If you’re thinking about taking an English proficiency test for immigration or study purposes, you’ve probably wondered “IELTS or PTE?” at least once. Hopefully this article will help you make your decision.

Mrs IELTS has been teaching at the local school for decades. She’s old, traditional and well-respected. She knows her grammar back-to-front and is a walking dictionary. She insists that you use pencil and paper in class and there are certainly no games. She’s very good at what she does and everybody knows it.

Ms PTE has just graduated from college. She’s fresh, fun and very smart. Because she’s young you can use laptops or tablets in class, which is exciting. Her English tests are a bit ‘friendlier’ than Mrs IELTS’.

Word in the playground has it that Ms PTE’s English tests are easier than Mrs IELTS, but is it really true?

The short answer to this question is NO. The difficulty of IELTS compared to PTE is the same. Neither test is easier than the other. They are both demanding and require fundamental skill building as well as knowledge of the test format.

The only real differences are:

  • PTE is delivered via a computer while IELTS is completed with pen and paper (but this is changing!).
  • PTE has 20 different, shorter tasks while the IELTS has 5 longer tasks.

When thinking about whether to choose IELTS or PTE consider the following questions:

IELTS or PTE: Am I digitally literate? That is, can I use a computer?

If no, then take the IELTS because a number of the PTE tasks require you to have computer skills. For younger people, this comes naturally but for older people you may be safer in Mrs IELTS classes.

Do you find computers easy to use? Being confident with technology is essential for PTE success.

IELTS or PTE: Do I have a strange accent?

If you were raised in Pakistan but then moved to Australia and then moved to the UK you may want to think about doing the IELTS because the human examiner will be able to understand your accent better. Of course, if you speak clearly then you can take either tests, but if, for some reason, you are failing your PTE speaking and scoring low on “oral fluency” you want to consider Mrs IELTS classes as she has had a lot better experience listening to strange accents.

IELTS or PTE: Do I need my results quickly?

If you need your results quickly then take the PTE. There turnaround on test results is impressive. Ms PTE, unlike Mrs IELTS, grades her students’ exams in her lunch break. (Graduate teacher!)

IELTS or PTE: I only have a short time to prepare. Which test is easier to cram for?

If you only have a short time to prepare then you shouldn’t take either test. Both tests are difficult and you shouldn’t try to ‘wing’ it.

In saying that, if you really do need to cram, both are about the same. The IELTS is arguably easier to cram for because the number of questions are fewer, but then again the PTE has a great practice website.

To conclude, if you think that the PTE is easier than the IELTS then you’re wrong and you may be disappointed. Both tests are rigorous. If you fail to prepare adequately then you should expect to be disappointed. The tests are barriers and they’re barriers for a reason. Universities and immigration want to know that you are skilled in English.

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Suggestion: Study. Prepare. Learn. Improve! And make sure you sign up for a free trial with us. Our E2Language reviews speak for themselves!


Update: E2Language teacher Jay took both PTE and IELTS, and explains the difference between the two. 

Check out our previous posts why PTE or IELTS may be right for you. 

Written by: Jay Merlo

88 thoughts on “IELTS or PTE? Which test is easier?

    1. Hi there! Because we are an English proficiency test preparation blog, we provide all content in English to help our visitors read at about the same level you will find on the PTE, IELTS, TOEFL or OET. 🙂

    1. Hi Buster,

      It depends on whether she would prefer to speak to a computer or a human for the speaking part! Also, it depends on her writing strength. Generally, those with weaker writing will choose the PTE because of the shorter essay section.

      If your wife wants to practice as a Nurse overseas, she should also look into doing the OET (Occupational English Test). This is the English test specifically made for healthcare professionals. You can find some information about it here: https://blog.e2language.com/oet/


  1. hi there,

    I have completed my studies in Diploma of Community Welfare from Australia. I did find IELTS bit difficult. I am wondering that is it PTE is valid for applying Australian Permanent Residency or Not? Also , please suggest me any other English exam which is easier than IELTS.

