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IELTS score sending process

IELTS score sending process

IELTS scores are available about 13 days after the test day. You can preview your score online and your Test Report Form (TRF) will be sent to you by mail. If you are not satisfied with the score, you may consider retaking the test. Or, maybe it’s time to find a better IELTS prep option than what you’ve been relying on. If it is a good score, you can send your score to universities by following the instructions below!

1.Choose universities

You can request up to five additional TRFs sending to five different universities or institutions free of charge within one month from the test date. If you request more than five TRFs, you would pay extra fees for extra copies. If you request additional TRFs after one month from the test date, you need to pay for each copy. Just make a list of your preferred schools. Check whether your IELTS score meets their requirement and decide how many universities you would like to apply to.
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2. Request score sending

There are two ways to request IELTS score sending. You can request during the registration process or after receiving your score. If you prefer making the request during registration, provide university names and addresses when booking a test on the test center website or fill out the application form with 5 universities and send it to the nearest test center. In this case, universities may receive your score earlier than you do. Sound scary? Therefore, I recommend making the request after getting your score. If you have taken IELTS multiple times, you can send the best score! Login to the website of IELTS test center where you take the test such as UKCanada and Hong Kong. Then find Apply for additional TRFs at the left-most side of your result page and fill out application forms online.

3. Choose delivery method

You can send your score by either electronic score report delivery or paper TRF delivery. Before choosing a score delivery method, check the official website of your dream universities and make sure which method they accept. You also have to pay for courier or regular delivery if you send paper TRFs. I strongly recommend choosing courier delivery such as DHL rather than regular delivery because couriers can better track your shipment and confirm it was delivered.

4. Submit and pay

Now you can submit your application and pay for it.  In most cases, universities can receive your electronic score report in five business days and paper score report in five to ten business days.

Though the process sounds a little bit complicated, it is a necessary step of international college application. Don’t forget to send your scores before application deadlines and prepare everything in advance!


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55 Responses to IELTS score sending process

  1. Zahra October 30, 2016 at 1:41 am #

    Thanks for the useful information.

    I have a question regarding this topic. How long would it take for our IELTS results to be received by the university after requesting the IDP or BC to send them to those universities?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert October 31, 2016 at 12:52 pm #

      It takes 13 days to get your IELTS score report. From there, it takes 5 business days for a university to receive notice of your score, if the university receives the scores electronically. And if your univeristy is receiving the scores by mail, it can take up to 10 business days. So overall, you’re looking at a wait time of 3 weeks to one month after test day before your scores arrive at the schools you’ve applied to.

  2. Natalie December 2, 2016 at 5:28 am #


    I finished my ielts around 3 months ago and I applied for a trf to send my score to a desired university electronically. How long will it take a university to get my electronic ielts score??

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 6, 2016 at 8:13 am #

      Good question. The official IELTS website says it should take no more than three weeks for a university admissions office to receive your scores electronically. So if you school hasn’t received the scores by then, you’ll definitely want to check with both the school and IELTS to see what has caused the delay.

  3. Goutham.M December 5, 2016 at 7:33 pm #

    i have not used my FREE universities yet. how can i use them now

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 6, 2016 at 8:00 am #

      To send free score reports after you’ve registered for the exam, you’ll need to directly contact the test centre where you took the exam. They’ll fill your request once you get in contact with them.

  4. Vidushi Dahiya December 15, 2016 at 8:15 am #

    Hey, so I gave the test in August. Now I wish to apply to universities. I did not send the test results electronically or did not bother to take any additional copies. Now I wish to apply to the universities in Canada which specifically state they wish to receive the scores electronically. The form states that the Canadian high commission in India have requested them not to send any ATRFs to them. So the form states that the applicants in these countries must send their own copies. I don’t understand. Please help. How am I supposed to do that?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 16, 2016 at 8:25 am #

      That IS kind of confusing. But I think I can help. If I understand correctly, it sounds like you need to send your IELTS scores electronically, and you need to send a provisional paper copy of your own score report. To order a paper copy for yourself and send your scores electronically to schools, you need to contact your regional IELTS office, or your testing centre.

      Since you’re in India, the contact information for your regional IELTS office can be found on the IELTS IDP India “Contact” web page. And you should be able to find the contact info for your IELTS testing centre through the “find a test location” tool on the main IELTS web page.

