I am getting asked this question very often, which is why we created an IELTS Overall Score Calculator you can use.
For those who need to understand the process in detail – here is how the IELTS test centre calculates your overall band score:
Total score = (Listening score + Reading score + Writing score + Speaking score) / 4
For example, if you’ve received Listening 6, Reading 7, Writing 8, Speaking 7, your total score will be (6+7+8+7) / 4 = 7.
Your score can be either a whole band or a band and a half – for example 7 or 7.5. No other fractions are allowed, for example no 7.25 or 7.75.
So what do they do in such cases, when the total score is neither whole nor half band?
There is a rule: if it ends with .25, round up to the nearest half score, and if it ends with .75, round up to the nearest whole band score.
To demonstrate, if you’ve received Listening 6, Reading 7, Writing 8, Speaking 6, your overall score will be (6+7+8+6)/4 = 6.75 – the rule says round up – which means you get 7.
Another example: if your scores were Listening 6 Reading 7 Writing 8 Speaking 8, the overall score will be (6+7+8+8)/4 = 7.25 – the rule says round up to half score – which means you get 7.5.
However, if you’ve received Listening 6, Reading 6.5, Writing 6, Speaking 6, your overall score will be (6+6.5+6+6)/4 = 6.125 – the rule says round down to the nearest whole band score – which means you get 6.
Similarly, if you received Listening 6.5, Reading 6.5, Writing 6.5, Speaking 7, your overall score will be (6.5+6.5+6.5+7)/4 = 6.625 – the rule says round down to the nearest half band score – which means you get 6.5.
It’s not too difficult – just remember to apply the rule of rounding.
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