    Please reply promptly.

    1. Hi Sam,

      Yes, the PTE is valid for applying for Australian Permanent Residency. Generally you need a minimum of a 65 on all skills in order to use the PTE for residency purposes, but many people aim for a 75 in all skills as this score entitles you to more points towards your residency application. Again, the PTE is not necessairily easier than IELTS, but there are many things about it that suit the younger generation of test takers including the lack of human examiner and the quicker sitting time! That being said, the PTE is a test where you absolutely need to understand the format and methods to succeed. You can see this if you check out my blog post about how I failed the PTE on my first attempt as a native speaker.

      You can sign up for a free trial of our course here: http://www.e2language.com/home/pte and set up a free information session with one of our expert PTE teachers to get further information on how to use our course to prepare and succeed on the PTE on your first attempt.

      Overall I would say that the PTE is probably most suited to you if you didn’t like the IELTS, but you may also want to look into the TOEFL iBT just to get a comparison. The TOEFL is also online, and the biggest difference between the PTE and TOEFL is that in the PTE the speaking section is at the beginning, and in the TOEFL iBT the speaking test is last. This can make a big difference for students to know!

      I hope this helps! Please do not hesitate to contact us with further questions, and definitely try out our free trial and set up a meeting with a teacher! 🙂

    1. Hello Sagar!

      For most universities you will need a minimum of a PTE 65-70 (with no skill below 50) or IELTS 6.5-7. It is different across different schools however, so it’s important to check the requirements for your given university. Here is the link with the requirements that Melbourne University (one of the top universities in Australia) asks for:

      Most schools will ask for a similar score minimum, potentially a bit lower if it is a smaller university.

      Hope this helps!

  2. Hello Dhaval here,

    I have all ready given exam in IELTS and got 5 band.so i have reappear for exam.but i am more confuse about choose IELTS OR PTE???

    Which one is better for me?? Pls advise..

    1. Hi Dhavel,

      I’m sorry to hear about your past IELTS experience. Unfortunately, I can’t give you a concrete answer about which test is better for you because I don’t know where your strengths and weaknesses lie!

      However, I can give you the following advice:

      1. If you are more comfortable speaking to a computer than to a human examiner, choose the PTE. Remember, you won’t get any sort of feedback from the computer, no body language, no 2-way conversation- nothing. Some people see this as a positive thing because they get nervous in the presence of a human examiner. Some people find it disconcerting because they aren’t able to receive body language and verbal cues from anyone. It really depends on how you feel about interacting solely with a machine.

      2. If writing is your weakest area, you may find the PTE writing section slightly less intimidating. The writing section on the PTE is shorter (there is only one essay task and it is 300 words), and in general you can do quite well on this section by writing simple sentences and using good essay structure. If you want some tips about how to write the essay on the PTE, check out our E2Language YouTube channel for a free webinar!

      3. You have already taken the IELTS and you know what to expect. For this reason, it may actually be easier for you to retake IELTS than to switch to a whole different test. The test formats and expectations are different, and this can be quite frustrating for students who switch tests.If you decide to switch to the PTE, just make sure you are committed to learning the different format and methods. Check out this article for more information: https://blog.e2language.com/failed-your-pte-ielts-toefl-or-oet-exam-switching-tests-may-not-be-the-answer/

      If you’re still confused about what to do, sign up for a free trial with us for either test at http://www.e2language.com and book a free 10 minute consultation with one of our expert teachers. They can chat with you about your personal strengths, weaknesses and goals to help you make a decision.

