IELTS Exam Scores & Results -
A Complete Guide


IELTS Exam Scores & Results -
A Complete Guide

Navigating the realm of IELTS results and IELTS scores can be quite a task. After participating in the rigorous IELTS exam, the anticipation begins as candidates wait for their scores. Typically, these scores are released within a mere two-week window. To access these results, one would head to the official portals of either the IDP or the British Council. Upon viewing, candidates will notice scores for all four distinct sections, all gauged on a scale of 1-9. Additionally, an overarching band score is presented. But how does one decipher this system? An understanding of the IELTS Band Score Chart and its intricacies is essential. In the subsequent sections, we'll dive deep into how these scores are calculated, offering a clear roadmap to interpret your performance level. Moreover, the underpinnings of the scoring pattern will be unveiled for a comprehensive grasp. Prepare to be enlightened!

How to Check Your IELTS Results?

Navigating the steps to uncover your IELTS results can be straightforward. Begin by visiting the official portals of either the IDP or the British Council. Here, candidates are presented with their IELTS scores, broken down into all four components, each ranging from 1-9. Additionally, an overall band score is showcased.

IELTS- Paper Based

For those who opted for the traditional paper-based IELTS, expect your results to appear 13 days after the test date. Conversely, if you embraced the modern approach of computer-delivered IELTS, a swift 3-5 days is all it takes.

IELTS Online/Computer

Now, how about getting your hands on the tangible TRF? You have options. Some might prefer to personally pick it up at the designated test centre. However, if convenience is your game, postal delivery is on the table, but do factor in roughly seven working days for its arrival. For the tech-savvy candidates who attempted the IELTS online, your results are exclusively electronic. Within a span of 3-8 days post-test, the electronic version, known as eTRF, is ready for download from the Test Taker portal. It's worth noting no supplementary paper Test Report Forms will be generated for this method. Happy checking of your IELTS results online!

Accessing IELTS Test Results Online

Embarking on the journey to access your IELTS results online? You're just a few steps away.

Steps to view results on the Test Taker Portal

First and foremost, ensure you have the following at your fingertips:

  • Your full name, exactly as you penned it during the booking process, encapsulates every given or middle name present on your ID.
  • The ID document number mirrors the very one you used on the day of the test.
  • Your date of birth is structured in the day/month/year format.
  • Now, journey to the test taker login page. Here, you’ll need to input your IELTS Reference Number and associated email. If you're scratching your head over where to find this number, cast your mind (or your inbox) back to the confirmation email from the test centre. It's nestled right there!

Duration for Which the Results Remain Online

While the convenience of checking IELTS results online is undeniable, it's crucial to remember they remain accessible for a span of 28 days. However, these online revelations shouldn't be misconstrued as an official testament to your prowess. The genuine TRF number, a hallmark of authenticity, graces only the physical report mailed to you. And for those wondering, no other route will unveil this number to you. Safe and secure, just how it should be!

How to Send IELTS Scores to Universities?

Navigating the process of sending IELTS scores can be daunting. Here's a breakdown to ensure you get it right:
Process of receiving and sending the Test Report Form:
  • The first five TRFs can be dispatched without any charges, provided they're sent within a month post-test.
  • Any subsequent TRFs beyond the initial five come with a charge of INR 250 each.
Requesting additional TRFs for university applications and scholarships:
  • For additional TRF requests, the official IELTS website is your go-to destination.
  • TRFs, both in paper and electronic forms (eTRF), can be fetched from the site. We've covered the method earlier for checking IELTS results online.
Methods to send the TRF: Mail, Courier, Electronic Transfer:
  • Opting for courier service for TRF dispatch? Be ready to pay INR 1500 for each.
  • Institutions and potential employers familiar with IELTS can view a candidate’s TRF online, making hard copies redundant in such cases.
Lastly, for clarity, here's what the IELTS TRF encapsulates:
  • It differentiates between the test type - Academic or General Training.
  • Essential details like the Centre Number, Date of Test, Candidate Number, and personal specifics like name and ID are stated.
  • Your IELTS results, comprising scores from all sections and the cumulative score, find a place on the TRF.
  • The IELTS TRF number can be found in the lower right corner for reference.

Understanding IELTS Section Band Scores

Understanding the IELTS scoring system is crucial for interpreting your test results and planning your next steps. The IELTS scores for Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking are all equally weighted and rated from 0 to 9, with increments of 0.25, 0.5, and 0.75.

Calculation of IELTS Scores:

The overall band score is calculated by taking the mean result of all four parts of the test. This is calculated to the nearest whole or half band, with scores ending in .25 rounded up to the next half band and scores ending in .75 rounded up to the next whole band.

What do IELTS Scores Represent?

The table below outlines what each band score represents in terms of a test-taker's skill level and includes a descriptive narrative for each band.

Band score

Skill level


Band 9

Expert user

You have a full operational command of the language. Your use of English is appropriate, accurate, and fluent, and you show complete understanding.

Band 8

Very good user

You have a fully operational command of the language with only occasional unsystematic inaccuracies and inappropriate usage. You may misunderstand some things in unfamiliar situations. You handle complex, detailed argumentation well.

