Ways to take IELTS

Test takers are offered a choice of different ways to sit their IELTS test at our test centres, and in some cases, remotely online. Security is a key priority to ensure that we maintain our trusted status with organisations around the world who accept IELTS results.

Educational institutions may choose to accept results from IELTS Academic tests that have been taken online.

At an IELTS test centre

Test takers have the choice to take their test on paper or on a computer. There is no difference to the test questions or format, only the way the test takers complete their answers.

IELTS on computer

Test takers can also attend an official IELTS test centre and sit their test on a computer. Questions for the Listening, Reading, and Writing sections are shown on the screen and test takers enter their answers on the computer.

The Speaking section is completed during a face-to-face session with a trained IELTS Examiner, which is done on the same day.


Results for IELTS on computer are available 3–5 days after test completion.

IELTS on paper

Test takers who opt to take the test on paper will sit at a desk with question-and-answer papers for the Listening, Reading, and Writing sections of their test.

The Speaking section of the test is conducted by a trained IELTS Examiner.


Results are available 13 days after test completion.

Remote testing with IELTS Academic online

We offer test takers in some countries the option to complete the IELTS Academic test online, and we are adding more countries all the time. The test has the same format, questions, timing, and marking criteria as completing the IELTS test at a test centre.

The Speaking section of the test is completed in an online video call with a trained IELTS Examiner. Receiving organisations can decide whether they are happy to accept results from IELTS Academic tests that are taken online or not. The Test Report Form will indicate if the test taker has completed their test online.


Test results are available 3–6 days after taking the test.