      Hope this helps, best of luck to you! 🙂

    1. Hello!

      Congratulations on passing your Sec. Examination! The answer to your question will vary, but in general you will need an IELTS band 6.5 or a PTE 65 to meet Australian University language requirements. In addition, you must not have any individual scores below 6.0 for IELTS and 50 for PTE. Definitely check the requirements for the university you wish to attend, however! For example, here are the requirements for Monash university: http://www.monash.edu/admissions/english-language-requirements . And remember: if you need any help with preparation, we can help!! 🙂

    1. Hi Fatma,

      Please sign up for a free E2Language account by visiting our website: http://e2language.com/ . The weekly quiz questions are posted in our Whiteboard and you can enter your answers there too. Signing up for an E2Language account is also a great way to get to know our platform better so you can decide if it’s the right option to help you prepare for your English proficiency test 🙂

  3. Hello sir,
    I have done medical lab technitian course after my graduation from india. It is a certificate course. N i have job exp for 3 yrs in that field…laboratory kind of blood testing..do i eligible for pr.

    1. Hi Shahin,

      Are you currently in India or Australia? In Australia, you can apply for PR after living/working there for a certain number of years (I think 3 or 4, but you will need to check on the immigration website). You may be eligible for a skilled migrant visa to get you to Australia, in which case you will need to take the PTE or IELTS. Again, I would definitely recommend checking the Australian immigration website for details! 🙂

  4. Hi Kaia, i did my ielts test last year and i achieved 6.5 however my pte was only 56 for speaking in pte. i have been practiaing pte for a month. my oral fluency is terribly low. do you think i should go for ielts? i believe in my writing though. MY written discourse is 90 and writing is 65

    1. Hi Herman,

      Sorry to hear about your speaking score difficulties! Excellent work with your written discourse though! Did you score a 6.5 in IELTS speaking, or 6.5 overall? It’s possible that the drop in your score could be accounted for by the difference in PTE and IELTS speaking format (i.e. speaking to a computer in a noisy room is completely different to speaking with a human examiner in a quiet room!).

      At the end of the day, you know your skills the best. If you think the environmental distractions (noise, headphones etc.) of the PTE speaking section are affecting your score, it may be smart to switch back to IELTS. Many people do just find it easier to talk to a person, and there is arguably less distraction in the IELTS examination room for your speaking test.

      Just a warning though- switching tests after focusing on one for awhile can be quite disorienting. If you do switch to IELTS, I recommend you spend another good month studying the format and practicing before you book your test. And either way, it sounds like you really need to work on your fluency. Have you thought about getting a speaking partner online? conversationexchange.com is a good place to find one for free! You can practice your speaking with a native speaker and build up your confidence. Fluency is all about having the courage to keep on talking, despite mistakes. Once you have fluency down, accuracy will come.

      If you want some help with IELTS (or PTE, if you decide to stick with it!), really consider signing up to one of our courses. Our teachers can help you with strategies to increase fluency, and we also do speaking assessments to help you pinpoint and build on your weakest areas. Plus, our e2pronounce app helps you boost your speaking score by guiding your pronunciation of academic words generally found on the PTE and IELTS. The good news about speaking is that once you start improving, the results are quite rapid! 🙂

      I really hope this helps you in your decision, and I wish you the best of luck on your next test!!

  5. Hi Kaia,
    Thanks for the information. I would like to know the ideal duration required for PTE training. I am ready to practice 4 hours a day. Please advise.

    1. Hi Praveen,

      I would advise to give yourself at least a month. This allows you time to improve at each skill independently, and not rush any of the important concepts you will need to learn about PTE format. Our course allows you to submit work for assessment, schedule one-on-one tutorials with PTE experts, and skill-build through our webinars, video lessons and practice questions. Unfortunately, this can’t happen overnight! A month gives you ample time to create a realistic study plan and follow it through, and also enough time to receive feedback and try again when it comes to activities you find difficult.

      Keep in mind, if you are currently at a PTE 30 level and you want to get to a PTE 90 level, a month will not be enough! But when the goal is a 65 or higher and the current level is in the PTE 45-50 range, a month is often an excellent timeline.

      Good luck!!

