20+ Less Common Words in IELTS: Words, Idioms, Tips and More

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20+ Less Common Words in IELTS: Words, Idioms, Tips and More

The IELTS test is conducted to check the candidate’s proficiency in the English language. The IELTS Vocabulary often contains words and phrases where candidates have to provide their meanings and uses in sentences. This test requires you to have an understanding of a wide range of words, their meaning and their appropriate use in sentences. You need to improve your vocabulary skills to get a better score on the test.

A lot of times, the IELTS Vocabulary tests your knowledge of words and their synonyms and antonyms. Here, you need to be very cautious while using words with similar meanings, as this might affect the meaning of your responses, resulting in fewer scores on the test. In this article, we are going to tell you about some of the less common words in IELTS.

20+ Uncommon Words in IELTS

To help candidates with an understanding of the less common words for IELTS, here is a table which highlights some of the less common words for IELTS.

IELTS Common WordsMeaning Example
AforementionedDenoting someone with something which was previously mentioned.He highlighted the aforementioned points made during the meeting.
BellicoseShowing aggression and urge to fight.The mayor appeared in a bellicose mood as he stamped on the platform and squared up to his rival.
CogentTrying to convince or compel someone using logical and clear reasoningThey put forward cogent arguments for British membership. 
EphemeralSomething which doesn’t last longerFashions are ephemeral: new ones regularly drive out the old. 
ImperativeBelieving in or based on the principle that all people are equal and deserve equal rights and opportunitiesIt is imperative to keep the following points in mind. 
EgalitarianA belief or principle that everybody is equal and deserves equal rights and opportunitiesHe was a social and political egalitarian.
EsotericSomething that is planned for or likely to be understood by only a small number of people with specialized knowledge or interestThe paintings made by the artist displayed esoteric themes. 
MitigateTo make something less severe or fierceShe tried to mitigate the tension in the room. 
MyriadSomething which is countless or cannot be countedThe UK boasts of housing a myriad of top-tier universities. 
OpineStating one’s opinion or ideaThe man is a genius, he opined. 
PlethoraSomething extremely large or excessiveThe city has a plethora of cafes and pubs. 
PerniciousSomething which has harmful effects, especially in a gradual or subtle waySmoking can be pernicious to your help. 
QuixoticSomething extremely idealistic or impracticalNow that he wants to rejoin society no goal seems more quixotic and hopeless.
PhenomenonA situation or something that is observed to exist or happen, especially one whose cause or explanation is in questionThe band was a pop phenomenon just for their sales figures alone. 
PanaceaIt means a solution or remedy for all problems or difficultiesThis will not be a panacea for all our ills. 

SalientSomething very important or should be noticedThe Allied command planned to clear the salient of Germans along a 20-mile front.

UbiquitousSomething present, appearing or found everywhereHis ubiquitous influence was felt by all the family. 
Zoilus A bitter and usually enviously carping critic. His corpse, thrown into the sea, was washed ashore and buried by the aged priest Zoilus who is also the patron saint of Zadar.
Obsequious Sycophant I can’t stand his obsequious manner. 

ZionistA nationalist movement emerged in the 19th century to enable the establishment of a homeland for the Jewish people in Palestine. My father, who was a Zionist, told my mother on his deathbed to take the family to Israel.
Anhedonia Inability to feel pleasure in normally pleasurable activities.Anhedonia is the inability to feel pleasure. It’s a common symptom of depression as well as other mental health disorders.
AphasiaLanguage disorder caused by damage in a specific area of the brain that controls language expression and comprehension. In addition to recovering from her physical injuries, Giffords suffered a brain injury that left her with aphasia. 
MyopicShort-sightedHe peered at me with his myopic blue eyes. 

Less Common Idioms and Phrases in IELTS

The ILEST test not only contains less common words, but idioms and phrases, which you must avoid using repetitively. Using uncommon words repetitively can hurt your overall score on the IELTS test. Check the table below to have an understanding of some of the less common idioms and phrases in IELTS.

