Grammar for IELTS: Importance, Tips & Rules to Follow


Aarushi Jain
Updated on Jun 21, 2023 02:33 PM IST

Grammar is widely acknowledged to be the foundation of any language. Similarly, a great command of the English language is closely correlated with one's grammar understanding. As a result, individuals interested in taking the IELTS test must be well-versed in the IELTS grammar too.

Grammar for IELTS: Importance, Tips & Rules to Follow

IELTS Grammar: The fundamental goal of the IELTS exam is to assess students' English proficiency because any language is incomplete without its grammar. We must face the truth, no matter how much we want to escape it; whether you like grammar or not, you must remember and have to prepare for the English language grammar too while studying for the IELTS exam.

Grammar is not directly tested in the IELTS exam, which may surprise you. However, appropriate knowledge and practice of IELTS grammar are essential for achieving a high band score! Even though no section of the IELTS focuses solely on grammar, you will need to learn grammar to be successful. Grammar aids in the development of all four skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking.

The subject is broad and requires years of work to master, but if you keep a few key concepts in mind, you can gain a decent grasp of the English language. Let us know more about different aspects of English grammar for the IELTS exam in no time!

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Why is Grammar Important for IELTS Exam?

Although there is no direct emphasis on grammar for IELTS, applicants will require solid grammar for the IELTS writing, speaking, listening, and reading sections to get a high band in the IELTS exam. In the listening and reading sections, grammatical structures and components will assist test takers in clearly expressing their ideas. Moreover, the IELTS grammar makes up 25% of each section of the test. 

Of course, they will need to demonstrate good grammatical ability in the speaking and writing areas. Aspirants should be able to employ passives, tenses, gerunds, infinitives, articles, and determiners correctly. A sound knowledge of adverbs, adjectives, prepositions, pronouns, and punctuation is also required for IELTS grammar.

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IELTS Grammar Syllabus 

There is no set curriculum or syllabus for IELTS grammar. However, it is recommended that the following and related themes and sub-topics be prepared:

  • Adjectives

  • Nouns

  • Tenses Rules and Examples

  • Pronouns

  • Modals

  • Examples of Simile

  • Article Rules

  • Prepositions

  • Degree of Comparison Rules

Use of Grammar in all IELTS Section 

Now that we have a better understanding of the IELTS grammar syllabus in general, let us look at the section-wise syllabus or usage of grammar for the IELTS exam:

IELTS Grammar in Speaking Section 

The Speaking Section of the IELTS lasts 11-14 minutes. The section is designed to assess aspirants' speaking abilities. The questions range from personal to general in nature and are designed to elicit information on a specific issue. While speaking, they may use their mother tongue, which is acceptable, but grammar for the IELTS speaking questions and answers is treated carefully. Test takers would be required to talk on a variety of themes, including theoretical topics. They will be tested further on factors like confidence, fluency, and pronunciation, for which English grammar is essential.

IELTS Grammar in Writing Section 

The writing section of the IELTS consists of two tasks that must be completed in 60 minutes. In Task-I, applicants will be given graphs, diagrams, and other information from which they must describe the facts and reach a conclusion. In Task II, they are required to compose an essay that meets the requirement. Grammar is likely the most significant aspect of the IELTS Reading Section, as evaluators will rate test takers' writing aptitude based on their ability to write and their understanding of English grammar.

IELTS Grammar in Listening Section

The Listening section has four recorded passages, monologues, and conversations, each of which will be followed by 40 questions. Applicants will be required to listen to recordings of diverse native speakers to assess their ability to understand the English language in various contexts. In addition to the underlying attitudes of speakers, their capacity to absorb concepts and comprehensive factual information is evaluated. To make it more challenging and inclusive, recordings of diverse accents are included. The relevance of IELTS grammar in the listening section should not be underestimated because it is the fundamental factor that will assist candidates in comprehending the recordings in a given time and making appropriate conclusions.

IELTS Grammar in Reading Section 

The IELTS Reading Section is divided into three sections that include texts designed to assess applicants' reading abilities. The test comprises reading for gist, skimming, and understanding logical arguments offered in the text and consists of 40 questions on a variety of themes and lengths to be completed in 60 minutes. The section may sound simple, but it is difficult because they are supposed to recognise the writers' thoughts and attitudes in addition to their goal for writing it. Aspirants must be able to read the content extremely clearly to do so. Grammar for the IELTS reading section helps test takers answer questions in a clear and precise manner.

How is the IELTS Grammar Marked in the Writing Section?

The table below, based on lexis and grammar indicates what examiners look for when analysing the IELTS writing section answers.

IELTS Band Score

Lexical Resource

Grammatical Range and Accuracy


Control of lexical aspects is sophisticated; only minor slips occur.

The applicant employs a diverse set of structures with complete flexibility and correctness; tiny errors arise only as slips.


Produces uncommon spelling and/or word formation problems.

The candidate employs a wide range of structures, the majority of sentences are error-free, and only very minor faults or inaccuracies occur.


Occasional mistakes in word selection, spelling, and/or word formation.

The applicant employs a range of sophisticated structures, creates frequent error-free phrases, and has high grammar and punctuation control, but may make a few mistakes.


Some spelling and/or word formation problems, however, do not interfere with conversation.

The candidate employs a combination of simple and complicated sentence patterns and makes some grammar and punctuation problems, but they rarely interfere with communication.


Noticeable spelling and/or word formation problems that may cause the reader difficulty.

