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IELTS vs. PTE: Which is More Important, IELTS or PTE for International Students?

For international students seeking to study in English-speaking countries like Canada, the UK, the US, Germany, France, Australia, and New Zealand, certifying their proficiency in English is crucial. Thus students must clear the test.

In terms of English proficiency tests, there are many options — IELTS, TOEFL, GRE, PTE, CPE, and GMAT; however, IELTS and PTE are the most popular and widely recognized among international students. Although to help international students study and communicate effectively in the country, many universities abroad typically offer a year of English courses along with the academic curriculum.

Candidates can score anywhere from 10 to 90 on the PTE, which uses automated scoring. An IELTS score is calculated manually using a 0-9 band scale. You can check your IELTS results online and receive a TRF (Test Report Form) within 10 to 15 business days of the test date. A PTE score can be accessed online within five business days of the exam.

What is IELTS?

The most popular and recognized proficiency test globally is IELTS—International English Language Testing System. It’s traditionally based on paper and pen examinations. However, now there are options for taking it online due to the high technology in today’s world and the need to eliminate barriers.

There is a joint ownership agreement between the British Council and IDP for IELTS.

IELTS has two versions, IELTS Academic and IELTS General, both manually assessed. Academic is recommended for student visas and academic subjects, while General is prescribed for professional purposes and the other categories it falls into. The test consists of 4 sections (reading, writing, listening, and speaking), and the score ranges from 1 to 9, where one is considered poor and nine as excellent.

Here are the order and timings for the IELTS:

– Listening — 30 mins
– Reading — 60 mins
– Writing — 60 mins
– Speaking — 11–14 mins

Overall time: 2 hours 45 minutes

What is PTE?

PTE — Pearson Language Tests is another popular proficiency test assessed using an AI scoring system. PTE is entirely computerized and automated.

Following this model, it has no room for human error in the scores. Instead, a high-intelligence computer system runs it. Although less preparation is required than in other official English language exams, students should still pay attention to the timings of each section.
PTE also features two essential versions — PTE General and PTE Academic.

There are some similarities between PTE Academic and IELTS in terms of structure. Both test student’s ability to speak, write, read and listening skills. Nevertheless, the order of the skills tested as well as the timing and organization of the tasks vary:

Speaking and Writing — 54–67 mins
Reading — 29–30 mins
Listening — 30–43 mins

Overall time: appx 2 hours

There are, however, significant differences between the IELTS Speaking test and the PTE Speaking test. In contrast to IELTS, PTE Academic tests both speaking and writing skills simultaneously. As a result, the language is more natural and more reflective of how we use it in our daily lives.

Which is More Important: IELTS or PTE?

In both cases, language skills are assessed, and general scores are provided. Compared to PTE, IELTS is significantly more widely recognized worldwide.

IELTS scores are accepted by more than 10,000 university institutions, allowing students from 140 countries to study abroad. Additionally, the PTE is accepted by more than 6000 universities, offering several notable benefits, such as the flexibility of taking the exams anywhere. In terms of importance, however, the scenario highly depends on the exam’s purpose.

The IELTS is the preferred option for international students to enter higher education and pursue professional certifications. Compared to PTE, it is associated with learning and professional purposes (General) and university students (Academic). The course also offers a more student-oriented and objective approach, reducing some pressure of having in-depth knowledge for IELTS.

What to do in Case of a Low IELTS Score?

Most universities require minimum overall and minimum scores in each of the IELTS sections to pass. The minimum score for passing IELTS is usually 6 to 7.

When you score low in one or more sections, you should apply and look for the next steps if you want to study in a country whose official language is English.

It is possible to retake the test if you receive a low grade. In addition, a deeper understanding of the language will improve your performance and communication skills.

What to do in Case of a Low PTE Score?

It is critical to bet on training based on the test format; you must familiarize yourself with the test, as you can develop strategies with this understanding.

Similar to the IELTS, the PTE is repeatable. You can also take tests as many times as you want. You wait until you receive the automated results of your last test, which is around five days. If you performed poorly on some sections, you could redo them.

Frequently Asked Questions about IELTS vs. PTE

1. Which is more challenging to crack — IELTS or PTE?

For candidates, the difficulty level of proficiency tests is an essential factor and reflects the nature of each test. It is, however, IELTS that presents the most significant challenge, as it requires a deeper understanding of the English language, which is somewhat more complex. On the other hand, PTE Academic takes a more practical approach that focuses on the candidate’s evaluation skills.

2. Which countries accept PTE?

Among the countries that accept the PTE are Australia and New Zealand. It is taken for all categories of essential visas in each country; thus, preparing for PTE would be a wise choice if the destination is one of them. Other countries, including the US, UK, and Canada, also recognize the exam.

3. Which countries accept IELTS?

Since the IELTS is the most globally recognized test, it is also accepted in all English-speaking countries. Some of these countries include Canada, the United Kingdom, the USA, Australia, and New Zealand. It is common for these countries to favor candidates with high scores on this test.

4. How much is the validity of IELTS and PTE?

IELTS and PTE Academic are valid for two years from the availability of the results for study purposes; as soon as the deadline expires, the score is automatically removed from the site.

5. How many attempts are allowed for PTE?

According to the conducting body, PTE Academic Exams can be taken as often as a candidate desires. However, the candidates must take their next exam within five days of completing their previous one.

6. How many attempts are allowed for IELTS?

There are no limits for taking the IELTS English proficiency test. You can also repeat the tests as often as you want; if you want to renew or achieve a high grade. You will still have to pay the fee for each attempt. Exams are held four times a month and every year.

It is also critical to emphasize the need to prepare well for the test, which will allow satisfactory results and financial savings.

Final Thoughts

Universities worldwide recognize IELTS and PTE Academic as the most popular proficiency exams. Despite the physical differences between these two exams, the IELTS is becoming increasingly similar as digital availability increases. In addition, their reach is expanded, allowing them to reach students worldwide.

We offer complete preparation for IELTS and PTE on your schedule at Global Colliance. IELTS and PTE test preparation at Global Colliance is taught by highly qualified teachers who have experience preparing students for overseas study and IELTS tests.

Students can learn about and practice different types of questions as well as explore strategies and tips to help them improve performance with Global Colliance’s complete IELTS and PTE package. For each section of the test, there are plenty of practice sessions.

Visit us at www.globalcolliance.com and get answers to all your study abroad-related queries.

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