  6. Hello there… i wanted to thank you .. your website helped me a lot >>> PTE Saved MY LIFE
    I took IELTS for three times and the three times i got L:8/9 R:8/8.5 S:8 W:7–7.5
    From the first attempt i got overall 85 :)) L:87/R:86/W:85/S:87

  7. Hi Naresh here.

    i got 6.0 overall and each subject L-6.0 R-6.0 W-5.5 and S-6.5 i want overall 6.5 what should i do , IELTS or PTE?? please suggest…

    1. Hi Naresh,

      It sounds like you are very close to reaching your goal, but you need to brush up on some skills, especially writing. Because you are so close, I might suggest sticking with IELTS because you already know the format and what to expect. Trust me, the PTE is COMPLETELY different, and it will take time to learn the new format and adjust to the new expectations. Now that you know what to expect with IELTS, why not work on your weaknesses and give yourself at least a month before you try again?

      On the other hand, (just to make sure you are fully informed) if your weakness is writing, perhaps the shorter writing tasks on the PTE would be more suited to you. You’re the only one who knows your abilities, so keep that in mind too!

      If you’re looking to brush up on writing for IELTS in particular, check out some of our free youtube webinars and video lessons here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCglDIsg_Z9mE2oT9hsrbzFA

      Here is a good example of a method you can use for IELTS writing task 1: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2-gWx319Ya8

      We also have a new and improved IELTS course that you should check out (get the free trial here ). We do writing assessments and also provide one-on-one tutorials with IELTS experts (and former examiners) who can help you identify your weaknesses and build your skills and confidence. Some one-on-one guidance and feedback could really help push your score over that 6.5 threshold.

      You’re very close, don’t give up! Good luck to you, Naresh!

  8. hi kaia,
    I need pte 50 or ielts(general) 6 score to apply permanent residency.I am confused which one should i take.I will give myself 2 to 3 months to prepare.Is pte writing is easiar than ielts general?Ielts academic is very hard but how is ielts general compare with pte?
    Please advise.thanks.

    1. Hello Shohana,

      First off, I have to commend you on giving yourself enough time to prepare! 2-3 months is very smart, well done! To answer your question, many people find the IELTS general writing section to be easier (and less mentally draining!) than the IELTS academic writing section. In a lot of ways, the IELTS general writing section and the PTE writing section are comparable in terms of the effort and skill level you will need.

      The PTE essay limit is a bit longer (300 words) in comparison to the IELTS general essay limit (250 words), so it depends on your preferences about how much you want to write. Some people prefer a greater word limit to get their ideas across, others like to be short and sweet! It’s up to you.

      In contrast, the PTE summarize written text task is much shorter (maximum 70 words) than IELTS general writing task 1 (150 words). However, the catch with PTE summarize written text is that you must get all your ideas across using only one sentence, and many people find this difficult.

      In your case, I might advise you to stick with IELTS only because you already know the format and what to expect, which really helps most test-takers. Switching tests comes with a whole new set of issues, as you have to learn a whole new format and adapt to a completely different environment (e.g. being recorded on a computer in the PTE vs speaking to a human examiner in the IELTS). Your speaking and listening sections will be the same if you stick with IELTS, and you’ll know what you’re in for. And your writing and reading tasks will be shorter, which you may find more manageable.

      Of course, I don’t know you and it’s possible the PTE is right for you- so make sure you do your research before you decide! There are plenty of PTE and IELTS related posts on this blog, as well as explanations of the tasks on each test, so feel free to have a look!

      I hope this helps, and GOOD LUCK! 🙂

      1. hi kaia,
        thanks for the advise kaia.i have done some research on pte and i like that more than ielts.i have decided to take pte.how i can purchase pte package?if i bye 1st package how many assessment i will receive?

        1. Hi Shohana,

          If you purchase package 1, you don’t get any writing or speaking assessments, but you do get a study plan consultation and tutorial with your teacher. With your timeline and what you need to achieve though, I think the 2nd package suits your needs more. It’s 70$ more (199$) but you get 4 speaking assessments, 4 writing assessments, and 2 tutorials on top of your study plan consultation. With the time you have, I think it’s important to build on your skills over time, and being able to receive feedback on these assessments will really help. Plus, you can focus on more with your tutor and receive follow-up feedback if you have 2 tutorials instead of 1!

