PTE vs IELTS: Which is Easier for you to study abroad?

PTE vs IELTS: Which is Easier for you to study abroad?

When it comes to pursuing higher education or career opportunities abroad, English language proficiency is the most important factor. Two widely recognized language tests, PTE (Pearson Test of English) and IELTS (International English Language Testing System), are commonly chosen by international students. This comprehensive guide will dive into the details of both exams, highlight their differences, and help you determine which one could be the right fit for your journey abroad.

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PTE Details & Format

The PTE exam is known for its computer-based assessment, designed to evaluate the four key language skills: speaking, writing, reading, and listening. The test is scored on a scale of 10-90, with increments of 1 point. Its unique feature is the use of AI to assess speaking and writing tasks, providing quick and unbiased evaluations.


  • Speaking: Describe Image, Read Aloud, Repeat Sentence
  • Writing: Essay, Summarize Written Text
  • Reading: Multiple-choice, Fill in the Blanks, Reorder Paragraphs
  • Listening: Summarize Spoken Text, Multiple-choice, Fill in the Blanks

IELTS Details & Format

On the other hand, IELTS offers two main formats: Academic and General Training. This test assesses listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills, providing a holistic evaluation of a candidate’s English proficiency.


  • Listening: Four sections, including conversations and monologues
  • Reading: Three long texts with tasks, evaluating comprehension skills
  • Writing: Academic (describe a graph) or General Training (write a letter)
  • Speaking: Face-to-face interview assessing communication abilities

PTE vs IELTS: Major Differences

Test Format Computer-based test only Mostly paper-based test (computer-based also available)
Sections Speaking & Writing, Reading, Listening Listening, Reading, Writing, Speaking
Scoring System Scores based on a point system Scores on a band scale (0-9 for each section)
Test Duration 191 mins 170 mins
Test Availability Available throughout the year Multiple test dates per month
ResultΒ  Generally available within 5 business days Available after 13 days if its paper based exam ,otherwise it will take 3- 5 days
Score Validity Usually 2 years Usually 2 years
Test Acceptance Widely accepted for education and immigration Widely accepted for education and immigration
Test Preparation Official study materials available Various prep books, courses, and resources

Difference between IELTS and PTE: Eligibility Criteria

Both exams have similar eligibility criteria, generally requiring candidates to be at least 16 years old. These exams are suitable for individuals seeking to study, work, or migrate to English-speaking countries. The choice between the two depends on your personal preferences, test availability, and the specific requirements of your chosen institution or organization.

PTE vs IELTS: Exam Pattern

Writing Timing 30-43 minutes 60 minutes
Speaking Timing 30-43 minutes 11-14 minutes
Reading Timing 29 – 30 minutes 60 minutes (varies by test type)
Listening Timing 30 – 43 minutes 30 minutes + 10 minutes
Total timings Approximately 2 hours 2 hours 45 minutes
Speaking Section Recorded answers using a microphone Face-to-face interview with an examiner
Writing Section Typing responses on a computer Handwriting responses

PTE vs IELTS: Which is Easier for You to Study Abroad?

The question of which test is easier ultimately comes down to your individual strengths and preferences. If you are comfortable with technology and can adapt well to automated assessments, PTE might be easier for you. However, if you thrive in face-to-face interactions and prefer traditional exam formats, IELTS could be more manageable. It’s recommended to take practice tests for both exams to gauge your comfort level with their respective formats.

In conclusion, choosing between PTE and IELTS requires careful consideration of your personal preferences and the requirements of your chosen destination. Both tests have their strengths and cater to different learning styles. Whichever test you opt for, remember that thorough preparation is the key to success.

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Are PTE and IELTS equally recognized by universities?

Both PTE and IELTS are widely accepted by universities globally. It’s essential to check the specific requirements of the institutions you’re applying to, as preferences might vary.

Can I take either test multiple times to improve my score?

Yes, you can retake both PTE and IELTS to improve your scores. However, check the policies of the test providers for limitations on the number of attempts.

Are there any resources to help prepare for these tests?

Certainly! Both PTE and IELTS offer official study materials and practice tests. Additionally, various online platforms and coaching centers provide comprehensive preparation resources.

Is there a validity period for PTE and IELTS scores?

Yes, both tests have a validity period for their scores, usually around two years. Ensure your scores are valid when you submit your applications.

Can I switch between PTE and IELTS if I’m not satisfied with my initial choice?

Yes, you can switch between the tests based on your preferences and experiences. Just make sure to check the test requirements of your chosen institutions.

How do I register for PTE or IELTS?

To register for PTE, visit the official Pearson website. For IELTS, you can register online through the British Council, IDP, or Cambridge Assessment English websites.

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