IELTS vs TOEFL vs PTE Academic: Which test you should take


3 mins read31.8K Views
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Apr 24, 2024 12:53 IST

The standardised English language exams such as IELTS, TOEFL, and PTE Academic, fall in the on-going debate of which test to take. This debate can be best answered by the following article discussing the exam pattern, structure, popularity, duration, toughness to crack the exam, prep tips, and even its relevance.

IELTS vs TOEFL vs PTE Academic: Which test you should take

Being the universal language, English is a compulsion for students who aspire to study abroad. Universities abroad follow rules of the global education system, which judges on the basis of your score in standardized tests designed to test your language fluency. There are predominantly three standardized English language tests that are widely accepted in most foreign universities i.e. IELTS (International English Language Testing Service), TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language), and PTE (Pearson Test of English). While all three of them evaluate your English language skills based on four parameters of Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking, the ongoing debate of which test to take has become a moot point amongst aspirants. Before landing to any conclusion, it is essential that we consider our requirements or preferences.

Related Read: PTE vs IELTS

Let us closely examine the factors to consider before zeroing in on which test to take up:






- Academic

- General Training


- TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition

PTE Academic

- PTE Academic UKVI


British Council, IDP: IELTS Australia and Cambridge Assessment English

ETS (Educational Testing Service)

Pearson PLC Group


INR 17,000

INR 16,900

INR 17,000


Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening

Reading, Listening, Speaking Writing,

Reading, Writing, Speaking, Listening


2 hours 45 minutes

3 hours

2 hours


1 to 9

0 to 120

10 to 90


13 days after the test date

6 days after the test date

Declared online within two working days


Widely popular in the UK and Australia

Widely popular in the USA and Canada; 100% accepted by universities in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand

Widely recognized in many institutions of the UK, Australia, USA, and Canada


9000+ International Colleges

11,000 universities, agencies, and other institutions 

PTE Academic Exam is accepted by thousands of universities worldwide, including prestigious institutions such as Harvard Business School, INSEAD, and Yale. PTE Academic is also accepted for visa purposes by the Australian and New Zealand governments.

Quick Links:

IELTS Important Dates

TOEFL Important Dates

PTE Academic Important Dates

Register for IELTS

Register for TOEFL

Register for PTE Academic

IELTS Syllabus

TOEFL Syllabus

PTE Academic Syllabus

IELTS Preparation Tips

TOEFL Preparation Tips

PTE Academic Preparation Tips

IELTS Practice Papers

TOEFL Practice Papers

PTE Academic Practice Papers

IELTS Test Centres in India

TOEFL Test Centres in India

PTE Academic Test Centres in India

'Which test to take?' is mostly a matter of opinion and individual preference. If you are not taking external assistance to help you decide, you may decide on the test on the basis of the location you choose to study.

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For instance, if you are planning to join universities/colleges in North American countries, TOEFL is the right choice for you. The IELTS score is generally accepted worldwide, with a higher acceptance rate in the European countries as well as New Zealand, and Australia. The PTE Academic Exam is also accepted in the USACanadaUK, and Australia.

It is always recommended that you conduct thorough research before finalizing an exam. To avoid further confusion, you may always seek assistance from the study abroad experts, who with their valuable experience and expertise can help you make useful decisions.

You might also want to read Choosing between TOEFL and IELTS: A Comparison. If already finalized, you might be interested to know When to start preparing for IELTS or TOEFL?

Also check:

About the Author
Written by
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert

Rahul Singha is a seasoned editor with Shiksha Study Abroad, specializing in overseas education. With over 8 years of domain experience, he has made a significant impact in contributing to the study abroad industry ... Read Full Bio

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Piyush Kohli

2 years ago

Hi, please elaborate on your and let us know which course you want to study further, so, we can assist you better.

Hi, If we write duolingo exam, we are most or least considered for admission in us college accepting duolingo?

Reply to K N Kalyan Chakravarthi


Shreya kale

3 years ago

Is TOEFL applicable for Germany?

Reply to Shreya kale

Shilpa Saxena

3 years ago

Hi Shreya, Yes, most German universities accept both IELTS and TOEFL.

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