Hyderabad: The first few steps towards the foreign education and career dreams of many Telugites usually involve the IELTS. And that crucial step is going through a significant transition.
The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is one of the most popular such tests for students and job aspirants wanting to go abroad, and in July, Australia-based IDP Education Limited, a global leader in international education services and co-owner of IELTS, acquired the British Council’s IELTS business in India.
Speaking at a recent Round Table conference on the new expansion policy and upcoming developments for IELTS post the IDP taking over, IDP South Asia Regional Director Piyush Kumar said the number of people taking the IELTS had shot up in the last couple of years.
“Post the pandemic, the number of students wanting to go abroad has gone up, and so has that of IELTS candidates too. So we are looking at expansion, by increasing the number of our test centres, for both pen and paper mode and the computer-based mode,” he replied to a query from Telangana Today.
“We are already increasing our capabilities with multiple sessions and clearing the backlog caused by the pandemic,” he said, pointing out that IDP was already present in over 74 locations, including Hyderabad, for paper-based IELTS and in 21 locations (with 36 test centres) for computer-delivered IELTS. Covid-19 safety precautions too were in place, including only 50 percent occupancy being permitted in centres.
“We are also working on building an IELTS ecosystem, comprising of new projects including an IELTS progress check that will help candidates to prepare better and score higher in their IELTS,” he said, adding that more innovative products were in the pipeline and that the whole effort was to ensure a smooth experience, where the candidate would have to focus only on the test and not on any other logistical issues.
IDP has also introduced a ‘Train the Trainer’ programme for faculties of referral partners and is organizing master classes for referral partners’ candidates (online/offline) on request.
With IDP now being the sole distributor of IELTS in India, Piyush Kumar said India was a competitive market in English language testing, with the country witnessing a booming demand for IELTS tests among all segments. There was no major change to the structure of the test, with the way it was being delivered to the candidate, right from registration to the experience of appearing for the test, being improved, he said.
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