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IELTS Life Skills FAQs



1. How is IELTS Life Skills assessed?

A certificated IELTS Examiner will assess your performance throughout the Speaking and Listening test based on the following criteria:

  • obtaining information
  • conveying information
  • speaking to communicate
  • engaging in discussion

The performance of the other test taker paired with you in IELTS Life Skills test does not affect the assessment of your own performance. 

2. How long does the IELTS Life Skills test take?

IELTS Life Skills at CEFR Level A1 takes 16-18 minutes and Level B1 is 22 minutes.

3. Is there any break between Speaking and Listening?

No, you will be assessed on your Speaking and Listening skills at the same time.

4. What is IELTS Life Skills? What is it for?

IELTS Life Skills is a new English Language test offered by the three IELTS Test Partners - British Council, IDP IELTS Australia and Cambridge Assessment English.

IELTS Life Skills is a test of Speaking and Listening, available at CEFR Level A1 and CEFR Level B1. It is designed to meet the requirements of UK Visas and Immigration for certain visa categories and other immigration purposes.

Download the IELTS Life Skills Guide for Test Takers and Agents to know more about the test.

5. Which IELTS Life Skills test do I need?

Are you are applying to UK Visas and Immigration for a ‘family of a settled person’ visa? IELTS Life Skills A1 is the test for you.

Are you applying to UK Visas and Immigration for indefinite leave to remain or citizenship? IELTS Life Skills B1 is the test for you.

6. Why does IELTS Life Skills only cover Speaking and Listening?

The new test has been designed to meet specific immigration requirements for which applicants only need to demonstrate speaking and listening skills.

7. When and where can I take an IELTS Life Skills test?

IELTS Life Skills tests are available throughout the world, in locations specified by UK Visas and Immigration. See the list of dates and locations.

To find out whether you need to take an approved test, what level you need to achieve, and which test you can use, you should contact UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI).

For more information, please visit Guidance on Applying for UK Visa – approved English language tests.

8. What is the format of the IELTS Life Skills test?

You take the test with another test taker and one Examiner. Your own performance on both speaking and listening will be assessed during this one session.