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How to Calculate IELTS Score?: Section Wise Steps Here!

How to Calculate IELTS Score?: Section Wise Steps Here!

Edited By Preetom Kumar Goswami | Updated on May 06, 2024 06:05 PM IST | #IELTS

Calculating your IELTS band score is a crucial step in understanding your proficiency in the English language. If you're preparing for higher education, knowing how to calculate your IELTS score is essential. IELTS is universally recognised by immigration departments worldwide, including those of Australia, Canada, the UK, the USA, Ireland, and New Zealand, as the preferred English language test. It evaluates an individual's proficiency in Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking.

Indian students can take the IELTS test online whereas the paper-based format is also available in various other countries. After completing the IELTS examination, it usually takes less than a fortnight to receive the results. To access the IELTS scores, applicants must visit the official website of IDP. Test-takers will be provided with their IELTS scores for each of the four sections on a scale of 1 to 9, along with an overall IELTS band score.

Candidates must comprehend the method for calculating bands in the IELTS exam. Additionally, it is recommended to gain a comprehensive understanding of how the scoring system operates. Know details on the IELTS scoring system, how each section is scored and how to calculate band score in Ielts.

IELTS Test Format - Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking Section

Familiarizing oneself with the format of the IELTS test is crucial for maximizing his/her score and opening doors to studying abroad. It is important to note that there are two types of IELTS tests: the IELTS Academic and the IELTS General Training. Both tests consist of sections mentioned below:

  • Listening Section

  • Reading Section

  • Writing Section

  • Speaking Section

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IELTS Academic test: The IELTS Academic examination is designed for those who wish to pursue higher education at a university in an English-speaking nation.

IELTS General Training test: The IELTS General Training examination is undertaken by individuals who are seeking to pursue education, employment, or residency in countries where English is the primary language.

How to Calculate IELTS Score?

It is crucial to comprehend the calculation process of the IELTS band score. The IELTS examination is graded on a scale ranging from 1 (the lowest) to 9 (the highest). Additionally, candidates can receive scores with increments of 0.5, such as 5.5 or 6.5. Each section (Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking) is assigned a band score, along with an overall band score. The overall band score is determined by averaging all the individual skill scores. To ensure accuracy, the band scores are rounded to the nearest whole or half band.

For example:

Scenario 1: If a candidate obtains 5.5 for Reading, 5.5 for Listening, 4.0 for Writing, and 6.0 for Speaking, the IELTS Band Score of the candidate will be: (5.5 + 5.5 + 4.0 + 6.0) ÷ 4 = 5.25 i.e., the IELTS score will be 5.5.

Scenario 2: If a candidate obtains 5.0 for Listening, 4.5 for Reading, 4.0 for Writing, and 6.0 for Speaking, the IELTS Band Score of the candidate will be: (5.0 + 4.5 + 4.0 + 6.0) ÷ 4 = 4.875 i.e., the IELTS score will be 5.

In the IELTS Result, a candidate will receive a band score for each section as well as an overall band score, which is calculated by averaging the band scores for Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking. The band scores in IELTS are either given as a whole number or rounded up to the nearest half-band score.

Below are several illustrations that demonstrate the functioning of IELTS score banding.

  • If a candidate’s overall IELTS band score is 6.75, his/her final score will be 7.

  • If a candidate’s overall IELTS band score is 4.25, his/her final score will be raised to 4.5.

  • If a candidate’s overall IELTS band score is 5.85, his/her final score will be 6.

  • If a candidate’s overall IELTS band score is 5.1, his/her score will be 5 since it is the closest whole band score.

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IELTS Listening Section

The IELTS Listening examination is specifically designed to assess a candidate’s proficiency in:

  • Comprehending the key concepts and specific factual details

  • Recognizing the viewpoints, positions, and attitudes of the speakers

  • Tracking the progression of ideas and arguments

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The IELTS Listening examination consists of 40 questions, with each accurate response earning the student one point. Consequently, the highest possible raw score attainable is 40. Subsequently, a band score between band 1 and band 9 is assigned depending on a candidate’s raw score.