          Either package will be useful, but I’m thinking because you have 2-3 months- you should spend the time getting the necessary feedback through assessment and multiple tutorials.

          In the end though, do what you think is best! 🙂

          Take care, and GOOD LUCK!

  9. Hello Kaia ,

    Today, for the first time I landed to your blog and found it very good. I have given IELTS test 2 times and, unfortunately I couldn’t score 7 band in each.

    My first try was better than the 2nd one. Following is my scorecard:

    First try:
    L: 6.5
    W: 6.5
    S: 6

    Second try:

    Second try:
    L: 6
    W: 6
    S: 6

    I don’t know what issues were in 2nd try as I am pretty sure about my writing test at least wherein I was expecting at least 7 bands.

    I am applying for PR of Australia and Canada both but IELTS doesn’t let me move forward with it.

    I am very confused whether I should go for IELTS again or not because If I have to speak the truth I find big difficulties in Listening and Speaking.

    Please suggest me what to do.

    Hoping a prompt reply.

    Lalit Sharma

    1. Hi Lalit,

      First off, welcome to the blog! I’m glad you found it helpful. 🙂

      It’s interesting that your first try went better than your second- can you think of any reason for that? Overall, your first try demonstrates that you are very close to your goal (although for immigration it’s always ideal to have an IELTS 7.5 or PTE 79). Because I don’t know you and your abilities in depth, I can only give you general advice. However, I highly encourage you to book a free information session with one of our test experts so they can get more of a sense of what’s going on for you personally. You can book a session by clicking this link: https://calendly.com/e2languageteam/infosession/11-10-2016

      General recommendations:

      1. If you find the writing section to be a mental strain on IELTS, you may find the shorter PTE writing section a bit more manageable. However, to complete the PTE writing section well, you need to be good at summarizing complex ideas into 1 sentence (summarize written text), which many people find particularly challenging. You should choose the test that plays best to your skill set. If you are good at being concise, the PTE may be more suited to you.

      2. Decide whether or not you are more comfortable talking to a computer or a person. If you think that your speaking score is being affected by your nervousness in talking with the IELTS examiner, it’s possible you will find it easier being recorded by the computer in the PTE. However, keep in mind that in the PTE you will have to get used to hearing the voices of everybody around you in the testing room. If you’re not easily distracted and prefer being recorded, the PTE may be right for you.

      3. The listening sections on the PTE and IELTS are different in format, but they test similar skills and have about the same level of difficulty. If you want to take the PTE, you’ll have to learn the format for all the listening tasks. If you stick with IELTS, you already know what to expect. I would recommend that you check out the different tasks in PTE listening though- it’s possible you might find them more suited to your strengths!

      4. Figure out whether or not your previous preparation for IELTS actually gave you a good shot at a good score. Many people study for IELTS using free online material, and I understand why they do this- but what they don’t often know is that this material can be out of date or flat-out wrong. It may be a case of getting correct information about each section, relevant lessons and practice questions, and strategies that actually work for you personally. Unfortunately, most free content doesn’t help much- it just helps people practice something over and over that they may not fully understand. Our IELTS course (check out the free trial here) provides one-on-one tutoring with an IELTS expert who can help you build your skills appropriately for the task at hand. We also do writing and speaking assessments, and have a wealth of webinars, video lessons, practice questions and vocabulary & grammar builders. Whether you want to stick with IELTS or go with PTE, proper preparation and feedback from courses like ours will be invaluable to you.

      I hope this helps! Remember, Canada only accepts PTE for study purposes, while Australia accepts PTE for both study and immigration, so keep this in mind when applying for PR.

      I sincerely wish you the best of luck and hope you’ll enjoy life in Australia (or Canada!)

        1. Hi Amir-

          You’re right, PTE is accepted only for studying in (many universities) Canada. Thanks for pointing that out!

        2. Hi Amir-

          You’re right, PTE is accepted only for studying in (many universities) in Canada. Thanks for pointing that out!

