Wednesday, May 4, 2016

TOEFL vs. IELTS – What’s the Difference between them?

Non-native English speakers are sure to be familiar with the different English proficiency exams. These English proficiency exams are usually a requirement to non-native English speakers when applying for work or study visas in English speaking countries. These are proven tests to accurately evaluate one’s English skills.

A lot of people know these tests, yet some are wondering with the difference of the two. Let us break down the differences between the TOEFL and the IELTS tests.


The TOEFL or Test of English as a Foreign Language certification is recognized by thousands of universities, colleges and agencies in over 130 countries all over the globe. This includes the United Kingdom, the United States of America, Canada and Australia. People who take the TOEFL are those who want to pursue a career in the international market, gain competitive edge among other non-native English speakers, and find better work opportunities.

The International English Language Testing System exam - this English proficiency examination is often required by academic institutions and professional bodies. Further, this is also a requirement for immigration purposes when entering countries such as New Zealand, Canada, Australia, and even the United Kingdom. Students who plans to undergo a postgraduate course in English-speaking countries and professionals who seek a better career opportunity overseas.

Here is a list of other differences between the TOEFL and the IELTS. 

The test evaluates the person’s ability to communicate and understand English in an academic setting and context. This means that most questions are from different fields of knowledge.The test uses English in its everyday social context. There are some academic readings in the reading, yet it is not as complicated compared with the TOEFL.
The type of English used is mostly American English.Different types of English are used in IELTS. Most of the time, Australian and British English are used.
The test is an internet-based test. Candidates have to use a computer with an internet access to do the examination.The test is a paper-based examination. Candidates have to be very careful in making their writing legible for the raters to check.
The perfect score in the TOEFL is 120 with a perfect score for each subtest: reading, listening, speaking, and writing.The perfect overall band score is 9.0 with a perfect score of 9.0 in each subtest: speaking, listening, reading, and writing.
Questions are mostly multiple-choice type.Candidates are faced with different types of questions: short answers, gap fills, and multiple-choice type to name a few.

If you are required to take an English fluency examination, ask your agency which of these are needed. Then, give yourself three months to review to be ready for the IELTS or the TOEFL test.


Post a Comment