How to take the IELTS test in Singapore

Whether you are an English learner or have been speaking English for a long time, there are situations in which it’s unavoidable to become IELTS certified. Such as when you’re planning to migrate to or go to University in an English speaking country.

In this post, I’m summarizing the nuts and bolts on taking the IELTS test in Singapore.

What is the IELTS exactly?

IELTS stands for “International English Language Testing System” and is run by three organisations: University of Cambridge, British Council and IDP Education Pty Ltd. You can take the test in Singapore.

There are two types of IELTS. Take the Academic version for University admission and the General Training version if you are planning to migrate to an English speaking country.

No matter what your level is, you will take the same test, and depending on your score, you will achieve a grade of 1 to 9, where 9 is the highest.

Why take the IELTS test?

You can take the IELTS test for 3 reasons:

  1. To know your own English level;
  2. To get into a University;
  3. To migrate to English speaking countries like Australia, the UK, Canada and New Zealand.

If (2) or (3) is your reason, it helps to know which University or country you want to get in to. For some Universities, a score of 5 is enough to get in, others require a score as high as 8.

For countries, it also depends. As one example, New Zealand now requires an IELTS score of 6.5 or higher.

People sometimes ask me whether schools provide certificates after taking an English course. Many schools do, but the truth is that the IELTS certificate is the most recognised internationally.

How to sign up?

In Singapore, both the British Council and IDP organise IELTS examinations.

British Council logoFor the British Council:
Examinations take place at (1) SMU at Orchard or (2) the Civil Service College at Buona Vista on Saturday mornings 9am-12:30pm. There are 2-3 exams every month. Follow this link for the latest updated exam dates and locations in Singapore.

The cost is S$ 320. You can find the upcoming test dates and register on the British Council Singapore’s website.

IDP logoFor IDP:
Examinations take place at the RELC building at Orange Grove Road in the Orchard area. It’s close to Stevens Road. Typical schedules are Saturday or Thursday mornings, 8am-12:30pm. There are about 4 Academic IELTS exams a month and roughly 2 for General Training.

The cost is S$ 310. Click here for the upcoming test dates and register on IDP Singapore’s website. They offer online registration (though it looks complicated) as well as in-person registration.


Are you taking the IELTS test soon? Make sure you don’t miss out on our free report. You will find tips and strategies to be well prepared when taking the test.


About Guus Goorts

Guus has traveled widely and has lived in The Netherlands, Ghana, Belgium and Singapore. In descending order of fluency, he speaks Dutch, English, Mandarin, German and some rudiments of Spanish, French and Italian. Guus lives in Singapore with his wife and two young children. He settled in Singapore in early 2006 from his native country The Netherlands. After working in a job for corporate training, he founded Yago Languages, Singapore's guide to language learning.

  • Pingback: How To Prepare Yourself For IELTS… Without The Stress! | Learn Languages: Yago()

  • Jonathan

    I was searching for IELTS-related stuff in Singapore and came across this blog. Your blog contains some interesting posts on various languages. I’m a certified ESL teacher in Singapore and have chosen to specialize in preparing students for the IELTS exam.

    I taught a lot of young foreign students in private schools in Singapore before and I’ve found very few of them serious about their English language studies. However, it’s a pleasure to teach those who really need to get a certain score for the IELTS for university entry – they are suddenly very motivated! :)

    I love languages – I studied Spanish in university and that’s the language I hope to be able to master one day!

    Keep writing about IELTS in Singapore. If you need some guest posts on IELTS, let me know. I’d be interested to share my eperiences in this area. For those who are interested in private one-on-one IELTS tuition, you can check out my website at I focus mainly on Writing (and to a lesser extent Speaking) as this is the area students struggle the most in. For Reading and Writing, people can improve through self-study, but Writing is the area where students would really need one-on-one help.


    • Guus Goorts

      Hi Jonathan, thanks for stopping by and leaving a note. I’m out of town right now, but will be glad to catch up with you some time next month – and see if we can exchange some guest posts!

      • Jonathan

        Great, hope to hear from you then. Cheers!

  • Pingback: For language certification, don't count on your school()

  • janna

    Thank you so much for the brilliant summary which helped me a lot!
    May God Bless You!

  • http://none shahadat

    Thank u so much for ur kindfull info.rmation

    • http://none shahadat

      I am a ielts candidate.i am a general ielts candidate.
      First time i was got overal 4.Now i taken ready full of preparation but i
      Have one problem .my company don’t givei me passport.

  • parthi

    sir I want know where is the training centre available in Singapore

  • Balraj singh

    Hlo Sir