Molly Kiefer

IELTS Podcast (Ep. 17) | How Can I Improve My IELTS Writing Band Score? Answers to Your IELTS Questions

Magoosh IELTS Podcast

How Can I Improve My IELTS Writing Band Score? Answers to Your IELTS Questions

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In this episode, Eliot answers our student questions about taking the IELTS including:

  • What is test day like?
  • How can I improve my writing band score?
  • How can I be more confident during the IELTS speaking test?

If you like this lesson, please subscribe on iTunes or Stitcher for more IELTS Vocabulary lessons, and check out all of our IELTS Podcast episodes here!

And don’t forget to check out these helpful resources!

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IELTS Podcast: Episode 17 Transcript

(Translations: русский, македонски, Tiếng Việt)


Welcome to the Magoosh IELTS Podcast. This is episode 17. In this episode, we will answer our student questions about taking the IELTS including:

What is test day like?
How can I improve my writing band score?
How can I be more confident during the IELTS speaking test?

Be sure to visit us at for more great resources to improve your IELTS band score. Use coupon code “ieltspodcast” to save 20% off your IELTS test prep!

Get a higher IELTS score? Start your online IELTS prep today with Magoosh.

Let’s get started. We have a great show for you today. We asked the Magoosh IELTS Facebook group for their biggest questions about taking the IELTS and your teacher Eliot is going to answer them here.


That’s right I know that taking the IELTS can be tough. There’s a lot at stake and we want to help you get the score you need. I’m happy to answer your questions today and if you are listening to this and have questions too, you can email me at [email protected] with a voice memo of your biggest IELTS question and maybe we’ll answer it on a future episode.


Yes! We’d love that and make sure to include your name and location in the voice memo too! Are you ready to get started?




Okay, Kim on Facebook asks: Can anyone tell me what the IELTS test is like, day of? Can I bring a phone and lunch? I’d be taking it in Seattle.


Great question Kim, that’s one we get from a lot of students.
You can bring a phone to the center, but required to keep it outside.
You will only be allowed to have a pen or pencil, an eraser and your ID on your desk.
Eat a big breakfast because food is not allowed in the testing room.

Other tips:

Plan your route to the center a few days before the test and arrive early
Make sure you bring the proper ID, as instructed by your center
Listening, reading, writing take 2:40
Link to more information in the show notes.


Those are some really useful tips, Eliot. I definitely agree that you should eat a big breakfast before your test. I know when i get hungry I have a hard time thinking about anything besides food.


Haha (snort)


Okay, here’s another question for you. Leticia on Facebook asks: How can I improve my writing from 6 to 7?


That magical 7 number is often the cut off for a lot of programs.
Band score calculator link in show notes
How much time do you have to work on writing before the test?
Consider taking a class or getting a tutor.
If a short time, focus on:
Paragraph development
Grammar editing

If a longer time:
Work on improving grammar


Good tips, Eliot! It sounds like time management is a huge part of succeeding with IELTS writing. Also if you need more practice with vocabulary, I recommend listening to previous episodes of this podcast where we cover a ton of really useful vocabulary you’ll need to know for the IELTS.


Exactly. The best way to learn vocabulary is through repeated exposure to new words that you hear in context.


Okay I have one last question for you. This one was submitted to us via voice memo to [email protected] . It comes from Jean Luc in Seattle who sent us this message [Recorded] Hi Eliot- I get nervous and make a lot of mistakes during the speaking interview. How can I stop making mistakes?


Many students do get a little nervous on the speaking test. It’s understandable…
Take advantage of Part 1:
These are easier questions designed to get you warmed up
Somewhat predictable:
We have a great list of questions you can use to study

Master Part 2 planning:
The STRUCTURE is highly predictable on this one. Practice:
Planning a response in one minute
Answering each question in the prompt
Thinking of details to support your answer


This was a lot of fun! Thanks so much for taking the time to answer student questions today, Eliot. I hope that this helps our listeners have a more successful IELTS experience.


Yes those were great questions! If this episode helped you, we invite you to send us your questions to [email protected] with the subject line IELTS Podcast and we may answer it on a future episode.


That’s our show! Thanks for listening! If you like our show, help us out by leaving a rating and review in Apple Podcasts, it helps people find us! And don’t forget to hit the subscribe button. Until next time! This is Naomi at Magoosh, wishing you happy studying!


  • Molly Kiefer

    Molly is one of Magoosh’s Content Creators. She designs Magoosh’s graphic assets, manages our YouTube channels and podcasts, and contributes to the Magoosh High School Blog.

    Since 2014, Molly has tutored high school and college students preparing for the SAT, GRE, and LSAT. She began her tutoring journey while in undergrad, helping her fellow students master math, computer programming, Spanish, English, and Philosophy.

    Molly graduated from Lewis & Clark College with a B.A. in Philosophy, and she continues to study ethics to this day. An artist at heart, Molly loves blogging, making art, taking long walks and serving as personal agent to her cat, who is more popular on Instagram than she is.


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