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IELTS Band Description

With each band designating level of proficiency in the language, the IELTS has band scales 0 to 9.

From 0 to 9 denoting lowest to highest scores, IELTS scores are given on a scale.

IELTS 9 Band Scale

 Band Score Level of SkillBand Level Description
Band 0Not attempted

Given information is not assessable as the test is not answered by the candidate.

Band 1Non user

Most important, the test taker has no ability to use English language except for possibly a few isolated words.

Band 2Intermittent user

The candidate finds major difficulty while understanding written and spoken English. However, there is zero possibility of real communication other than most basic data using isolated words in a friendly words.

Band 3Extremely limited user

The candidate communicates and understands only in general meaning in familiar situations. Frequent breakdowns might occur during normal communications.

Band 4Limited user

In terms of familiar situations, the candidate’s basic competence is limited and caters to frequent problems in understanding and expression. The candidate is not able to use complex language.

Band 5Modest user

The candidate can cope up with overall meaning in most situations and has complete partial command of the language.

He/she should be able to handle basic communication in their own field although the candidate is likely to make several mistakes.

Band 6Competent user

Regardless of some inaccuracies and misunderstandings, the candidate generally has an effective command of language.

Specifically in familiar situations, they are capable to use and understand fairly complex language.

Band 7Good user

 Though with occasional inaccuracies, misunderstandings and inappropriate use in few conditions, the candidate has operational command of the language. The candidate keep the hold of complex language well and understands detailed reasoning.

Band 8Very good user

With only occasional inaccuracies, the candidate has completely operational command of the language. The candidate keep the hold of complex and detailed argumentation well. Because of some unfamiliar situations, they may misunderstand few matters.

Band 9Expert user

Over the language, the candidate has complete operational command. With complete understanding, their English usage is appropriate, accurate and fluent.

IELTS Marking and Band Score Conversion

Marking of IELTS Reading, Listening, Writing and Speaking testsAll the four modules are marked by certificated IELTS examiners, who are regularly monitored to ensure reliability. All answer sheets, after being marked, are further analysed by Cambridge Assessment English.

Band score conversions


  • One mark is awarded for each correct answer
  • IELTS scores are awarded in whole bands and half bands
  • A Band Score conversion table format is presented for each module of the IELTS test which translates scores out of 40 into the IELTS 9 band scale.

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