What Listening Techniques Should I Use to Improve My IELTS Score?

ielts Listening Techniques

IELTS Listening is a section of the IELTS exam that assesses a candidate’s ability to understand spoken English. The IELTS Listening test is approximately 30 minutes long and consists of four sections with 10 questions each. The test takers are required to listen to different sets of recordings. 

These recordings are of native English speakers in the form of monologues and dialogues. Each section is played only once.  The IELTS Listening section is considered easy by many, but there are a lot of candidates who find it difficult. Experts say in the most popular IELTS study material while sharing best IELTS listening tips, that candidates should pay attention to the keywords while listening to the recordings. 

There are no best IELTS listening books that can prepare anyone to improve, it’s only once consistent practice and hard work that can work.

Reasons for low score in IELTS Listening test 

1.Poor English language skills: Candidates with poor English language skills find it challenging to understand accents used by native speakers while listening to the recordings. They end up missing important information and answer questions incorrectly.

2. Lack of familiarity with the test format: The IELTS Listening test has a unique format, which includes different types of questions and accents. Candidates not familiar with the test format, or the ones who do not take help of IELTS study material while preparing, can feel overwhelmed thus leading to a lower score.

3. Lack of focus: Listening requires concentration and focus. It is very important for candidates to learn the techniques to focus and find the key information in the dialogues or monologues they listen to.

4. Poor time management: The IELTS Listening test has strict time limits, and candidates must manage their time effectively to complete all the questions. If a candidate spends too much time on one question, they may not have enough time to answer all the questions, leading to a lower score.

5. Inadequate practice: Candidates who do not practice listening to conversations or taking practice tests may find the IELTS Listening test challenging. Practicing regularly can help candidates build their listening skills and confidence.

To improve their score in the IELTS Listening test, candidates should focus on improving their English language skills, familiarize themselves with the test format, practice listening to English conversations, and work on time management and concentration.

Follow best IELTS Listening tips for the desired band score:

The following are some particular strategies to hone your listening abilities:

1.Familiarize yourself with the test format: The IELTS listening test comprises four sections, each with a different type of listening task. Make sure you understand what each task involves and the types of questions you might be asked. 

The test is designed to progressively increase in difficulty, and the recordings will become longer and more complex as the test progresses. At the conclusion of the test, you will have 10 minutes to record your responses on an answer sheet.

The IELTS Listening test is scored on a band scale of 1-9, with whole and half band scores available. Your final score will be the average of the four sections. It’s important to note that there are no penalties for incorrect answers, so it’s always better to make a guess if you’re unsure of an answer.

2. Listen to a variety of English accents: As mentioned earlier, the IELTS listening test features a variety of English accents. Expose yourself to different accents by listening to various English podcasts, news programs, or audiobooks.

Listening to a variety of accents and following the best IELTS Listening tips can help you in IELTS listening because the IELTS test features a range of accents from different English-speaking countries. The speakers on the test could have accents from the United Kingdom, the United States, Canada, Australia, or New Zealand, among others. The accents might also vary within each country, depending on the region or background of the speaker.

Therefore, exposing yourself to different accents can help you become more familiar with the variations in pronunciation, intonation, and word stress that you are likely to encounter on the IELTS listening test. As you listen to different accents, your brain becomes more adaptable to understanding various speech patterns, making it easier for you to recognize and understand different accents.

3. Practice listening for specific information: In IELTS Listening, you have a limited time to answer a set of questions. By knowing what specific information you are looking for, you can efficiently locate and identify the answer without wasting time listening to irrelevant parts of the recording.

Listen to English content with a specific purpose, such as understanding directions, instructions, or news stories. You can also watch videos and TV shows with English subtitles to help you understand the content. 

4. Take IELTS practice tests: The IELTS Listening test format is unique, and taking practice tests can help you become familiar with the test structure, instructions, and types of questions.

Practicing with the help of IELTS study material is one of the most effective ways to improve your listening skills. Take as many practice tests as possible, and review your answers to identify areas where you need to improve.

Taking IELTS practice tests is an essential component of effective preparation for the IELTS test. It can help you become familiar with the test format, improve your time management skills, identify weak areas, increase your confidence, track your progress, and expose you to different accents and topics.