The applicant employs just a limited number of structures and attempts complicated statements, but these are less accurate than basic sentences, may make frequent grammatical errors, and punctuation may be incorrect; faults may cause some trouble for the reader.


Control over word structure and/or spelling is limited; inaccuracies may cause strain for the reader.

Some structures are accurate but faults predominate, and punctuation is frequently faulty, errors may severely distort the message and attempts sentence shapes but errors in grammar and punctuation predominate and distort the meaning.


There is essentially no control over word structure and/or spelling.

Except for memorised words, the candidate is unable to use sentence forms.


There is essentially no control over word structure and/or spelling.

Except for memorised words, the candidate is unable to use sentence forms.


Only a few isolated words are permitted.

The candidate is unable to use any sentence forms.

How is the IELTS Grammar Marked in the Speaking Section?

The table below is based on IELTS band descriptors and gives information about the IELTS grammar scoring criteria in the speaking section:

IELTS Band Score 

Grammatical Range and Accuracy


Full, natural, and suitable sentences, as well as consistent, accurate sentences with few errors


There is a wide variety of sentence forms and the majority of sentences are error-free.


A variety of complicated sentence patterns with some flexibility and a high frequency of error-free sentences with some grammatical errors.


Simple and complicated sentences, but with limited flexibility and frequent errors in complex sentences, with infrequent comprehension problems.


Basic sentences with average correctness and a restricted range of complicated sentences with faults that may create understanding problems.


Basic phrases with uncommon subordinate clauses and frequent errors cause understanding issues.


The candidate uses ready or memorised sentences.

2 and 1 

The candidate is unable to articulate basic sentences.

Tips for IELTS Grammar for a Higher Band Score

Candidates who want to understand English grammar must first learn the fundamentals. Acing a test becomes a piece of cake if you learn the fundamentals of a language. Here are a few tips to assist candidates ace IELTS grammar:

  • When speaking, try to employ the passive voice. Use practice modules to constantly practise transitioning from active to passive voice. Remember to adjust your tone depending on the situation. This is because employing the passive voice everywhere may not be appropriate in every scenario.

  • Use accurate tenses when speaking or writing in everyday situations.

  • Candidates must avoid using modal verbs when they are not essential, as this suggests doubt.

  • Most applicants make blunders when it comes to inserting suitable prepositions. Adequate knowledge of prepositions is required to speak and write coherent sentences.

  • Use relevant articles and adjectives to create well-structured sentences.

Best Books for IELTS Grammar

Aspirants studying for the IELTS exam should look through some of the best books, tools, and study materials for IELTS preparation. If you want to spend more time studying IELTS grammar, the following are some of the best IELTS resources to help you ace your grammar for the IELTS exam:

Name of the Book

About the Book

Manhattan GMAT Sentence Correction

This book's content is organised in such a way that it will help you master grammar from the ground up. The language is intriguing, and the examples are straightforward. If you have enough time on your hands, you can read this book. 

Collins Grammar for IELTS

This book is intended for expert users and includes clear explanations and practice exercises.

Oxford Practice Grammar

This book is appropriate for intermediate readers. It includes plenty of practice tasks to help you hone your skills.

English Grammar in Use by Raymond Murphy

Self-study students will enjoy this book. It includes simple explanations as well as practice tasks.

Cambridge English: Grammar For IELTS

This book contains practically all of the grammar rules as well as practice questions. Cambridge published it, which adds to its legitimacy.

Proper grammar is vital for earning a good band score on the IELTS exam, which is a basic requirement for studying in an English-speaking nation. The IELTS grammar influences the choice of a candidate's answer, which can affect the grammar score. So, study the fundamental grammar principles, follow the advice, and stay up to date to ace that test.

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Is grammar for the IELTS exam difficult?

IELTS, the world's leading test of English language proficiency, is not a challenging exam in itself. It evaluates candidates' ability in listening, reading, writing, and speaking in less than three hours. Having stated that, the complexity of any subject/topic is determined by your level of preparation. It takes time to develop solid IELTS grammar. You must use genuine resources and practise on a daily basis.

What factors should I consider if I want to ace IELTS grammar?

In terms of IELTS grammar, you should look at the band descriptors. The main descriptions include a wide range of structures with full flexibility and accuracy, rare small errors, full, natural, and suitable sentences, and consistent accurate sentences with rare mistakes.

Why do I need to study English grammar for IELTS if it is not on the exam?

Yes, there is no grammar section in the IELTS exam, but the sections that are included need a good degree of grammar knowledge, particularly in the speaking and writing sections. Grammar is worth 25% of the scores in both parts. Good grammar can help you get a higher band score. It demonstrates your grammar and English proficiency, as well as how broadly you can articulate your responses. As a result, it is critical that you pay attention to it.

What topics do I need to master in grammar for IELTS exam?

Although there is no separate grammar examination on the IELTS exam, all portions require basic English grammar knowledge to score well. Here are some fundamentals you must understand:

  • Proper pronunciation 

  • Use of proper tense 

  • Use of passive voice 

  • Use of correct articles 

  • Modal verbs 

  • Use of correct spelling 

  • Use of correct vocabulary 

How can I improve my grammar for IELTS?

Grammar progress is dependent on your ability to determine what works best for you and what does not. Here are some wonderful strategies to help you improve your grammar for IELTS in a short amount of time:

  • Watch English videos

  • Practice everyday reading and writing

  • Watch videos on grammar rules

  • Proofread and highlight your mistakes and errors

  • Maintain a journal

  • Study the IELTS study materials and books

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