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IELTS Academic Vs IELTS General Exam: What Is The Difference Between IELTS Academic Vs General

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IELTS Academic Vs IELTS General Exam: What Is The Difference Between IELTS Academic Vs General Image

If you have planned to appear for the IELTS exam this year then firsty, you should familiarise yourself with the IELTS test and what is the difference between academic and general IELTS exam.

IELTS, commonly known as the International English Language Testing System, this test is conducted for international students who want to study abroad where English is the primary language of communication. It generally categorizes candidates on the nine-band scale to identify the proficiency level of each candidate who takes this test. 

However, there are two types of IELTS exams which are the IELTS Academic and IELTS General tests. And, candidates usually get confused about the difference between academic and general IELTS. In this blog, you will get all the details related to IETLS academic VS General exam, IELTS general vs academic which is easy etc.

Table of Content

What Is IELTS Academic Test?

The IELTS academic exam often determines if a candidate's level of English proficiency is suitable for further study in an academic context. Therefore, you must take the IELTS Academic exam if you intend to enroll in any college or university for bachelor's, master's, or doctorate programs in a country that speaks the English language.

Additionally, this exam assesses your ability to handle a huge schedule of readings, study materials, and procedures in any institution or university that offers English-language instruction. For this reason, the exam materials from the British Council and IDP are packed with academic language and cover a wide range of academic, and most likely science-related, topics.

What is IELTS General Test?

Your English proficiency in an everyday context is examined in the IELTS General Training examination. If you wish to immigrate abroad or work in an English-speaking country, or even if you want to apply for citizenship from other nations like Canada and New Zealand, you must take the IELTS General category exam. The British Council, along with other related organizations like IDP, offers this test.

In other words, you will be required to prove that you can interpret and master writings that are related to daily life, leisure, employment, and training-related text. As a result, reading passages and writing test problems from the IELTS General exam typically represent workplace and social scenarios. 

Suggested:How to score 8+ band in IELTS?

What Is The Difference Between Academic And General IELTS?

You can find the difference between IELTS academic vs IELTS general tests in the Reading and Writing sections here that will help you in preparing for any of the exams more effectively.

Difference Between The IELTS Reading Sections In IELTS General Training Vs Academic

There are two types of Reading tests are:

  • Different in reading passage numbers and topics
  • The little difference in question types.

NOTE: The exam fees for both tests are similar.

Difference In Reading Passage Numbers:

There is the same number of reading passages in each of the sections of the IELTS Academic exam as well as the IELTS General Training tests. However, in the IELTS General Training test, the amount of reading passages varies in each of the sections.

Sections IELTS Academic Test IELTS General Test

Section 1

Consists of 1 short article (easier than the other two sections of the IELTS Academic Test)

Consists of at least 3 short texts

Section 2

Consists of 2 texts

Consists of 2 text

Section 3

consists of 1 long text

consists of 1 long text

Difference In Reading Passage Topics:

In the IELTS Academic Reading, all the texts cover the general interest and those are closely related to the range of academic subjects or topics that include:

  • Plant/animal/human biology
  • Chemistry, physics
  • Astronomy, space exploration
  • Mathematics, computer science
  • Medicine
  • Inventors and inventions
  • History, anthropology
  • Psychology, sociology
  • Culture, and civilization
  • Education
  • Arts: painting, sculpture, architecture, music, crafts
  • Language and linguistics
  • Environment conservation
  • Law
  • Business, economics, marketing, management, etc.

Whereas, in General Training Reading:

Sections Reading Topics
Section 1

Consists of at least 3 texts which are related to everyday life like travel leaflets, college brochures, accommodation lists, safety procedures, classified ads, newsletters, advertisements, noticeboards, etc.

Section 2 

Usually consists of 2 texts that are related to work or professional training such as job descriptions, work policies, guidelines, manuals, etc.

Section 3 

Consists of a long text of general interest like newspaper/magazine articles, book extracts, or internet texts on the environment, civilization, business, culture, history, people, transport, etc.

Differences In Reading Question Types

There are usually at least 15 questions used in both the IELTS general training and academic tests. However, only a single additional type is added to the IELTS Academic test (see the lists below).

