Computer-Based IELTS vs Paper-Based IELTS


Hi there! It’s Asiya. Which IELTS test is
easier, computer-based or paper-based? A couple of days ago I took my first
computer-based IELTS exam in London. If you can’t see my results on the screen,
it means I’m still waiting for them. And in this video I want to compare each
section of this computer-based exam with the paper-based exam I took last year. Hopefully, I will help you decide which test format is right for you. Ready? Let’s
get started! let’s start with the listening section
first and a huge advantage for computer-based exam was to have
earphones because I put them on I could hear everything clearly I didn’t have to
think about it at all that was great because when I took a paper-based exam
last year we were in a huge room with probably a hundred people and there was
echo people were coughing and moving and I had to concentrate so much just to
hear the recording it was really unpleasant but in a computer-based exam
it was great and even though earphones were not
proper noise cancelling headphones I didn’t hear other people as clearly as
a would otherwise and I wore my earphones in the reading and writing
sections too so that was great I’ve heard that some centers offer
earphones for paper based exams too so if you have several centers in your city
it may be worth checking because I think it’s really really helpful another thing
I liked is that computer-based exam is based in a small room with probably 25
people and in a paper-based exam we had a hundred people and just even a smaller
room is quieter it’s more pleasant the exam itself was absolutely the same over
had a few seconds to read questions then you listen to the recording answering
questions then you have a few seconds to revise them a few seconds draw read
coming questions and so on a tip is don’t spend time on
revising questions always read questions which are coming it’s really really
helpful especially when you start getting those multiple-choice questions
when you need to read a lot of information they won’t give you enough
time to do that but if you use time for revising on reading you’ll be able to
answer more questions anyway it’s the same the difference is that in a
paper-based you have ten minutes at the end to
transfer your answers to the answer sheet
but in a computer-based exam you answer directly on the screen so you don’t need
to transfer your answers anywhere they’re already there you have two
minutes to check them basically it was enough for me because if you miss an
answer it’s unlikely that you’re going to get it later
anyway but you can check spelling of the words you write or you can check that
when you feel the gap and you’re right you were there but sentence becomes
grammatically correct because sometimes that tip helps you to understand whether
you need to write a lot of two words for example one or three words let’s say
museum or the museum because once you write it the sentence should be correct
or sometimes it helps you understand if the knowledge should be singular or
plural depending on how the sentence is written so two minutes is enough to do
that oh yes I didn’t have a practice question at the beginning the test just
started straight away I find that from a technical point of view it’s easier to
answer questions in a computer-based exam because quite often you simply
click on the correct answer and that’s it
all you instead of writing words or looking for a letter you simply take a
box with the correct answer and you drag it to the correct place so I think that
a probability of making a stupid mistake is lower in a computer-based IELTS exam but
you should be able to listen to the recording and type at the same time and
also you need to get used to different question types and how you answer
because sometimes you click on the awesome sometimes you type an ulcer or
sometimes you take a box and you drag it and you should know what for example if
you take a wrong box and you drag it to the wrong place how do you cancel that
during the exam quickly.i defeats website at essentials has a video on how
to use a platform they have free practice tasks for the
listening reading and writing sections and it looks exactly like during the
exam so you can learn how to use a platform before you take the test I
think that’s important I’m gonna leave you a link in the
description box below I would say it was easier to navigate between different
questions and answers on the computer because you have a number of each
question at the bottom of the screen and if you leave any question unanswered
you can see that if you want to come back to any questions at the end for
example to think about the spelling of a word you click you click revise and then
you’ll be able to see which questions you wanted to revise about convenient
what’s less convenient is that in multiple-choice questions or in
questions where you’re given let’s say six options and you need to choose the
correct to you you’re not able to cross out incorrect options as you go so I
didn’t like that and another thing is don’t forget to scroll the page down to
the very bottom I almost missed one question like that I simply didn’t
scroll it down but all-in-all I still prefer taking the listening
