Unlocking Success: Deciphering the PTE Score

Meridean Overseas
Meridean Overseas

Updated On 28 June 2023 & Read Time 7 minutes



The odyssey of the PTE exam is familiar to international standards and is designed to assess your English in terms of listening, reading, speaking, and writing. From educational institutions to professional organisations to immigration authorities, the PTE test is widely used worldwide.


Before planning for the Pearson Test of English, you must understand that the PTE scoring system is paramount for achieving your desired scores. From setting realistic goals, targeted preparation, performance evaluation, and effective test strategies, to score improvement, there are several reasons why you should choose the PTE test. Read ahead to learn more about the PTE scoring scale.


Understanding the PTE Scoring System

The PTE scoring scale begins with 10 being the lowest and ends with 90 being the highest. Your marks will be evaluated based on your performance per different sections of the PTE exam. Have a look at the breakdown of each section’s scoring scale:


  • Speaking - You will be evaluated on your oral fluency, pronunciation, and content of your speeches in the speaking section. There are 10 to 90 possible scores for this particular section.

  • Writing - The writing section of the test is designed to test your ability to express your ideas in written form by including grammar, vocabulary, and organisation skills. You may receive a score from 10 to 90, depending on how you do in this section.

  • Reading - In the reading section, you will be asked to demonstrate your understanding of different written texts, including the main ideas, supporting details, and vocabulary. A score of 10 to 90 can be given for this exam section.

  • Listening - In terms of listening skills, this section evaluates your understanding of spoken English and your ability to understand lectures, conversations, and academic content. The range of scores for this section ranges from 10 to 90.

Scoring Criteria for Each Section

 As such, there’s no hard and fast rule, but some points must be kept in check for scoring criteria in each section of the PTE exam.


  • Speaking - The scoring criteria for the speaking section include content, relevance, development, and clarity of your responses. Your ability to address the task, offer supporting details, retain coherence, and articulate thoughts are assessed. Pronunciation is very important, focusing on oral fluency, fluidity, naturalness, and flow of your speech. In addition, rhythm, intonation, and stress are taken into account.

  • Writing - Based on predetermined scoring standards, the writing part of the PTE exam is evaluated, including content, which evaluates the accuracy, flow, and structure of your written comments. While spelling focuses on spelling accuracy, grammar assesses the breadth and precision of your grammatical constructions. Your vocabulary range will be evaluated to evaluate the variety and appropriateness of your word selections.

    Also, your ability to provide an argument or explanation and your work's consistency and cohesion are considered. The scoring guidelines for the writing portion are designed to evaluate your capacity to express ideas clearly, to utilise proper grammar and spelling, and to show that you have a mastery of a variety of vocabulary words.


  • Reading - The scoring criteria of the PTE reading section include reading comprehension, vocabulary, understanding implied meaning, and following written instructions. Your capacity to identify the writer’s purpose, understand vocabulary in context, make inferences, and grasp the organisation of the text.

    Your ability to accurately summarise information, pick out significant points, and respond to multiple-choice questions are all considered in the grading process. Your ability to comprehend and analyse textual passages efficiently within the allotted time limits and your other reading comprehension skills will be evaluated.


  • Listening - The listening section of the PTE test includes identifying the speaker's attitude or opinion, grasping key information, note-taking, and understanding the context. The test aims to evaluate your listening comprehension abilities, including your capacity for accurate and proficient interpretation of spoken English.

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Scoring Scale and Interpretation

Now that you have knowledge of the scoring scale of the PTE exam range from 10 to 90, with 10 being the lowest and 90 being the highest. Based on how well you did on the test, this scale is used to assess your level of English.


An exceptional level of proficiency is indicated by a score of 90, which demonstrates advanced abilities and a firm grasp of the English language. Scores between 65 and 78 suggest a competent level of skill, whereas scores between 79 and 83 show a high level of competency.


Let’s have a brief idea with the table mentioned below:

Score Range

Level of Proficiency




Very high










Extremely limited or non-user

You can also align your PTE score with other English language proficiency tests such as IELTS and TOEFL. Take a look at the concordance tables mentioned below:

IELTS Comparison 

PTE Academic






















TOEFL Comparison

PTE Academic
























Tips for Improving PTE Scores

 Head on to our next topic! To help you increase your results on the PTE exam, take a look at the following basic tactics and ideas for each section:


  • Speaking: Practise your pronunciation, coherence, and fluency. Include pertinent examples in your comments.

  • Writing: When writing, pay close attention to organisation, grammar, vocabulary, and time management.

  • Reading: Improve your speed and accuracy while working on different questions to increase reading comprehension.

  • Listening: Practise taking notes, paying attention to details and important ideas, and developing active listening skills.


Lastly, utilise official PTE practice materials, online platforms, time management, recording your responses, seeking feedback, and joining study groups to improve your performance and band scores. In addition, allocate time wisely by quickly assessing the difficulty of each question, setting time limits, and moving on if you're stuck. 



To conclude, the PTE exam is assessed and marked on a 10 - 90 scoring scale, with the components of Speaking, Writing, Listening, and Reading sections. All these scales are scored separately and combined for the final marking system. Interpretation from the Pearson Test of English to IELTS and TOEFL differs. Its comparison may vary, which you can see on the blog above. Follow strategies and tips such as practising regularly, managing your time, and focusing on your skill set. 



Q. How long does the PTE exam last?

A. The PTE exam lasts about three hours, including breaks.


Q. How long does it take to get the results of the PTE exam?

A. PTE exam results are usually available within 2-5 business days, but this varies based on the test centre and other reasons.


Q. Can you transmit my PTE scores to more than one university?

A. Yes, you can send your PTE scores to several universities during the score-reporting procedure. Each receiver may be subject to additional charges.


Q. How many times can you sit for the PTE exam?

A. There are no restrictions on how many times you can take the PTE exam. You can retake the exam as many times as you wish to enhance your marking system.


Q. How long do PTE scores last?

A. PTE scores are normally valid for two years after the exam date. However, confirming the score validity standards with the specific university you are applying to is best. 


We hope you enjoyed deciphering the PTE exam and scoring scale. If you would like to get a deeper insight into English proficiency tests, we encourage you to have a word with our team of expert counsellors at Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC). Our counsellors will provide you with guidance throughout your study abroad journey. Get help with the application process, SOPs and filing for a visa. Visit us and get one-to-one counselling or avail yourself of free video counselling via our website. We will be happy to help you, so please do not hesitate to contact us at application02@meridean.org or 1800-1230-00011.


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