8 Ways On How Podcasts Can Help You with IELTS Exam Preparation

IELTS exam is a high-profile English language test that requires a big chunk of your efforts to appear, clear, and achieve your goals. In this era of digitization, preparing for an IELTS exam is no longer a thought but a regular practice for the same stuff is one. One of the methods which are gaining popularity in no time is learning through podcasts. Podcasting, as one of the latest mediums to emerge into the mainstream, is one of the forefront technologies in this change.

Yes, in this article, the top 8 ways of learning through podcasts will be discussed which will make you convinced enough to give it a thought too.


A podcast is an acronym for personal on-demand broadcast. A podcast is a series of audio files which is available over the web and can be downloaded via the internet. It is available for listening to the content of one's own choice. For example- the radio program which is available for listeners on different stations.

● One of the greatest advantages of educational podcasts is the portability and convenience they offer. Podcasts can be downloaded to a mobile device, allowing the student to access the learning resources anytime, anywhere, with very little effort.

● In the recent time of COVID, podcasting has emerged as a successful implementation of the learning of the language. A huge number of downloads were there for the same.

● Additionally, with podcasts comes versatility and accessibility which other mediums of information and entertainment cannot offer. You might not necessarily read a thirty-thousand-word blog, but you can listen to a podcast about the same topic in bits on your daily commute to school or work.

Where to search for a Podcast?

Spotify is one of the leading platforms for podcasts, having already gathered two million users in India in the first quarter of 2019. Other music streaming services like Apple Music and Amazon Music have also started streaming podcasts, giving access to podcasts to a wider audience. Independent podcasts are also mushrooming in the country

How do Podcasts help in IELTS exam preparation?

Well, there is a huge amount of content over the internet. Search for your topics of interest, download the podcast and listen to it a more number of times for effective practice.

Following are the 8 ways by which podcasts can be used to prepare for the IELTS exam:-

1. To Build Stamina In Listening

Podcast is a series of audio files which a listener can listen to as many times as one wants. So the first way by which podcasts can help you in your eyes preparation is by building your stamina in listening to the English language.

● It improves your concentration.

● It boosts your focus.

● It makes you careful while listening to the content.

● It gives you an idea of how the English language sounds.

So the more times you listen to the podcast the more strengthened your stamina will be in the IELTS listening exam.

2. To Use The Transcript

Another important way by which a podcast can help you in your IELTS preparation is by using the transcript method. It is a method of using what is being said in the podcast 's audio.

● Try to mimic and shadow fill the blanks by putting random blanks in your transcript and then filling them out by listening.

● In addition, students learning English as a second language and they like how they can read the words and promptly hear how they're supposed to sound. Pronunciation and the patterns of stress and intonation used when people are speaking — aid in understanding, especially for English-language learners.

● Podcasts allow students to practice their listening comprehension of complex texts that are both conversational and formal, and the corresponding transcripts enable students to confirm their success.

3. To Get Used To Real Life English

There is no doubt that a textbook English and a spoken English which is in real life are two different things so it is very important to get knowledge about the real English. However there is a little bit of difference between the real English and the IELTS listening.

● Real life English is somewhat depends upon person to person whereas the IELTS listening is curated for the exam purpose.

So how a podcast helps here is that you can listen to the audios of natives of an English speaking country and also the IELTS exam listening. By doing this, you will get the idea of the differences between the two.

4. To Build The Knowledge Of The Language

Podcasts help to construct the knowledge of the language in its deeper concepts. The more you listen, the more exposure to the language will be there.

● First of all, obviously you get the knowledge of the pronunciation.

● Secondly, you get the knowledge of the pace and tone with which it can be spoken.

● It not only helps in the listening exam in IELTS but also your speaking skills are enhanced.

5. To Actually Learn Something

With the help of podcasts, you can choose the content and the form that fits your particular lesson to learn, and the possibilities by which you can get your podcasts are endless: fictional stories podcasts, educational and inspirational TED talks, current events or world news probably on BBC and CNN news channels, and investigative journalism.

● To many of the recent student generation, learning through listening is enjoyable and less tedious than reading. Educational podcasts are appealing and may encourage students who don’t like reading. Because of the kind of content people consume nowadays and the way communication has evolved over the years, the attention span of younger generations has decreased and this means that internet users prefer audio content over the written one.

● Podcasts are a great way to explore new topics and interests and whenever students have leisure time or when they are doing daily tasks like commuting, transiting, cooking, cleaning or gyming and exercising, they can listen to a podcast and help themselves out in learning a new language.

6. To Focus On Overall Meaning

One of the major advantages of learning and listening through podcasts is that you get to engage in focusing on the overall meaning of the concept.

How can it be done?

Well there are some steps which you can follow.

● Firstly, listen to your chosen podcast and understand it.

● Write a summary in your own words of what you have understood.

● Listen to the audio again and check what you have mistaken.

● If audio is not understandable once, listen to it twice. You will feel the difference as many times as you listen. With time, it will get clear after one time listening.

How can it help?

By doing so, your speed will enhance and your understanding power strengthens. The more you listen, the more it will get better.

7. Speed Variations

Another way by which a podcast can help you in your IELTS exam is by varying the speed of the podcast. Set the speed of your listening to the point which is understandable to you. Be it 1× or 1.5× or 2×. By doing so, you will get to know your actual speed and you will have better practice in this.

Many times, I hear students saying that mam, listening was difficult as it was very fast. Well, my dear students, it was normal but you need to practice for all the speeds in it. So I believe, setting a podcast to your chosen speed will make you highly practiced in it.

8. Read It Along

Last but not the least, a way to practice using podcasts is by reading the transcript along with. It suggests that reading along with the audio helps focussing on the content and keeps away from "spacing out" while listening.

Top Five Podcasts for IELTS Exam Preparation-

1. BBC Six Minute English

This is a classic podcast for beginners and students who are just beginning their IELTS journey and might currently have low-level listening skills.

2. In Our Time

One of the difficult podcasts for high level preparation. In each episode, you will listen to the host having a round-table discussion with three or four academics.

3. Desert Island Discs

Many students ask for “Band 9 essays” but what you have here are “Band 9 speaking performances”. If you want to improve your intonation and start to sound more “native” when you speak, then this is the podcast for you.

4. Radiolab

This is an all-round good podcast for IELTS as you’ve got the variety of voices to stretch your listening skills, plus so many of the topics that are covered.

5. 99% Invisible

Good for the students who want to move one level up from BBC 6 Minute English to a higher-level.

A website for downloading more such podcasts:-


A must for preparing for the IELTS exam, this podcast offers tips and strategies, helping students develop their techniques in all areas of the exam.

I hope that the above article helps you out in finding what exactly a podcast means and how it can help you in your IELTS exam preparation. Keep practicing and listening to more such podcasts.

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