matching information ielts reading

IELTS matching questions involve matching small segments of the text, like examples or details, to another detail from the text. This is a fairly popular question type and must be practiced to ensure accuracy.

1. Matching Questions Explained

The questions will be in the order you hear them in the audio. So, if you see you have missed an answer, don’t worry about it. Just guess and move on, so that you don’t lose your place in the audio. However, the answers in the answer bank will generally be in alphabetical or numerical order.

Most of the time, you will not hear the exact words that appear in the answer bank. You will hear a synonym or a paraphrase. Only write the letter that matches the correct answer into the answer space. If you write the actual word, the answer will be incorrect.

2. This is how the question will appear on your question paper

Example 1
Tips and Practice
Example 2
Tips and Practice

IELTS writing correction

3. Tips Before You Listen

Here are some tips that will help you before you listen to the audio:

  • Read the instructions carefully!
  • You will have an answer bank containing more answers than you will use, so the process of elimination will not work.
  • You will have time to read the question and answer options before the recording plays.
  • Mark key words from the question and answer options, so you can listen for them.
  • Think of possible synonyms for your key words – synonyms and paraphrasing are important!
  • Based on the question and answer options, predict the topic and possible content of the audio you are about to hear.
  • Your answers will usually be a letter, not a word. Don’t write the actual answer into the blank.

4. Tips While you Listen

Here are tips to consider as you are listening:

  • The questions will be in the same order as the information you hear.
  • It is possible that you might need to use an answer option more than once.
  • You will need to listen for specific details and key words. However, listen also for meaning, because the speaker may add more information that will change the answer.
  • The questions usually use synonyms of words found in the audio. You may hear the exact words used in the answer options, but be careful to decide what the correct answer should be.
  • If you have trouble with a question, make an educated guess and move on. You don’t want to lose your place in the audio and risk missing even more questions. Don’t leave any answers blank, even if you have to guess.

5. Ready to try a sample question?

First, read the question and the words in the answer bank. Then, click play and listen to the audio to find the answers. During the actual exam, you will only be able to hear the audio once, so try to answer both questions as you listen one time. Of course, since you are practicing, you may listen to the audio multiple times to become more familiar with the question type and how to answer it.

Ready? Here are the questions.

Questions 17-20.

Choose FOUR answers from the box and write the correct letter, A-G, next to questions 17-20.

IELTS Listening: Matching Questions

  1. an audio production
  2. a drama about friends
  3. in different languages
  4. violent subject matter
  5. set outside
  6. a challenge for the director
  7. a lot of sound editing
  1. Heroes of the Fourth Turning is...
    1. 17.
    2. 18.
  1. Minor Character is...
    1. 19.
    2. 20.

Now, listen to the audio and answer the question.

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