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IELTS Vocabulary 2023-24: The Best List of Vocabulary Words for IELTS

Harsh Ranjan      October 10, 2023

About this article

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is one of the most popular English language proficiency tests in the world. It is used by universities, employers, and immigration authorities to assess the English language skills of non-native speakers.

 The test covers a wide range of topics, and examiners are looking for candidates who can use a variety of words and phrases to express themselves clearly and concisely.

If you are preparing for the IELTS exam, it is important to focus on building your vocabulary. 

If you're planning to take the IELTS exam in 2023-24, you're likely aware that a strong vocabulary is crucial for success. A rich vocabulary not only improves your writing and speaking skills but also helps you understand and respond effectively to the various question types in the exam. In this article, we'll provide you with a comprehensive list of vocabulary words for IELTS, categorized by skill area and proficiency level.

1. Common Vocabulary for All IELTS Sections:

These are essential words that can enhance your performance across all sections of the IELTS exam.

  • Crucial: Extremely important or necessary.
  • Significant: Having great meaning, importance, or consequence.
  • Consequently: As a result, or effect.
  • Inevitable: Certain to happen; unavoidable.
  • Adequate: Sufficient in quantity or quality.
  • Henceforth: From this time forward.
  • Nevertheless: In spite of that; nonetheless.
  • Furthermore: In addition; moreover.
  • Nonetheless: Nevertheless; in spite of that.
  • Conversely: In an opposite manner; on the other hand.

2. Vocabulary for the IELTS Reading and Listening Sections:

These words will help you understand and answer comprehension questions effectively.

  • Comprehend: To understand something completely.
  • Infer: To deduce or conclude information from evidence and reasoning.
  • Ambiguous: Having more than one possible meaning; unclear.
  • Paraphrase: To rephrase or restate something using different words.
  • Synthesize: To combine different elements to create something new.
  • Delineate: To describe or portray something precisely.
  • Analyze: To examine in detail, typically to understand or explain.
  • Evaluate: To assess the quality, significance, or value of something.
  • Contrast: To compare and highlight the differences between two or more things.
  • Evaluate: To assess the quality, significance, or value of something.


3. Vocabulary for the IELTS Writing Section:

These words are essential for constructing well-structured essays and reports.

  • Elaborate: To provide more details or information about something.
  • Persuade: To convince someone to do or believe something.
  • Cite: To quote or mention as evidence or support.
  • Substantiate: To provide evidence or proof to support a claim or argument.
  • Concede: To admit that something is true or valid, often reluctantly.
  • Refute: To prove a statement or argument to be false or incorrect.
  • Justify: To provide reasons or evidence to support an action or decision.
  • Critique: To evaluate and analyze something critically.
  • Advocate: To publicly support or recommend a particular cause or policy.
  • Exemplify: To serve as a typical example of something.

4. Vocabulary for the IELTS Speaking Section:

These words will help you express yourself clearly and confidently during the speaking test.

  • Articulate: To express thoughts or ideas clearly and coherently.
  • Fluent: Able to speak a language or express oneself easily and smoothly.
  • Enunciate: To pronounce words or sounds clearly and distinctly.
  • Eloquence: Fluent and persuasive speaking or writing.
  • Gesticulate: To use gestures, especially dramatic ones, while speaking.
  • Incorporate: To include or integrate something into a larger whole.
  • Impromptu: Done without preparation; spontaneous.
  • Paraphernalia: The equipment or items used for a particular activity or hobby.
  • Intonation: The rise and fall of the pitch of the voice when speaking.
  • Elocution: The skill of clear and expressive speech.

5. Advanced Vocabulary for High-Scoring Candidates:

If you aim for a high score, consider incorporating these advanced words into your vocabulary.

  • Ubiquitous: Present, appearing, or found everywhere.
  • Sycophant: A person who acts obsequiously towards someone important to gain an advantage.
  • Cacophony: A harsh, discordant mixture of sounds.
  • Benevolent: Well-meaning and kindly.
  • Ephemeral: Lasting for a very short time.
  • Ostentatious: Characterized by vulgar or pretentious display; designed to impress.
  • Esoteric: Intended for or likely to be understood by only a small number of people with a specialized knowledge or interest.
  • Quixotic: Exceedingly idealistic; unrealistic and impractical.
  • Obfuscate: To render obscure, unclear, or unintelligible.
  • Perfunctory: Carried out with a minimum of effort or reflection.

Here are some tips on how to learn IELTS vocabulary:


Learning vocabulary for the IELTS (International English Language Testing System) exam can be a challenging but essential part of your preparation. A strong vocabulary can significantly improve your performance in all sections of the test, including reading, writing, speaking, and listening. Here are some tips to help you effectively build your IELTS vocabulary:

