Who needs IELTS?

When you are learning English, one question you might ask yourself is –

“Should I take an official exam at the end of my course?”

At Excel English, we think the correct answer depends on your reasons for studying.

If you are simply taking a short English course to refresh your knowledge of English and spend some time in London (one of the world’s greatest cities!), then taking home a school certificate, lifelong friendships and happy memories at the end of your stay will be good enough for you.

On the other hand, if you are learning English for your personal enjoyment, then taking an exam might be a good opportunity to challenge yourself.

But if you are studying English for your career or future study plans, then a good result in an internationally recognised examination will be very important for you.

Fail to prepare = prepare to fail

Many people do not realise that your knowledge of English alone is not enough to help you pass the exam.  To get the result that truly reflects your skills, you need to prepare for the different challenges you will face in the exam itself.  Here at Excel English we have courses to help you to prepare for a Cambridge First Certificate in English (FCE), Certificate of Advanced English (CAE) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exam.

Our next exam preparation course is for IELTS, which begins on 31 March.  The programme will last for 4 weeks and includes 21.5 hours per week of exam preparation lessons.  These lessons will help you to prepare for the exam, which includes tests of your speaking, listening, reading and writing skills.  We can also arrange for you to take the exam at a local testing centre (additional fee applies).

Measuring success

IELTS exam candidates receive a score between 1 (beginner) and 9 (expert).  For students who wish to study at a UK university, it is usually necessary to obtain a result of 6.5 or higher (depending upon the course chosen).

In 2013, 84% of Excel English students who took the IELTS exam achieved a result that was equal to or higher than their target.

Table of IELTS scores required by UK universities

(Information from Wikipedia which is intended as a guide only – if you are applying to a UK university you should check their entry requirements)

University Minimum IELTS score
Oxford University 7.0
London School of Economics 7.0/7.5
University of Edinburgh 7.0
Cambridge University 7.0 / 7.5
Glasgow University 6.5 (General)7.0 (Faculty of Arts & Humanities)
University College London 6.5/7.0/7.5
Imperial College London 6.57.0 for Life Sciences Dept & Business School
Exeter University 7.0
Liverpool University 6.0
Birmingham University 6.5
Cranfield University 6.5 / 7.0
Robert Gordon University 6.5

Find out more and join our next IELTS course

Our next IELTS Preparation Course runs from Monday 31 March to Friday 25 April 2014.  Other sessions are available throughout the year – find out more about our IELTS courses here.

Click here to Contact Us or Apply now!


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