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Academic test - sample test questions

IELTS Academic is your key to studying where you want to go.


Preparing for your IELTS Academic test

We want you to do well in your test. To help you get ready, here are some sample tests for the Academic test.

Listening and Speaking tests are the same for IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training, but the Reading and Writing tests are different.

With these official practice materials you can:

  • get used to the test format
  • experience the types of tasks involved
  • test yourself under timed conditions
  • review your answers and compare them with model answers.

IELTS Academic - paper sample tests

Listening (30 minutes) 

The Listening test is the same for both IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training and consists of four recorded monologues and conversations.

The following IELTS Listening sample tasks are to be used with the Answer Sheet and MP3 audio files and/or transcripts. Each answer sheet indicates which recording to listen to, or if a transcript is provided.

Listening sample tasks

Find out more about the Listening test

Academic Reading (60 minutes)

Texts for the Academic Reading test are taken from books, journals, magazines and newspapers.

A variety of tasks is used, including: multiple-choice questions, identifying information, identifying writer’s views/claims, matching information, matching headings, matching features, matching sentence endings, sentence completion, summary completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, diagram label completion, short-answer questions.

Academic Reading sample tasks

Find out more about the Academic Reading test

Academic Writing (60 minutes) 

The Academic Writing test consists of two writing tasks of 150 words and 250 words.

In Task 1, you are asked to describe some visual information (graph/table/chart/diagram). You need to write 150 words in about 20 minutes. In Task 2 you are presented with a point of view or argument or problem. You need to write your response in 250 words in about 40 minutes.

Academic Writing sample tasks

Find out more about the Academic Writing test

Speaking (11–14 minutes)

In the Speaking test, you have a discussion with a certified examiner. It is interactive and as close to a real-life situation as a test can get.

There are three parts to the test and each part fulfils a specific function in terms of interaction pattern, task input and test taker output.

In Part 1, you answer questions about yourself and your family. In Part 2, you speak about a topic. In Part 3, you have a longer discussion on the topic.

The Speaking test is the same for both IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. Each of the three parts is designed to test a different aspect of your communication ability.

Speaking sample tasks

Find out more about the Speaking test 

IELTS Academic - paper sample tests

Listening (30 minutes) 

The Listening test is the same for both IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training and consists of four recorded monologues and conversations.

The following IELTS Listening sample tasks are to be used with the Answer Sheet and MP3 audio files and/or transcripts. Each answer sheet indicates which recording to listen to, or if a transcript is provided.

Listening sample tasks

Find out more about the Listening test

Academic Reading (60 minutes)

Texts for the Academic Reading test are taken from books, journals, magazines and newspapers.

A variety of tasks is used, including: multiple-choice questions, identifying information, identifying writer’s views/claims, matching information, matching headings, matching features, matching sentence endings, sentence completion, summary completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, diagram label completion, short-answer questions.

Academic Reading sample tasks

Find out more about the Academic Reading test

Academic Writing (60 minutes) 

The Academic Writing test consists of two writing tasks of 150 words and 250 words.

In Task 1, you are asked to describe some visual information (graph/table/chart/diagram). You need to write 150 words in about 20 minutes. In Task 2 you are presented with a point of view or argument or problem. You need to write your response in 250 words in about 40 minutes.

Academic Writing sample tasks

Find out more about the Academic Writing test

Speaking (11–14 minutes)

In the Speaking test, you have a discussion with a certified examiner. It is interactive and as close to a real-life situation as a test can get.

There are three parts to the test and each part fulfils a specific function in terms of interaction pattern, task input and test taker output.

In Part 1, you answer questions about yourself and your family. In Part 2, you speak about a topic. In Part 3, you have a longer discussion on the topic.

The Speaking test is the same for both IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. Each of the three parts is designed to test a different aspect of your communication ability.