  1. Start Early: Vocabulary acquisition takes time. Begin your vocabulary-building efforts well in advance of your exam date to allow for gradual learning and retention.
  2. Use Context: When learning new words, try to understand them within sentences or phrases. This helps you grasp their meaning and usage in context, making it easier to remember.
  3. Read Widely: Reading is one of the best ways to acquire vocabulary naturally. Read books, newspapers, magazines, and online articles in English. Pay attention to unfamiliar words and look up their meanings.
  4. Keep a Vocabulary Journal: Maintain a notebook or digital document where you write down new words, their meanings, example sentences, and any relevant notes. Regularly review and revise this journal.
  5. Use Flashcards: Create digital or physical flashcards with the word on one side and the definition/example sentence on the other. Review them regularly to reinforce your memory.
  6. Study Word Families: When learning a new word, explore its related forms, such as verbs, adjectives, adverbs, and nouns. Understanding word families helps you use words more flexibly.
  7. Learn in Context: Don't just memorize isolated words. Understand how words are used in phrases, collocations, and idioms. This helps you sound more natural when speaking and writing.
  8. Use Vocabulary Apps: There are numerous apps designed specifically for vocabulary building, such as Memrise, Quizlet, and Duolingo. These apps often gamify the learning process, making it more engaging.
  9. Watch English Movies and TV Shows: This exposes you to natural language usage, including slang, idioms, and colloquial expressions. Subtitles can be helpful for understanding difficult words.
  10. Listen to English Podcasts and Radio: Listening to spoken English regularly helps you absorb vocabulary in a conversational context.
  11. Engage in Conversations: Practice speaking and using new vocabulary with native speakers or fellow English learners. Join language exchange groups or language learning communities.
  12. Take Online Vocabulary Quizzes: Many websites and apps offer vocabulary quizzes and exercises. These can help you test your knowledge and identify areas for improvement.
  13. Set Specific Goals: Establish weekly or monthly vocabulary goals. For example, aim to learn a certain number of new words each week and review old ones.
  14. Use Vocabulary in Writing: Incorporate new vocabulary into your essays and writing practice. This helps you retain words and ensures you can use them effectively in the IELTS writing section.
  15. Practice IELTS Materials: Work with IELTS practice materials that include vocabulary exercises. These are specifically designed to target the vocabulary needed for the exam.
  16. Group Words Thematically: Organize words into categories or themes (e.g., technology, environment, education) to make it easier to recall related words during the test.
  17. Be Patient and Consistent: Vocabulary acquisition is a gradual process. Don't get discouraged if you don't see immediate results. Consistency is key.
  18. Revise Regularly: Periodically revisit and review your vocabulary list and notes to reinforce your memory.

Remember that effective vocabulary learning is an ongoing process. Tailor your vocabulary-building strategy to your specific needs and strengths, and don't forget to practice using your newly acquired words in real-life situations to make them a permanent part of your language repertoire.

Remember that building a strong vocabulary takes time and practice. To maximize your IELTS performance, start incorporating these words into your daily reading, writing, and speaking activities. Additionally, make use of various vocabulary-building resources, such as flashcards, language apps, and practice tests.

A robust vocabulary is a key component of success in the IELTS exam. By expanding your vocabulary and using these words appropriately, you can boost your confidence and increase your chances of achieving your desired IELTS score in 2023-24. 

In conclusion, the importance of a strong vocabulary cannot be overstated when it comes to achieving success in the IELTS exam. Your ability to comprehend complex passages, express yourself clearly in writing, and communicate effectively during the speaking test is greatly dependent on your vocabulary prowess. Therefore, the journey to building an extensive and diverse vocabulary is a crucial aspect of your IELTS preparation.

As you embark on this journey, remember the valuable tips we've discussed: start early, read widely, use context, keep a vocabulary journal, and engage in consistent practice. By incorporating these strategies into your daily routine, you can steadily expand your vocabulary and significantly enhance your performance in the IELTS test.

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Ques 1. Why is vocabulary important in the IELTS exam?

Ans. Vocabulary is crucial because it helps you comprehend reading passages, express ideas in writing, and communicate effectively during the speaking test. It plays a significant role in all four sections of the IELTS test.


Ques 2. How can I expand my IELTS vocabulary effectively?

Ans. You can expand your IELTS vocabulary by reading extensively, keeping a vocabulary journal, using flashcards, and practicing with vocabulary exercises specifically designed for the IELTS test.

Ques 3. How many words do I need to know for the IELTS exam?

Ans. There is no specific word count requirement for IELTS, but having a diverse vocabulary of at least 7,000 to 10,000 words is generally considered beneficial for achieving a high score.

Ques 4. Are there specific vocabulary lists I should study for IELTS?

Ans. While there are no official vocabulary lists for IELTS, you should focus on general academic and everyday English vocabulary. You can find IELTS-specific vocabulary in some test preparation materials.

Ques 5. Can I use complex words to impress examiners?

Ans. It's important to use vocabulary that is appropriate for the context and your level of proficiency. Using overly complex words may lead to errors in usage, so clarity and accuracy should be your primary goals.

Ques 6. How can I improve my speaking vocabulary for the IELTS speaking test?

Ans. Engage in regular conversations with native speakers or fellow English learners, practice speaking about a variety of topics, and pay attention to vocabulary used in IELTS sample speaking questions.

Ques 7. Is it better to learn vocabulary thematically or randomly?

Ans. Learning vocabulary thematically can be more effective as it helps you group related words together and use them coherently in context. However, random vocabulary acquisition can also be valuable.

Ques 8. Can I use synonyms to avoid repeating words in the IELTS writing section?

Ans. Yes, using synonyms can enhance your writing and prevent repetition. However, make sure you use them correctly and appropriately.

Ques 9. Are there any vocabulary resources specifically designed for IELTS preparation?

Ans. Yes, there are many IELTS preparation books, websites, and apps that offer vocabulary exercises and lists tailored to the exam. These resources can be highly beneficial.

Ques 10. How can I assess my vocabulary proficiency for IELTS?

Ans. You can assess your vocabulary proficiency by taking practice tests and quizzes, reviewing your performance, and seeking feedback from teachers or language experts. Additionally, monitoring your progress in vocabulary journals can help you track your growth.

Harsh Ranjan
Harsh Ranjan

Digital Mktg. Manager

A seasoned marketer with the ability to craft narratives that elevate brands and drive volume. Harsh loves researching, finding new ways to connect with potential audiences

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