PTE Academic or IELTS – What to Choose and Why?

PTE Academic or IELTS – What to Choose and Why?

A lot of myths surround both the tests. Even the testing bodies vaunt their own test to be better and easier than their alt-test. Each test has its own merits and before you sign up for one, the best advice would be to weigh your circumstances and choose the test that fits your requirement. Let’s learn more about both the tests and know which is better for you.

What is a PTE Academic?

PTE (Pearson Test of English) Academic, conducted by Pearson Education, is a computer-based test to assess your proficiency in English and helps you study, work or migrate overseas.

What is IELTS?

International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is yet another English language proficiency test for candidates who aspire to study, work or migrate abroad. Created by Cambridge University, IELTS is managed or conducted jointly by the British Council (BC) and International Development Program (IDP).

Where is all PTE Academic accepted?

Following is the list of countries that accept PTE:

Countries For
Australia and New Zealand Study, Work or Permanent Settlement
Canada Study
UK Study
USA Study


Where is all IELTS accepted?

There are two types of IELTS: IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training. These tests serve different purposes, which are explained below:

IELTS Academic:

It is designed for students who wish to pursue their undergraduate or postgraduate degrees overseas or for professional registration purposes.

IELTS General Training:

It is for those who want to migrate to Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK. Apart from this, those aiming to study or train abroad at a level that is below degree may take this test.

Following is the list of countries that accept IELTS along with the purpose(s) for which it is accepted:

Countries For
Australia Work, study or migrate
Canada Work, study or migrate
New Zealand Work, study or migrate
USA Study or work

It is very important to consult the requirements of the programme for which you are taking the test before you register for the test.


Test fee:

Test Price (Indian Rupees)
PTE Academic Standard Price – INR 11,102

Late Booking Price* – INR 13,878
Plus applicable taxes -18 % GST

IELTS INR 12,650

*For bookings made within 48 hours of the test date, a late booking fee of 25% will be applied.

Check PTE fee for your country:

Check IELTS fee for your country:

Test Formats:

PTE Academic:

The Pte Academic Practice test is divided into 3 modules: Speaking and Writing (77 – 93 minutes), Reading (32 – 41 minutes) and Listening (45 – 57 minutes). All the modules take place on the same day. In total, there are 20 different types of questions in PTE. It is a computer-based test and no stage requires human intervention. All the modules in the test are evaluated by a machine.


The test is divided into 4 modules: Listening (45 minutes), Reading (60 minutes), Writing (60 minutes) and Speaking (11 – 14 minutes). The test for the first three modules is conducted on a single day whereas the Speaking interview may be held within 7 days before or after the test.

For the first three modules, there is a pen and paper test and for the speaking section, an interview is conducted. The Reading and Listening modules are evaluated by a machine whereas the other two are evaluated by a human evaluator.

Computer-delivered IELTS:

In order to compete with PTE Academics, which is a computer-based test, IELTS has also launched a computer-delivered test for both the modules (General Training and Academic). Each aspect of the computer-delivered test remains the same as the paper-based test including timing, marks, content and question formats.

The candidate would attempt Listening, Reading and Writing modules on a computer whereas the Speaking module would be conducted in the same way – a face-to-face interview with a human examiner.

Test Preparation:

Both the tests provide resources for preparation of the tests. Additionally, there are various online and offline resources that students may use to score well.

Test Results:

PTE Academic:

The result is declared after about 5 business days. The scores are given out of a maximum score of 90. If a student wishes to reattempt the test, there must be a gap of at least 5 days between the test attempts.


The result of both IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training is declared after 12 working days. The result is delivered in a band score format, 9 being the highest band score. In case, a student has to reattempt the test, there must be a gap of at least 2 weeks between the two attempts.

Therefore, it would be inappropriate to say that one test is better than the other as both the tests have their own purpose, their own strengths. So, choose the test that best suits your needs.

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