Information and advice about your IELTS test day

You might feel a bit nervous about your IELTS test day. So that things go smoothly as possible for you, we’ve put together some information to help you understand what will happen on the day of your test.

You will need to arrive on or before 8:00 am for your written test and 30 minutes before your speaking test. If you arrive late, you may not be allowed to take the test.

If you need special arrangements as a result of a disability or other condition, adjustments will be made for you on the test day. Please contact our customer service staff at least six weeks before your preferred test date and before you register.

Your Speaking test may be offered on the same day as the other sections of the test, or up to a week before or after. The test centre will send you a confirmation for the Speaking Test date seven days before your written test. If you registered less than 7 days before the written test, you will be notified of your speaking test date the next working day after your successful registration.

Make sure you are prepared and have something to eat and drink beforehand. You will not be allowed to take food into the test room and you will only be allowed to take water in a transparent bottle.

How long does the test take?

The Listening, Reading and Writing tests take 2 hours 40 minutes and there are no breaks between the parts of the test.

Your Speaking test may be offered on the same day as the other sections of the test, or up to a week before or after. You will receive notification in advance if your Speaking test is on a different day to your main test day.

What do I need to bring into the test room?

You need to bring:

  • the original copy of the same ID you used to register for the test

We recommend you bring:

  • a transparent bottle of water.

You will not be able to take anything else into the test room. Switch off your mobile phone and any other electronic devices. You will be asked to place these with other personal belongings outside the test room.

You will not be able to take anything else into the test room. 
Switch off your mobile phone and any other electronic devices. You will be asked to place these with other personal belongings outside the test room.

What do I do with my belongings on the test day?

There will be a secure area where you need to leave all your belongings. The British Council is not responsible for loss or damage to your personal belongings at the test venue. Therefore, we strongly recommend leaving valuables like mobile phones and computers at home.

When is my identity checked?

The IELTS test location staff will check your identity when you arrive.

Please bring the same original valid ID / identification document (passport, GSIS/SSS ID, PRC License, or UMID) you used when you booked your test. 

Invalid or expired ID / identification documents will not be accepted. If you cannot provide valid ID, you will not be able to sit the test.

When will I get my test day photograph taken?

Your photograph will be taken on test day as an additional security measure and will appear on your Test Report Form.

What happens at the end of the test?

Stay in your seat until the invigilator gives you permission to leave the room.

If you think that there have been any issues that may have affected your performance, tell the invigilator straightaway.

If you want to raise an issue or make a complaint, please ask your invigilator for a Test Day Incident Form to complete. This form needs to be submitted within one week of the test date.

What if I need assistance during the test?

If you have any questions during the test, raise your hand to ask for help.

When you take the Listening test, check that you can hear the sound properly. Raise your hand straightaway and let the invigilator know if you cannot hear the recording.

Please remember that you will have 10 minutes after the Listening section to fill in your answer sheet. You will not have 10 minutes after the Reading section, so make sure that you write your answers on your answer sheet as you complete each section.

If you need to go to the bathroom during the test, raise your hand to attract the attention of the invigilator. Do not disturb other test takers.

The British Council takes your security seriously

Please note that security at a British Council IELTS test is very important. As an added measure, all participants will be required to have their photograph taken by IELTS administrative staff on their test day. Fingerprint scans will also be taken upon registration on test day. 

All watches irrespective of their style and age are not allowed in the test room. You will be required to leave your watch with your belongings in the secure baggage area. There will be a clock at the test venue.