Great news! IELTS has announced a temporary online option – IELTS Indicator – for those of you who are unable to sit exams due to coronavirus restrictions. IELTS Indicator was designed to support your progress in your University and Educational Institution applications during the COVID-19 crisis. Please watch this video and read all information in this article carefully before applying.

What is the new IELTS test – IELTS Indicator?

IELTS Indicator is an online test that can be taken from the safety and comfort of your home. It is available for a limited time while IELTS testing is currently suspended due to COVID-19. The test includes four skills – Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking of the Academic training marked by real IELTS markers and examiners. IELTS Indicator is an official IELTS product you can trust. However, it is not yet accepted by all organisations. Before you book, be sure to check the list below or contact your university or educational institution.

Who accepts IELTS Indicator?

As of 4th of May, 2020 and based on the official IELTS Indicator website, IELTS Indicator is accepted by the following institutions:

United Kingdom
Hong Kong
New Zealand
United States of America

Who is the IELTS Indicator test for?

The IELTS Indicator test is designed for those who meet ALL of the following conditions: 

  1. You are planning to study abroad in the next few months and the university requires proof of your English level. 
  2. You are unable to take the IELTS test in your country due to coronavirus restrictions.
  3. You have contacted your university or educational institution about IELTS Indicator and they confirmed that they accept IELTS Indicator.
  4. You are taking the IELTS Academic test. IELTS Indicator does not (yet) include the general training for immigration purposes.
  5. You have all the test requirements below.

Test Requirements – What do you need to take the IELTS Indicator test?

Before booking the IELTS Indicator Academic test, make sure you have the necessary equipment and set-up.

Your computer must meet the minimum and recommended system requirements. For example, you will need to have the Zoom application downloaded on your computer and the ability to download and install a Safe Exam Browser (SEB).

For more information about computer equipment requirements and instructions on how to download the programs you need, read this page.

How does IELTS Indicator test work?

You can take the IELTS Indicator on any suitable desktop computer or laptop with reliable internet access. 

It is recommended to perform a computer check at least 3 days before your test so as to make sure that it works fine. If you have Windows, read this guide. If you have a Macbook, read this guide.

In addition, you should read the test day guide to give you an understanding of how to log in and what to expect in the test.

You will need to complete the Listening, Reading, and Writing in one sitting – approximately 2 hours 45 minutes. The Speaking test will be conducted separately. You will do the Speaking test with an examiner face-to-face over a computer using a video call with the Zoom application. Please read the IELTS Indicator test day Speaking guide.

As with the normal IELTS test, each section will be strictly timed. So make sure you prepare well and master all the IELTS strategies in which you can find in this complete online preparation course.

Official IELTS examiners will mark the IELTS Indicator test in the same way and with the same marking criteria as the normal IELTS test. You will receive your results within seven days of completing all sections of the test. 

When does the test take place?

IELTS Indicator Academic test will take place once a week. The next available dates are on April 29, May 6 and May 13 at 8:00am UK time. You can view the time of the test in your local time-zone before booking the test. To book your test, visit

How much does IELTS Indicator cost?

IELTS Indicator costs $149USD. So you need to prepare well before booking.

How do you prepare for the IELTS Indicator test ?

The test format and the difficulty level of the IELTS Indicator test is exactly the same as the normal IELTS test, paper based or computer based. So you should prepare the same way as you would for the normal IELTS test.

Nevertheless, it is important to practise on a computer since you will be taking the test on a computer. You can find free practice tests for computer-delivered IELTS on the official British Council page. You can also practise answering Writing, and Reading questions on your computer by completing the assignments of our complete IELTS preparation course.

It is equally important to prepare well by learning and practising all the IELTS strategies, tips and techniques you need to know to achieve a high band score. Our online complete IELTS preparation course provides everything you need to learn as well as extra practise material for you, so do check it out.

For those who lack ideas and vocabulary for the Speaking and Writing module check the book with the IELTS most common topics.

Please note

IELTS Indicator is available only in some countries. If the IELTS test is suspended in your country due to coronavirus restrictions, but IELTS Indicator is not available in your country you need to check this page regularly as this might change.

Finally, before booking the IELTS Indicator test you should:

  1. Be sure that the university and organisation you are applying to will accept this new IELTS test.
  2. Have all the necessary equipment and set-up (read Instructions). 
  3. Prepare well and feel confident and ready to take the test. Do these 3 simple checks to ensure you’re ready.

Useful Resources

Watch first free lesson

Focus only on what you need to pass IETLS

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Focus only on what you need to pass IETLS

Watch first free lesson

Focus only on what you need to pass IETLS

Watch second lesson

Focus only on what you need to pass IETLS