  10. Hi Kaia,

    I have chosen PTE for my Australian PR. I have attempted PTE twice in last 2 months. In my first attempt i scored 58 and 2nd i scored 63. I am planning for 3rd attempt which is on 20-Dec-16. My aim is to score 80 in third time and I have 30 days time to prepare. I would like to sign up for E2 Language package, but not sure which package is suitable for me.

    Please advise,

    Sai Kishore

    1. Hi Sai,

      Okay, so you have a good amount of time to prepare but you need to be smart about it. What areas were you scoring the lowest in? These are the ones you really have to skill-build on (not just do practice questions endlessly!). You’re at 63 overall right now, and I think an 80 is doable if you are getting the feedback you need in order to know where you are going wrong.

      With that in mind (as well as your 30 day timeline), I would recommend our second package (199USD). This will provide you with:

      1. A study plan consultation with a teacher. In this time, your tutor will work with you to pinpoint your weaknesses and develop a plan that addresses these weaknesses and builds on them. They will fit it within your timeline and give you a sense of where to start and when to check back with them.

      2. Two 1:1 tutorials on Zoom (similar to skype!). In these tutorials, your tutor will work with you to develop strategies and methods to tackle your problem areas. They will also provide you with plenty of honest feedback and suggestions!

      3. 4 speaking and 4 writing assessments, which will be marked in the same way as the real PTE tasks. With this many assessments, you’ll have time to submit, get feedback and try again. This will really help you improve and show you where you are losing marks currently on writing and speaking tasks on the PTE.

      4. Full access to all of our course materials (video lessons, webinars, practice questions, and vocab & grammar builders) and our pronunciation app, which will really help boost your fluency and pronunciation score, as well as your overall speaking score.

      I hope this is a clear outline! I honestly think that if you put the time into it, you’ll be able to achieve your score. You’ve given yourself a good amount of time to improve and it is certainly doable.

      GOOD LUCK! Let me know if you have any more questions 🙂

      1. Thank you Kaia for the advise. Below are my scores for your reference.
        Communicative Skills:
        Listening – 63
        Reading – 67
        Speaking – 56
        Writing – 62

        Enabling Skills:

        Grammar – 68
        Oral Fluency – 48
        Pronunciation – 55
        Spelling – 19
        Vocabulary – 62
        Written Discourse – 56

        1. Hi again Sai!

          It looks like you could use a brush-up across all the skills, but especially in speaking and writing. This definitely solidifies my thought that package 2 will suit you well, as you will receive feedback on 4 writing and 4 speaking assessments. I would definitely try to focus on writing and speaking in your tutorials (your spelling, grammar, vocabulary and written discourse scores will ALL go up if you focus primarily on writing, and it’s also best to work through your productive skills with your tutor rather than your receptive skills). Your receptive skills (reading and listening) can be highly improved through self-learning with our webinars, video lessons, activities and practice questions! 🙂

          Hope this helps, let’s boost those scores!!


          1. Hi Kaia,

            I purchased the 2nd package. Would i be receiving the meeting invites from teachers or what’s the procedure for consultations.


          2. Hi Sai,

            You should receive an email with a link to book your first consultation! If you have trouble, you can write to a tutor using your “whiteboard”, and they will send you a link! 🙂

          3. Hi Kaia,

            Thank you so much for your reply the last time. Please I would like you to send me link on how to get my OET preparation tutorials. I would like to start immediately. Thanks,


          4. Hi Kaia,

            I had booked for a free information session next week to enable me get the right package. Thank you so much.


          5. Hi Kaia,
            I got my PTE scores today for my 3rd attempt. I am glad to inform you that i passed the test with flying colors scoring 70 in all sections. Thanks to you for timely advice and E2 Language team for helping me out. I have used all your methods and they were very helpful. Thanks for recommending me the 199 package. David was a great help.

            You guys are best!


