IELTS Preparation Tips - Check Strategy & Tricks to Crack IELTS

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Aarushi Jain
Updated on Feb 24, 2023 3:44 PM IST

Want to learn how to stay on track with your IELTS preparation for 2023? Want to know the tips and tricks to score well in IELTS? Then you are at the right place. Usually, candidates who have a good command of the English language find it easier to score well on the test. But lack of preparation and practice can cause trouble, even for the smartest candidates.

There are plenty of options available online that you can use to prepare for IELTS. With the right and reliable IELTS study material, you can prepare well for all the IELTS sections.

Follow the detailed tips and guidelines for IELTS preparation tips provided on this page to secure a good IELTS score.

IELTS Preparation: Study Plan 2023

IELTS is divided into 4 sections and each section is equally important to score well in the IELTS exam. The IELTS 2023 test score reflects the overall IELTS band as well as individual scores in Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing. If you are planning to take IELTS, then you must prepare well for each of these components. A strategic study plan will enable you to give your best on the day of the test.

You can refer to the following study plan to score well in IELTS. The following IELTS study plan has been created keeping in mind that the student has at least 30 days to prepare for IELTS. You must ensure that you register for IELTS well in advance in order to have enough time for IELTS preparation for 2023. One month is sufficient time for a candidate to prepare for IELTS if he/she has a good command of the English language, grammar, vocabulary, tenses, etc.

Study Plan for IELTS

Let us know about each of the above-mentioned steps that fall under the IELTS preparation and study plan in detail which will eventually help aspirants to prepare for their IELTS exam better:

Plan Your Day

Once you know your IELTS test date, you could plan your preparation days accordingly. Figure out your potential and divide each hour of the day to practice different questions from the IELTS practice papers. Make an ideal plan for each day i.e. do not overdo your per-day target and get enough rest. Keep physical and other recreational activities in your daily schedule.

Work a Little Extra on Your Weaknesses

You may or may not be equally good in all the sections of IELTS. Therefore, you must figure out the topics or components of IELTS that you need to work on a little more. Those areas may require extra time and attention. Suppose, you are not very good at English vocabulary. For this, you can create an additional task of making a list of English words each day and learning how to use them in sentences.

Revise Notes Regularly

Make it a habit to create notes of important points while you focus on your IELTS preparation for 2023. For example, you can note down important rules on tenses, words and their meanings, incorrect sentence formation, etc. Keep revising these notes on a regular basis.

Practise IELTS Test Papers Daily

The IELTS test is timed and ultimately you need to take the test in one go. Therefore, it is important to enhance your speed of attempting questions and also improve your focus to perform well in IELTS. This can be improvised by taking IELTS practice sets. Ensure that you practice enough IELTS Question Papers as it follows the same format as the original IELTS test.

Read Good Books

You must make it a habit to read good English books daily. It will enhance your vocabulary and will also help in using correct grammar and sentences while writing or speaking English. Choose the best books from popular authors and select the genre you are interested in. These extra small steps will definitely help you become well-versed in the English language.

Find the Best Universities Abroad According to Your IELTS Scores!

General IELTS Preparation Tips

Along with a well-planned study schedule, you need to consider a few general IELTS preparation tips that will help you in preparing for the IELTS better. You can keep in mind the following points while preparing for the IELTS 2023 test:

  • Make sure you have gone through the latest IELTS exam pattern, syllabus, and format.

  • Stick to your IELTS study plan. Prepare a study plan wisely that you can follow practically. Figure out your proficiency level in English and make a study plan accordingly. 

  • Take IELTS practice papers seriously. Attempt them in one go without any distractions.

  • Analyse your performance after taking each IELTS practice test to figure out your strengths and weaknesses in the English language. Review answers and compare them with the answer sheet provided.

  • Refer to some good English books and authentic IELTS 2023 practice papers.

  • Above all, factors like your confidence, focus, and physical and mental stability are equally important on the IELTS test day.

