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The Best Apps for IELTS Students

The Best Apps for IELTS Students

Test prep and language learning really has gone mobile. But what are the best apps for IELTS students? Today, we’ll look at some Magoosh-recommended IELTS preparation apps.

The Best Apps for IELTS Students Tend to Be Free

There’s an English saying, “the best things in life are free.” This is certainly true of IELTS prep apps. I spend the afternoon looking for IELTS apps in the Google Play Store and the iTunes App Store. On these two popular app platforms, it really is apparent that the most reputable and helpful apps don’t cost a thing.

The best apps I found were free, and came from one of two kinds of publishers: companies that officially sponsor the IELTS, and larger, well-known companies for test prep and ESL learning.
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The Best Apps for the IELTS: Official IELTS Apps

Two apps from the official makers of the IELTS stand out: The British Council’s IELTS Word Power app and the app for the Official Cambridge Guide to the IELTS.

Of these two official apps, Word Power is by far the most useful. It contains over 100 vocabulary quiz questions. With fill-in the blank activities and listening comprehension quizzes, this app tests vocabulary skills for the IELTS Reading, Writing, and Listening sections. Because users get to hear an extensive selection of English audio, this app also has some use for developing spoken vocabulary. The speakers in the sound files can serve as an example of how to pronounce IELTS wocabulary words and use them in context.

The OCG IELTS app doesn’t really offer hands-on activities. But it’s still a very good app for IELTS students. This app gives you an extensive free preview of Cambridge’s Official Guide to the IELTS book. It includes excerpts from the book that describe and explain each section of the IELTS. And this app also comes with a library of IELTS videos. Some videos feature students performing IELTS tasks, while other videos feature short talks about the nature of the exam. Knowing what to expect on the real IELTS exam is important. And this app really helps you do just that.

The Best Apps for the IELTS: Unofficial Apps

I found two unofficial IELTS apps that are also pretty good. As I mentioned, the best unofficial IELTS prep apps come form larger, more well-known companies.

One very good app, if I may say so, is Magoosh’s very own IELTS vocabulary flash card app. This app doesn’t have the multimedia features of the British Council’s IELTS Word Power, but it does have a lot more words — around 600 words for the IELTS. As such, this unofficial app is a good companion to the official vocabulary app from the British Council.

Then there’s the IELTS Skills App from MacMillan. This app is also a great companion to one of the best official apps. The IELTS Skills App works very well as a follow-up to the tour of the IELTS that you get with Cambridge’s app for the Official Guide to the IELTS. The activities in the MacMillan App aren’t necessarily 100% IELTS-like. But they don’t need to be. The goal of the activities is to help you build the skills you need for the IELTS — skills such as good spoken and written grammar, the ability to skim and scan passages, and so on.

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