IELTS Listening Band Score Calculator [IDP/BC]

This user-friendly IELTS Listening band score calculator take your total marks (out of 40) and convert them into an estimated band score (out of 9).

IELTS Listening Band score calculator
Number of correct answers (out of 40):       
Band scores
*Please note that this is an estimated band score as the grading may slightly vary based on the complexity of the exam.

Resources to help you score better in IELTS Listening:

☑️ Read our IELTS Listening beginners guide 2021 to understand the exam pattern.

☑️ Practice from our largest collection of free listening practice tests. We’ve plenty !

☑️ Browse through our extremely useful tips and tricks to score band 9 in Listening module.


IELTS Listening Marking Criteria

An important aspect of your IELTS Listening preparation is knowing how you will be marked for your answers. Here, both IDP Australia & British Council use similar criteria to calculate band scores.

In the Listening exam, you will have 40 questions based on audio recordings that will be played to you.

You’ll get 01 mark for each correct answer and you will be happy to know that there is NO negative marking.

So, the total number of correct answers (out of 40) will determine your band scores.

It should also be noted that scores are reported in whole (for example; 9.0, 8.0, 7.0 etc) or half (for example; 8.5, 7.5, 6.5 etc) bands.

The score chart/table used by our IELTS Listening Band Score Calculator is given below, it indicates the number of answers that should be correct in order to achieve a particular band score in IELTS Listening:

Number of correct answers
(out of 40)
Band scores
39 – 409.0
37 – 388.5
35 – 368.0
32 – 347.5
30 – 317.0
26 – 296.5
23 – 256.0
18 – 225.5
16 – 175.0
13 – 154.5
10 – 124.0
08 – 093.5
06 – 073.0
04 – 052.5

For illustration, let’s say …

– You’ve given 39-40 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘9.0′

– You’ve given 37-38 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘8.5’

– You’ve given 35-36 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘8.0′

– You’ve given 32-34 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘7.5’

– You’ve given 30-31 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘7.0’

– You’ve given 26-29 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘6.5’

– You’ve given 23-25 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘6.0’

– You’ve given 18-22 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘5.5’

– You’ve given 16-17 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘5.0’

– You’ve given 13-15 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘4.5’

– You’ve given 10-12 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘4.0’

– You’ve given 08-09 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘3.5’

– You’ve given 06-07 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘3.0’

– You’ve given 04-05 correct answers, then your estimated band scores in IELTS Listening will be ‘2.5’


IELTS Listening 9-Band Scale

In your IELTS journey, you must have wondered why band scores are so important? what they signify? why are they such a big deal for university admissions or immigration?

Well..let me tell you, each band score is rated against a particular English language skill level. As such, the band description will help the agencies or organisations where you’re applying, to gauge your English language strengths and weaknesses.

The band descriptors used for Listening module remain same for both IELTS Academic and General Training. Both test versions employ a similar 9-Band scale to rate candidate’s performance in the exam.

For better understanding, observe the table given below:

Band ScoreSkill LevelBand Description
9Expert user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has full operational command over the language.
➡️The candidate’s use of English shows complete understanding of the language.
➡️The test taker understand and use the language appropriately, accurately and fluently.
8Very good user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has complete operational command of the language with rare mistakes and inappropriate grammar usage.
➡️The test taker may not understand few things in unfamiliar circumstances.
➡️The candidate handles the detailed and complex argumentation well.
7Good user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has operational command of the language, though with occasional errors, inappropriate grammar and slight misunderstandings.
➡️The test taker can understand detailed reasoning and generally manage the complex language well.
6Competent user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has an effective grip over the language despite some mistakes, inappropriate grammar and slight misunderstandings.
➡️The test taker can communicate in fairly complex language, particularly in well-known situations.
5Modest user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has a partial command of the language and understand the overall meaning in different situations.
➡️The candidate is likely to make frequent errors.
➡️The test taker is able to handle basic communication in his own domain.
4Limited user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has basic competency limited to familiar circumstances.
➡️The test taker frequently demonstrate difficulty in understanding and expression.
➡️The candidate is unable to use any complex language.
3Extremely limited user➡️The candidate registered for the exam understands and conveys only general meaning of the language in very familiar situations.
➡️Frequent breakdowns can be observed in the communication.
2Intermittent user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has immense difficulty understanding the written and spoken English.
1Non-user➡️The candidate registered for the exam has no ability to use the English language except a small list of isolated words.
0Did not attempt the test➡️The candidate registered for the exam did not answer any questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

