Summary of the test

Time allowed: 60 minutes (including transfer time)

Number of sections: 3; the total text length is 2150–2750 words

Number of questions: 40


Each correct answer receives 1 mark. Your final score is given as a band score from 1–9 in whole or half bands, e.g. 4 or 6.5.


The IELTS academic texts originate from a variety of sources, including books, journals, magazines, newspapers, and online resources, and are crafted for a readership without specialized knowledge. All topics covered are designed to engage students at both undergraduate and postgraduate levels due to their broad appeal. The texts exhibit diverse writing styles, such as narrative, descriptive, or discursive/argumentative. Notably, at least one text features a comprehensive logical argument. In addition to textual content, visuals like diagrams, graphs, or illustrations may be included. In instances where technical vocabulary is employed, a straightforward dictionary definition is provided for clarity.

When completing the Reading test, it is essential to transfer responses to the answer sheet within the allocated time frame. Unlike the Listening test, there is no extra time provided for this transfer, necessitating careful attention to spelling and grammar to avoid losing marks.

IELTS Academic Reading Types of Questions

How to approach IELTS reading academics?

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