit for the first task is 150 words, and students mustn’t write less than that, while for the second task, the minimum word limit is 250 words. It’s a common myth that exceeding the minimum word limit helps get more marks, but this isn’t true. The marks are given on the qualitative aspect of writing. Writing bulky passages doesn’t help; instead, the examiner feels taxed by reading many words.

A balanced paper is needed for getting good scores. The main focus should be on writing grammatically correct sentences. Sentences must be structured, every passage should be coherent with the preceding one, and other dynamics of writing should be taken care of.

4. Level of Difficulty Varies from One Nation to Another

Several students are under the impression that the questions asked in the test are easier or tougher than the rest in a few countries. However, it is entirely untrue. The question paper is made by considering the education system of all the central regions of the world. The IELTS test questions are trialed with test takers around the world before they are approved, and this is the testimony of the impartiality with which the IELTS test is conducted. The test is conducted at more than 1100 locations spread across 140 countries, and the level of uniformity is maintained so that no student gets an undue advantage.

5. Cheating is Impossible in the IELTS test

IELTS is a very reputed test. It opens many opportunities for people to pursue higher education at the world’s top universities, get jobs at the world’s best job locations, and immigrate to English-speaking countries. So, the chances are very likely that some test takers might come under the influence of a few con men who would promise a guaranteed score band in the test.

But it’s of utmost importance for any test taker that these tests are overly monitored, and barely any human intervention happens in the distribution of question papers to students. Every test is different, and a unique combination of questions is there for all the tests. No tests are identical, and the chances of cheating are reduced to a bare minimum. Also, if a test taker is found to be doing any malpractice, they might end up losing all the opportunity to take the test again and even be barred from getting a visa to that country.

6. Opinions Expressed Must be In-line with the Examiner’s Point of View

Test takers are always under the impression that giving an opinion in line with that of the examiner will fetch more marks in the speaking or writing test. This is so untrue on many counts as this test is not about political correctness or assessing a test taker on their point of view. Whatever the test taker’s opinion, the sole criteria to judge a test taker is their ability to express themselves in English. It is a language test, and one must know that the point of view is not of any importance.

7. Giving More Information Will Give More Marks in Speaking

This is another myth that test takers have in their minds, and it is not at all right. There are several instances wherein a test taker starts giving more information than required for a particular type of question. One should always stick to the question that is asked and restrict their answers within the ambit of the question.

These are common myths that a student encounters. One more thing is not a myth per se but a misconception among the test takers. It is about taking coaching or guidance. It is a subjective thing. One can take help from experts or prepare on their own. There is no hard and fast rule for this, and it depends on the student’s capability.

One should check the test format and then assess their present level of English and take a call on coaching. Myth is temporary, and success is permanent. So, keep the focus on success and go away from tales.

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