          6. Hi Sai,

            CONGRATULATIONS!! What fantastic news! We’re thrilled for you and wish you the best of luck with your future endeavours. I’ll pass along your lovely feedback to David as well 🙂

  11. Hi, am Isaac and I found your site and webinars helpful however my PTE academic result was bad. I want to do the OET this time but I do not know how you can help. In addition, how do I get one-on-one expert tutorial from you and all I need to know in OET. Am a nurse seeking registration with the Nursing board of Australia. I live in Australia at the moment. Which countries are your organization? Do you have a branch in Australia?


    1. Hi Isaac!

      We are based in Melbourne, but our course is delivered completely online- so you can do it from anywhere in the world! Our one-on-one tutorials are done on Zoom, which is similar to skype. The OET may be good for you as it will focus on more of a medical context, so you might feel more comfortable with the content. I would really suggest talking to one of our experts about it first before signing up though, as they may be able to help you ensure the OET is right for you. You can set up a free information session with one of our OET experts by clicking here: https://calendly.com/e2languageteam/infosession

      Once you have chatted with someone at E2, they can direct you to the best course to help you with your specific difficulties so that you can ace the test and get your registration!

      Let me know if you have anymore questions. Hope to chat with you soon! 🙂


    2. Hi Isaac,

      My name is Raiza, I am also a nursing student.
      Which University are you doing your degree?

      It was interesting to see that your are not using a personal pronoun when you are referring to yourself, as example: “Hi am Isaac” when you should be saying Hi! I am Isaac.

      I hope you are not taking this as rude on my side, I believe that it is an opportunity to learn.

      Please do the same with me, so I can learn from you too.



  12. i have written my ielts exam on 5/nov/16, but my score was 5.5. i should have to retake my ielts or pte test to score a better result?
    and i have seen yours recents post replys too.. but the thing is i have attend a versent exam in a interview ,ofcourse i have cleared it well. so which will be best option for me kaia.

    1. Hi Sai,

      As I’ve said before, it’s likely best to stick with what you know (IELTS) unless there is a deal-breaker issue that’s causing you to do badly (i.e. the human IELTS examiner makes you too nervous to speak!). If you cleared an interview well recently, it seems you don’t have a problem with speaking in front of someone else! It may be beneficial to keep studying for the IELTS as you already know what to expect.

      Have you signed up to our free IELTS trial course yet? Sign up here: http://www.e2language.com/home/ielts. You can do all the practice questions there, and you can check out all of our free webinars and tips videos here:https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCglDIsg_Z9mE2oT9hsrbzFA

      In the end, having good methods and lots of practice is what will help you ace IELTS. Again, I wouldn’t consider changing unless there is one part of the test that makes you so uncomfortable that you can’t get past it. In this case, I would consider switching to PTE. Just remember- a whole new set of challenges comes with switching to the PTE, including the different format and different environment!

      Good luck!!


  13. hello. I am going to appear for pte exam. I am nervous about it…aahmm feeling tensed. I am not scoring good in fill in the blanks of reading as the meanings are not clear. Can you please tell that do the blanks are actually difficult in real exam??

    1. Hello Gurpreet!

      Don’t worry, it’s normal to be nervous! I was super tense before I wrote the PTE and I am a native English speaker! I’ll be honest- the fill in the blanks task can be quite challenging if you don’t know exactly what to look for. Check out this webinar, it has some very useful tips for dealing with this task type:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8–e4jzAtWg

      Also, make sure you sign up to our free trial at http://www.e2language.com/home/pte so you can get a sense of the difficulty level from our practice questions. If you have time, I also highly recommend that you sign up to one of our courses so a PTE expert can help work on your weaknesses with fill in the blank questions and you can get lots of practice! 🙂

      Good luck!

  14. Hi . am Vijaya

    I have appeared IELTS 3 times . This will be my 4th attempt.But still am unable to score my required 7.5 in each band.
    I have scored 6 overall.
    Pls help and suggest what to do .I am messed.