  5. roy December 17, 2016 at 9:44 am #

    i took the test approximately 1 year ago. now i want to send the trf but the website tells me this:

    Your account login has been disabled as it is 30 or more days since your test date. If you require any information regarding previous or future tests, please get in touch with the centre where you took the test or where you are planning to take the test. You can find contact details for your centre on your IELTS Application Summary or Confirmation emails or via Take IELTS.

    what shall i do?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 22, 2016 at 7:12 am #

      Hi Roy,

      Looks like your only option is to contact the testing center and the IELTS British Council. Good luck! 🙂

  6. bhargav reddy January 6, 2017 at 9:17 am #

    hi, i have receive my ielts score on 28th december and i didn’t get my test report form through post till now. Also, i need to apply for 7 universities in US and if only one test report form is sent through courier to me, how am i supposed to send to the remaining universities as score reporting to universities need test report form. so, please answer this.

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert January 7, 2017 at 3:19 am #

      Hi Bhargav,

      You need to get these reports through your IELTS registration on the main webpage.

      “A candidate may request up to five (5) additional TRFs to be sent to Receiving Institutions (universities, professional bodies, etc) within one (1) month of taking the IELTS test. TRFs sent by courier will be sent through DHL and students will be charged accordingly. If the Receiving Institution accepts electronic submission of scores then that can be arranged through the IDP IELTS office at no charge. More than five TRFs are subject to an extra fee plus courier costs. These are sent directly to the Receiving Organisations of your choice.”

      The one being sent to you will be invalid because it needs to be delivered directly to institutions, not first to you.

  7. nabeena January 12, 2017 at 6:09 am #


    very useful information indeed all my doubts have been cleared except I want to know if it is possible for me to send the TRF’s before I pay the application fee and apply. I am on process of applying but i do not want to risk the chance of the scores reaching late,

    do u think i can send the score say tomorrow and it takes 5-7 days to reach the university i can try and finish application payment and processing but if not and before i pay the application fee and my ielts reaches will it be still identified later when i register for application ?

    Hoping for a reply

    Thanks in Advance

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert January 12, 2017 at 7:49 am #

      Hi Nabeena,

      It’s excellent to hear that the information on the post was useful 😀

      While I recommend contacting the programs you’re applying to in order to confirm, yes, you should be able to send your scores in before paying the application fee. In fact, schools typically recommend that you send your scores in as soon as possible, so that arrive on or before the application deadline. As long as the information you enter when sending the score matches the information on your application, you should be all set 🙂

      Hope this helps! Good luck on your applications!

  8. Raghav January 20, 2017 at 9:20 am #

    Hi, Can you please explain how IELTS scores are sent electronically and why it takes 5 days (as you mentioned) if it is sent electronically to be received by the university?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert January 21, 2017 at 2:27 am #

      Hi Raghav,

      We are not privy to the entirety of the score sending process, but I can give you some insight. First, despite a report being prepared/score available, there is additional administrative effort that goes on before it is issued digitally. This buffer of ~5 days helps cover high traffic periods. Also, you need to consider that the receiving institution might not receive it instantly. On, “Educational institutions and organizations receive a large number of applications and supporting materials throughout the admissions process. Therefore, please allow 2–3 weeks from the time you submit your score request until they are uploaded into your application file at your preferred institution (department/program).” I hope that clarifies!

  9. Nhu La February 3, 2017 at 6:44 pm #

    Hi I just took IELTS on January 14th. I dont want to send scores to universities anymore, and my results have been out for almost 8 days, starting from Jan 26th up until Feb 3rd. I use free send IELTS Scores. Therefore, should I call the centre on Monday Febuary 5th to ask them to cancel it? Is it possible? Please let me know!

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 6, 2017 at 6:11 am #

      Hi Nhu,

      The IELTS usually sends out your scores no more than a week after they’re available. So there’s a good chance your scores have already been sent. Still, it has been just 6 business days. There’s at least some chance that the scores haven’t been sent yet. I recommend contacting your testing center ASAP. Check and see if you can still cancel. It certainly doesn’t hurt to ask.

  10. Navaneethan Thangavel February 26, 2017 at 10:18 pm #

    I got my IELTS score on 24th. I’m planning to do masters in Germany. The universities I’m looking for require me send my documents via uni-assist . What is the procedure to send my IELTS score? Should I send my IELTS score directly to the university or uni-assist?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert February 27, 2017 at 8:30 am #

      If I’m understanding correctly, it sounds like you should submit the scores through Uni-Assist, rather than sending them directly to the university. However, every school that uses Uni-Assist has different policies. There are different lists of documents you need to send through Uni-Assist, depending on the school. And some German institutions want to receive certain documents directly, while getting other documents through Uni-Assist.

      In other words, you should really contact your Masters Program admissions office to get the exact rules.