5. Use note-taking techniques: During the IELTS listening test, you will have time to read the questions before the audio begins. Use this time to identify keywords and phrases and take notes while listening to the audio. Note-taking techniques can vary depending on your personal preference and style. You can use bullet points, diagrams, tables, or a combination of these to capture the information you need. The key is to be clear, concise, and to write down only the most important information. Here are some specific benefits of note-taking during the IELTS listening test:

  • Helps you focus: Taking notes can help you concentrate on the audio and stay engaged throughout the test. You’ll be actively listening for the specific information that you need to write down, which can help you stay alert and focused.
  • Helps you remember: Writing down the key points can help you remember the information better. Studies have shown that taking notes can significantly improve your recall of information.
  • Helps you organize: Taking notes helps you organize the information you hear, making it easier to understand and analyze. It can help you connect ideas and make sense of complex topics.
  • Helps you identify answers: Note-taking can help you identify the answers to the questions you’ll be asked during the test. You can use abbreviations, symbols, or keywords to highlight the information you need.

6. Improve your vocabulary: A larger vocabulary enables you to recognize and use context clues more effectively. As you listen to the audio, you may come across words that you don’t know, but can infer their meaning based on the context in which they are used. A good vocabulary can help you identify these clues and use them to answer the questions more accurately.

To improve your vocabulary for IELTS listening, you can start by learning new words and phrases from various sources, such as news articles, podcasts, and academic journals. You can also use flashcards or vocabulary apps to practice and memorize new words. The key is to practice regularly and use a variety of resources to help you expand your vocabulary. 

With a larger vocabulary, you’ll be able to recognize and process words faster, which can improve your speed and accuracy during the test. This can be especially important during the “fill in the blank” sections of the test, where you need to write down specific words or phrases

7. Improve your concentration: Listening for long periods can be challenging, so it’s important to improve your concentration. Improving your concentration for IELTS Listening requires a combination of mental and physical techniques. By removing distractions, actively listening, building stamina, exercising regularly, practicing through IELTS study material, and taking regular breaks, you can improve your ability to concentrate and ultimately improve your performance in the IELTS Listening test.

Remember that the IELTS listening test is designed to be challenging, so don’t worry if you find it difficult at first. With practice and preparation, you can improve your listening skills and get the score you need.

How to find IELTS study material for listening test 

These days there is a plethora of content on the internet whether it is IELTS study material, practice tests, sample answers or other learning material that candidates can use on their own. However not all the content available on the internet is of high quality. 

The best IELTS online coaching centre like Yuno Learning has a wide range of Listening practice tests and study materials that will help you to practice in the best possible way and get your desired band score. These resources will not only help you to analyze your performance, but give you an idea about how the real IELTS Listening test looks like.

What are some of the best IELTS Listening books in 2023 for practice?

There are many IELTS listening books available in the market, and the best one for you may depend on your current level and specific needs. Here are some highly recommended IELTS listening books for practice:

1.”Cambridge IELTS 15 Academic Student’s Book with Answers” – This book is one of the latest editions in the Cambridge IELTS series and provides a good range of listening practice tests that reflect the actual test.

2. “Barron’s IELTS Practice Exams” – This book includes six full-length IELTS practice exams with detailed explanations of the answers. It also comes with audio recordings that can be downloaded online.

3. “Target Band 7: IELTS Academic Module – How to Maximize Your Score” by Simone Braverman – This book provides a comprehensive guide to IELTS listening and includes a range of practice exercises and tips to help you improve your listening skills.

4. “Official IELTS Practice Materials 2” – This book is produced by the makers of the IELTS test, and it includes a range of listening practice tests along with audio recordings and transcripts.

5. “IELTS Listening Strategies: The Ultimate Guide with Tips, Tricks, and Practice on How to Get a Target Band Score of 8.0+” by Rachel Mitchell – This book provides a step-by-step guide to IELTS listening, including a range of practice exercises and strategies to help you improve your score.

Overall, the above-listed best IELTS listening books are highly recommended by students and experts, and they provide an excellent range of practice materials to help you prepare for the IELTS listening test.

IELTS Listening is one of the most scoring modules, and with the appropriate help and IELTS study material and practice tests, you may achieve your desired band score on the listening section. So, don’t waste any more time and get started on your IELTS exam preparation by using our excellent resources.

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