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Preparing for your IELTS test can be stressful. With so much depending on your score, the pressure can feel overwhelming. If you've been studying on your own and finding it challenging, perhaps it's time to consider an online IELTS preparation course.

This blog aims to break down your preparation needs and highlight what to look for in an IELTS preparation course, making your journey a bit easier.

1. Understanding your needs

Setting concrete, realistic goals is crucial for tracking your IELTS preparation progress when practising online. It's helpful to break your main goal into smaller, manageable milestones. For instance, aim to improve your writing test scores by lining up your answers with the model answers with every practice run. Your improved understanding of techniques like reading contextual clues, for example, will contribute to higher Writing Test scores. This approach not only makes your preparation more manageable but also allows you to easily track your progress over time.

It's important to objectively assess your skills and identify which areas require more attention. While it’s essential to focus on weaker areas, such as if you find the Writing test more challenging than the Listening test, don’t neglect your strengths. Allocating more time to improve where you're lacking is wise, but continuing to practise all skills ensures a well-rounded proficiency.

2. Course structure and curriculum

Choosing how to plan your IELTS preparation can be confusing, especially when considering the timeline and structure of your study. This is where the structured curriculum of an IELTSpreparation course can be invaluable. A well-organised course can provide a clear roadmap for your study, helping to demystify the preparation process.

A structured curriculum is designed to systematically improve your English language skills through targeted practice. Following a set plan, you can cover all online material provided within an optimal timeframe, ensuring you're fully prepared by your test date.

Regardless of your strengths and weaknesses, it's crucial that you choose a course that offers comprehensive material covering all four IELTS modules: Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking. An effective curriculum should balance these modules and help you develop proficiency across the board. This ensures that you’re well-prepared for every part of the test, not just the areas you're confident in.

3. Maximising your preparation

Utilising IELTS practice tests is an effective way to prepare for the exam. These tests mimic the format of the actual exam, helping you become familiar with the types of questions you'll encounter. Look for a course that includes comprehensive IELTS practice tests covering Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking modules.

A good IELTS coach can make a significant difference in your preparation. They can provide personalised feedback on your practice tests, helping you identify areas for improvement and refine your test-taking strategies. Ensure your chosen course offers access to experienced coaches who can guide you through your preparation journey.

4. Qualified instructors

Having an experienced and qualified instructor to oversee your work can greatly influence your preparation progress for your IELTS components. IELTS experts, such as a skilled IELTS coach you interact with online, can identify and track your habitual mistakes to provide targeted feedback, which is invaluable for making constructive progress. Engaging with a preparation course with access to such expertise is crucial to enhancing your IELTS preparation efforts.

The teaching methods employed in your course can greatly affect your comprehension of complex topics. While the approach to teaching might not vary dramatically across different courses, the impact of an interactive course structure and dynamic preparation material on your learning progress is undeniable. An engaging teaching style can transform your study experience, making it more effective and enjoyable.

5. Online resources

The landscape of IELTS preparation has evolved with the advent of technology and online learning. This shift has introduced a range of innovative learning platforms that offer diverse avenues for study.

  • Short-form videos from test-takers: These videos provide quick insights and tips from those who have recently taken the test, offering practical advice and relatable experiences.

  • University webinars: Webinars hosted by universities often cover specific sections of the IELTS exam, providing in-depth explanations and answering common queries.

  • Practice tests: Online platforms offer a variety of practice tests that mimic the format of the actual exam, allowing you to familiarise yourself with the test structure and types of questions.

  • Online IELTS preparation courses: Comprehensive preparation courses that cover all aspects of the IELTS test, including interactive lessons, feedback from coaches, and a wealth of practice materials.

The role of practice tests in IELTS preparation cannot be overstated. The availability of online IELTS mock tests, including those built on past questions, allows you to set realistic expectations to track for the actual exam. These tests provide a benchmark for your progress, highlighting areas where further study is needed. Moreover, practising with official IELTS mock tests ensures you're well-acquainted with the exam's format, timing, and pressure, significantly boosting your confidence on test day.

6. Flexibility and convenience

Balancing IELTS preparation with your current job or academic curriculum can be a challenge. Allocating specific times for study is essential, yet unforeseen constraints may disrupt your schedule. It's crucial to opt for online IELTS courses with flexible schedules to accommodate these fluctuations, allowing for a more adaptive learning experience.

Contrasting this with a more rigid timetable, the benefits of a course that provides preparation material for self-directed learning become clear. Self-paced courses offer the ultimate flexibility, enabling you to progress according to your availability and to easily track your advancements.

IDP’s education connection


If you’re searching for effective IELTS preparation materials, look to official sources such as IDP, which co-owns IELTS. With access to free practice tests online and insightful webinars led by IELTS experts, learners have a wealth of IELTS strategies at their fingertips.

Selecting the right IELTS course provider is about finding the right balance between comprehensive material coverage, flexible learning options, and access to qualified instructors. With IDP, you can get equipped with the knowledge and skills you need on your IELTS preparation journey. Download the IELTS by IDP app to get started.

When you’re ready to take on the IELTS test, book a suitable time slot at a test centre of your choice with IDP.