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  • Writer's pictureABBA Personnel Services Inc.

7 Tips on Preparing for the IELTS

There has been a growing trend among individuals migrating to other countries for education, work, or even permanent settlement in the past decade. Despite this, transferring abroad still involves a number of requirements and processes to be able to migrate legally. One of these may be having to pass a language exam to assess one’s fluency in the primary language of a preferred country.

One popular requirement is the International English Language Testing System, more commonly known as the IELTS. This is the world’s most recognized English language proficiency test for migration and is being required among applicants aspiring to work or live in the United Kingdom and many other English-speaking countries. More than 2 million IELTS exams were taken just last year, many of which are Filipino nurses who are in demand abroad.

A passed IELTS score is an asset as it can bring you a wide variety of career opportunities and advancement overseas. Passing it, however, is an entirely different story since it is notoriously known for its high difficulty level.

With this, we collated 7 important tipsfor UK nurse applicants based on our experience with nurses the past months:

1. Verify the detailed IELTS requirements for nurses in your preferred country. This may prevent you from committing mistakes or wasting effort. Here are the IELTS requirements of countries that Abba has nurse vacancies for:

2. Take a mock exam first. Doing so will give you an idea of your current standing. There are a good number of websites and IELTS review centers offering mock exams prior to your review. For the UK, a 6.0 overall band score means you may pass the IELTS in a few months or within a year. Any lower overall band score means you may need to spend more time and effort in order to pass.

3. Study on your own or review at one of the big review centers if you got at least a 6.0 mock exam overall band score. The Internet is brimming with useful resources for self-study such as tips, sample sub-test exams, and the like. If you feel these are not enough, you can opt for a big review center where an instructor can provide more specific coaching. Enjoy discounted rates at J Rooz Review Center, Cevas IELTS Review Center and 9.0 Niner IELTS Review Center if you apply to any of Abba’s vacancies.

4. Review at a small review center if you got an overall band score that’s lower than 6.0. Instructors in small review centers are usually more focused on students compared to bigger ones because they accommodate only up to 10-12 students in one class. This will give you the attention that you need, given that your mock exam score is on the lower side of the bracket. Because of these review centers’ limited number of branches, Abba has partnered with 6 small review centers where our applicants can claim discounts as well: TSAA-IELTS, International Review & Integrated Studies (IRIS), Utest Review Center, Rachell Allen, 3A Test Review Center, and ACE IELTS Review Center and Language Services.

5. Choose an online review center if there’s no small review center near your place. If you got a low overall band score yet none of our small review centers is near your location, online classes can be an option for you. Classes will be conducted one-on-one so rest assured that you’ll get the focus that you need. This, however, is more expensive than group review classes and requires you to have a flawless WiFi connection. Discounts are available at Swoosh English, International Review & Integrated Studies (IRIS), Utest Review Center, and ACE IELTS Review Center and Language Services for nurses who apply to Abba.

6. Focus on the Writing and Speaking Subtests. Majority of our applicants perform well in the Reading and Listening subtests but struggle with the Writing and Speaking ones. An IDP educator confirmed our status as an English-speaking country may have caused this situation. We are constantly bombarded with English news, shows and signages from so many sources—whether they’re grammatically wrong or right—which we simply translate into written and spoken English that “looks” or “seems”correct.We treat the English language informally and it is seen in how we combine it with Tagalog, thus the “Taglish” language. Chinese, Korean and Indian takers, on the other hand, are forced to treat the English language in a formal and academic manner, just as how people normally would with a foreign language. Since the IELTS is a standardized test following formal rules, the Chinese, Koreans and Indians tend to perform better than Filipinos especially in the Writing and Speaking subtests.

7. Study within 2-4 months right before you take the IELTS exam. Frequently reviewing for the IELTS within a solid block of short period ensures better performance and higher recall of information versus attending one or two classes every month within an entire year. IELTS Review Centers’ popular “1-Year Unlimited Review” package doesn’t mean you should spend one full year reviewing for the IELTS. Our partner review centers themselves encourage students to finish their review within 2-4 months. Those who extend beyond 4 months tend to continuously fail the IELTS.

The IELTS can be challenging, but remains to be an achievable dream as long as you keep these important tips in mind. If you are a nurse considering a career in the United Kingdom, you may want to apply to Our client, NHS Professionals, is visiting on October 13 – 14, 16-17 2017 to conduct interviews among applicants interested in working at Queen Alexandra Hospital, in Portsmouth, United Kingdom. They are willing to accommodate those who haven’t taken or passed the IELTS yet so these tips will still be very useful for you.

Donna Benigay is a Recruitment Assistant in Abba Personnel Services, Inc. She joined our team this year and has been recruiting for NHS Professionals (Queen Alexandra Hospital, Portsmouth and University Hospital Southampton, Southampton). She graduated from Polytechnic University of the Philippines with a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration major in Human Resources Development Management.

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