How to calculate IELTS listening band score?

The score for the IELTS Listening section is determined by averaging the scores obtained in the four different sections of the listening test.

The examination consists of audio recordings that you will need to listen to, followed by answering questions related to the content. There are four recordings delivered by native English speakers, each accompanied by ten questions, resulting in a grand total of 40 questions. Each recording focuses on a distinct type of exercise such as:

  • Discussion regarding a daily task

  • A monologue regarding a popular topic

  • Instructional dialogue involving multiple participants

  • Scholarly monologue on a subject of study

Answering all 40 questions correctly will earn you a total of 40 marks. It is highly recommended to try your best to answer every question in order to enhance your IELTS listening score, as there is no penalty for incorrect responses. Your band score is determined based on the total number of correct answers you provide.

IELTS Listening Band Score

Band Score

Correct Answers


39 – 40


37 – 38


35 – 36


32 – 34


30 – 31


26 – 29


23 – 25


18 – 22


16 – 17


13 – 15


11 – 12

IELTS Reading Section

The IELTS Reading assessment is created to evaluate a candidate’s proficiency in:

  • Comprehending the overall message of a passage

  • Extracting the primary concepts from a text

  • Analyzing the specific information within a reading

  • Quickly glancing through and searching for specific details

  • Grasping the logic behind arguments and their significance

  • Identifying the author's viewpoint, attitudes, and intentions

The IELTS Reading assessment consists of 40 questions, with each accurate response earning the student one point. Consequently, the highest possible raw score attainable is 40. Subsequently, a band score between band 1 and band 9 is assigned according to a candidate’s raw score.

How to calculate IELTS reading band score?

In the Reading section, you will be required to respond to a total of 40 questions. These questions encompass a range of formats, including multiple choice, True/False/Not Given, matching, and sentence completion.

Unlike the Speaking and Writing tests, where answers can be subjective, in the Reading test, your responses are either deemed correct or incorrect. Consequently, the marking scheme differs slightly. For every accurate answer, you will be awarded one mark. The cumulative number of marks you obtain will determine your band score.

IELTS Reading Band Score

Band Score

Correct Answers






36 – 35


34 – 33


32 – 30


29 – 27


26 – 23


22 – 19


18 – 15


14 – 13


12 – 10


9 – 8


7 – 6


5 – 4

IELTS Writing Section

The IELTS Writing assessment is created to evaluate a candidate’s capacity to:

  • Express his/her perspective or argument

  • Demonstrate his/her extensive vocabulary and accurate grammar

  • Elaborate on and elucidate the information depicted in data, diagrams, and charts.

The IELTS Writing score includes an assessment of a candidate’s Writing Task 1 and 2 responses. Candidates are given a band score for each of the four criterion areas: Task Achievement (for Task 1), Task Response (for Task 2), Coherence and Cohesion, Lexical Resource, and Grammatical Range and Accuracy. All four criteria carry equal weightage.

How to calculate IELTS writing band score?

The Writing test in IELTS is evaluated by an examiner across 4 different criteria, with each criterion accounting for 25% of your total score for that task.

IELTS Writing Band Score

Score Parameters

Task 1 (Task Achievement)

Presenting accurate details to give a comprehensive summary emphasizing important characteristics/phase specifics backed by relevant data.

Task 2 (Task Response)

Completing the assignment by responding to the inquiries, presenting pertinent arguments to back up the response, expressing personal viewpoints when required, and delivering a concise summary.

Cohesion and Coherence

Arranging thoughts and data into paragraphs, with each paragraph focusing on a specific central idea and utilizing a variety of connectors.

Lexical Resource

Spelling utilizing appropriate word combinations, preventing mistakes by employing alternative expressions, and incorporating a variety of terms where necessary.

Grammar Range and Accuracy

Using a variety of grammar tenses, employing a range of sentence structures, utilizing proper punctuation, and avoiding errors.

IELTS Speaking Section

The primary purpose of the IELTS Speaking test is to assess a candidate’s proficiency in spoken English. This test involves a conversation between the candidate and an examiner, which aims to replicate a genuine and engaging real-life interaction.

