IELTS: How has the pandemic hit test takers
The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a test to check the English language proficiency of non-native English language speakers. The test is accepted as one of the main eligibility criteria for international students, and people looking to migrate from non-native English regions to other countries.
It started roughly 40 years ago and was designed by English language experts from Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK, and the US.
The IELTS Academic has been developed for those looking to study at university or college as an undergraduate or postgraduate student, or want to join or gain entry into a professional institution. The organising authorities boast about this test being accepted by nearly 11,000 organisations in over 140 countries.
Educational institutes usually have a minimum set score (on a scale of 1 to 10) that they require from international students while assessing their admission applications.
Setback amid Covid-19
The IELTS test takers and organising authorities were also affected by the coronavirus pandemic. However, the organisers tried their best to come up with solutions. “Pandemic did affect candidates for a brief period due to the restricted movements and temporary shutdown of the test centres. Given the importance of the test in a candidate’s study abroad process, we wanted to come up with a solution that’d still allow them to take the test during the pandemic,” Piyush Kumar, Regional Director (South Asia) of IDP Education told Indianexpress.com. “We launched the IELTS Indicator, an online test for study abroad aspirants that could be taken from the comfort and safety of the home during those tough times. The Academic test was available for a limited time while IELTS testing was suspended in its standard formats due to COVID-19.”
In India, a lot of candidates used to rely on IELTS coaching classes, especially in the northern region of the country. As Covid-19 spread across the country and shut down all educational institutes and coaching centres, the IELTS coaching too took a hit.