Section-Wise IELTS Preparation Tips

When noting down the IELTS preparation tips for 2023, you must give equal attention to all the sections i.e. Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. Each section of IELTS is designed in a specific manner and candidates should prepare for each section as per the defined format, structure, and pattern. Here are some of the section-wise preparation tips for IELTS 2023, which can help you score well in each section.

IELTS Preparation Tips for Listening 

  • The sample practice set for the IELTS 2023 test is available for free on the official website for IELTS. It is recommended that the IELTS test takers practice the sample papers before attempting the original test.

  • When practising the Listening section of the test, candidates must listen to the recording attentively as questions asked in this section are based on the recordings. It should be noted that the recording is played only once, therefore, attentiveness and the ability to point out key details in the recording are a must.

  • A good rule of thumb, when practising as well as while attempting the actual test is to take notes of the important points while listening to the recording.

  • While answering the questions, candidates must cross-check their answers with the ones given in the answer sheet for any grammatical or structural errors.

IELTS Preparation Tips for Reading

  • The reading section of IELTS 2023 contains passages from books, journals, and newspapers. You must pay close attention to the smallest details when reviewing/reading the questions.

  • The answers must be precise and grammatically correct.

  • Answers are available in the passage, therefore, candidates must carefully read the passage and write the answer most appropriately and to the point.

  • It is always a good practice to proofread your answers for any grammatical or sentence structure mistakes.

IELTS Preparation Tips for Writing

  • While attempting the IELTS 2023 Writing Section, candidates must utilise the limited time effectively. The topic must be written in a precise manner but should cover all the major ideas for the topic.

  • Plan the structure of your essay accordingly before writing the entire content on a specific topic. Above all, important points must be discussed and chalked out properly.

  • Redundancy in the written content must be avoided.

  • Proofreading and revision are highly recommended before submitting the writing sample.

IELTS Preparation Tips for Speaking

The speaking section of IELTS 2023 is conducted on a separate day once the other three sections have been conducted successfully. This section is used to analyse a candidate's ability to speak fluently in English. You are advised to follow the points mentioned below while preparing for the IELTS Speaking Section:

  • You should practise speaking slowly and fluently.

  • You must listen to the question carefully and provide an answer to the point.

  • Sentences used must be grammatically correct and be structured appropriately.

  • You must be confident while answering the questions.

  • In case the question asked by the examiner is not clear, you must ask the examiner to repeat the question.

IELTS Study Material for IELTS Preparation

Following your IELTS preparation plan is essential for achieving the maximum possible score on your IELTS examinations. Although it might be daunting at times, particularly if you are just beginning the journey, baby steps in practice go a long way. There are several things you may take to improve your IELTS 2023 preparation. Here is a list of some of the most genuine resources, books and study material for your IELTS preparation:

Name of the Book


The Official Cambridge Guide to IELTS

This book provides insights and recommendations from people who have completed the course to help you get a high score in your IELTS preparation. Step-by-step instructions will help you plan, prepare for, and pass your IELTS exam with the highest possible score.

Barron’s IELTS Superpack

This is one of the greatest books for IELTS general preparation, suitable for both academics and professionals. The complete IELTS preparation bundle includes virtually everything you need to do well on your IELTS exam.

Simone Braverman’s Target Band 7

This is a book written by someone who has taken the IELTS exam and is straightforward to grasp, with clear ideas and tactics that are simple to implement. It provides solutions to difficulties you may experience, as well as several hints, and it receives high marks from students, who see it as one of the greatest books for IELTS general preparation.

IELTS Practice Tests Plus 2 with Key and CD Pack

An excellent IELTS preparation book that covers all four examinations and the tactics you will need to succeed. This is a wonderful resource of practice examinations that is suitable for both General Training exams and those preparing for their IELTS Academic. It goes through the analysis of what makes a correct and incorrect response. It contains helpful tips, and the audio scripts will assist you in improving.

Cambridge IELTS 15 Academic Student’s Book with Answers

Real examination papers can offer you a solid picture of what to anticipate on your IELTS exam. This book is intended for IELTS Academic students and features 4 exams as well as a really good answers part that is crucial for you with your IELTS preparation and growth. It is the most recent version of this well-respected series.

