The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a globally recognized test that is conducted all over the world. The test’s main objective is to measure one’s ability to communicate in English. It does this by testing all four basic linguistic skills - Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Meant for non-native English speakers, it is for those who wish to study or work in countries where English is the main language of communication.
This test is the first step in your Student Visa application process. Given that the IELTS conforms to the highest international standards of language assessment, your IELTS score is a trusted and valid indicator of your ability to communicate in English and is recognized by universities and colleges for course admissions in United States of America, Canada, New Zealand, United Kingdom and Australia and increasingly, in Europe.
(IMPORTANT - IELTS is also a requirement in case you are looking to immigrate to Australia, New Zealand or Canada)
The Academic Training Module, as the name suggests, is for those applying for higher studies in universities abroad. It is also applicable for candidates who want to register with the General Medical Council or the Dental Medical council in UK.
If, however, you are looking to migrate to Canada, Australia or New Zealand, then you should opt for The General Module.
(IMPORTANT - Although it is solely at your discretion to choose the right module, it makes good sense to double-check with the institution you are applying to)
IDP India & British Council are the examining bodies while Cambridge ESOL prepares or creates the IELTS paper.