8 April 2016

MORE than 150,000 learners around the world have gone online to prepare for their English language tests through a Massive Open Online Course (MOOC) offered by The University of Queensland.

IELTSx: The ‘IELTS Academic Test Preparation’ course was developed by UQ’s Institute of Continuing and TESOL Education (ICTE-UQ) in collaboration with UQx in late 2015 and has enabled students across the globe to prepare for the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) academic test.

UQx Director John Zornig said the free online course had provided new opportunities for students learning English in over 200 countries and territories, particularly students without access to face-to-face learning.

“The largest percentage of enrolments for the course is from India, Pakistan, Egypt, Vietnam, Brazil, Colombia, and Indonesia,” Mr Zornig said.

“Learners tell us that IELTSx is a complete preparation package that has improved test performance.

“It has also led learners to pursue new scholarship opportunities to continue their higher education.

“This milestone and success is a great validation of the potential of MOOCs to assist learners across the globe to work towards gaining higher education qualifications through access to quality education.”

ICTE-UQ has been helping students prepare for the academic IELTS test for more than 25 years.

ICTE-UQ Director Julian Wilson said he was glad to see the interactive online course enabling so many learners.

“The self-paced course provides approximately 80 hours of interactive practice materials covering the four skills tested by IELTS: listening, speaking, reading and writing,” he said.

“Each section of the course includes engaging video and audio presentations that cover key test-taking skills, strategies and techniques.

“We are excited to reach this milestone and see the results of sharing our IELTS test knowledge and expertise with learners from all around the world.”  

UQx represents UQ’s engagement with edX, the world’s largest non-profit MOOC provider established by Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Harvard in 2012. UQ joined as a charter member in 2013. 

For more information or to complete the course please visit https://www.edx.org/course/ielts-academic-test-preparation-uqx-ieltsx

Media: Zarese Kisielewski, z.kisielewski@uq.edu.au, (07) 3365 6211.