Introduction to IELTS speaking section
IELTS, the International English Language Testing System is outlined to evaluate the language ability of the candidates who are either ambitious to study and work overseas or are the global migrants. In this article, we will explore in details about the IELTS Speaking Section.
The authorities that have managed to conduct this test effectively since 1938 are British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment.
By over 9000 organization in 135 countries that majorly include Australian, British, Canadian and New Zealand, and over 3000 academic institution in the United States that accepts this test as an exclusive evidence of your English proficiency.
This is one of the major reasons for the increase in IELTS test takers every year. The 2017 data that recorded 3 million test takers have proven this point. With the global acceptance and its increasing ‘popularity’, do you think it’s going to be an easy task to pass this IELTS exam? Maybe the answer is ‘no’ but nothing is easy until we try to make it one. Before we move further, the first task for us is to get familiar with our target i.e. IELTS exam here.
Types of IELTS Test
After deciding to take IELTS, the major responsibility that comes at your shoulder is choosing between IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training.
1. IELTS Academic Test
This exam is suitable for students who want to pursue a bachelor or postgraduate degree programme or the ones who are seeking professional registration in the UK.
2. IELTS General Training
This exam is taken by ones who are either planning to study, work or train in an English native land like Australia, Canada, New Zealand or the U.K. Before considering any, you just need to find out which of the two will meet up to your personal, professional and educational goals.
IELTS: Test of four skills
Regardless of any of the two type, IELTS being a task-based exam not only analyses your reading or writing skills but listening and speaking too.
After reading the above, the first thing we get to know about this IELTS test is about the four testing skills for this exam.
To win the battle of this IELTS test, we need to get familiar with each and every testing skills very carefully. So, of the four, we have already chosen one testing skill i.e. IELTS Speaking Module to discuss with you today.
IELTS Speaking Module
This is 11-14 minutes of IELTS Speaking Module, comprises of the three sections. Before giving the detailed view of these three sections, let’s have a proposition about them first.
- Section 1: This starting (4-5 minutes) is all about ‘you’. To make you comfortable the evaluator will ask you some casual questions regarding your family, hobbies etc.
- Section 2: This section sometimes called as “long turn”. You will be given a card on which a topic has been written. You will get one minute to think and another two minutes to speak.
- Section 3: This section is more conceptual where you will get an opportunity to make a good answer for the issues brought up by the evaluator.
Purpose of the IELTS Speaking Module
It is an absolutely important part to know about what purpose this IELTS Speaking Module test is and for what it is not. More than knowing about for what it is, we better be aware of what it is “not”
It is NOT
- A test of how many huge/ fancy/ high standard words you know.
- A test of how many different grammar structures and Idioms you are aware of.
- A test of how many answers you get ‘memorised’
- How your British accents or dialects are.
- A test of how well your speaking skills are, about how well you are going to communicate and handle the situation which you are going to have in mere future.
There is a more behind it, but one thing that is crystal clear here is that they want to test you on the terms that if you are ready to integrate into the native English Community or not.
Now let’s get aware of the three major sections.
Section 1 of the IELTS Speaking Module
In this starting 4-5 minutes, the evaluator may ask you the questions that relate to the topic such as
- Your hobbies
- Your family
- The reason behind taking this test
The first advantage that is in this section is it’s about “you”. In regard of the other two sections of IELTS Speaking Module, it’s comparatively a score gaining. We often find easy to talk about ourselves rather than speaking on any abstract topic.
Section 2 of the IELTS Speaking Module
This Section 2 of the IELTS Speaking Module is more likely of an extempore where you have to speak a little longer than above.
Many find this section of IELTS Speaking Module, a difficult one. A one that often makes them nervous, just because it’s a monologue.
A monologue is completely a different segment from the rest of the IELTS Speaking Module. As you will be speaking alone without any interruption or question from the evaluator.
Then you will be given with one task card. That task card will state the point which you have to include in the talk and one relevant topic which you must have to explain.
At last, the evaluator may ask one or two questions in relevancy of the same topic.
Section 3 of the IELTS Speaking Module
This section of IELTS Speaking module is in coherence with the Section 2 itself.
This is an opportunity grabbing section where you will get a chance to enhance your answer more.
This is also called to be the last task not only of IELTS speaking module but also of this whole IELTS test.
This includes a discussion between the evaluator and the candidate about the topic which you have spoken in Section 2.
As we came to know about the sections, it’s time to get aware of the grounds on which you are going to be evaluated.
The basis of evaluation of the IELTS Speaking Module
You are going to be evaluated on four grounds.
1.Fluency and Coherence
This is about how good you line up your thoughts and keep your ideas forward efficiently.
This is about your vocabulary check and how well you can use it. This criteria consider the communication functions of speech and social meaning of speech.
3. Grammatical Range and Accuracy
This is about how many grammatical structures are you aware of and how well you use them.
This is about how well you pronounce words. As well as considering the communicative effect of candidate’s pronunciation, there is an evaluation of how much strain you cause to your listener.
Now after knowing the basis of evaluation, we should be aware of IELTS Speaking Scoring Band.
But before that let’s do a brief discussion about IELTS Scoring Band.
IELTS Scoring Band
The IELTS evaluator ensures about the accurate evaluation by applying the strict criteria that help in reflecting the exact level where your communication or writing skills stand.
It follows a 9-band scoring, though there are no set bars to be called as “failed” or “approved”.
The IELTS score ranges between 0-9 (Non-user to expert). Candidate IELTS skills (listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking) gets an individual band score in this range.
We tell you what is a Good IELTS Score here.
Come let’s get aware of IELTS Speaking Module Scoring Band.
IELTS Speaking Module Score Calculator
Each of the four criteria which we have discussed above will receive a score from 0-9.
After that, it can be calculated through arithmetic mean.
If your exams are given as follow:
Fluency and Coherence: 7.5
Lexical Resource: 7.0
Grammatical Range and Accuracy:7.5
Then your total score for IELTS Speaking Module
Which will rounded upto 7.5
How much you have already scored, there is always a scope of improvement.
Ways to improve IELTS Speaking Module
Don’t try to finish quickly
By speaking for around 15 minutes in non native language may exhaust you. But that’s the only chance to hit the goal and win the match. It will be better if you will answer full rather to cut it in short to end it hastily.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions
There will be words in some questions that you might not understand at that very instant. The rule is that you can ask the meaning of one word, but be aware you are not allowed to ask them to explain what a whole sentence means.
You might ask them to repeat the question if it didn’t click your mind. So make it a good advantage of this opportunity and try to use it rather stucking between your inner turmoil of May I or May I Not.
In this article, you came to know about every little detail of the IELTS Speaking Module from Sections to its purpose then to its scoring band. Hope you have enjoyed it while making an addition in your knowledge. Good Wishes for your plans!
To read more about the IELTS exam, click here