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Discover the pathway to your ambitions with IELTS General Training for UKVI, a step towards working, migrating, studying, or engaging in vocational training in the United Kingdom.

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If you want to work, migrate, study or seek vocational training in the UK, you might need to take the IELTS General Training for UKVI. It is a Secure English Language Test (SELT) approved by the UK Home Office for visa applications to the United Kingdom.

The IELTS General Training for UKVI is the same as the IELTS General Training test in terms of content, format, scoring, and level of difficulty. However, the IELTS for UKVI test is only available at test centres that meet the administrative requirements outlined by the UK Home Office. Your Test Report Form (TRF) will also look slightly different if you take an IELTS General Training for UKVI test.

While the IELTS Academic for UKVI test is intended for those planning to study at the tertiary level or seeking professional registration, the General Training for UKVI focuses on the practical skills required in everyday English in a social and workplace context. This focus makes it ideal for individuals aiming to embark on a new chapter in the UK, whether for career advancement, education, or personal growth.

Understanding the IELTS UKVI General Training test

The IELTS for UKVI General Training test is designed to assess your English language skills in everyday contexts, which is essential for thriving in the UK. This test has four sections:


This 11 to 14-minute test assesses your spoken English skills through a face-to-face interview with a certified IELTS examiner. It includes short questions, speaking at length about a familiar topic, and a structured discussion. This section reflects real-life interaction in English, testing your ability to communicate effectively in the UK's diverse social and professional settings.


In this 30-minute section, you will be exposed to four recordings of native English speakers, simulating a range of scenarios from everyday social conversations to academic discussions. The test requires you to listen for specific information, general understanding, and the speakers’ attitudes and opinions. This mirrors real-life situations, such as listening to a public announcement or a university lecture, preparing you for various listening environments in the UK.


Spanning 60 minutes, this section presents you with extracts from books, magazines, newspapers, notices, advertisements, company handbooks, and guidelines. These are materials you are likely to encounter daily in an English-speaking environment. The tasks involve reading for gist, main ideas, and detail, skimming, understanding logical arguments, and recognising writers' opinions, attitudes, and purpose. This section equips you with the reading skills necessary for your professional and social life in the UK.


Over 60 minutes, you'll complete two tasks. Task 1 requires you to write a letter requesting information or explaining a situation, while Task 2 involves writing an essay in response to a point of view, argument, or problem. The emphasis is on the ability to communicate effectively in a variety of contexts, ensuring you are prepared for the kinds of writing tasks you will encounter in the UK.

Effective preparation strategies for the IELTS UKVI General Training test

Securing a good score in the IELTS UKVI General Training test is achievable with a well-structured and thoughtful preparation strategy. Here’s how you can optimise your study plan to excel in the test:

1. Understand the test format

Familiarise yourself with the nuances of each section: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. Understanding the format, types of questions, and the test's timing is crucial. This knowledge will not only help you anticipate what to expect but also strategise your approach to each part of the test. You can make use of the IELTS Familiarisation Test for some insights on the test format details.

2. Develop a study plan

Create a study schedule that covers all aspects of the test. Allocate time for each section and stick to your plan. A balanced approach, focusing equally on all sections, is essential. Consider your daily routine and carve out consistent, uninterrupted time slots as part of your preparation for the IELTS UKVI General Training test.

3. Utilise official practice material

IDP provides a range of free IELTS preparation materials that give you a taste of the real test environment. These materials include sample questions, practice tests, and preparation books. By regularly practising with these resources, you become more familiar with the test format and question types.

4. Take mock tests

Mock tests are an excellent way to simulate the actual test experience. They can help you manage test anxiety and improve your time management skills. Regularly taking full-length IELTS practice tests under timed conditions will make you more comfortable and confident on the test day.

5. Work on time management

Time management is crucial for the test. Practice completing each section within the given time frame. This will help you allocate your time effectively during the actual test, ensuring that you can answer all questions without feeling rushed.

6. Focus on weak areas

Identify your weak points in English proficiency through practice tests. Once identified, dedicate extra time and resources to improve these areas. Whether it's expanding your vocabulary, enhancing your writing skills, or improving your listening abilities, focusing on these areas will help to boost your overall score.

