As we mentioned, IELTS is not a test that you can pass or fail. Your
assessment will be reported according to a scale from bands one to nine.
You will need to contact the university you wish to enter to find out
the IELTS score they require for entry into your chosen course. Band one
indicates that you have virtually no English at all. Band nine is native
speaker proficiency. Universities in Australia typically require a band
score of between 6 and 7.
Following are the detailed band description.
9 Expert User. Has fully operational command of the language:
appropriate, accurate and fluent with complete understanding.
8 Very Good User. Has fully operational command of the language with
only occasional unsystematic inaccuracies and inappropriacies.
Misunderstandings may occur in unfamiliar situations. Handles complex
detailed argumentation well.
7 Good User. Has operational command of the language, though with
occasional inaccuracies, inappropriacies and misunderstandings in some
situations. Generally handles complex language well and understands
6 Competent User. Has generally effective command of the language
despite some inaccuracies, inappropriacies and misunderstandings. Can
use and understand fairly complex language, paricularly in familiar
5 Modest User. Has partial command of the language, coping with
overall meaning in most situations, though is likely to make many
mistakes. Should be able to handle basic communication in own field.
4 Limited User. Basic competence is limited to familiar situations.
Has frequent problems in understanding and expression. Is not able to
use complex language.
3 Extremely Limited User. Conveys and understands only general
meaning in very familiar situations. Frequent breakdowns in
2 Intermittent User. No real communication is possible except for the
most basic information using isolated words or short formulae in
familiar situations and to meet immediate needs. Has great difficulty
understanding spoken and written English.
1 Non User. Essentially has no ability to use the language beyond
possibly a few isolated words.