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IELTS Listening preparation

Learn about the IELTS Listening section and the question types to expect.

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IELTS Listening

IELTS Listening overview

The Listening test consists of four audio recordings with ten questions for each recording. The questions are designed so that the answers appear in the order they are heard in the audio recording.

The first two recordings deal with situations set in everyday social contexts. In recording 1, there is a conversation between two speakers (for example, a conversation about travel arrangements). In recording 2, there is a monologue in (for example, a speech about local facilities).

The final two recordings deal with situations set in educational and training contexts. In recording 3, there is a conversation between two main speakers (for example, two university students in discussion, perhaps guided by a tutor), and in recording 4, there is a monologue on an academic subject.

The recordings are heard only once. They include a range of accents, including British, Australian, New Zealand, American and Canadian.


A variety of question types are used, chosen from the following: multiple choice, matching, plan/map/diagram labelling, form/note/table/flow-chart/summary completion, sentence completion.