How are IELTS Band Scores Calculated?


IELTS the main exam which decides whether you are eligible for higher studies, work or migration to the selected countries. Here is the article about the Band score calculation of IELTS. Read more and learn more about the band score calculation of IELTS including the score requires in writing, speaking, pronunciation tests in IELTS.

IELTS or International English Language Testing System is as the name suggests a test of your English language skills. This examination includes a test on your listening skills, writing skills, reading skills and speaking skills. This test is usually taken by students who wish to study at any university abroad that imparts the lectures in English. In that case, the university not only requires a good academic background of the student, but it will also scrutinize if the student holds a good score in IELTS. If you enrol for a IELTS training, then you will get to learn a lot of aspects of English language that were not taught to you, when English was your compulsory language subject in academics. Without professional guidance, it will be very difficult for you to achieve the score that you have in your mind. The score that will be generated once you pass the examination is universally accepted. Therefore, if you are going to study abroad and that too in a university where the language of communication is English, make sure that you first clear this test and make sure you take some professional help to clear this test.

These scores are called band scores and they are separately calculated for each part of the test. This means that if you give the test, then you will get a separate band score for IELTS reading, listening, writing and speaking. These individual band scores are then combined or added up to calculate your overall band score. Whatever be the summation of all 4 band scores, it is divided by 4, which will be your overall band score. If your overall band score that is the average is above .5, then the score is generally rounded off to the immediate next higher score. For example, say your average for overall band score comes to 6.65, then your overall band score would be considered as 7. Now let us have a look at the individual band scores for IELTS and its measuring parameters.

How are IELTS Band Scores calculated?

Reading-The IELTS band score of reading is in between 0-9 or 0-40. You get some passages from where some questions are asked at the end of the passages. Now based on the number of correct answers you provide in the answer sheet, you will get a score in between 0-40 in Reading and therefore, you will get a band score. There are 40 questions each carrying 1 mark. Therefore in order to get a band score of 9, you must answer 40 questions correctly. There are no other parameters or factors that influence the band scores for the Reading Test. Therefore, in order to score high, you must read all the passages given in your question paper and answer the questions correctly. There is no negative marking for any wrong answer.

Listening-The band score of listening is in between 0-9 or 0-40. Just like Reading Test, you need to answer 40 questions. The marking system is same as that of reading. In Listening test, you will have to listen to various dialogues sessions one by one in a headphone provided to you. You will get the answers to the questions given in the question paper in the dialogues that you will be listening to. There are no other factors affecting the band score of listening. The more you answer correctly, the higher band score you get. There is no negative marking here for any wrong answer.

Writing-In this case, the band score is calculated on four factors. You will be given two questions, for which you will have to write at least the number of words mentioned in the question. The four factors affecting the band score of writing are as follows:

  • Task Achievement-This means whether you have written with respect to the question or not. You need to address all the questions given and complete each question or task within the time. If there are four graphs which you have to analyze, then you need to address each part of the four graphs. Otherwise your task will be incomplete.
  • Coherence and Cohesion-Your writing should be coherent to read.
  • Lexical Resource-Whatever you write should have good vocabulary.
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy-Last but not the least, your grammatical constructs should match the rules abided by British or American English grammar.


If you can write keeping in mind the points above, your band score will rise towards 9.

Speaking-Here also the band score is calculated based on four factors. You will be asked a few questions on which you will have to speak. The examiner will try to understand your knowledge in English grammar and vocabulary based on the following factors
Fluency and coherence-This means how fluent you are in speaking in English.

  • Pronunciation-The examiner will check if your English pronunciation matches the rules for pronunciation in British or American English.
  • Lexical resource and
  • Grammatical range and accuracy mean the same as for writing.


The better you speak and excel in each of those four departments, the higher will be your band score and closer will it be towards a 9.


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