Speaking sample tasks

Find out more about the Speaking test 

IELTS Academic - computer sample tests

Listening (30 minutes)

The Listening question types for IELTS on computer are the same as in the IELTS on paper test. 

A variety of tasks is used including: multiple choice, matching, plan/map/diagram labelling, form completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, summary completion, sentence completion, short-answer questions.

Listening Sample task Multiple Choice (one answer)

You will hear an extract from a Part 3 recording in which a student called Judy is discussing her research with her tutor and fellow students.

For each question, click on the correct answer.

You will hear an extract from a Part 1 recording in which two people are discussing a guide to a library.

Click on the correct answers.

Listening Sample task Plan/Map/Diagram Labelling (Type A)

You will hear an extract from Part 2 of the test in which a tour guide describes different places in a US town.

For each question, click on the correct space in the table.

Listening Sample task Note Completion

You will hear an extract from a Part 1 recording in which two people are discussing second-hand furniture.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Listening Sample task Table Completion

You will hear an extract from a Part 4 recording in which a university lecturer is giving a talk about research into ‘learner persistence’.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Listening Sample task Flow-chart Completion (selecting from a list of words or phrases)

You will read an extract from a Part 3 recording in which two biology students are comparing their research on evidence of life on Earth and other planets.

For each question, click on the correct answer and move it into the gap.

Listening Sample task Sentence Completion

You will hear an extract from a Part 3 recording in which two friends are discussing studying with the Open University.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Listening Sample task Short Answer Questions

You will hear an extract from Part 2 of the test in which a representative from a clothing company is giving a talk to high school students.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Find out more about the Listening test

Academic Reading (60 minutes)

The Academic Reading question types in IELTS on computer are the same as in the IELTS on paper test. A variety of tasks is used including: multiple choice, identifying information (True/False/Not Given), identifying a writer’s views/claims (Yes/No/Not Given), matching information, matching headings, matching features, matching sentence endings, summary completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, diagram label completion, short-answer questions.

Academic Reading Sample task Multiple Choice (one answer)

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about older people in the workforce.

Click on the correct answer.

Academic Reading Sample task Multiple Choice (more than one answer)

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about older people in the workforce.

Click on the correct answers.

Academic Reading Sample task Identifying Information (True/False/Not Given)

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about the scientist Marie Curie.

Click on the correct answers.

Academic Reading Sample task Note Completion

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about the scientist Marie Curie.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Table Completion

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about dung beetles.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Matching Features

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about the development of rockets.

For each question, click on the correct space in the table.

Academic Reading Sample task Summary Completion (selecting words from the text)

You will read an extract from a Part 3 text about the ‘Plain English’ movement, which promotes the use of clear English.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Summary Completion (selecting from a list of words or phrases)

You will read an extract from a Part 3 text about language.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Sentence Completion

You will read a Part 2 text which discusses whether birds evolved from dinosaurs.

Click on the correct answer.

Academic Reading Sample task Matching Sentence Endings

You will read an extract from a Part 3 text about the scientific community in London in the 1700s.

Click on the correct answer.

Find out more about the Academic Reading test

Academic Writing (60 minutes)

The Academic Writing question types in IELTS on computer are the same as in the IELTS on paper test.

In Part 1, you are presented with a graph, table, chart or diagram and are asked to describe, summarise or explain the information in your own words. You may be asked to describe and explain data, describe the stages of a process, how something works or describe an object or event.
In Part 2, you are asked to write an essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem.

Academic Writing Sample tasks

Find out more about the Academic Writing test

IELTS Academic - computer sample tests

Listening (30 minutes)

The Listening question types for IELTS on computer are the same as in the IELTS on paper test. 

A variety of tasks is used including: multiple choice, matching, plan/map/diagram labelling, form completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, summary completion, sentence completion, short-answer questions.

Listening Sample task Multiple Choice (one answer)

You will hear an extract from a Part 3 recording in which a student called Judy is discussing her research with her tutor and fellow students.

For each question, click on the correct answer.

