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PTE vs IELTS – Which exam is better?(Updated 2022)

Written by  Rachit Agrawal, MBA

Published on Tue, January 16, 2018 7:38 AM   Updated on Fri, January 21, 2022 9:22 AM   11 mins read
Source: CHY


The primary distinction between PTE vs IELTS examinations is that PTE exams may only be taken on a computer. IELTS, on the other hand, demands your actual presence for a paper-based exam—with few exceptions for online assessments in India.

Even the evaluation techniques for the two examinations are diametrically opposed. PTE-A results are awarded using artificial intelligence (providing an impartial and error-free technique), whereas IELTS is reviewed manually. Other distinctions include which is more commonly acknowledged, the fees involved, the number of tests permitted yearly, and more.

PTE and IELTS are English Language Tests which are needed to be attended by the students who are interested in studying abroad.PTE stands for Pearson English Language Test, and IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System. IELTS has test centers in more than 140 countries and was started in 1989, whereas PTE has 200 test centers in the world. Both the exams are very fair and secure and are accepted in more than 3,000 academic institutions around the globe.

Field of ComparisonPTEIELTS
Countries112 countries including, Singapore, Germany, Canada, Australia etc.140 countries including, UK, New Zealand, Canada, Australia, USA etc.
Field of judgementSpeaking, Writing, Reading, ListeningWriting, Reading, Speaking, Listening
Universities covered+5,000 Universities+9,000 Universities
FeesRs 13,300Rs 13,250
Score division10-900-9
Average Score in India506.04
Time Duration3 Hours2 Hours and 45 Minutes
Number of TrialsInfiniteInfinite
Type of TestOnlineOMR Sheet
Gap Between Exams3 HoursA week between each exam

Which English test to choose? PTE or IELTS


The PTE (Pearson Language Test) is a non-native English speaker’s English language assessment test. The exam is given in association with Edexcel, the world’s largest assessing authority. PTE General, PTE Academic, and PTE Young Learners are the three types of PTE tests.

PTE Academic is a computer-based English language test designed for non-native English speakers studying abroad. It assesses the candidates’ ability to read, write, listen, and speak English. Every question in the test combines two abilities: reading and speaking or listening and reading.

Thousands of educational institutions throughout the world accept the PTE Academic examination. Apart from that, the Australian and New Zealand governments recognize PTE Academic as a valid visa application. Those who want to study in a major English-speaking nation such as the United Kingdom, Australia, the United States, or Canada must prove their English proficiency.

ExamPTE (Pearson Language Test)
Mode of ExamOnline
  Types of ExamPTE General PTE Academic PTE Young Learners
Official Website
Registration FeesINR 13,700
  No. of SectionsReading Listening Speaking and Writing

PTE test format

The test format of PTE is divided into 3 different types, and all 3 sections focus on different skills.

Following is the list and duration for the different sections:

  • Speaking and writing (54-67 minutes)
  • Reading (29-30 minutes)
  • Listening (30-43 minutes)


IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System. People who wish to migrate, work, or study in another country need to demonstrate their English ability to take this exam. IELTS Academic and IELTS General are the two categories of the test.

IDP Education Australia, the British Council, and Cambridge English Language Assessment jointly own and administer the IELTS exam. The United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, the United States, and Canada are the most famous nations where IELTS is approved for university applications.

The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is unnecessary for all university admissions. It is the only English Language Test that UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) has authorised for visa applicants applying from both within and outside the UK. Many students are unsure why IELTS results are important.

The quick answer is that foreign colleges and visa issuing agencies want to ensure you won’t have any communication problems when you’re there. Because your total IELTS scores are crucial, you must demonstrate a high grasp and command of the English language. Another common misconception among students is whether or not the IELTS exam is necessary.

ExamIELTS (for International English Language Testing System)
Mode of ExamOnline Paper based
  Types of ExamIELTS General IELTS Academic
Official Website
Registration FeesINR 14,700
  No. of SectionsListening Reading Speaking Writing

IELTS Format

IELTS test is divided into 4 different sections that focus on different skills for English.

Following is the list of the different sections in IELTS:

  • Listening
  • Reading
  • Speaking
  • Writing

PTE or IELTS Which is Better?

Both the exams are equally best in their own manner as both are English Proficiency Scorer and can be relied upon. But PTE scores are more reliable than IELTS scores, as PTE exams are conducted online, and results are generated online, so no human biased factor issue will be there, whereas the IELTS exam is easier than PTE.

  • PTE scores are more reliable.
  • IELTS exam is much easier than the PTE score because of its marking process.
  • Both are English Proficiency Scorer exams.
  • Both the exams are to be attended by those students who are interested in studying abroad.
  • Both the exams are equally important, reputed, and needed.

PTE vs IELTS Score

PTE and IELTS scores are calculated differently. PTE score report is calculated with the overall performance of an individual, whereas in IELTS scores are calculated individually for every section i.e., different for learning, different for speaking, and much more. But both the tests represent the overall ability of English an individual has. Some of the essential points are:

  • IELTS scores are calculated between 0 and 9.
  • In IELTS scores are calculated individually, and afterwards the total score is created.
  • The overall PTE scores are calculated between 0 and 90.
  • The PTE score report has sections of personal details and photos, score report code, overall score and detail breakdown performance.
  • A good IELTS score can be between 6 and 9.

The following table compares PTE and IELTS score:

Very Good83-858.5
Very Good74-848

PTE vs IELTS score accuracy

The PTE is extremely accurate in the writing portion but not so great in the speaking section. In the PTE speaking module, pronunciation scores are frequently poor. However, PTE’s speaking coaching can help with this.