The examination will evaluate a candidate’s capacity to:

  • Display proficiency and consistency in his/her verbal expression. For example- how effectively a candidate can connect thoughts and construct logical and seamless sentences.

  • Exhibit his/her variety of vocabulary and how precisely he/she employs it in relevant discussions. For example- how adeptly he/she can enhance conversations with vivid details, depth, and description.

  • Maintain a fluid dialogue with clear pronunciation

  • Present his/her perspective, engage in discourse, and provide reasoning for his/her viewpoints.

How IELTS Speaking Score is Calculated?

The IELTS Speaking band descriptors consist of bands ranging from 0-9. These descriptors are a mean calculation of all the skills demonstrated by candidates in the IELTS Speaking test. The scoring criteria for IELTS Speaking is determined by the candidate's comprehension of different accents and their ability to effectively communicate in a face-to-face conversation.

IELTS Speaking Band Score

Score Parameters


Speaking at length, conversing without interruption or hesitation while utilizing easily comprehensible connectors for the audience.

Lexical Resource

Rewording and utilizing various word groupings, incorporating common phrases, and employing uncommon terminology

Grammar Range and Accuracy

Ensuring grammatical accuracy by utilizing various tenses and employing proper sentence structures


It is important that the speech can be comprehended by all listeners, regardless of their accent, through the use of appropriate intonation and accurate pronunciation

IELTS Band Scores Descriptors

Here’s the IELTS band scores chart to understand the descriptor of each band score.

IELTS Band score

Skill Level



Test Not Attempted

The candidate taking the test did not provide answers to the questions.


Non-user level

The candidate cannot effectively utilize the language, except for a limited number of isolated terms.


Intermittent level

The candidate taking the test finds it challenging to grasp spoken and written English.


Extremely limited level

The candidate grasps only the overall idea in extremely familiar contexts. Communication breakdowns happen repeatedly.


Limited level

The candidate is restricted to familiar situations only. He/she is not capable of using difficult language and finds it challenging to understand and express.


Modest level

The candidate taking the test possesses a limited grasp of the English language and is capable of comprehending the general message. He/she frequently commits errors, yet he/she is able to effectively engage in basic communication within his/her specific area of expertise.


Competent level

The candidate demonstrates a strong grasp of the language, albeit with occasional errors and inaccuracies. He/she exhibits a good understanding of complex language in familiar contexts.


Good level

The candidate demonstrates a strong grasp of the English language, although there are occasional inaccuracies and inappropriate usage in specific contexts. He/she exhibits a solid understanding of intricate reasoning and effectively navigates complex language structures.


Very good level

The language proficiency of the test taker is excellent, with only a few minor inaccuracies. He/she demonstrates great competence in dealing with complex situations. However, there is a possibility of the candidate misinterpreting unfamiliar scenarios.


Expert level

The candidate demonstrates full mastery of the language, exhibiting fluency in English and a thorough comprehension of its nuances.


The IELTS band score chart is released within 13 days of the test date for the paper-based test at the ETS official website. Whereas, candidates can get access to the IELTS computer-based test scores within 3-5 days after the test.

IELTS band scores are generally valid for 2 years from the test date. However, some educational institutions might have different policies for acceptance of IELTS band scores.

How To Download IELTS Scorecard?

Students can get their IELTS band score chart online by browsing the ETS official website. Follow the below-mentioned instructions to download the IELTS scores:

  • Visit the official IELTS website.

  • Log in using the login details.

  • Click on the "View Results" or "Download TRF" section.

  • Enter the Test Report Form (TRF) number.

  • Download the IELTS score report.

Minimum IELTS Score Required

The minimum IELTS score required varies depending on the country, university, or organisation you are applying to. Therefore, there is no universal standard for the minimum IELTS score. It is important to note that each university/college/organization may have its own specific set of requirements when it comes to the IELTS score, which can significantly impact an applicant’s chances of being selected.

