An English language qualification is a requirement for any visa application in the United Kingdom. The IELTS UKVI is an approved test for these visa applications.

An IELTS UKVI test is specifically required for UK visa applicants as it is designed to meet certain administrative requirements that are specific to UK Visas and Immigration. The Test Report Forms are different from the usual IELTS examination as IELTS UKVI indicates that the test has been taken in an ILETS UKVI test center.

The IELTS UKVI test has no difference with the usual IELTS test. Test questions, test format, level of difficulty, and scoring are all the same. The only observed difference is that the IELTS UKVI test fee is more expensive than the usual IELTS examination.
There are still two modules in the IELTS UKVI – the Academic and General Training modules. The IELTS UKVI Academic is for test takers who are wishing to study at undergraduate and postgraduate levels, and for those seeking professional registration in the UK. Professionals such as Filipino nurses would have to take the Academic module. Further, the General Training module is for those who wish to live permanently in the UK and those who are planning to undergo training and studying a below degree level.

There are some questions whether the IELTS UKVI exam is assessed. It is actually the same with the usual IELTS test. The speaking test, however, is recorded through a CCTV camera. This camera recording can be used when one asks for a remarking on one’s IELTS speaking examination. Like mentioned earlier, there is no significant difference between the IELTS UKVI score assessment with the usual IELTS examination.

A lot of candidates feel the pressure when taking the IELTS UKVI. The common reason for this is that the IELTS UKVI is not as cheap as the other IELTS exam. Also, there are only two authorized test centers here in the Philippines – Manila and Cebu. Those candidates who are not in these cities would have to travel to these designated centers which is another expense for them. To be successful in reaching target scores for the examination, here are some things IELTS UKVI candidates should do.

  1. Give yourself enough time to review for the examination. Most candidates spend about three months to fully review for the test. This gives them enough time to be familiar with the test format and build necessary skills for the examination. 
  2. Look for practice tests online. There are a literally hundreds of practice test online. These practice tests are good exercises to hone skills for the examination. There are sample answers and answer keys for the exercises and some even have rationalization on their answers. Take advantage of these as most of them are free to download. 
  3. Find a speaking partner to improve skills and confidence for the IELTS speaking test. Most Filipinos are anxious when speaking English in front of other people. Having a speaking partner can help one be more fluent in English. Choose someone who is an expert in the language such as teachers. 
  4. Enroll in an IELTS review center. IELTS review centers have coaches and mentors that teach and hone students to be IELTS ready. Further, they give the best advice when it comes to improving English skills.

The IELTS UKVI is designed to measure one’s English skills appropriate and useful for the UK. Preparation is essential and practice makes the test so much easier.