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What is IELTS?

IELTS is the international English language testing system. It’s the world’s most popular English language test for tertiary education, work and migration purposes. In a global partnership of language experts, IDP: IELTS Australia, the British Council and Cambridge English Language Assessment co-created IELTS. 


Millions of IELTS tests are taken each year in over 140 countries for study, work and migration purposes. Over 9000 organisations including universities, immigration authorities and professional bodies recognise IELTS, which means it helps you reach your study and career goals faster.

IELTS is the only internationally recognised English language test where the speaking section of the test is held with an examiner in a private room so you will not be interrupted. Our examiners are fully qualified and follow rigorous global IELTS standards and are regularly monitored and re-certified.

IELTS content is developed by an international team of experts that do extensive research to ensure the test is fair and unbiased for all, regardless of nationality, gender, lifestyle or location.

Download your copy of the IELTS Essentials pack for more information.

Take the IELTS test with us

Every year over 10 000 people take an IELTS test with RMIT English Worldwide. We are one of Melbourne’s longest established IELTS test centres. We ensure that everything runs as smoothly as possible for you.

Test days are scheduled regularly, and all four sections of the test are held on the same day.

Book an IELTS test online, or book an IELTS preparation course today.

The IELTS test consists of two modules:

  • Academic
  • General Training.

Before applying, check the test format to determine the right module for you, as fees may apply for changing modules.

The IELTS test assesses four language skills—listening, reading, writing and speaking.

The listening, reading and writing sections are scheduled between 9.00 am and 12.30 pm. The speaking section is scheduled between 1.00 pm and 5.30 pm. All sections of the test are conducted in small rooms, providing you with a comfortable environment.

Book your IELTS test

All bookings to sit an IELTS test must be made online.

When booking an IELTS test, you will need:

  • a scanned copy of your current passport
  • your credit card to pay in full
  • a valid email address.

IELTS test fee

The fee to sit the IELTS test is A$330. Full payment is required to confirm your booking.

Refunds and transfers

To cancel or transfer your booking to another test date or request a refund of the test fee, you need to fill in and return the Request for refund or test date transfer form more than 5 weeks prior to your test date. Applications submitted less than 5 weeks prior to you test date will not be accepted.

IELTS test dates and locations

IELTS test dates

Date Academic General Training
14 November 2015 Test closed No test
21 November 2015 Test closed Available
5 December 2015 Test closed Available
12 December 2015 Test closed Available

Not ready to sit the test yet? You can do an IELTS preparation course to get the confidence you need.

On the day of the test

When you have booked online, you will receive an email with the test date, location and time to arrive. You will get an SMS reminder on the Friday before the test, which is always held on a Saturday. Registration opens at 8.00 am. The test begins at 9.00 am sharp.

On the day of the test you must bring:

  • your current passport (only original and current passports are accepted)
  • pens
  • pencils
  • an eraser
  • a pencil sharpener.

Remember to bring your passport or you will not be able to sit the test.

Download the IELTS test day flowchart, which is a map of what happens on the day of the test.

The IELTS Essentials pack has more information on what to expect on the day of the test.

Photograph and fingerprint scan

You must have your photograph taken and have a fingerprint scanned for security and identification purposes on the day of the test.

IELTS test results

Collecting your results

Your IELTS test results come in a report known as the Test Report Form and will be available 13 days after the test day. Your results will either be posted to you in the mail or you can collect them in person.

If you would like to collect them in person, you must complete a written request on the day you sit the test. Collect your results from RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne (Building 108, Level 10) on the release day between 10.00 am and 1.00 pm. Results that have not been collected will be posted after 1.00 pm. You must present your current passport to receive your results.

Before receiving your results in the mail, you can preview them online by entering the information requested.

Understanding your results

Your results will place you on a nine band scale. You will receive five scores, one for each section of the test and an overall score, and a brief description of your level.

Check the entry requirements with the institution or organisation you’re interested in applying to. The required IELTS score will vary from one institution or organisation to another.

How long are your IELTS test results valid?

Your Test Report Form (TRF) is valid for 2 years. You will be given ONE copy only, and it cannot be replaced. We can send up to five additional copies on your behalf to other institutions or organisations—you will need fill out the Application for the issue of additional TRFs form. Test Report Forms for tests taken more than 2 years ago cannot be re-issued.

Requests for remarking tests

If you would like your IELTS test to be marked again, you need to fill out an Enquiry on results form and submit it within 6 weeks of your test date. The fee for this is A$176 and it can take 8–10 weeks for the results to be finalised. If there is a change in score, the fee will be refunded. If there is no change, there is no refund.