  11. Archana Mishra March 19, 2017 at 4:08 pm #


    I took the ielts test on 18th feb and results were out on 3rd march
    The trf score was delivered to me by end of week after 3rd march
    I requested two copies to be sent to US universities to british council on 15th March. The demand draft for mail to universities, which is via courier was received by BC on 15th March. I have no way to check if they have actually sent my trf score card to universities yet. Is there a way I can check? If BC recieved all my documents on 15th, when will they be sending to universities?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert March 19, 2017 at 11:26 pm #

      You should be able to check in one of two ways. To see if your scores have been sent off yet, contact the test centre where you took the examination, or log in to your online IELTS account.

  12. AIDA March 26, 2017 at 10:59 am #

    what is my ielts reference number,I want to send my scores,but I don’t know which is my ielts reference number??

    Thank you

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert March 29, 2017 at 10:30 am #

      Hi Aida,

      Your reference number should have been included in most documentation, including in your registration confirmation email. The reference number is a long alphanumeric string of characters. 🙂

  13. Mike April 10, 2017 at 10:58 pm #

    i have a question , i received my scores on April 7,2017, and i had already applied sending my score when i registered my test, and i paid it for 10, i just wanna know where will the scores send to? and how long can i receive the scores? thank u!

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert April 11, 2017 at 7:22 am #

      The scores will go to destinations you select. You can send them to yourself or to a university of your choice. You can choose your score recipients through your IELTS candidate login, or by contacting your test centre.

  14. Sai Krishna June 27, 2017 at 2:40 am #

    Requested TRF to be sent by courier and paid the fee of 1250 at ielts idp how many days will it take to reach the university..? and also how can I track it..?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert June 27, 2017 at 8:46 am #

      Hi Sai,

      TRFs sent by courier go through DHL. There should be a DHL tracking number for your courier-sent TRF, but you may need to contact your test centre in order to get that number. How long it takes depends on the location of the destination university, and the speed of courier that IELTS has selected with DHL. Again, these are things you can likely find out by contacting your test centre. 🙂

  15. abenezer June 28, 2017 at 2:48 pm #

    this is really helpful thanks you and this is the first time i have commented on a blog or so

  16. Zoama Hassan August 11, 2017 at 9:17 am #

    Hi I have a query.
    If I donot opt for sending my scores to 5 institutions(free ones) while registering due to being undecided yet, can I choose these 5 institutions later, after the registration?
    If yes, how and upto when can this choice be done?

  17. Samiha August 26, 2017 at 7:44 pm #

    I recently gave the IELTS test and the score is expected to be out by 8th September. I’m not satisfied with my performance in the writing section and feel that I might get below 6. I would give IELTS again but my problem is that I want to start applying to the universities as soon as the application system opens as I also want to apply for the scholarships.

    Is it possible for me to apply first and then submit the score later?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert August 28, 2017 at 4:26 pm #

      Hi Samiha,

      You can start applications at any time, but often your application is not considered submitted/complete until all parts are there. You will have to ask individual admissions departments to get the final word here. Good luck! 🙂

  18. saikrishna September 2, 2017 at 8:27 am #

    I need to apply 6 US colleges but in artf form there is only 5 columns to fill how i need to apply the 6th colleges and if can be applied in additional form then how i need to take the DD 5+1 =total or seperate?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert September 7, 2017 at 10:25 am #

      That’s a good question. I believe you’d need to ask your local test centre for a second form. But to make sure you do your 6 score requests correctly, I recommend contacting your test centre and asking them exactly what you should do.

  19. rowena October 11, 2017 at 9:30 pm #

    HOw to send IELTS result from British Council electronically?

  20. Aarathi October 17, 2017 at 6:06 am #

    Does the charge for electronic and courier differ..?
    And i would like to know how to check the status after reporting.

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert October 18, 2017 at 10:23 am #

      Hi Aarathi,

      There is no clear information about whether it costs more, so I suspect it varies geographically. As for checking on the status, the IELTS website says, “please allow 2–3 weeks from the time you submit your score request until they are uploaded into your application file at your preferred institution (department/program).” So there are not regular updates and you will have to wait 3 weeks before asking the institution if your scores were received.