Uncommon PhrasesPhrases Meanings
A far cry fromSomething which is not similar or very different from one thing
On the cusp of A point in time when something is about to transform into another
In the throes of Facing difficulty or struggle in an intense situation
To hit the ground runningTo begin or start something with great enthusiasm and energy
To cut cornersDoing something carelessly or hastily to save time or money.
To be in the doldrumsA condition or state of low spirit or stagnation
To get a handle onUnderstanding something or gaining control of something or someone
To make a beeline forGoing directly or quickly towards someone or something
To be in the pipelineThe process of planning or developing something
To fall by the waysideTo fail or be forgotten over time

Top 5 Tips to Ace Your IELTS Score

IELTS Preparation: The IELTS Writing Section might seem like a formidable mountain to climb, but fret not! With the right preparation and consistent practice, you can reach the summit and achieve stellar scores. Here are the top 5 IELTS preparation tips to expedite your journey to IELTS success:

a) Engaging with a diverse range of sample papers constitutes a comprehensive preparation tool for IELTS writing. Through this simulated testing environment, individuals acquire a robust understanding of the section’s structure, the nuances of question formats, the anticipated level of difficulty, and the strategic allocation of time, all of which are crucial for optimizing one’s performance.

b) Prioritize purchasing resources that reflect the latest test format and come from reputable experts. Look for those packed with practice tests and loaded with insightful strategies to propel your scores. 

c) Implement self-imposed deadlines for your studying to enhance both your speed and precision. Structuring your preparation with time constraints will optimize both your efficiency and execution.

d) Transcending the confines of textbooks, effective IELTS preparation embraces a holistic immersion in the English language. Reading captivating novels, immersing oneself in compelling films, and engaging with the multifaceted voices of podcasts and news channels not only fortifies one’s linguistic foundation but also expands vocabulary horizons and refines grammatical precision, thus equipping candidates for the intricacies of the IELTS examination.

e) The bedrock of IELTS success lies in dedicated practice. For optimal preparation, construct a meticulous schedule, designating specific time blocks for each exam section. Through consistent engagement with practice tests and meticulous cultivation of your skills across all domains, you will feel poised to confront even the most formidable questions with unwavering confidence.

Best IELTS Preparation Books 📖 to Purchase in 2024 

Individuals preparing for the IELTS Exam can refer to the following table to go through the list of the best IELTS  preparation books. 

Name of the BookAuthor/PublisherPricePurchase Link
The Official Cambridge Guide To Ielts Student’s Book With AnswersPauline CullenINR 594Click Here To Buy
R*barron’s Ielts Practice ExamsLin Lougheed INR 448Click Here To Buy
IELTS Graphs from the past examKiranpreet Kaur MakkarINR 287Click Here To Buy
Cambridge IELTS Academic 16 Student’s Book [paperback] CambridgeCareer Zone INR 130Click Here To Buy
Word Power Made Easy Including Latest Word List Norman LewisINR 149Click Here To Buy
IELTS WRITING ACADEMIC 2023Karamveer SinghINR 299Click Here To Buy
Cambridge IELTS 18 academic with authentic papersCambridge PressINR 234Click Here To Buy

So that was all about the Less common words in IELTS. Hope the blog has answered your queries pertaining to the topic.


What is the duration of the IELTS test?

The duration of the entire IELTS test is around 3 hours, which is divided into four sections – Speaking, Reading, Writing and Listening sections.

Is the IELTS application fee refundable?

The IELTS application fee is non-refundable. Once you’ve paid the IELTS application fee, it will not be refunded back to you. The IELTS application fee is INR 15,500.

How many times is the IELTS test conducted?

The IELTS test is conducted around 48 times a year, which makes it 4 times a month.

Candidates who want to prepare for IELTS or any other language proficiency test, can Build a plan with Leverage Edu‘s Leverage Live classes and our top trainers and strengthen your English score as well as your application so that you can secure your spot in your dream college.

Fulfil your dreams of studying abroad with Leverage Edu, to get a free counselling session, reach us at 1800572130

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