IELTS Listening Band Score Calculator [IDP/BRITISH COUNCIL]
In IELTS Listening test, you have to answer 40 questions related to audio recordings that will be played to you. You'll hear the recordings for around 30 minutes and you'll be given additional 10 minutes to transfer your answers on the listening answer sheet. To know more about this test, follow our IELTS Listening Beginners Guide 2021.
IELTS Listening band scores are calculated based on the total number of correct answers given by a candidate. The wrong answers are nullified as there is NO negative marking. Suppose, you've given 25 correct answers out of 40 in IELTS Listening, then your score will be 6.0 bands. Use this IELTS Listening band score calculator to know more.
Any score in the range of band 7.0 and above is a good band score in IELTS Listening test. Band 7.0 means that you are a 'Good listener' of the English language and competent enough to hold conversations. However, it also depends on the kind of visa you need (e.g. student, work, business, immigration etc). For instance, you may get extra points in Canada Express Entry immigration system if you score band 8.0 and above in the IELTS Listening module.
Yes, you can take notes or write down important information on the question booklet itself; in the first 30 minutes when you'll be listening to the recordings. In fact, taking notes is extremely important part of the listening test. These notes may help you to choose the correct answer in the last 10 minutes when you'll be writing answers on the answer sheet
You have to correctly answer at least 35 questions (out of 40) to get band 8.0 in IELTS Listening test.
Generally NOT, IELTS Listening is not as hard or difficult as many candidates think of. In fact, if you practice well and work on your weaknesses you can easily get a perfect 9.0 band score in this test.
You should correctly answer at least 30 questions (out of 40) in order to get band 7.0 in IELTS Listening test. To know more about score distribution, refer to the listening score chart/table shared above.
Follow these tips to score 8.5 bands in IELTS Listening:
  1. GET FAMILIAR. Make yourself familiar with each question type before appearing for the exam.
  2. LISTEN ATTENTIVELY. Stay focused on the audio that is being played to you.
  3. HAVE AN EAGLE EYE ON THE QUESTIONS. Carefully look at whole set of questions before the recording starts.
  4. ANTICIPATE INFORMATION. Identify the type of information required to answer each part of the question.
  5. NO SPELLING ERRORS. Be careful while you transfer your answers on the answer sheet.
  6. PARAPHRASES/SYNONYMS WORK WONDERS. Knowing useful phrases and synonyms will help you to understand widely used vocabulary in the Listening test.
  7. PRACTICE IS THE KEY. Practice listening tests under the same exam conditions will definitely put you at ease during the actual exam.
  8. ATTEMPT ALL QUESTIONS. There is no negative marking so don't leave any question unanswered otherwise you may miss your shot of getting band 8.5 in IELTS Listening test.
You can use our largest collection of listening tests available for FREE. Remember, practice makes a man perfect! It's the only thing that is keeping you from a perfect band 9.0 in Listening.
Yes, you can write in capital letters in IELTS Listening test, as there is no such rule which prohibit you from using uppercase letters. For example, MELBOURNE or Melbourne both are correct answers. Also, this is true for both paper-based and computer delivered IELTS.

Rajit

Rajit Kaushal is the Co-founder and an active blogger at 'CIC Talks'. He is best known for his rich expertise in IELTS & Canadian Immigration🇨🇦. You can reach out to him at [email protected]

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