Related Links: TOEFL Score

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs)

1. How many sections does the IELTS exam consist of?

The IELTS test consists of four sections: Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking. The candidates undergo evaluation based on these four criteria. The International English Language Testing System (IELTS exam) offers two formats, namely IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training Test. IELTS Academic is recognized by universities globally, allowing candidates to apply for undergraduate or postgraduate programs.

2. If I decide to cancel my IELTS exam, will I receive a refund for the exam fee?

Your IELTS Exam Fees will be reimbursed, deducting the exam's 25% administrative fee. To be eligible for a refund, you must submit a request for exam cancellation at least five weeks prior to the exam date. However, if you cancel on the day of the exam, no refund will be provided. In order to obtain a refund, you must provide a valid medical certificate within five days of the test date, excluding local administrative fees.

3. What is the average IELTS score required by universities in Canada?

Canadian universities have different IELTS score thresholds. Undergraduate programs usually require a minimum score of 5.5 in each section and an overall score of 6.0.

4. How is the IELTS listening score calculated?

The IELTS Listening examination comprises a total of 40 questions. Students are required to respond to these questions, and for every accurate answer, they receive one mark. The scores, ranging from 0 to 40, are then converted to the IELTS nine-band scale. The final scores are reported in whole and half bands.

5. How IELTS writing scores are calculated?

IELTS Writing test is evaluated by an examiner on 4 different criteria. Each criterion is worth 25% of your total score of that task. The examiner will give you a band score for Writing Task 1 and a band score for Writing Task 2. Then, your final IELTS Writing band score is calculated based on your individual scores in both tasks.

6. How to calculate IELTS result?

IELTS individual band scores for Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking are scored on a scale of 1 to 9. IELTS results are reported in whole (e.g., 5.0, 6.0, 7.0) or half band scores (e.g., 5.5, 6.5, 7.5).

IELTS overall band scores are calculated by taking the average of your scores in all four sections to get your overall IELTS band score.

Overall band score formula: (Listening score + Reading score + Writing score + Speaking score) / 4


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Questions related to IELTS

Have a question related to IELTS ?

Since you're currently in the first year of your Bachelor of Commerce (B.Com), planning ahead for your MBA abroad is a wise decision. The ideal time to take your IELTS exam is during your third year of B.Com. This timing ensures that your IELTS score, which is valid for two years, will still be valid when you apply for MBA programs. I recommend reaching out to a reputable abroad education advisor, as they can assist you throughout the entire process from start to finish. One such company is Invicta Career Consultancy, which offers specialized training, guidance, and support for studying abroad. You can visit their website at to learn more and make an informed decision. Best of luck!


It is very highly unlikely to obtain a legitimate IELTS certificate without taking the exam. Any claims suggesting otherwise are likely scams. It is essential to take the exam through authorized testing centers to ensure the validity and credibility of the certificate.

Hope this helps you ,

Thank you


The difficulty of the IELTS General Training and Academic modules depends on individual strengths and backgrounds. Generally, if you are more comfortable with everyday English and practical tasks, you might find the General Training module easier. Conversely, if you are accustomed to academic English and have experience with academic tasks, you might find the Academic module more manageable.

Hope this helps you,

Thank you

Hello aspirant,

Opinions on the E-GMAT course vary. Some find it beneficial for improving GMAT skills, especially in verbal sections, while others may prefer different resources. It's essential to explore reviews, consider your learning style, and maybe try a trial or sample to see if it aligns with your preferences before making a decision.

So it all depends on your personal opinion.

Thank you

Hope this information helps you.

Many candidates ask whether their IELTS certificate is real or fake. To know if your IELTS test report is real or not, check the following points:

  • Check the certification stamp on the certificate if it matches the centre of registration and your selected IELTS test centre .

  • Visit the IDP IELTS official website after receiving the oft copy of your certificate via email to check whether it is available online and if it is valid.

  • Make sure that you receive the confirmation of your IELTS registration from the centre you registered. Also, check the login credentials to verify your IELTS results once the process is complete.

  • Collect the hard copy of the IELTS scorecard directly from the test centre once the results are announced.

  • Talk to the agent directly on the phone to verify his identity.

Verify all the above-mentioned points carefully to not get deceived by any fraud attempts.

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