10 steps for success

  1. Make sure you know how to get to the location of the test. Give yourself enough travel time, so you arrive relaxed and on time.
  2. Practise, practise, practise. There are lots of practice tests available, so do them. The better prepared you are, the calmer you will be on the day.
  3. Plan ahead. Get to know how much time you need to complete each question, so you finish the test in time.
  4. Build your concentration skills by matching your study habits to the test format. For example, practise writing in blocks of 60 minutes to reflect the time allocated for that section of the test.
  5. Don’t exhaust yourself by studying up to the last minute. Take time to relax. Get a good night’s sleep. Spend the day before the test making a plan, so that you will feel in control on the day.
  6. Don’t drink too much caffeine or too many energy drinks before the test. They may stimulate you but can also make you anxious.
  7. Breathe in, breathe out. Breathe in, breathe out. Deep breathing can bring your heart rate down, which calms you and relieves anxiety.
  8. On the day, work your way into the test. In Part 1 of the speaking section, listen to the question and give short, concise answers. The first questions are designed to be easy. Do that, and you will have the confidence to move on to the tougher questions that follow. In the writing section, start with the task that you feel most comfortable with but remember to leave enough time for the other task.
  9. Remember your strengths. You don’t just get penalised for your mistakes, you also get rewarded for the things you get right.
  10. You don’t need to get 100%. If you make a mistake, move on.

Take an IELTS preparation course with us

Our IELTS preparation courses give you the skills you need to confidently sit the IELTS test.

Part time IELTS preparation course

RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne offers a part time course in two modules:

  • Reading and writing—Academic OR General Training
  • Listening and speaking.

Each module consists of 20 hours of classroom tuition and takes 2 weeks to complete. Classes are held from 6.00 pm to 8.30 pm four evenings a week for 2 weeks.

You need a minimum level of English (IELTS 5.0 or equivalent) to do our part time course.

Our part time course:

  • is quick and convenient
  • allows you to practise in test-like conditions
  • offers expert advice, as you receive individual feedback from teachers
  • helps you build skills in performing well on the day of the test.

Book your IELTS preparation course

You can book an IELTS preparation course online or over the telephone.


Please call us on (61+3) 9925 8111. Have your credit card details ready.

For further information, please email us at

Course dates

Part time

Click on the course you are interested in to view the scheduled course dates.

Reading and writing—Academic

Advanced writingAcademic

Reading and writing—General Training

Listening and speaking

Note: classes will be held on the Wednesday in weeks containing a public holiday.

Course fees

Course 2015 fees (in A$)
Part time
Reading and writing—Academic (20 hours) $395
Advanced writing—Academic (20 hours) $395
Reading and writing—General Training (20 hours) $395
Listening and speaking (20 hours) $395
Both part time modules (40 hours) $740
($50 discount* if you book both part time modules)

* To receive the $50 discount for enrolling in both part time modules—Reading and writing (either Academic or General Training) and Listening and speaking—you must enrol in both at the same time.

Ask for details about current promotions—call us on +61 3 9925 8111 or email us at

Course location

All IELTS preparation courses are held at RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne:

RMIT University Building 108, Level 10
235-251 Bourke Street

Listen to one of our teachers share some tips on how to prepare for your IELTS experience with us.

Practice materials

If you want to do further study at home, you can buy practice materials published by Cambridge University and IELTS Australia from RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne.

Cambridge University’s Top tips for IELTS

Cambridge University produces practice materials for IELTS candidates:

Top tips for IELTS academic (with interactive CD-ROM) = A$35.50
Top tips for IELTS general training (with interactive CD-ROM) = A$35.50

These guides provide you with essential advice for each section of the test, and include:

  • clear examples and explanations
  • general tips to help with revision
  • information on how to revise
  • what to do on the day of the test.

You will find a full IELTS practice test, sample answers for the writing section and a video of a speaking section.

IELTS Australia’s Official IELTS practice materials

IELTS Australia offers two volumes of official practice materials to help you understand the format of the IELTS test and the types of questions you will be asked.

Each volume contains different samples of IELTS test questions:

Official IELTS practice materials, Vol. 1 (with CD) = A$35.50
Official IELTS practice materials, Vol. 2 (with DVD) = A$35.50

Each volume gives different samples of the listening, reading, writing and speaking sections, with sample answers and comments from examiners. The CD in Vol. 1 gives samples of the listening section and the DVD in Vol. 2 shows candidates in the speaking section.

The Official IELTS practice materials guides are the only IELTS practice materials endorsed by the co-creators of the IELTS test, IDP: IELTS Australia, the British Council and Cambridge University.

IELTS Assist

Get personal advice from IELTS experts. Try sample IELTS tasks in Writing, Speaking or Reading and get practical tips on how to improve your test performance. 

IELTS Reading Assist: Try sample reading tasks that are just like those in the IELTS test.

IELTS Speaking Assist: Practice your speaking skills with an English expert.

IELTS Writing Assist: Try sample writing tasks that are just like those in the IELTS test. 

Find out more


What level of English do I need before I can sit the IELTS test?

IELTS tests are designed to assess candidates from beginner through to advanced levels. However, the test is aimed at candidates with a level of Intermediate and above.

How long are IELTS test results valid?

IELTS test results are valid for 2 years only.

Do I have to study at an English language school before I sit the IELTS test?

No. However, to get your best possible score, you may consider taking an IELTS preparation course, which will familiarise you with the types of questions you will be asked in the test. 

