Why IELTS?

IELTS (International English Language Testing System) is the world’s most popular English language test. More than 2 million IELTS tests are taken each year. 

Taking IELTS opens doors – it can help you live, study and work around the world. More than 9,000 organisations worldwide accept IELTS, including government, academic and employment institutions. In fact, IELTS is the only English language test accepted for immigration purposes by all countries that require one. 

The IELTS test is designed to help you use English in your new life abroad. It effectively assesses all of your English skills, including listening, reading, writing and speaking.

The most effective way of testing your English conversation skills is face-to-face. IELTS is the most widely accepted English language test with a one-on-one speaking test to assess your English language communication skills. 

Designed by experts in English language assessment and trusted around the world, you can be sure that IELTS will give a fair and consistent assessment of your English skills.   

On 22 May, the UK Home Office issued guidance on secure English language test (SELT) providers. We encourage you to check the full text and FAQ here

If you are applying for a visa to move to or remain in the UK,  there's an IELTS test for you. You can find more information in our IELTS for UK Visas and Immigration section.

WHY TAKE IELTS WITH THE BRITISH COUNCIL?

The British Council has more than 75 years’ experience teaching and testing English. We have helped people in more than 130 countries gain English language qualifications that help them make the most of their chances in life. That’s a lot of experience, and it means that if you take an English language test with us, you can be confident that you’ll be well looked after.

Here are just a few reasons why millions of people have taken IELTS with the British Council:  

  • Expert support: from videos and books to online interactive courses, you have access to the best preparation materials to help you do well in your test.
  • Free resources: Road to IELTS is the British Council’s popular online preparation course. When you register for an IELTS test with us you also get access to 30 hours of free training.
  • Convenient dates and locations: we organise test sessions three times a month in convenient locations. This gives you more options for when you can take your test.
  • Easy booking: you can book your IELTS test online easily.
  • Fast results: we guarantee you will be able to see your results online 13 days after your test date.
  • Special arrangements: your English language ability will be assessed objectively, regardless of any disability or special needs that you may have. Find out more about how we can facilitate your special arrangements. Please note, you will need a medical certificate issued within the last two years at the time of registration.

Recognition in Hong Kong

Being widely recognized both by private corporations and the Hong Kong government as proof of English proficiency, IELTS is very popular amongst secondary students who are about to enter local universities, as they use an IELTS score as a backup to their local public examination results for university applications.  Young graduates and job seekers also tend to take IELTS as additional proof of their English proficiency.     

Register

You can register for IELTS quickly and easily through our Online Registration Service.
To register, simply follow the steps below:

1. Read the Information for Candidates

Download and read the Information for Candidates,which contains important information about the test format, question types and test results. Please note that IELTS is not recommended for candidates under the age of 16. 

2. Decide which version of the test is right for you

There are two versions of the IELTS test:

IELTS Academic
IELTS General Training

 Read our simple guide to help you decide which version of the test is right for you. 

3. Check the IELTS test dates 

British Council holds IELTS in both Hong Kong and Macau. 

The IELTS test fee for sessions before 1 September 2016 is HK$1,860 in Hong Kong and MOP$2,250 in Macau.

The IELTS test fee for sessions from 1 September 2016 onwards is HK$1,930 in Hong Kong and MOP$2,250 in Macau.

There are a limited number of places for all our IELTS test sessions. To make sure you get a place, we recommend that you register two months before your chosen test date. Of course, places may be available after this date.

If you would like to take the IELTS test in Hong Kong, please check the test dates here

To register for a Macau session, please contact MPI-Bell Centre of English at (853) 8599 3162 or (853) 8599 3163 or mpibell@ipm.edu.mo  

Please note:

  • All written tests (listening, reading and writing sections) will be held on Saturday mornings (from 9:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.).
  • Speaking tests will be held either in the afternoon after the written tests (from 1:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.) or on the following day (Sunday from 9:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.). Please check before you register.
  • Each candidate is allocated a speaking time slot of 15 - 20 minutes.
  • If you haven’t completed all four sections of the test, you will not be given a test report.

4. Register online

Use our Online Registration System to book your place for the test.

  • Check and select module and a test date
  • Register your personal details and pay by credit card

5. In person or by post

  • Check the test date and module
  • Complete, sign and date an Application Form
  • Attach a copy of your HKID or passport (you must bring the same ID document on the test date)
  • Prepare a cheque made payable to 'British Council' for the test fee, correctly dated and signed (for postal application).
  • Hand in or post to the Customer Services Centre or post to Examinations Services

6. Payment Methods

  • Credit cards
  • EPS (not applicable to registration online or by post)
  • Crossed cheque from a bank account in the HKSAR or a bank draft drawn from a bank in the HKSAR (payable to 'British Council' in Hong Kong currency)
  • Cash is not accepted

Important Notes:

  • The application will only be processed with completed information.
  • Do not send your application before the relevant registration period opens.
  • No refund will be made for cancellation of examinations under any circumstances. 

 7. After you register

After registration, you will receive an email confirmation and have free access to the online course: Road to IELTS

 8. Change of Test Date

You are only allowed to change the test date on medical grounds. The test date can be changed once only. You need to submit such requests within five working days after the test.

Special Arrangements

We aim to do our best to cater to candidates with special needs. We will do all we can to enable candidates to understand test questions and ways of giving answers. All candidates, irrespective of their disability, will be assessed fairly and objectively.

Candidates who require special arrangements are asked to submit the request at least three months before the test and inform the test centre before they pay their test fees. You must attach original supporting medical evidence to your application. It must be in the form of a report prepared in a period no more than two years before the test date. 

