The Speaking test consists of a face-to-face interview between the test taker and a Speaking examiner. All Speaking tests are recorded.
Below you’ll find more information about the test format and scoring, as well as top tips, free videos and blog articles, and other resources to help you understand the Speaking test and achieve a high score.
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The Speaking test lasts 11–14 minutes and has three parts.
Part 1 – introduction and interview (4–5 minutes)
This part includes general questions on familiar topics such as home, family, work and studies.
Part 2 – long turn (3–4 minutes)
You’ll be given a task card with a topic and points to cover. You have one minute of preparation time and then you have to talk for up to two minutes. The examiner will ask one or two questions on the same topic.
Part 3 – discussion (4–5 minutes)
You and the examiner will discuss issues related to the topic in Part 2.
Your score is marked by a certified IELTS Speaking examiner. You will be scored based on the following criteria:
Fluency and coherence
The ability to talk with normal levels of continuity and rate, and to link language together.
The range of vocabulary used and how well meaning can be expressed.
Grammatical range and accuracy
The range and accuracy of grammar used.
The ability to produce speech which is comprehensible.
1. Practise speaking as often as you can and make sure you can talk for two minutes on a topic.
2. Study all aspects of English including pronunciation, vocabulary and grammar as this will help improve your Speaking score.
3. Use a wide range of grammar and vocabulary during the test. The examiner can only award marks for the language you produce, so show them your full potential!
4. Don’t speak too fast because it can be difficult to follow. Don’t speak too slowly as you won’t have the chance to say much.
5. In Part 3 always give an opinion! It doesn’t matter what your opinion is – you're being assessed on your language not your ideas.
In part two of the IELTS Speaking test, you will be asked to speak for 2 minutes about a given topic.
If you’re worried about not having enough to say, find out how to use the one-minute preparation time on test day to ensure you’re not stuck for words.