You will hear an extract from a Part 1 recording in which two people are discussing a guide to a library.

Click on the correct answers.

Listening Sample task Plan/Map/Diagram Labelling (Type A)

You will hear an extract from Part 2 of the test in which a tour guide describes different places in a US town.

For each question, click on the correct space in the table.

Listening Sample task Note Completion

You will hear an extract from a Part 1 recording in which two people are discussing second-hand furniture.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Listening Sample task Table Completion

You will hear an extract from a Part 4 recording in which a university lecturer is giving a talk about research into ‘learner persistence’.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Listening Sample task Flow-chart Completion (selecting from a list of words or phrases)

You will read an extract from a Part 3 recording in which two biology students are comparing their research on evidence of life on Earth and other planets.

For each question, click on the correct answer and move it into the gap.

Listening Sample task Sentence Completion

You will hear an extract from a Part 3 recording in which two friends are discussing studying with the Open University.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Listening Sample task Short Answer Questions

You will hear an extract from Part 2 of the test in which a representative from a clothing company is giving a talk to high school students.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Find out more about the Listening test

Academic Reading (60 minutes)

The Academic Reading question types in IELTS on computer are the same as in the IELTS on paper test. A variety of tasks is used including: multiple choice, identifying information (True/False/Not Given), identifying a writer’s views/claims (Yes/No/Not Given), matching information, matching headings, matching features, matching sentence endings, summary completion, note completion, table completion, flow-chart completion, diagram label completion, short-answer questions.

Academic Reading Sample task Multiple Choice (one answer)

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about older people in the workforce.

Click on the correct answer.

Academic Reading Sample task Multiple Choice (more than one answer)

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about older people in the workforce.

Click on the correct answers.

Academic Reading Sample task Identifying Information (True/False/Not Given)

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about the scientist Marie Curie.

Click on the correct answers.

Academic Reading Sample task Note Completion

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about the scientist Marie Curie.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Table Completion

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about dung beetles.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Matching Features

You will read an extract from a Part 1 text about the development of rockets.

For each question, click on the correct space in the table.

Academic Reading Sample task Summary Completion (selecting words from the text)

You will read an extract from a Part 3 text about the ‘Plain English’ movement, which promotes the use of clear English.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Summary Completion (selecting from a list of words or phrases)

You will read an extract from a Part 3 text about language.

For each question, write your answer in the gap.

Academic Reading Sample task Sentence Completion

You will read a Part 2 text which discusses whether birds evolved from dinosaurs.

Click on the correct answer.

Academic Reading Sample task Matching Sentence Endings

You will read an extract from a Part 3 text about the scientific community in London in the 1700s.

Click on the correct answer.

Find out more about the Academic Reading test

Academic Writing (60 minutes)

The Academic Writing question types in IELTS on computer are the same as in the IELTS on paper test.

In Part 1, you are presented with a graph, table, chart or diagram and are asked to describe, summarise or explain the information in your own words. You may be asked to describe and explain data, describe the stages of a process, how something works or describe an object or event.
In Part 2, you are asked to write an essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem.

Academic Writing Sample tasks

Find out more about the Academic Writing test

IELTS on computer practice experience

The practice experience will show you how everything will look on your computer ahead of the test day. As these are practice tests, they are not timed. There are some variations from the live tests, including the timer, highlighting, and notes functions performing differently.

In this Listening test sample, you will hear four different recordings.

You will hear each recording ONCE only.

The test is in four parts, with 40 questions in total.

This Academic Reading sample will show you three texts to read.

The test is in three parts, with 40 questions in total.

This Academic Writing sample consists of two writing tasks.

In this Listening test sample, you will hear four different recordings.

You will hear each recording ONCE only.

The test is in four parts, with 40 questions in total.

This Academic Reading sample will show you three texts to read.

The test is in three parts, with 40 questions in total.

This Academic Writing sample consists of two writing tasks.

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