7. Join an IELTS preparation course

Consider enrolling in an IELTS test preparation course offered by IDP. These courses provide structured learning, and professional guidance, and often include practice materials and mock tests. They can help address specific challenges and receive feedback on your performance.

By incorporating these strategies into your preparation plan, you may increase your chances of achieving a high score in the IELTS UKVI General Training test.

Book your IELTS for UKVI General Training

Booking your IELTS for the UKVI General Training test with IDP is a straightforward and user-friendly process. By following these simple steps, you can ensure your registration is completed smoothly, setting you on the right path to achieving your goals in the UK.

  • Choose your test date: Begin by selecting an IELTS exam date that suits your preparation schedule. Consider allowing enough time for study and practice before the test date.

  • Select a convenient exam centre: IDP offers numerous exam centres across various locations. Choose a centre that is most convenient for you in terms of accessibility and comfort.

  • Register online: Complete the online registration form with all the necessary personal details. Ensure that the information provided is accurate and matches the identification documents you will present on the test day.

  • Review the test format and requirements: Familiarise yourself with the test format, what to expect on the test day and any specific requirements or regulations to follow.

  • Make the payment: Pay the test fee through the secure online payment gateway. The fee for the IELTS for UKVI General Training test can be found on the booking page. Various payment options are available to suit your convenience.

  • Confirm your booking: Once your payment is processed, you will receive a confirmation of your test date and centre. This confirmation is important, so keep it safe and refer to it as needed.

  • Prepare for the test: With your test booked, focus on your preparation. Utilise the resources available through IDP and consider enrolling in preparatory courses if needed.

Once you have successfully booked your test, it's crucial to continue your preparation. Regular practice, familiarity with the test format, and working on your weaknesses will help you go into the test with confidence. Additionally, keep an eye on your email for any communication from IDP, including reminders or updates about your test.

How much does the IELTS for UKVI General Training cost?

The cost of the IELTS General Training for UKVI test may vary based on your location and the specific test centre. On average, you can expect the fee to be around RM935. However, it's essential to check the IDP IELTS Malaysia booking system for the most accurate and current pricing in your region.

Additionally, IDP facilitates a range of payment options to ensure convenience for all candidates. These include secure online payment methods such as credit/debit cards and bank transfers. Make sure to complete your payment within the specified deadline to secure your test booking.

Apart from the test fee, there may be additional costs to consider, such as:

  • Preparation materials: While there are many free resources available, investing in official IELTS preparation books or courses might incur additional costs.

  • Travel and accommodation: If your test centre is far from your residence, you may need to budget for travel expenses or overnight accommodation.

Rescheduling or cancellation fees: Be aware of the fees associated with rescheduling or cancelling your test, as these can add to your overall costs if your plans change.

Scoring and results in IELTS UKVI General Training

Understanding the scoring system and what to expect from your results is a vital part of preparing for the IELTS UKVI General Training test. Knowing how you will be assessed and what scores are required for your UK visa application can help you set realistic goals and focus your preparation efforts. Here’s a brief overview of the IELTS scoring system:

1. Band scores

The IELTS test, including the General Training for UKVI, is scored on a scale of 1 to 9, known as band scores. Each of the four sections – Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking – receives a band score. Your overall band score is then calculated as an average of these four scores.

2. Understanding band scores

Each band score corresponds to a descriptive indicator of English proficiency, ranging from 'non-user' (band score 1) to 'expert' (band score 9). Familiarise yourself with what each band score represents on the IELTS band scores.

3. Scoring for visa applications

For UK visa applications, different types of visas require different minimum band scores. Check the specific requirements for the visa category you are applying for to understand the score you need to achieve.

Your results will typically be available 13 days after the test date for IELTS on Paper and 3 to 5 days for IELTS on Computer. You can access the IELTS test results online. Additionally, a Test Report Form (TRF) will be mailed to you, which is the official document you will use for your visa application. Please note that the TRF is valid for two years from the test date, so plan your visa application accordingly.

If you do not achieve the required score for your visa application, you can retake the test. There is no limit to the number of times you can retake the test, but it’s important to use the time between attempts to improve your English skills. Consider seeking feedback on your performance and engaging in focused practice to address any weaknesses.

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