Prepare

British Council Hong Kong has a wealth of resources to help you prepare for your IELTS test, from our one-day workshops and preparation seminars to online tools such as Road to IELTS. Available exclusively to British Council registered IELTS candidates, this tool provides 30 hours of online self-study material based on commonly used IELTS topics.

If you book your IELTS test with the British Council, you can take exclusive advantage of our wide range of learning materials – all designed to help you get the best possible score on your IELTS test. 

1. Road to IELTS Course – 30 hours of free online study

Road to IELTS is a popular online self-study resource for listening, reading, writing and speaking practice. Prepared by the British Council for its IELTS students, Road to IELTS includes: 

  • Practice materials
  • Timed tests
  • Tutorials
  • Online scoring
  • Self-assessment tools so that you can measure your progress

You can try our Road to IELTS resources with 10 hours of free study right now.

When you register for an IELTS test with us, you’ll be free to enjoy a further 20 hours of access to the learning materials. 

2. Further British Council online preparation materials

We also have a selection of online preparation materials for your listening and speaking tests.

Prepare for the IELTS Listening Test

Prepare for the IELTS Speaking Test

3. LearnEnglish website

We have a website dedicated to learning the English language. It’s called LearnEnglish and it has a number of very useful English learning resources, such as:

  • Videos
  • Podcasts
  • Grammar and vocabulary tutorials
  • Business/work resources and a magazine
  • Games
  • IELTS tips
  • Community networking opportunities

You’ll find that learning materials on the site really support your preparation for your IELTS test, and they’ll give you more confidence when it comes to test day.

4. British Council IELTS courses and workshops

We provide a range of face-to-face courses and workshops taught by highly qualified English language teachers who have in-depth knowledge of the IELTS test.
Find out about our IELTS courses

5. More British Council IELTS materials and resources

IELTS books: You can buy a selection of IELTS self-study books which are written by some of the world’s leading English language experts.

IELTS videos: Videos are features by our senior teachers, which cover the four papers of the IELTS test - reading, writing, listening and speaking and give invaluable advice on how to prepare in advance and plan on the day itself.

IELTS seminars: Our monthly IELTS seminars are designed to provide practical information and valuable preparation tips. Our experts consist of staff from the British Council IELTS department as well as teachers with IELTS preparation course teaching experience from the British Council teaching centre.

Results

We understand that getting your results is important to you. We know you want them quickly, but it is equally important that we give you the score that correctly reflects your performance.

You can expect your IELTS results to be available 13 calendar days after your test.

IELTS RESULTS ONLINE

You will be able to preview your results online from 7 a.m. onwards on the 13th day after the main test day. Please login to your IELTS account and check it under ‘My Test’. Each test result will be available for viewing online for two weeks, after which the information will be deleted automatically.

You will not be able to obtain your results over the phone, by email or by fax.

If you haven’t completed all four sections of the test, you will not be given a test report.

Test Report Form (TRF)

Test scores are also recorded on an official Test Report Form (TRF), showing overall ability, as well as performance in listening, reading, writing and speaking.

Please note that candidates will be sent only one copy of the Test Report Form. Unfortunately, a replacement cannot be issued if you lose it.

IELTS Test Report Form will be sent out by local courier, free of charge, on the 13th day after the test provided that you have given a Hong Kong address on your application form.

If you live outside Hong Kong:
i) we can send you your certificate by courier at a cost of HK$250 or,
ii) you can authorise a friend or relative to collect the results from our Customer Services department on your behalf at no additional cost. Please download a copy of the IELTS authorisation form here.

You should contact us as soon as possible if you do not receive your results two weeks after they have been sent out. We are not responsible for any lost results if you inform us eight weeks after your results are released.

Uncollected Test Report Forms will be destroyed after one year.

Requesting an additional Test Report Form

Within one month of the test report issue date, you may request up to five additional copies to be sent to academic institutions/government agencies/professional bodies/employers for free (but not for the migration or education agents). An administrative fee will be charged for any further copies.

You may apply for further copies of the Test Report Form for a period of two years from the examination date. Additional copies can be sent only to receiving institutions, not given to candidates.

The validity period of your Test Report Form

Institutions will not usually accept a TRF that is more than two years old.

Enquiry of Results

You may apply for an enquiry of results (EOR) only at the centre at which you took your test. You must apply within six weeks of the test date. Your test material is forwarded to the UK for remarking. The fee is HK$900. After remarking, should the score on any module be increased, the fee is refunded.

It takes some nine to ten weeks from receipt of the your exam materials in the UK before you are notified of the re-mark results. You will receive an EOR feedback letter stating your final result status.

You should submit the following required documents to Customer Services Centre in person or by post.

1. A completed, signed application form for IELTS Enquiry on Results

2. Your original IELTS Test Report Form

3. Payment of HK$900 by cheque, credit cards or EPS (only for application in person)

During the period of re-marking the test results are frozen and cannot be used to apply for a university placement or be sent to an immigration authority.

Understand your IELTS scores

IELTS provides results for all levels of English: there is no such thing as a pass or fail. You will be given a score from zero to nine for each part of the test – listening, reading, writing and speaking

Find out more about how to understand your IELTS scores and the nine-band system.

Find out how IELTS scores relate to the Council of Europe’s Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR).

Can I re-take the test?

You can take the test as many times as you wish. However, please note that to significantly improve your score, it is necessary to undertake further study. IELTS research indicates that scores are unlikely to improve without further English language tuition.