The examination of IELTS test takers’ report writing portion is rigorous. Test takers who were dissatisfied with their results were offered the option of retaking the exam, and some of the questions were reviewed more leniently, resulting in higher marks.

PTE vs IELTS Score fairness

PTE’s scoring system is fair since the tests are algorithm-based and have a high predictability factor. PTE has created proprietary automated tools for PTE evaluation. Test takers are less stressed/anxious since no one is judging their performance while they are answering questions. The question forms are standard, and there is no room for human bias in the grading.

Whereas, IELTS urges test participants to respond in a realistic real-life situation. Test takers communicate with people and not computers, so it creates a difference as the test takes can be stressed and the examiner can count on it.

Also read: How to go to Canada without IELTS?

PTE vs IELTS Score Comparison

There are a total of 10 levels under which PTE and IELTS scores are compared. The best scores under both are: In IELTS if the score is 9 and in PTE, the score is between 86-90, then the level will be ‘Expert’. In IELTS, if the score is 8.5 or 8.0 and in PTE, the score is between 83 and 86, 79 and 83 the level will be ‘Very Good’

  • In IELTS if the score is 7.5 or 7.0 and in PTE the score is between 73 and 79, 65 and 73. The level will be ‘Good’.
  • In IELTS if the score is 6.5 or 6.0 and in PTE the score is between 58 and 65, 50 and 58. The level will be ‘Competent’.
  • In IELTS if the score is 5.5 or 5.0 and in PTE the score is between 43 and 50, 36 and 43. The level will be ‘Modest’.
  • In IELTS if the score is 4.5 and in PTE the score is between 30 and 36 the level will be ‘Limited’.
  • IELTS is calculated between 1.0 and 9.0, and PTE is calculated between 0 and 90.

PTE vs IELTS Score Calculator

Both the scores are different, IELTS scores can’t be converted into PTE scores as both of them are different from each other. IELTS scores are calculated between 0 and 9, whereas PTE scores can be calculated between 0 and 90. If the IELTS score is 7.0 then the PTE score will be between 65 and 72, respectively.

  • Under PTE, Communication and enabling skills are calculated differently.
  • Under communicative skills, the pointers are: Listening, Reading, Speaking, and Writing.
  • Under Enabling skills, the pointers are Grammar, Fluency, Pronunciation, Spelling, Vocabulary, and Written Disclosure.
  • In IELTS, the score is rated within 0- 9. Each domain is rated within 0-9 value.
  • IELTS domains are Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking.

PTE vs IELTS Which Is Easy?

PTE is comparatively more robust than IELTS. As PTE scores are calculated within every domain and then altogether the scorecard is made, whereas IELTS scores are calculated directly all together. Thus, one need to score good marks in every domain. IELTS is thus comparatively easier as students can cover in any of the domains for better results.

  • IELTS is easier than PTE.
  • PTE is computer based exam, thus human biased system will not be recorded and honest results will be generated.
  • IELTS scores can be human biased as exam is conducted in OMR sheets.
  • Students need to score above 6 in IELTS for getting ‘Good’ grade in their scorecard.
  • Students need to score above 73 in PTE for getting ‘Good’ grade in their scorecard.

PTE vs IELTS Which is difficult?

The PTE exam is more difficult than the IELTS exam. As with PTE, the score is recorded or marked according to the bands assigned at the individual level, and then the final score is calculated. As a result, in order to retain their overall performance, pupils must score well in all of the bands. In contrast, in IELTS, students can alter and maintain their scores in any of the bands of their choice because IELTS scores are determined at the end based on the performance of all the bands collectively rather than individually.

  • The PTE is more demanding than the IELTS.
  • The PTE scoring pattern is more demanding than the IELTS scoring pattern.
  • PTE results are graded separately in each band, whereas IELTS scores are graded collectively.

Check out : The Ultimate Guide to PTE Score required for Australia

PTE vs IELTS Difficulty

PTE is comparatively tricky than IELTS as in PTE, the assessing technique is different and challenging. In PTE, the scores are allotted for every band individually, and then the total score is calculated. Therefore students need to score in every band for good marks. Whereas, in IELTS, scores are allotted altogether. Thus, students can cover-up in any of the groups as per their understanding.

  • PTE is comparatively more robust than IELTS.
  • PTE scores are calculated individually in domains, and then the final score is prepared, which is tough.
  • PTE score is correct as it is an online exam process, and scores are calculated online. Thus no biased results can be generated.
  • IELTS scores are comparatively easier than PTE.
  • IELTS scores are calculated altogether and not in specific domains.


PTE or IELTS, which is more difficult?

Ans. PTE is more difficult than IELTS because of its checking process which consists and focuses on every band and scores are marked according to every band and then final scores are obtained, whereas in IELTS directly final scores are obtained, individual checking is not done.

PTE or IELTS, which exam is more popular?

ELTS is more popular than PTE as IELTS is used from many years as compared to PTE.

PTE or IELTS, when these two exams were started?

PTE was started in 2009, whereas IELTS was started in 1989.

How often one can appear for the exams?

Both the exams can be given as many times as one wants to give. The limit is infinite for both.

How long IELTS score is valid?

IELTS score is valid till 2 years after the exam given.

Difference Between PTE and IELTS

Check Out:

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test prep

About the Author & Expert


Rachit Agrawal

Author • MBA • 20 Years

Rachit believes in the power of education and has studied from the top institutes of IIIT Allahabad, IIM Calcutta, and Francois Rabelias in France. He has worked as Software Developer with Microsoft and Adobe. Post his MBA, he worked with the world's # 1 consulting firm, The Boston Consulting Group across multiple geographies US, South-East Asia and Europe.

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