What age must I be to sit the IELTS test?

IELTS is not recommended for candidates under the age of 16.

What is the difference between the Academic and General Training IELTS tests?

IELTS Academic measures the English language proficiency needed for an academic, higher education environment. IELTS General Training measures English language proficiency in a practical, everyday context. This version of the test is also often a visa requirement for those planning to migrate to English speaking countries including Australia, the UK and New Zealand. For more information, visit the IELTS website

How long does the IELTS test take to complete?

At RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne, all four sections of the IELTS test are held on the same day.

The listening, reading and writing sections are scheduled between 9.00 am and 12.30 pm. The speaking section is scheduled between 1.00 pm and 5.30 pm.

Is there time at the end of the reading section of the IELTS test to transfer answers to the answer sheet?

No. The reading section takes 1 hour and you must write all your answers on the answer sheet in that hour.

Can I write on the question papers?

Yes. The examiners do not see your question papers.

What do I need to bring on the day of the IELTS test?

On the day of the test, bring:

  • your current passport (only original and current passports are accepted)
  • pens
  • pencils
  • an eraser
  • a pencil sharpener.

When will I receive my IELTS test results?

Your results, which come in a Test Report Form, will be issued 13 days after the day of the test. They will be posted to you in the mail or you can collect them in person at RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne if your written request has been received. You must complete the written request to collect results in person on the day of the test.

Do not contact RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne for your results—they will not be given over the phone or via email.

What happens if I lose my Test Report Form?

At any time within 2 years of sitting the test at RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne, you can apply for up to five additional copies of the original form. These copies will NOT be sent to you, but can be sent to universities, embassies, consulates etc. on your behalf. You will only ever receive ONE personal copy of your Test Report Form. 

How do I arrange for my Test Report Form to be forwarded to universities, consulates etc.?

You will need to complete the Application for the Issue of Additional TRFs form and submit it at RMIT English Worldwide Melbourne, along with an A4 Registered Post envelope for each copy that you would like to be sent out on your behalf.

How often can I repeat the IELTS test?

There is no limit to the number of times you can sit the IELTS test. However, scores are unlikely to improve dramatically without English language lessons or the completion of IELTS preparation courses between tests.

Do I have to sit all four sections of the test when I am repeating?

Yes. When you repeat the IELTS test, all four skills must be tested again, regardless of your previous results.

What happens if I am absent on the day of the IELTS test without giving prior notice?

You will lose the full test fee. However, if a medical certificate is provided within 5 days of the test date, the full fee will be refunded minus an administrative fee of 25%.

What can I do if I am unhappy with my IELTS test results?

You may request that IELTS Australia carries out an enquiry on results. Your test material will be sent to a senior examiner who will review the results. The fee for this is A$176 and it can take 8–10 weeks for the results to be finalised. If there is a change in score, the fee will be refunded. If there is no change, there is no refund.

What help is available for disabled candidates?

If you require a modified version of the test you must give us 3 months’ notice. If special administrative arrangements need to be made, for example, you need extra time to sit the test, you must give us 6 weeks’ notice. Please note there are limited seats available for special needs candidates who require a separate room during the test. For more information, see the IELTS Australia website.

How strictly is the IELTS test marked?

Take care when writing answers on the listening and reading answer sheets, as incorrect spelling and grammar are penalised. Both UK and US varieties of spelling are acceptable. If you are asked to write the answer in a specific number of words, you will be penalised if you write more than that number. In questions where you are expected to complete a gap, you should only transfer the necessary missing word(s) onto the answer sheet.

Will I be able to get better IELTS test results if I take a preparation course?

The results you achieve will depend on your level of English and the effort you put into preparing for the test. Doing a preparation course is not a guarantee of achieving better results, but it will provide you with practice, strategies, sharper skills and more confidence.

Are the teachers IELTS examiners?

The regulations set by IDP: IELTS Australia, the British Council and Cambridge University do not allow teachers of the preparation course to divulge their examiner status. Preparation courses are taught by fully qualified English teachers who are very familiar with the test and experienced at teaching IELTS strategies.

Are the practice test results a good indication of my IELTS level?

The regulations set by IDP: IELTS Australia, the British Council and Cambridge University state that candidates can only receive a band score for an actual IELTS test. Students of our preparation courses will receive detailed feedback on their performance in practice tests and will get an indication of their approximate level; however, this will not be a band score.

Is there a price discount if I book both modules of the part time course?

Yes. See IELTS preparation course dates, fees and location for more information.

Is there a cut off date to apply for an IELTS preparation course?

Candidates are encouraged to book their course in advance due to the high demand for places; however, it is possible to book your place up until the day the course begins, pending availability. For the full time course, you should apply by the Friday before a course begins as classes commence on a Monday morning.

Can student visa holders do an IELTS preparation course?

Yes. See Book your IELTS preparation course for more information.

Can I pay the fees by instalment?

No. Fees for the IELTS test and for preparation courses must be paid for in full up front.