Road to IELTS

Road to IELTS is an online interactive course that includes mock exams, teaching videos, and other interactive tasks. You may access free IELTS mock exams and free videos and interactive activities if you register for the test with the British Council.

IELTS Trainer

IELTS Trainer provides six full practice papers and assists you in preparing for your IELTS exam. It is one of the greatest books for IELTS preparation since it walks you through the first two papers, offering you step-by-step assistance.

Focus on IELTS Foundation: Foundation Coursebook

Focus on IELTS Foundation is a book that provides a solid foundation in the language as well as the abilities required to ace the exam. It includes intriguing texts and resources, a core language bank, and DIY learning methodologies and projects for outside-of-classroom growth.

IELTS (Academic) 5-in-1 Actual Tests eBook Combo

This is regarded as one of the top eBook bundles for IELTS General. The set of five eBooks covers all four areas of the IELTS exam, including the most recent questions. It includes elements from the Academic module that address listening, reading, writing, and speaking. It also includes responses from IELTS specialists.

English Vocabulary in Use

This book has a reputation for being the best-selling vocabulary reference and IELTS preparation book, even for advanced students. It is comprehensive and simple to use, and available in multiple versions depending on your stage of learning.

How to Self Study for IELTS?

You should be aware that many study abroad aspirants actually prepare for IELTS on their own and ace their exams on the first attempt with a good IELTS score with self-study. Now that you are familiar with some of the best IELTS preparation tips and study strategies, here are some IELTS preparation tips that you can follow if you want to self-study for the IELTS exam:

Understand the Test Format

Understanding the test format is one of the most crucial aspects to emphasize when self-studying for the IELTS exam. Examine the syllabus, as well as the question and task types for each section, to become familiar with the test format. It's also a good idea to go over the IELTS rules and regulations. These are outlined in the Notice to Candidates and Declaration, both of which are included in the application form.

Use only Official IELTS Study Material

While deciding to self-study for the IELTS exam, it is important to keep in mind that you have to solely rely on official IELTS study material and study resources for your IELTS preparation. You will find a plethora of study material in the market but always go for the official ones that are available online or offline for up-to-date information, exam pattern, format, changes, questions and more. 

Solve IELTS Sample Papers and Questions

If you have decided that you will self-study for the IELTS exam, this is another important IELTS preparation tip that you should adhere to. Practising with sample questions and sample or past papers might help you become acquainted with the test structure. To assist you in preparing for your IELTS exam, we have supplied example questions. This will help you prepare for the Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking tests of the IELTS exam.

Keep a Track of Your Results and Improvement

Another important IELTS preparation tip for all the self-study IELTS aspirants is to always keep a track of their results, progress, and improvements. Always get your work or samples (your essays/letters for example) get proofread or checked by your professors in the university, by your elders or by your friends. Also, you can keep a track of your own progress and results while studying for the exam. 

If your IELTS results suggest that you have made progress in one area, move on to the next. If you are having trouble improving in one subject, experiment with several sorts of materials (website, textbook, practice exam, YouTube videos), and you might find that some are more beneficial for you than others. Self-studying and preparing for the IELTS exam might be a lonely experience for some students, but it does not always have to be like this. 

Keep a Track of Your Scores

Write down your score after each practice test or practice IELTS exam. Keep track of it in a spreadsheet. Your IELTS score will rise as you prepare for the exam. Make it clear what band score range you are aiming for. Working on Band 4 resources is pointless if you currently have a 6.5 and require a score in the 7-8 band. You are ready to take the IELTS test whenever you have regularly achieved your target band score range (Band 7 or 9).

Remember to Take the IELTS Progress Official Practice Test

Before your IELTS exam, know where you stand. IELTS Progress Check is an official IELTS online practice test that is graded by IELTS-trained and accredited examiners. Take a timed or untimed test, and you'll get feedback with an estimated overall band score and individual IELTS band scores for each section: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. Assisting you in planning and understanding the areas in which you need to enhance or focus while your self-study and IELTS preparation for the IELTS exam.

