Major Differences between PTE, IELTS and TOEFL

By SiliconIndia   |   Thursday, 28 February 2019, 04:45 Hrs
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Major Differences between PTE, IELTS and TOEFL

Are you thinking of applying to a university abroad? If yes, then you will most probably have to submit an IELTS or TOEFL or PTE test score. So let’s examine the difference between the three exams.

If you want to study abroad in an English speaking country for your Bachelor's Degree or Master’s Degree in a country where English is the first language, then you will have to submit either Pearson Test of English or IELTS or TOEFL score. All of these standardized tests examine a student’s skills of reading, writing, speaking and listening in the English language.

All the three tests differ in format, marking scheme and more. So let’s see and explore the differences in the following article.

What is IELTS exam?

IELTS is an acronym for the International English Language Testing System is recognized throughout the globe. It examines student’s capabilities based on four categories viz.

  • Reading,

  • Writing,

  • Speaking and

  • Listening.

It is jointly owned by British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge English Language Assessment through more than 1,000 test centers and locations in over 140 countries. It is accepted by around 9000 different organizations throughout. The time duration for the entire examination is 2 hours and 45 minutes. The entire exam is done together in one day and in one sitting. Only speaking may or may not be taken on the same day as the other exam but it will be rescheduled within a week.

What is TOEFL exam?

TOEFL is an abbreviation for Test of English as Foreign Language is another form of examination which is accepted worldwide and it also helps in the admission in an English-speaking country. This exam tests the candidates' skills on the same four parameters as IELTS namelyreading, writing, listening and speaking. It has almost 50 test dates per year. Candidates are allowed to take as many tests as possible but can’t take it more than once in a 12-day period. All the tests are conducted in one day and the total time duration is four and half hour approximately. The test is for 4 hours and the check-in time is 30 minutes. There are two methods of taking this test; it can be taken as a Paper-Based Test or an Internet-Based Test. The results are thought to be more objective and reliable than IELTS.

What is PTE exam?

PTE is an abbreviation of the Pearson Test for English which was launched by Pearson in the year 2009. It is a new testing system for the English language but in a short time, it has become known among several universities. They are approved by the Australian Government for visa applications and accepted by thousands of institutions in the UK, Australia, USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Ireland, including Harvard, Yale, and instead. The categories of examining are still the same as the two above – reading, writing, speaking and listening.

Differences Discussed

Given below are the factors on which the differences are explained:

1) On the Basis of Evaluation

An IELTS examiner evaluates the speaking abilities of the candidates by making live conversation, which is then recorded in some recording device but in PTE and TOEFL, there is no such system of recording where the candidate has to speak to a microphone for getting recorded in a computerized system

2) On the Basis of Programme

A computer program then evaluates the speaking and rates the test taker. The IELTS is completely a paper-based examination. Therefore, it uses the diagram, graph or chart for the writing section. On the other hand, PTE & TOEFL are totally computer-based examination and thus uses many innovative techniques to test the writing capabilities of the candidate.

3) On the Basis of Time Duration

IELTS has set time for each paper, and candidates can move forwards and backward whereas PTE has section timings and can move forward only. Another difference among the three is that PTE promises to deliver the result in a span of 5 days, whereas in TOEFL & IELTS you receive the result after 10 days. Printed score reports are mailed within 13 days after the test date for both the exams.

4) On the Basis of Requirements

All the three tests provide reading material for the preparation which is easily available in the online sites.

5) On the Basis of Marking and Grading

In IELTS candidates receive scores on a Scale know as band scale which ranges from 1 to 9 in each section. The four sections are individually averaged and rounded to produce an Overall Band Score.

In TOEFL you are scored from 0-30 in each section and the total score is 0- 120.

In PTE Academic Score Report includes overall score, communicative skills scores and enabling skills scores. The score is based on overall performance. The range of the overall score is 10-90 points. It displays score in a graphical form which gives a quick and clear view of the straight and weaknesses.

6) General Guidance for the Students

In general observation the IELTS score is more acceptable in Europe and Australian part. And, the scores in TOEFL is demanded in the USA. The PTE is still a new testing system so it is acceptable by most of the universities.

The test you select depends on the university you are willing to apply for. There might be specific instructions by the university itself to take a particular test as an English language proof. Still, according to me and my experience, most of them accept IELTS & TOEFL. PTE is readily accepted by MBA colleges worldwide.Therefore, my suggestion for you all is to select the country and university first that you want to apply to, check the requirement and then choose the test you want to take.Here, wishing you all the best with your applications and language test.

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