Listening

15 Sure Shot (IELTS Listening Tips) To Score 7+ Band

The Best IELTS Listening Tips - Curated by Experienced IELTS Trainers & Evaluated by Examiners

Scoring a 7 band or more in the listening module of IELTS exam is not at all difficult. Thanks to these super yet basic and simple IELTS Listening tips. These tips for IELTS Listening are so simple and effective that you’ll feel confident almost instantly. All you need to do is read them carefully and keep them in mind.

Many candidates appearing for IELTS consider the listening module as a difficult one. Some find it hard to understand the accent while others find it hard to multitask – jot down the answers while listening. It often happens that you miss an answer while listening and this is the point where many candidates often get lost and find it hard to get back on the track. However, there’s a way out. Read the best 25 IELTS listening tips below and find your motivation to crack the listening module of IELTS exam with an excellent band.

IELTS Listening Tips

I have tried to best to describe each tip in as much detail as possible. Take your time to read through all these IELTS listening tips as these will help you a lot in your exam.

  • Check Your Headphones:

The first thing that you need to do before your IELTS listening exam is to check the headphones that you receive. Inspect it manually and check where the volume buttons are. make sure to increase the volume so as you are able to hear properly without any disturbance. In case, you face any problem, let your examiner know. There are IT people in the IELTS listening hall and as per this tip, you’ll be able to get your headphone fixed or replaced in case of any trouble.

  • Introduction to the Conversation:

As soon as you start with your listening exam, listen to the instructions carefully. There are a total of 4 sections in IELTS Listening and the best tip is to listen to the instructions before each section is played. This is when you are told that what the conversation is about. So, if you get this one clear enough, it will be easy for you to listen with concentration. And even if you miss an answer, you can easily guess it.

  • Utilize the Time to read Questions

Before the beginning of each section, you are given some time to read the questions. The audio says – Read question numbers 14 to 18. Don’t rush through the questions. There is enough time and you just have to read the question numbers specified. Don’t try to read the next questions as they belong to the next section. By doing this you’ll only get confused. Read only the questions specified in the audio. Read them in one go but go slow in order to understand each question.

  • Instructions like “Answer in Three words Only”

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Pay attention to the instructions written on your IELTS Listening question paper. Sometimes, it is written that answer in three words only or say answer in numbers only. In this case, even if you give the right answer but it is of four words, it will be marked wrong. Similarly, use numbers where it is specified that answer in numbers only. These IELTS listening tips will prove helpful as many candidates simply ignore these instructions.

  • Picturise in Mind 

As you listen to the conversation, use your mind to picturise it. For example – in the instructions, you are told that this conversation is between a student and a librarian, so try to picture that in front of your eyes as you listen to the audio. This will give you a better understanding of what is being said.

  • Read Questions in Advance

Now when you have picturised the conversation, one important tip to score well in IELTS Listening is to read the questions in advance. Although all questions given in the sheet are in the order of the audio but reading 1 question in advance will help you know if in case you miss an answer.

  • Multitasking in IELTS Listening

One of the best tip for IELTS listening is to multitask. And this comes by practice. What we mean by multitasking here is that you should be able to listen and write at the same time. Many IELTS listening tips will not be useful to you if you can’t multitask efficiently. You should be able to write answers on the question paper as soon as you listen without taking your concentration off from the audio.

  • Concentration is the Key

This one needs no explanation. If you ask us how to score 7 bands in IELTS listening, then the one answer will be to concentrate. You need to concentrate on the audio and focus on each sentence and each word being said. Try to understand the context of whatever is being said. One thing that can help you understand the audio is – reading the questions and listening to the introduction in the beginning.

  • Write Quick Answers on Test Paper

Your question paper will not be checked. So, you are free to write on it in a way that you can understand. This means that you don’t have to write the full sentence here and you don’t have to worry about the spelling and anything else. You just have to be quick in writing as you’ll get an extra 10 minutes, in the end, to transfer your answers to the IELTS  Listening answer sheet. So, while listening, you can write in short forms as well. And write full words when you get 30 seconds free time after each section.

  • Don’t Panic

Even if you miss an answer, don’t panic. There are a total of 40 questions and missing one or two should not bring panic to you. Anyone giving you IELTS listening tips will ask you to be calm throughout the module. The audio is played only once and if you miss an answer, there is nothing that you can do about it. The best strategy is to leave what you have missed and move on with the flow.

  • Utilize 30 Seconds After Each Listening Section

You are given half a minute after each of the 4 IELTS Listening section. This time should be utilized to the fullest. Have a look at the answers you have written. Most likely, you’ll be able to recall the audio that you just heard and you’ll come to know if the answer written by you is correct. In case you have missed an answer in any particular section, this is the time when you should make a guess for the answer instead of leaving it blank.

  • Practise IELTS Listening at home

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Among the best IELTS Listening tips is ‘Practise’. IELTS General or Academic, whichever exam you are giving, it is better to practise at home. Listen to the previous exam audio recordings and answer the questions. Another strategy can be to listen to English news channels at home. This will make you familiar with the accent.

  • Transferring Answers to Answer Sheet

At the end of the exam, when you get 10 minutes to transfer your answers on the answer sheet, remember that you have a total of 40 questions. As per these IELTS Listening tips to score 7 bands, you should begin from the starting and write quickly. Time is less as you just have 15 seconds per answer. Many candidates are not able to transfer all the answers on the answer sheet in the specified time and hence lose marks. The best strategy is to simply keep writing and look up only when you are done.

  • Check Spelling

If you get an answer right but misspell it on the answer sheet, it will be considered as wrong. Same goes if you write 4 words when the instructions are to answer in only 3 words. It is essential to check your spelling while you write. You’ll not get any extra time to have a look at your answers, so it is advised to write carefully.

  • Capitol Letters

Punctuation is a serious matter. If you write a person’s name, city’s name etc, it should start with a capital letter. In case you are not sure if an answer should start with a capital letter or not, you can write the whole word in capitals. This will help you get more marks.


IELTS Listening is not at all difficult. This is one module which can help you score a good overall band. Many will agree with the fact that IELTS listening is easier than writing (where you have to use your imagination to write) and speaking (where you have to speak fluent English).

Hence, following the above IELTS listening tips, anyone can score 7+ band in this module – enhancing your overall IELTS score.

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Ajay Deep

I'm Ajay Deep, founder of IELTSPaper.com. Before being an entrepreneur, I have worked as an IELTS trainer, examiner and evaluator for 8 years. With vast experience in this domain, I wish to share my knowledge to help candidates score a good band. You can reach out to me at ajay@ajaydeep.com.