Band 7

Good user

You have an operational command of the language, though with occasional inaccuracies, inappropriate usage, and misunderstandings in some situations. Generally, you handle complex language well and understand detailed reasoning.

Band 6

Competent user

Generally, you have an effective command of the language despite some inaccuracies, inappropriate usage, and misunderstandings. You can use and understand fairly complex language, particularly in familiar situations.

Band 5

Modest user

You have a partial command of the language and cope with the overall meaning in most situations, although you are likely to make many mistakes. You should be able to handle basic communication in your own field.

Band 4

Limited user

Your basic competence is limited to familiar situations. You frequently show problems in understanding and expression. You are not able to use complex language.

Band 3

Extremely limited user

You convey and understand only general meaning in very familiar situations. There are frequent breakdowns in communication.

Band 2

Intermittent user

You have great difficulty understanding spoken and written English.

Band 1


You have no ability to use the language except for a few isolated words.

Band 0

Did not attempt the test

You did not answer the questions.

How to Calculate IELTS Score?

Criteria for calculating scores in Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking sections:

  • Scale: The IELTS scores fall between 1 (being the lowest) and 9 (the pinnacle). Notably, candidates can secure scores with .5 increments, such as 5.5 or 6.5.
  • Skill-wise Scores: Each of the four skills—Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking—gets individual band scores.
  • Overall Band Score: This is the rounded average of all the individual skill scores.

Explanation of the scoring process for each section:

  • Listening:
    • Comprising 40 questions, each right answer fetches a mark. With 40 as the top raw score, a corresponding band score (from 1 to 9) is derived from this raw score.
  • Reading:
    • Much like Listening, the Reading test has 40 questions. The methodology to convert raw scores (maximum being 40) to band scores remains consistent.
  • Writing:
    • Delving into the IELTS Writing Band descriptors reveals how examiners evaluate Writing Tasks 1 and 2.
  • Speaking:
    • Insight into IELTS Speaking band descriptors can illuminate the assessment standards during the Speaking test.













It's essential to remember that the overall band score is an average of all sections and then rounded to the closest whole or half band. For instance, with an average score of 6.25 (like in the table), it's adjusted to 6.5. Here's a quick guide to rounding: A score of 7.75 will be rounded to 8. 7.25 will become 7.5. 7.85 will also round up to 8. 7.1, being closest to 7, will remain 7. Understanding these nuances can be critical in interpreting and strategising for IELTS results and improving IELTS scores. Knowing the ins and outs of the IELTS band scores can indeed make a difference!

IELTS Band Score Comparison Chart

Delving into the intricacies of IELTS band scores and what they represent in terms of proficiency levels.

Table 1: Listening Band Score Interpretation

Listening band score

Number of Correct Answers


39 – 40


37 – 38


35 – 36


32 – 34


30 – 31


26 – 29


23 – 25


18 – 22


16 – 17


13 – 15


11 – 12

Tables 2.1 and 2.2: Breakdown of Reading Band Scores

Band Score (Academic)

Correct Answers (Academic)

Band Score (General)

Correct Answers (General)










36 – 35


37 – 38


34 – 33




32 – 30


34 – 35


29 – 27


32 – 33


26 – 23


30 – 31


22 – 19


27 – 29


18 – 15


23 – 26


14 – 13


19 – 22


12 – 10


15 – 18


9 – 8


12 – 14


7 – 6


9 – 11


5 – 4


6 – 8

Writing Skills Band Score Assessment

  • Task Achievement (Task 1): Demonstrating the accuracy of information, crafting a concise overview, emphasising pivotal features, and backing points with valid data.
  • Task Response (Task 2): Directly addressing questions, providing pertinent points, articulating opinions where necessary, and concluding with clarity.
  • Cohesion and Coherence: Systematic presentation of ideas, segregating information with distinct focal points in paragraphs, and utilising diverse linking words.
  • Lexical Resource: Ensuring accurate spelling, employing collocations, steering clear of mistakes, and adept paraphrasing.
  • Grammar Range and Accuracy: Versatile use of grammar tenses, variety in sentence formations, impeccable punctuation, and thorough error avoidance.

Speaking Skills Band Score Analysis

  • Fluency: Articulating at length, refraining from unnecessary pauses, and leveraging connectors for listener clarity.
  • Lexical Resource: Mastering the art of paraphrasing, ensuring a diverse vocabulary, aptly using collocations, and sprinkling in less common vocabulary.
  • Grammar Range and Accuracy: Exuding grammatical perfection, embracing a plethora of tenses, and ensuring accurate sentence construction.
  • Pronunciation: Ensuring speech is universally intelligible, emphasising intonation, ensuring accents don't impede understanding, and maintaining pronunciation accuracy.
By embracing IELTS exam scores and results, students can open doors to worldwide opportunities by refining language proficiency and gaining a universally recognised certification, fostering a path toward academic and career aspirations.Get in touch with our academic counsellors at AECC to get exclusive insights on IELTS results and scores.

Frequently Asked Questions

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