Aubrey Carter
"3 Keys IELTS Certified Coach"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

How is the Listening exam different if you take the computer version?

You need all the details so you know what to expect on test day!

Today is Part 2 of our series of podcasts on the Computer-delivered IELTS exam.

You can hear Part 1 about the Reading exam in IELTS Energy Episode 819.

Today you’ll learn important advantages of taking this version of the exam.

We’ll also provide vital tips for the computer IELTS experience.

What is the Listening exam like if you take the paper version?

You will be seated in a large room with the paper exam in front of you.

The audio will play and there are a few unknowns.

  • How far will you be from the speakers?
  • Will it be loud enough?
  • Will it be clear enough?
  • Will there be any other distracting sounds in the room?

We hope for the best, but no one knows the exact situation they will face on test day.

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Difference #1: More control over the audio!

You will be given headphones and will hear the audio through them.

You can control the audio.

Tip: You will be prompted to adjust the audio when the exam begins.

Don’t stress about this!

You can change it at any time during the exam.

Difference #2: Highlighting

You will be able to highlight key words instead of underlining them.

This function can be tricky to get used to, and you will want to practice!

We are about to launch a Computer IELTS preparation course that will give you the chance to practice this!

Sign up here so you can be the first to know when it launches!

Anyone on this list will also have access to special introductory pricing.

Difference #3: Note Taking

You will have the option to take notes.

Tip: Don’t take notes!

You don’t have time for this!

If you do, you could miss part of the audio that contains answers.

Difference #4: You can mark questions for later review.

At the bottom of the screen, you will see a function for marking questions.

Tip: Use this function!

This is much easier than flipping back through the test to find markings.

You can very easily jump back to any questions you have marked.

What is the same on both versions?

The audio that has been recorded is exactly the same.

The questions and answers are exactly the same.

You will still use the 3 Keys IELTS strategies.

How can you practice for this computer-based version?

There is currently no system that is specific to studying for the computer-delivered IELTS exam.

This is why we are creating one!

We have been working hard to create a study program that will give you all the information about computer IELTS.

It will also provide you with practice questions so you can get used to all the functions available.

Sign up now to be notified when this new study system launches!


There are some key differences between the computer-delivered IELTS exam and the paper version.

If you are aware of these in advance, you will be less stressed on test day.

You also need to be familiar with all the different functions available to you.

You can practice these once our new computer IELTS study program launches!

It is also vital to be aware that many things are the same!

You will still use all the 3 Keys IELTS strategies.

What questions do you have from today’s episode?

Please leave a comment below.

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