The International English Language Testing System (IELTS) is a program designed to assist you in working, studying, or migrating to a country where English is the native language, such as Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, or the United States. It is accepted in more than 140 countries worldwide. The ability of the candidate to speak, read, write, and listen is tested by this test, and the candidate is graded on a scale of 1 to 9 with 1 being indicative of a candidate who cannot use the language except for a few isolated words and 9 being the highest band indicates the candidate who has fully operational command of the language. IELTS is conducted both in pen and paper and online mode. The result for IELTS is announced within no more than 13 days if given on paper and the result for the computer-based test is made available in three to five days. The test was introduced by Cambridge English language assessment in partnership with British Council in 1980 to provide a fair and accurate assessment of the English language proficiency of non-native speakers.
Similarly, the Pearson Test of English- Academic also assesses and validates the English proficiency of non-native English speakers. The test is a computer-based examination that costs around 13,300 to 13,700 inclusive of all taxes. The test is timed for around two hours which includes speaking, writing, reading, and listening to assess the candidates. Moreover, it has a multi-level grading system which provides a better understanding of the candidate’s proficiency in the English language. PTE is accepted mainly in 74 countries including Australia, Canada, the USA, Ireland, Singapore, New Zealand, and the United Kingdom for immigration and as an eligible score for admission in such countries. These scores are also accepted to obtain permanent residence in Australia and New Zealand. The result of PTE-A usually is announced in 48 hours.
IELTS is conducted in four phases, i.e., listening for about 30 minutes, reading and writing which takes 60 minutes each and speaking sections which lasts for approximately 14 minutes. Hence totaling an overall time of 2 hours and 45 minutes. On the other hand, PTE-A merges the speaking and writing section into one and is conducted in three phases of speaking and writing which usually takes approximately 67 minutes, then comes the reading section which is timed at 30 minutes and the third section is the listening section that takes around 43 minutes to complete. So the total time given to complete the test rests at approximately 2 hours.
1. IELTS conducts its writing section in 60 minutes where the candidate is provided with the task to summarize the given image into a short paragraph of 150 words in 20 minutes. The next task which the candidate has to complete in the remaining 40 minutes is to write an essay of 250 words. The essay should be inclusive of point of view/ argument/ problem response. PTE-A at the same time grants approximately 43 minutes for the writing section which includes the speaking section as well. In this section, the candidate is asked to summarize the given passage into a phrase of 75 words in 20 minutes. In the rest of the 20 minutes, the candidate is instructed to write an argumentative essay. The word limit of the essay lies somewhere between 200 – 300 words.
2. After the Writing section, comes the Speaking section which is allotted a time division of approximately 14 minutes. This section is conducted in an interview mode. The candidate is first asked to introduce himself/herself which is succeeded by an interview. The next task assigned to the candidate is to speak for 2 minutes on a given topic. At last, a discussion takes place on the same topic which was given previously. However, PTE-A has merged its speaking part with the writing section only. The test further divides the speaking part into 5 sub-sections of reading out loud, repeating the given sentence, describing an image, retelling of the provided lecture, and short answer questions.
3. The third section is the reading section that is being allotted a 60 minutes time slot in the IELTS exam. A candidate has to attempt all 40 questions in the given time. These 40 questions help to analyze the understanding power of the candidate through different types of questions. These types include identifying details, the main theme of the passage, writer’s opinions, writer’s point of view, purpose, etc. Moreover, the PTE-A pattern is completely different when it comes to the reading section as the time allotted and the questions given to solve in that particular time are less than that of IELTS. In this test, there is one question for every sentence or text.
4. Listening is the last section we have for both tests. Although both the tests allow almost the same time, i.e., 30 minutes for this section but the pattern followed is way too different. On one hand, IELTS uses the conversations or monologues from the social environment with fewer recordings dedicated to the higher number of questions whereas, on the other hand, PTE - A uses its conversations from academic sources. This section is incorporated in the test to check the comparing or differentiating skills of the candidates.
All in all both the tests are conducted to examine the English language proficiency of the applicants so that the ability of the applicant to bridge the communication gap in the English-speaking country can be assessed but the pattern is a bit different from each other.