Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"

Today you’ll learn questions to ask your IELTS test center, so you’re fully prepared for test day!

IELTS has very strict regulations for their test centers, attempting to make them as uniform as possible.

However, there is some flexibility and variations from center to center. Find out the information below, so you have more control over your IELTS Exam experience.

Questions for IELTS Test Center Administrator: 

  • Is the Listening Exam via speaker or headphones?

Most centers play the audio on speakers. This can be a surprising challenge on test day for some candidates.

Make sure to practice listening via speaker, and not just headphones, before your exam!

  • When will the Speaking Exams be scheduled?

Many test centers automatically administer all parts of the exam on the same day, usually on Saturdays, and sometimes on Thursdays.

However, other centers will schedule your Speaking test up to a week before or after your test date.

Make certain of your options, and you can ask to schedule your speaking at a convenient time instead of the same day as the rest of the test, if this will help you perform better.

  • What time should I arrive?

Many IELTS centers begin the exam at 9 a.m., but some start later.


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Nevertheless, you will have to arrive early to complete the registration process and verify your identity.

  • What can/must I bring with me?

At numerous centers, they are very strict about what you are allowed to bring with you into the testing room.

For instance, you may only be allowed to have a water bottle with no label. Many centers do not allow you to bring your own pen/pencil, as they will provide these.

Also, you will be prohibited from having your phone with you, and probably a watch as well. The invigilators and examiners will keep track of the time for you.

You can bring your bag, but you must check it in, and then pick it up after your exam.

Lastly, you absolutely must bring your passport, or another accepted form of ID.

Then, try to find another student that has taken the test there. 

You can ask them:

  • Did you have any problems at this venue?

(i.e. hearing the audio on the listening test, difficult examiners, overall experience)

What was your experience like at your IELTS Test Center?

Leave a review in the comments section below, and let other candidates know!

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