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IELTS Speaking: which part is the most important?

 Do the 3 parts of the speaking test carry equal weighting when your score is calculated, or is one part more important?

The simple answer is that the 3 parts are not scored separately; the examiner rates the candidate's performance as a whole. In this sense, neither part is more important.

However, it's useful to think about the 3 parts like this:

  • Part 1 is supposed to be quite easy (like a warm-up), so you won't get a high score if you only do well in this part.
  • Part 2 is when the examiner really gets a chance to assess how good you are. He/she will now have an idea of what scores to give you.
  • During part 3, the examiner is making his/her final decision. A good performance here can boost your score.

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