section on the computer what about the IELTS reading section well I really liked that
the timer was right on the screen and I knew exactly how many minutes I still
have when you’re taking a paper-based exam a clock is on the wall and you have
to memorize what time your session starts and then you need to calculate
how much time is left but here it’s right on the screen both in the reading
and writing sections it’s super convenient in a paper-based exam
examiner’s tell you when you have ten minutes left and five minutes left here
is the time of flashes in red but to be honest I didn’t always see that but it’s
fine as long as you just keep an eye on the time the only thing you should know
about is when it’s one minute left you don’t see seconds so it’s one minute and
then the screen suddenly locks you never know when exactly that is gonna happen
to be honest I expected that I wouldn’t like taking the reading section on a
computer screen I thought on the paper I could see
everything better or the passage and questions but I was wrong the monitor
was large and I could see almost all the passage without scrolling it and then
questions were just there I didn’t have to turn pages so it was actually more
convenient in a paper-based IELTS exam you answer questions on question sheets
first and then as you go you transfer your answers to the answer sheet it
takes a bit of time but you’re not given extra time as an IELTS listening you
still have to finish everything in 16 minutes in a computer-based exam you
answer questions directly on the screen and you type less because for true false
not given you don’t need to type not given you simply click on the correct
option so it sends a bit of time in terms of highlighting you need to
highlight key words names phrases and so on it’s helpful in a paper-based IELTS exam
you use a pencil in a computer-based example you have a function to highlight
words or phrases in yellow you simply select your word or phrase in the text
or in questions it doesn’t matter you press the right button on your mouse and
you select highlight and that’s it it’s easy to do oh yes what I’ve discovered
and what they don’t tell you in the official guidance is copy paste function
works you know questions where you need to find two or three correct words in
the text and fill the gap you find words you select them you press copies ctrl C
to copy ctrl V to paste and that’s it so you’re not likely to make a stupid
spelling mistake when simply copying words oh yes
and don’t explain that they’re gonna show you how to use software the
for the exam you have to learn how to do it at home on your own so do the
practice questions first but to summarize I prefer computer-based IELTS
reading definitely let’s talk about IELTS writing computer-based or paper
based writing oh here everything depends on how fast you type
I personally type faster than I write with a pen and particularly with the
pencil because you know some centers allow you to bring your own pen for it’s
writing but some don’t and you have to use a pencil and it’s just so slow when
I took the paper-based exam I used a pen and then I could finish probably five
minutes before and proofread some things and my essays were not that long probably
just about the required 170 and 270 words this time i typed and finished about 15 minutes before and my essays were longer about 200 and 300 words then i could proofread everything well not everthing some things to proofread your essays if
you type them and then even when we proofread them it’s unlikely you’re
gonna have plenty of time to do that so you’re still gonna miss some typos and
ideally you need to type correctly straightaway so it’s a bit of a
challenge on the plus side it’s easy to make corrections when you type and I
corrected a few words and I even changed some sentence structures and you’re
unlikely to do anything like that if you take a paper-based IELTS exam some people say
well oh it’s a pencil you can erase they turn right again but honestly how much
time it’s gonna take you you’re unlikely to do anything
but during your exam oh yes by the way if you take a computer-based exam you’re
still gonna get a pen and paper to make notes or whatever I didn’t use them at
all and someone asked me the other day if it’s just typing like at home are all
the words or the mistakes going to be highlighted like in Microsoft Word like
no don’t hope for that and despite this disappointment I still by far prefer
computer write computer-based writing but you have to type quite fast in order
to get this benefit the speaking exam is absolutely the same whatever test you
take it’s a face-to-face interview with in examiner but there is another
advantage of a computer-based test the results are published in 5-7 days not in
13 days like in a paper-based exam well even though if you take IELTS for UKVI
IELTS for UK visas and immigration you have to wait for 13 days whatever test
you take anyway in the coming weeks I’m going to film videos about each section
of the exam giving you specific tips on how to get a higher score and tell you
more about how I approach different tasks and what strategies I use thank
you for watching me today good luck with your preparation and your exam bye

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