Is My Accent Hurting My IELTS Score?
IELTS is an internationally accepted English language test that you must pass in order to get into an English-speaking nation. This test has more than 1200 testing locations all across the globe and is accepted by 10,000 organizations worldwide. It means that you can get to almost any country if you manage to score well in IELTS.
The test consists of four modules – Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking. Out of all these four modules, the IELTS Speaking test is the one you may struggle a lot in. It requires you to hold a face-to-face conversation with the IELTS examiner. Further, there is another question that many are doubtful of. It is – Does getting a good IELTS band score in Speaking requires you to have a “perfect” English accent? The answer is NO.
Here is everything about the importance of “Accent” in the IELTS Speaking test.
Is Accent Crucial in The IELTS Speaking Test?
Pronunciation is the key to ace speaking skills in communication. It is a part of getting a high score in your IELTS Speaking test. So, it is quite natural for candidates to worry about their accents. However, one thing that you must note here is that pronunciation and accent are not the same.
Every word of English has a specific way it is pronounced. But the accent is something that is a result of the part of the world you stay in. Here, we have some considerations about how accent plays a role in effective Speaking and how it can affect your IELTS band score.
IELTS Speaking Test Assessment Criteria
Before we get started, you must be familiar with the factors that the examiner will consider to check your speaking skills in communication:
- Fluency and Coherence
- Lexical Resource
- Grammatical Range and Accuracy
The marking scheme for the IELTS Speaking test does not mention the accent even once. Therefore, trying to copy an American or some other accent might be a waste of time.
Things You Must Keep in Mind for The Best IELTS Band Score
>>> The IELTS Speaking Is A World-English Speaking Test
There are more second-language speakers of English than the native ones. Thus, more people learn English as compared to the ones that have it as their mother tongue. Now, as IELTS is a global test and more people know English globally, it can be readily called a “World English” test.
English is, therefore, a language that is accepted worldwide. And it has managed to develop across numerous countries and cultures. It is where accents come in the picture. If you stay in Florida, it may be different than that of the people in England.
Thus, it doesn’t matter where your accent is from. The only condition for you to do well in the IELTS Speaking test is that the examiner must understand you. So, the question you should really worry about is that – Is my “World English” accent clear?
>>> Being Understood Is Important for Successful Communication
Your speaking skills in communication, however excellent, are effective only when the other person understands you. Thus, a significant part of your speaking grade constitutes the fact that you are being understood. Make sure that you use your voice to communicate meaning in the IELTS Speaking test.
Thus, even if you have a strong accent, you will score high if the examiner gets what you speak. Avoid mispronouncing words and having unusual stress patterns in your speech. It will lead you to lose marks. So, the only thing that you must worry about is effective Speaking and successful communication. Do not worry about sounding like you are from London or New York.
>>> The IELTS Speaking Test and The Airport English Analogy
Another great way to understand the role of accent in IELTS is Airport English. There are numerous airports across the globe. And each one of them communicates in English. This English reaches across people from different parts of the world and cultures. One thing that you can note about the language at the airports everywhere is that you can understand it.
However, the accent changes as you travel from place to place. But all these airports produce the same accurate English. So, the next time you think that your accent may trouble you in scoring the best in your IELTS Speaking test, think about how widely accepted Airport English is.
As a beginner, you may find preparing for your IELTS Speaking test quite challenging. And it is natural to worry about your accent. But while you learn, you will realize that effective Speaking is the one that is understood easily. A lot of practice is the secret to ace this module and get your desired IELTS band score. Ebritishielts is an IELTS online preparation portal that can help you with this. Visit our website now and take an assessment test to know where to stand in your skills for the English language.