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How are the IELTS writing and speaking tests assessed?

The IELTS test has 2 productive papers which are the writing and speaking parts. Both are assessed by examiners and both can be quite stressful.

In our experience, over 50% of students get lower writing and speaking band scores than listening and reading ones.

Now we’ll take a look at how these 2 tests are evaluated.

The writing test is assessed according to the following 4 criteria:

1) Task response/achievement = Did you FULLY answer the question and is your answer well-developed?
2) Coherence and cohesion = Does your answer develop naturally and are your paragraphs effective?
3) Lexical resource = Do you show a wide range of correctly used vocabulary?
4) Grammatical range and accuracy = Do you show a wide range of correctly used grammar?

The speaking test is assessed according to the following 4 criteria:

1) Fluency and coherence = Did you speak naturally without too much hesitation and did you use linking strategies to create longer answers?
2) Lexical resource = Did you use a good range of vocabulary selected appropriately?
3) Grammatical range and accuracy = Did you use a good range of tenses and structures selected appropriately?
4) Pronunciation = Were you easy to understand and did you use stress, intonation and pauses in an effective and natural way?

For each criteria you are awarded a score out of 9 and the total is then divided by 4 to give you an overall score.

For example:

Fluency & Coherence = 6
Lexical Resource = 7
Grammatical Range & Accuracy = 6
Pronunciation = 7

Overall score = 6.5

Both tests are assessed by trained examiners who know the difference between each band. Thus, they can see when a writing task is band 5 or 6 and can recognise when a student speaks like a band 6 or a band 7 candidate.

Understanding how you are being assessed is very important because it enables you to meet the required criteria so you can get your desired band score.

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If you need help to prepare for the IELTS speaking and/or writing test, we have specific training courses which specialise in these two skills.

Here are the links for more info:

http://www.ipassielts.com/learning_store/course/tutored/ipass_speaking_course/

http://www.ipassielts.com/learning_store/course/tutored/ipass_writing_course

Both courses include personal feedback from an iPassIELTS trainer.

 

By Jenny Bedwell on 2015 12 29

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Davide - Italy

Davide - Italy

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