Be Aware of the Exam Time Constraints

The better your comprehension of the test format, the more likely you are to complete it successfully within the time limit. Prepare under timed settings so that you become accustomed to the pace of the test. Keep in mind that the IELTS test has a time limit, and you will only have the time allotted for each module. If you are unable to complete the courses within the time allotted or if you are unable to concentrate due to time constraints. All IELTS preparation in a preparation course is done under the same paced settings as the exam, so you are prepared for the pace of the IELTS test.

Immerse Yourself in English

Along with your IELTS preparation, expose yourself to as much language as possible. Read about topics that interest you in English; online periodicals or blogs are good places to start. Every day, write some English in a diary, create a blog, or communicate with an online community, such as members in a Facebook group who share an interest with you. Listen to native speakers conversing with one another and, if feasible, participate. Attempt the 'shadowing' approach. This entails repeating in English what someone has just stated. This will aid in pronouncing, intonation, and stress. Remember that self-learning is achievable if you are committed and find someone who can provide feedback.

Have a Plan for Test Day

The most terrifying aspect of any test is that no matter how much preparation you do ahead of time, it will all come down to how you feel on the day. To take an exam, you must be in the right frame of mind. All of the general advice for managing exam logistics that you will recall from school still applies:

  • Travel Time: If possible, do a test run to ensure that you arrive on time!

  • Things to Carry: Bring your ID, which must match the ID you supplied on your IELTS application form. You should also bring a water bottle and something to nibble on before the test. Remember, you are not permitted to bring a watch!

  • Revision-on-the-Go: Go over your notes before the test.

  • Meals: Have a balanced meal before the exam to get you going. Not too light or too heavy.

  • Water Intake: You can take a few sips of water before the exam but avoid drinking too much water to refrain from visiting the restroom. You will not be allowed to visit the loo in between the exam.

  • Clothes: You must be comfortable and not overheated or underheated. Keep in mind that your photograph will be taken before the test. Dress smartly and avoid wearing casual clothes or pyjamas.

How to Prepare for IELTS in One Month?

While there is no end to IELTS preparation or study, it is always possible if you are dedicated enough to maximise your time and learn the basics as quickly as possible. If you are concerned about the IELTS exam, which is only a month away, consider the following to prepare for IELTS exam in one month:

  • You do not need to put much emphasis on your reading abilities. Read the passage and make sure you understand it completely. Increase your writing time. Select a few subjects from recent IELTS exam papers and try to express yourself in writing.

  • You must practise grammar but do not become frustrated if you come across a difficult structure or word. It is simple to do well in IELTS if you know how to structure a sentence.

  • Write the terms and definitions on sticky notes or a little piece of paper (the new word should be on the front and the definition on the back). So you can only turn the note back when you forget what it means).

  • Repeatedly say new words. If you have access to the Internet, you can look up how to pronounce them using an online dictionary.

  • Watching English movies might help you enhance your listening and speaking skills.

  • When you register for IELTS, you will have access to a variety of online training options. You can select one of these to simulate the real IELTS exam.

Free IELTS Preparation Apps

The free IELTS preparation applications from the British Council allow you to learn English whenever and wherever you wish.

IELTS Prep App

The easy-to-use IELTS Prep App for Android and iOS users provides fast access to free practice exams, grammatical advice, exercises, quizzes, and other resources. There are additional practice questions for Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking, as well as vocabulary. You may also track your progress to better understand the IELTS evaluation criteria and prepare for the actual test.

LearnEnglish Audio and Video

LearnEnglish Audio and Video feature the greatest podcasts and films available on the LearnEnglish website, covering themes such as UK food and culture, daily living, and classic stories and poetry. The software now includes features such as a moving audio script and pitch control to aid in listening to and comprehending podcasts.

When is the Right Time to Start IELTS Preparation?

The globally-renowned English language proficiency test, IELTS, is conducted throughout the year for all aspirants who wish to study or work abroad. An IELTS test scorecard is valid for two years, therefore, candidates can take the test anytime they want at their convenience.