  21. Akash Dangre October 25, 2017 at 11:21 pm #


    my IELTS test is schedule on 2nd Nov 2017. I want to send 5 free copies of test result to universities in Canada. as mentioned above test result takes (approx) 15 days to reach the candidate and sending the copies to universities take more (approx) 10 days. So should the candidate wait for his copy to reach him first or should I submit details of those 5 universities immediately after the test?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert October 29, 2017 at 1:04 pm #

      Hi Akash,

      This depends on several factors. You should consider how confident you are in your ability to reach your target score, and whether or not you would retake the test if you don’t reach your target score (and if you have time to do so before applications are due). If you have time and would plan to retake the test for low scores, I recommend that you wait until you get your score results. This allows you to decide if you like the scores before sending them to universities 🙂

  22. Simone November 13, 2017 at 1:32 pm #

    I plan on taking the IELTS test February 2018, as I need it for a trip to Australia in fall 2018. However, I am not applying to universities in the UK until January 2019.
    Is it possible to get a copy of my results and then send them to the universities by myself / or to wait to get my 5 free copies sent to institutions until next year (2019)?
    – Simone

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert November 13, 2017 at 7:05 pm #

      Hi Simone,

      You don’t have to immediately send your scores, so you can definitely follow your proposed timeline. 🙂

      • Reshma November 18, 2017 at 10:59 pm #

        Hi, I had taken up my ielts exam on June 24, I would like to apply to the universities now. (Usa). So how do I know in which form different universities accepted the scores. I would want to apply to Arizona state university. So could you please how the university accepts the score report. For masters in electrical engineering

        • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
          Magoosh Test Prep Expert November 20, 2017 at 5:26 pm #

          Hi Reshma,

          You should look at that program’s admissions page on the university website. If it is not indicated, you should write to admissions and ask them directly. 🙂

  23. ABDALLA November 20, 2017 at 7:55 pm #

    hey guys I need an urgent answer please, I’ve asked my test center to report my IELTS score electronically today and the deadline for application is December first.Will it reach the university in time? it’s mcgill btw

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert November 21, 2017 at 6:01 am #

      Hi Abdalla,

      It takes around 5 days for your score to reach the university if you send them electronically, and up to 10 business days if you send them by mail. If you sent them by mail then you may be cutting it close–if so, you should reach out to McGill and see what they say.

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert November 28, 2017 at 11:09 am #

      Hi Digvijay,

      Great questions! For electronically sent scores, score sending is usually free, although sometimes your specific test center may charge an small extra fee for that. Bear in mind also that not all universities accept electronic scores. So if you are considering electronic score submission, first contact your prospective school to make sure they can accept electronic IELTS scores. Then, if the school can accept paperless score reports, contact your test center to see what extra fee they charge, if any, for sending the scores that way. (Again, if there is a fee for sending electronic scores, it will probably be cheaper, and often this service is free.)

      As for specific payment methods, that’s also something you should contact your test center about, as rules can vary.

  24. Jester December 21, 2017 at 8:26 pm #

    Hi! Mam! Can i request my TRF through onilne? It is possible that they can send it through my eamiladdress? .thanks

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 22, 2017 at 6:40 am #

      Unfortunately, TRFs are available by post only at this time.

  25. Parth Parnerkar December 22, 2017 at 12:36 am #

    I have given the test and have recieved the scores recently . But the TRF will take upto 10 days . Since my deadline is approaching is less than 10 days is there any other way i can get my score sheet and upload

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert December 22, 2017 at 6:30 am #

      For that, you should check with the school or agency you need to send your IELTS scores to. Some places will accept a scanned and uploaded image of your score sheet while they wait to receive the real thing. Others only want an official score report.

  26. Rakshandha January 18, 2018 at 7:25 am #

    There is an option ‘Registered Airmail’ in the ATRF. Is that option okey to choose even if the specific university I wish to send my scores isn’t in the British Council Institutions list that is available online.

    And what is File/Application number that’s been asked to fill in the ATRF?(above applicant’s signature)

    Tysm in advance!!

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert January 18, 2018 at 1:11 pm #

      Hi Rakshandha,

      To my knowledge, the “Registered Airmail” option works for any university, even if it isn’t in the British Council Institutions list. But this is something that could vary depending on the region where you took the exam and the region of your destination university. So I recommend calling your test center to make sure that Airmail really can be an option.

      The File/Application number is not absolutely required. By “File/Application number,” the form is referring to the specific application or file you have with the university that will be receiving your scores. If your university has their own number for your application materials, adding that number to your TRF can sometimes help your school file your IELTS score report more quickly. If you’re not sure you should include that number, check with your university. But again, the IELTS itself doesn’t require you to put that number on the form.

  27. rahul January 21, 2018 at 2:49 am #

    i’ve given IELTS test on january 14th and i’ve already mentioned 5 universities to which scores have to be sent,while i registered for the test.
    But i want to change one or two universities among 5. Is this possible? if yes, how?
    If not, how can i send my scores directly to other universities?

    • Magoosh Test Prep Expert
      Magoosh Test Prep Expert January 22, 2018 at 9:23 am #

      Hi Rahul,

      I recommend that you contact your testing center directly to see if there is a way to change the score recipients and what the process is. Even if you can’t change the recipients after submitting them, you can designate more recipients for a small fee. Good luck!

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