  • Sentence completion
  • Sentence completion with a box
  • Short answer questions
  • Notes/tables/flow chart completion
  • Matching
  • Classification
  • Labeling a diagram
  • Paragraph headings
  • Finding information in the paragraph
  • Summary completion
  • Summary completion with a box
  • True/False/Not Given
  • Yes/No/Not Given
  • Multiple choice
  • Pick from a list
  • Global multiple-choice questions - Only in the IELTS Academic Test

You can use the IELTS indicator which is used as a timed online IELTS test before you decide to spend money on IELTS general training vs academic exam fees because the IELTS indicator provides you fast feedback and score for your reading and listening abilities, which can help you in progressing and identifying your problem areas.

Still, there are some IELTS general vs academic difference test types that you can find in the Writing section of the examination. Let's discuss them.

First, the course's similarities.

There are often two writing exercises in the general vs academic IELTS tests, both of which must be completed.

The condition for both of the exams is listed below:

Time Given

60 minutes

Total Tasks


Marking in Task 1

~33% of the whole Writing score

Marking in Task 2

~66% of the entire Writing score,

However, you must use the entire sentences rather than incomplete ones or bullet points when writing your responses on the academic and general IELTS difference Writing examinations. You can write your responses on the provided answer sheet. Additionally, writing your responses with a pencil or pen or on a piece of blank paper is not a good idea. Though it won't be prohibited, the writing examiner shouldn't judge brainstorming notes on the question paper.

Also Read


IELTS Exam Pattern For Beginners

Guide to IELTS results and scores

Universities accepting IELTS score 6.5 to 7

Universities accepting IELTS score 7.5 and above

How To Decide: IELTS Academic Vs IELTS General Test?

As of now, you know what is the difference between Academic Vs General IELTS Test. Although the IELTS test helps you with various choices in your life, like moving abroad, joining a job that you have always desired, or even upgrading your English language abilities. So, it is advised that before booking your test, be sure to check the difference between IELTS academic and IELTS general test and which one fits best for you.

Here are some suggestions you might consider while choosing which exam to take and the IELTS general vs academic difference.

Go For IELTS Academic Test:

  • If you want to study an undergraduate or a postgraduate level program anywhere in the world
  • If you want to apply for Tire 4 Student Route visa at any university that is a Tire 4 Student Route sponsor in the United Kingdom
  • If you want to work for any professional organization in an English-speaking country

Go For IELTS General Training Test:

  • If you want to study or train below degree level
  • If you want to work or seeking to work as a trainee in an English-speaking country
  • If you are emigrating to any English-speaking nation
  • if you are offered a different job within your own nation.

How to apply and register for IELTS exam?

The above is the information that any international must know about IELTS general vs academic difficulty and the preparation steps. Hence, Students are suggested to prepare accordingly.

However, if you feel like seeking support regarding choosing the best university, then we at Yocket are here to help you to get a seat that accepts IELTS scores. Moreover, after deciding which test to take after going through IETLS academic vs general difficulty level, and now if you are confused about which university would be best for you, then you can contact Yocket Counsellors for in-depth discussion.

Frequently Asked Questions About IELTS Academic Vs IELTS General Test

Ques: Can you take the IELTS exam from home?

Ans: Yes! The new IELTS online test is offered by its administration, and you can take any of the academic vs general IELTS difference tests from the comfort of your home. The IELTS administrator will ask you to set up the necessary device before you can take the exam online from home.

How to prepare for IELTS at home?

Ques: How many times does the IELTS exam conducted in a year?

Ans: There is no specific number of times for the IELTS exam to be conducted. It is held several times a year, allowing candidates to choose a date and appear for the test whenever they are prepared.

Moreover, there is no limit on how many times a candidate can attempt or re-appear for this test. You only need to decide IELTS general vs academic which is easy for you and pay for exam re-taking fees and appear for the exam as many times as you want to (you need to pay before every re-take for this exam).

Ques: Where can you book your IELTS slot?

Ans: The slot for IELTS general vs academic difference exam can be booked in two ways, online and in-person. You can check every detail on its website regarding IELTS 2023.

IELTS exam fees in India

Ques: How many attempts can you give for the IELTS test?

Ans: You can give as many attempts as you required to crack this exam. However, you must pay for the IELTS test fees for every attempt and decide which exam you want to appear for after knowing the difference between academic and general IELTS exams.

Que: How many test centers are there in India?

Ans: India has many testing locations. One can take the IELTS exam at any of the 78 centers in India. Because your journey shouldn't be stressful, you should choose a good location.

You might select a location that requires less travel time so that you can show up for the exam feeling relaxed. You may easily locate a test close to your home due to a large number of locations available. Don't forget to schedule the test center ahead of time according to your preferred timetable. You can view a list of IELTS test centers in India.

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