The IELTS Band Scores

Multi-level

IELTS is a multi-level exam. You get a score between 1 and 9 for each section. Half scores such as 6.5 are possible. Universities often demand an IELTS score of 6 or 7. They may also demand a minimum score in each of the 4 sections.

You can use the IELTS Band Score Calculator on this site to convert your reading and listening raw scores.

IELTS Listening marking schemes

For the listening test, which contains 40 questions, the approximate band scores can be calculated using this table.

Band Score 9 8.5 8 7.5 7 6.5 6 5.5 5 4.5 4 3.5 3 2.5
Score / 40 39-40 37-38 35-36 32-34 30-31 26-29 23-25 18-22 16-17 13-15 10-12 8-10 6-7 4-5

 

IELTS General Reading marking schemes

For the general reading test, which contains 40 questions, the approximate band scores can be calculated using this table.

Band Score 9 8.5 8 7.5 7 6.5 6 5.5 5 4.5 4 3.5 3 2.5
Score / 40 40 39 37-38 36 34-35 32-33 30-31 27-29 23-26 19-22 15-18 12-14 9-11 6-8

 

IELTS Academic Reading marking schemes

For the academic reading test, which also contains 40 questions, but is more difficult, the approximate band scores can be calculated using this table.

Band Score 9 8.5 8 7.5 7 6.5 6 5.5 5 4.5 4 3.5 3 2.5
Score / 40 39-40 37-38 35-36 33-34 30-32 27-29 23-26 19-22 15-18 13-14 10-12 8-9 6-7 4-5

 

IELTS Writing marking schemes

The two writing questions are marked out of 9 according to the following criteria:
  • Task Achievement
  • Coherence and Cohesion
  • Lexical Resource
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy

Click here to see the full writing band descriptors for IELTS.

IELTS Speaking marking schemes

The speaking test is also marked out of 9 according to the following criteria:

  • Fluency and coherence
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy
  • Pronunciation

Click here to see a comparison of IELTS scores with other exams.

Click here to see our IELTS Exam Tips.