Well, it is good you are going to take the IELTS. But, which version of IELTS are you going to take? Often, first-time candidates face this problem. They know they have to take IELTS but they do not know which version is more suitable for their purpose because both of these versions serve a particular purpose. Here, we have listed down some basic differences.
You want to study at one of the universities in English-countries (want to pursue undergraduate or postgraduate courses)
You want to join one of the corporate companies in English-speaking countries
If That is Your Aim, You Will Have to Take IELTS Academic.
But, if you wish to undergo a course that is below graduation level/degree level
If you wish to undergo work-related course training at one of the English-speaking countries
If you wish to immigrate to one of such English-countries
You will have to apply for General IELTS.
Well, both the versions will assess all four essentials skills – reading, writing, speaking and listening. Candidates will have to be well-prepared in order to take the test because; each of these versions will be set to assess the skills more scientifically.
A Common Misconception
There is a common misconception that IELTS General is much easier than Academic IELTS Training. Well, to a certain extent, it is not wrong but it is not 100% right either. Because, when it comes to undergoing a graduation or post-graduation course, the applicant is expected to have a higher level of English whereas for someone who is just thinking of taking some job-related training may not require having that strong fluent English. That is the reason why IELTS Academic is always a bit tougher than General Test.
But, it should also be mentioned that candidates will have to get themselves more acquainted with what the organization needs, the organization where they are applying. Because there are many organizations which may ask for either of these versions. It would be better to contact the organization and find out more about what it may need. And only after getting yourself more acquainted with their needs are, you can apply for the test online.
Well, there are not many differences in both of these versions. Listening and Speaking Tests would just be the same but when it comes to Reading, there will be slight differences. Especially, in the first section of Reading Test. In Academics, you may find 3 reading passages with different types of questions in all the sections but when it comes to General, the first section may comprise small text boxes or a diagram, a flowchart etc (rest of the things would be same, passages with questions). Writing Test for those who apply for Academics will require candidates to write on two different topics (as given in Writing Tasks 1 and 2) whereas those who apply for General will have to write Letter in Writing Task 1. Writing Task 2 would be a topic (a small essay/candidates will have to express his or her views on a (particular topic)