7 Key Grammar Rules for IELTS Exam Everyone Should Know

Grammar is one of the major components of any language upon which the language is based. However, ideas can be conveyed through words but a proper linkage of those words is taught under grammatical skills.

IELTS is an English test which checks your ability to convey your messages in the English language. It is a high-profile English test that is pursued by enrolling in studies or work in an English-speaking country.

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Is Grammar important for IELTS?

Grammar is not the only criteria which is checked in this test but it is one of the parameter upon which all the four modules of IELTS are tested under a heading of GRA (Grammatical Range & Accuracy). The more correct, the more you will be scored. However, no need to be perfect though.

This article will head towards the 7 key English Grammar rules that you should know to get through this test.

1. Sentence structure

First and the foremost thing to learn in Grammar is sentence composition. Sentences are the foundation for writing. If you know the words, but do not know how to chain it in sentences, it will be of no use.

Sentence- It is a combination of words. A simple sentence consists of a Subject+ verb+ object.

For example- John eats ice cream. Here John is subject, eating is a verb and ice cream is an object.

However IELTS doesn’t demand complex sentences, but the written one should be correct.

2. Tenses

Tenses tell the time of a verb that when did it happen? Three types of tenses are there, that is, past, present, and future. To have basic knowledge of past and present forms of tenses is a key aspect of scoring high in IELTS and sometimes, even to crack an exam.

Students should have basic knowledge of simple and continuous present, simple and perfect past tenses.

A simple form of tenses has no helping verb in it and it shows that an action is there.

For example:- He writes an essay. (Simple present), He wrote an essay. (Simple past)

The continuous form of tenses tells that an action is going on in present.

For example:- He is writing an essay. (Present continuous)

Perfect past says that an action has been done. For example:- Mr. Brown had left India.

3. Modals and helping verbs

Another key rule that should be on tips when appearing for IELTS or even for learning English Grammar is learning modals and helping verbs.

Helping verbs are:- Is, am, are, was, were, will, shall

Modals are:- Can, could, may, might, should

Why modals and verbs are important?

These are important to write and convey your message in a correct way as is, am, are verbs are used in the present tense and was ,were verbs are used for past message and will, shall are used for future.

He is doing his work at the present.

He was doing his work in past

He will do his work in future.

4. Comparative degrees

Another major rule of Grammar is comparative degrees of adjectives. Adjectives tell the quality of a noun or a pronoun. These are beautiful, adorable, black, white, gorgeous, fast, lazy, ugly etc.

These are of three types:- simple, comparative, superlative which become the three degrees of comparison.

  • Alice is happy.
  • Alice is happier than Chris.
  • Alice is the happiest.

Some of other degrees of comparison are:-

  • Funny, funnier, funniest
  • Good, better, best
  • Bad, worse, worst
  • Fast, faster, fastest
  • Poor, poorer, poorest
  • Slow, slower, slowest
  • Famous, more famous, the most famous
  • Fascinating, more fascinating, the most fascinating

5. Homophones

Homophones are an important part of the English language. Homophones are basically words that have the same pronunciation but different meanings and spellings. Sometimes, students tend to get confused between some words and as we know, that one word can change the meaning of a whole sentence. So, it is very important to know the correct differentiation between the words and it is one of the major rules you should learn to have better scores in your writing module.

Some of the major homophones are:-

  • Their (pronoun), There (place)
  • Hear (to listen), Here (place), Hare (rabbit)
  • Flower (blooming bud), Flour (powdered wheat or maize)
  • I (personal pronoun), eye(human body part on face)
  • Plain (flat), plane (airplane)
  • Career (job or profession), carrier (to load things over vehicle or messenger)
  • Our (personal pronoun), hour (60 minutes time period)

6. Nouns and Pronouns

Nouns and pronouns are major parts of speech of the English language. These are basic components of grammar and play a key role in all modules of IELTS.


These are basically name of any person, place, animal or thing. For example- John, Mr. Brown, Amsterdam, Canada, Tortoise, Book, pen or anything etc.

Why nouns are important?

  • Nouns are important as with the identification of nouns, you will be able to put articles, like, for TAJ MAHAL, you have to write THE TAJ MAHAL. For any common noun, like a watch, you can write A WATCH etc.
  • Also in case of fill-ups of the reading and listening module, if any blank is followed up by any article, you will get the idea of filling a noun in it. For example:- The......... is situated in Agra. Here noun is a subject of which the blank is talking about. You can search for nouns in the passage.


These are the words that are used in place of nouns. For example:- He, She, It, You, Their, Yours, We etc.

Why pronouns are important?

  • Pronouns help you to put the correct word in place of a noun. For example:- If the subject is a boy, you can use ‘He' afterward in other sentences which will refer to him.
  • Pronouns are a key aspect as in reading and listening modules too, you can understand what the subject matter is. Also in the speaking module, many students do the mistake of speaking wrong pronouns like for he , they use she etc.

7. Spellings

Major and one of the key aspect of grammar or any language is spellings. However, again you need not to be perfect but more of the spelling errors can cost you much bands. Also, in reading and listening module, any wrong spellings on answer sheet will be marked wrong. There are many mistakes which are usually can be seen in students answer sheets. These are:-

  • Acceptance, accessible, accommodation, advice (noun), advise (verb), attendance.
  • Basically, beginning, belief, believe, business
  • Category, calendar, cigarette, committed, condemned, correspondence
  • Deceive, despair, discipline, disappointment
  • Excellent, existence, exasperating, especially, exaggerate
  • Foreign, former, fourth, forty, February, finally, fulfill
  • General, genius, grammar, guarantee
  • Happily, humorous, humor, honor, height
  • Imaginary, interrupt, inevitably, interference, ideally
  • Jealous, jealousy
  • Know, knew, known, knowledge
  • Library, luxurious, legitimate, length
  • Marriage, millionaires, missionary
  • Neighbors, necessary, noticeable
  • Option, opinion, opportunity, originality
  • Psychological, personnel, perceive
  • Quantity, questionnaire, queue
  • Realistic, receive, recommend,
  • Secretary, separate, sincerely, suspicious, successful
  • Their, there, technique, technical
  • Undoubtedly, ubiquitous,
  • Valuable, violent, vision
  • Youngsters young, yatch
  • Zero

So, grammar is the foundation of any language. Having a hold over Grammar makes you fluent though but if you are learning English as a second language, so no need to be perfect but practice is must to score higher. More of the mistakes can’t be tolerated.

Dr. Roma

Content Writer