When it comes to IELTS preparation, the time required for preparation varies from person to person. Those who are proficient in English may hardly need a month to prepare for the test. However, those who do not have a good command of the English language must start preparing for it at least three months before taking the test.

Want to Know Which Countries Accept IELTS Score?

FAQs on IELTS Preparation Tips

Is there any free study material available for IELTS preparation 2023?

Yes, you can access the free IELTS practice paper on the official website for IELTS. The conducting body offers free IELTS preparation materials that may be downloaded from our official website or picked up in person at your regional IELTS centre. The IELTS basics pack, often known as IELTS Support Tools, includes the following items: Information regarding IELTS.

How to prepare for the IELTS Speaking section?

To score well in the IELTS speaking section, you must be fluent in spoken English. You can listen to different English podcasts, speeches, audios as a part of your practice. It is also important to speak confidently and emphasise on main phrases while speaking.

How to prepare for the IELTS Writing section?

You can start your IELTS preparation for the writing section at home with an effective strategy. You can choose among the topics asked in the previous IELTS exam and practice writing them at home. Make sure to use the correct sentence structure, grammar, and punctuation while attempting the writing section. Make sure you prepare for the common essay subtopics for the IELTS writing section.

Should I take coaching for IELTS preparation 2023?

No, candidates do not need coaching to prepare for IELTS exam, however, seeking professional help through tuition or enrolling in coaching centres can significantly increase their chances of success. Those who wish to prepare by themselves must ensure that they have a well-organised and scheduled preparation strategy for IELTS that they will stick by religiously. Check out the benefits of IELTS Coaching, here.

When should I start my IELTS preparation for 2023?

Keep in mind that IELTS preparation or studying for IELTS is a process. On average, it takes 12 weeks to be prepared for the exam. Start preparing for your test at least three to six months in advance. We strongly advise you to select an institution that can assist you with English improvement and a personalised study plan.

Which is easier, IELTS or TOEFL?

Both IELTS and TOEFL are fundamental English proficiency assessments. Most test-takers believe that IELTS is easier than TOEFL. If you type quicker than you write, have sloppy handwriting, and/or prefer computers to paper examinations, the TOEFL may be for you. If you prefer writing down your answers, are uncomfortable with computer-based assessments, and/or are unfamiliar with English language keyboards, the IELTS may be simpler for you.

Can I prepare for IELTS in one month?

Yes, you can prepare for IELTS in one month. However, if you only have one month for your IELTS preparation for the 2023 IELTS exam, you will need to be more organised. You will need to pay closer attention to what is vital and then proceed accordingly. Do not put greater emphasis on reading if you are capable of reading and comprehending effectively.

How to prepare for the IELTS Speaking section at home?

You can work on your IELTS preparation for the speaking section at home effortlessly. To score well in the IELTS speaking section, you must be fluent in spoken English. You can listen to different English podcasts, speeches, and audio as part of your practice. It is also important to speak confidently and emphasise the main phrases while speaking.

How to start the IELTS preparation for the IELTS exam effectively?

"The most effective strategy for the IELTS preparation 2023:

  • Try out a practice exam
  • Recognise the test format
  • Keep in mind the time limits of the exam
  • Improve your English skills and IELTS methods
  • When listening to English, you can multitask
  • Develop a diverse set of reading abilities
  • When writing, use acceptable and aggressive English terminology"

If I have prepared for the TOEFL, do I need to prepare for the IELTS separately?

Yes, preparing for TOEFL does not guarantee equal preparation for IELTS. Both the tests require separate preparation because they have significantly different types of questions for each section with only a minor overlap.

How to prepare for IELTS?

There are several IELTS online practice test papers and IELTS preparation books available in the market and online that can be used to prepare for the test. Students may also refer to some good English language books for grammar, vocabulary and sentence formation.

How much time does it take to prepare for IELTS?

The minimal amount of time needed to prepare for IELTS is four months. It might be 6 months for certain exam takers. There is no clear guideline dictating how much time you should devote to IELTS preparation. Some exam takers believe that 15 days of preparation is sufficient, while others may require more time.

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