We have collated the most frequently asked questions candidates have inquired us about the IELTS Listening test. You may find these answers helpful with IELTS EXPERT in the Listening section and other parts of the IELTS test as well.

  • Using capital letters

Question: Would my answers be marked incorrect in case, if I use upper case, for example, writing ‘garden’ as ‘GARDEN’?

A: NO, it is completely up to you, which case you want to use.  We recommend you write all Listening and Reading answers in upper case, therefore it is clear for the examiner.

  • Academic vs General Training

Q: Is there any difference between the Academic and General Training Listening tests?

A: If you only look at the IELTS Listening test, there is no difference — there is only one Listening test for Academic and General Training candidates. However, there are different papers in the IELTS Reading and Writing tests.

  • Using acronyms

Q: Would I be able to write my answers in short forms/acronyms?

A: Keep away from them if possible. There are a few acceptable abbreviations you can use in all four IELTS components, For example, 1 am / 11 a.m., 600m, 8kg, among some others. In a few cases, even some notable acronyms are permitted, Such as UK, US, and — yes — IELTS. However, to try not to lose marks, you must consistently attempt to write the full form of a word till that you can spell them (correctly). So if the answer is, for example, Youth Club, then do not simply write ‘YC.

  • Spelling

Q: If I spell the word incorrectly what would happen?

A: You do not get the mark. It’s that simple. No half point will be deducted. The answers in the Listening test rarely involve long and difficult words but some students have difficulty with spelling names. You can attempt these exercises to practice and improve your spelling.

  • Listen to the accent

Q: Can I choose the type of English to be included in the IELTS listening test? For example, I find that the Australian accent is really hard to understand!

A: Unfortunately, you can’t. Moreover, the IELTS Listening tests always involve more than one accent, including the received pronunciation of (British), General  American English, etc. Therefore, it is a good idea to practice not only from one source but also from multiple sources. If you want to improve your IELTS listening and IELTS speaking skills at the same time, check out your clear pronunciation 1  and clear pronunciation 2, where you will hear various accents from all over the world.


  • Write numbers

Q: I am afraid of the answers to numbers. I don’t know if I should write them in words or numbers!

A: Both can work normally: 2 or two.

  • Read the test paper

Q: Will I put the test paper in front of me when I listen?

A: If you are doing a paper-based IELTS test, then you can. First, listen carefully and quickly write down the answers in the appropriate place. Then you will have time to write your final answers more clearly on the answer sheet, at the end of each record. If you are taking the computer-based IELTS test, then you will see the questions on the screen and answer them while listening.

  • Writing during pauses

Q: Can I write during the pauses between parts?

A: Yes, these are great opportunities for you to read and highlight the keywords in advance to get a general idea of the content of the recording. It is no exaggeration to say that how you use these breaks will determine the band score you will eventually get.

  • Explanation of the four parts

Q: Is there any difference between the four parts?

A: The first two parts are about living in English in English-speaking countries. The first part can be anything, from getting a call from a car dealer to reserving a restaurant table. The second part usually involves a plan or a map that you need to study carefully. The third and fourth parts are mainly related to academic subjects, and the last part is usually more difficult than the other parts.

Knowing the difference between IELTS listening four parts is a good start. But to be fully prepared, you need to make sure you understand all types of questions before attempting the IELTS exam.

how to score band 9 in IELTS reading

“Above queries will help you in IELTS Preparation in Karachi. Good luck”.
By. Ms Mehreen Shaikh, IELTS Expert.


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