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The IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Exam, as its full-form suggests, is undertaken to examine English language proficiency. The IELTS Exam is usually undertaken by students who want to study abroad or people who will be working there shortly.
As one could interpret, the main idea of the exam is to test whether an individual will be able to use English as the language of communication in the English-speaking countries.
Two Categories of IELTS Exam: IELTS Academic or IELTS General Training
To further simplify the process, the IELTS Exam has been divided into two categories, which are IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. The IELTS Exam is made available for those who specifically want to pursue their higher education or for people migrating to English language speaking countries for work purposes. Nevertheless, both the types of the IELTS Exam provide a very authentic and credible measurement of four skills in the English language.
Generally, people who plan to pursue their higher studies in foreign English-speaking countries or migrate for work purposes to countries like the US, Canada, England, Australia, and others take this exam. The IELTS Exam is essential because it not merely assessing the level of your proficiency. But it measures if a person will be able to communicate himself/herself in a foreign land. It determines how well sh/e will adjust, adapt, survive, and thrive in a foreign country if migrating for studying or work business specifically.
The IELTS (International English Language Testing System) Exam assesses an individual in four different sets of skills i.e., Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening. These are the critical areas of both an Academic IELTS Exam and the General IELTS Exam. Of course, the level of Academic IELTS Exam is set higher than the General IELTS Exam. Apart from that, both the kinds of IELTS Exam more or less similar in the pattern followed in conducting the IELTS Exam.
Next, the IELTS Exam assesses an individual and his proficiency in key four main areas, which are essential in any language. The IELTS Exam uses a nine-band measurement scale system to identify the different levels of proficiency starting from band score 1 i.e., Non-English user to 9 band score that of an expert in the field.
The IELTS Exam is not only one of a kind as there is various similar exam measuring the proficiency in the English Language. For example, TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) another best known and commonly taken exam. The TOEFL Exam has been specifically designed to assess proficiency in the English language as it will be used in the University setting. While IELTS General also allows employees around the world to prove their knowledge of the English language enough to be able to work in an English-speaking country.
Other exams include the Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English (CPE) and the Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (CAE).
There is no fixed score in IELTS that will prove your proficiency or minimum. It would help if you scored to clear the exam. Various colleges and universities set their band score of the IELTS Exam a student needs to score to qualify for the admissions. And the level of comprehension in English in general for IELTS General to determine how effectively one can work.