Lindsay McMahon
"The English Adventurer"
Jessica Beck
"Director of IELTS Training"

Timing is super important on the IELTS Speaking Exam.

Today you get inside tips on what the Examiner’s job is when it comes to the Speaking test.

Jessica Beck, Director of IELTS Training at All Ears English was an Examiner for 14 years so you’ll learn the best tips to maximize your score today.

One subscriber said that recently on IELTS Speaking Part 3 the Examiner interrupted him and cut him off.

He was wondering if this hurts his score.

The short answer is: No! This does not hurt your score.

It shows fluency that you had to be cut off so that is a good thing.

Watch this video to get the perspective of Jessica who was an IELTS Examiner for 14 years.

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What does the Examiner have to do?

In Speaking Part 1, the Examiner MUST ask you three different groups of questions.

The first group is always about home, hometown, work, and studies.

The second group could be about anything.

Topics could range from mirrors, colors, hats, etc.

The Examiner has to ask you all of the questions from the first group, all of the questions from the second group, and some of the questions from the third group.

The Examiner has to keep the timing very strict.

IELTS Speaking Part 2:

In Speaking Part 2, the Examiner must give you one minute for taking notes and two minutes for answering the question.

The Examiner cannot interrupt you during those two minutes but he or she must stop you at the end.

The Examiner also has to ask you a closing question.

Give a short answer for this question and let the Examiner move on to Speaking Part 3.

IELTS Speaking Part 3:

The Examiner has to ask you up 3-6 questions.

Don’t treat this like a Speaking Part 2. It is not the same.

Your answers will not be two minutes each.

Learn more here about content for Speaking Part 3.


It’s not bad to be interrupted by the Examiner as long as you are not repeating yourself, going off topic, or losing fluency.

To see more Examiner insight into a real IELTS student taking a mock speaking test, go here now.

Do you have a question?

Let us know in the comments below.

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