    1. Hi Vijaya,

      How have you been preparing for IELTS? It sounds like you really need some targeted coaching, not just practice questions on the internet! 6 isn’t really that far away from 7.5, but boosting your score that much WILL require about 4 weeks MINIMUM preparation using QUALITY materials. If you can commit to this study time, I think your 4th attempt could be the last. It sounds like you need help identifying your weaknesses and building on them, as well as a method to help you tackle each task and each section.

      I think you should really consider signing up to E2Language (2nd package at least, as this way you will get speaking and writing assessments on top of your study plan consultation and tutorials) and letting one of our experts work through your preparation with you. Here’s an information video if you’re interested: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqcsNpVicsY

      You can check out our free trial here, and you can schedule a free information session to figure out which course option would best suit your needs as well.

      Good luck. I know it’s incredibly discouraging to take the IELTS 4 times, but you aren’t that far away from your goal and you CAN do it. In your situation, I would only recommend switching to PTE is there is one section on the IELTS that you will NEVER improve upon because it’s not suited to your testing style (i.e. you will always be too nervous with a human examiner). Otherwise, stick to IELTS and get some good materials and guidance! 🙂

      Hope this helps!

  15. Hello Sir
    I had given Ielts exam 3 time n got 5.5 band n. Now I switch to PTE so. Please give me advise about acceptance of PTE In Canada n how much score is required To get admission in diploma ????
    I m from.

    1. Hi Tushar,

      For University entry, almost all Canadian universities accept PTE, but you should check on the language requirements page of the university your are applying to just to make sure! Generally you need a minimum of 65, with no score below 50. It depends on the school though. For example, UBC requires an average score of 65 with no individual score under 60.

      Overall, I would say to aim for 65, with all scores above 60 to be safe.

      Check out our course if you need a hand with preparation! Good luck 🙂

  16. Hello Sir,

    My name is H.K, from Japan.
    I have already got IELTS 6.0 (Reading and speaking were 6.5, while listening and writing were 5.5.)

    In this case, which is easier for me to get regarding overall score, IELTS 6.5 or PTE-A 58? Please kindly let me know.

    Kind regards,

    (P. S.)
    I’m better at typing than average examinees.

    1. Hi H.K.

      Based on your IELTS writing score and your typing skill, you may find the PTE writing section more suited to you.That being said- you may find the speaking section a little off-putting since you are used to being assessed by a human examiner. If you think this won’t be an issue, I would recommend trying out some PTE practice material. You could even do the ptepractice.com full PTE test to get a sense of the differences between IELTS and PTE, especially when it comes to writing and speaking.

      You can also check out some PTE practice questions on our free PTE trial course.

      If you start doing PTE practice material and find it more intuitive than IELTS (especially with your above average typing skills), you should consider switching. If you find the format off-putting or too much to learn in a short time (there are a lot of tasks!), consider sticking with IELTS. You are very close!

      Good luck 🙂

  17. Hello Kaia,

    I am also in the same boat like Herman. After month long preparation my PTE scores as below:

    PTE mock: L-63, R-52, S-55, W-63
    Actual test: L – 54, R-56, S-48, W-62

    My oral fluency – 42 and pronunciation – 45.

    It is evident that due to my oral fluency/pronunciation my score dented. I need overall score of 65 in each for Australia PR.

    Appreciate if you can advice me how to improve my score. Do you think IELTS would be better option for me? I find speaking in noisy room annoying, impacting my score!

    Thanks in advance.

    Br, kamal

    1. Hi Kamal,

      It sounds like the noisy room could definitely be throwing you off! The definite advantage to IELTS speaking is that you get to speak to someone in a quiet room, rather than contend with noise from other people (who may or may not be aware of how loud they are being!). In your case, it may be worth it to switch tests, especially if you are worried about noise throwing you off again. Just remember that IELTS tasks are completely different from PTE so you will likely need another good month to prepare for IELTS and learn the format.

      Another option for you is to practice getting used to a noisy environment (I have some tips for that here and here), and keep at the PTE since you are relatively close to your goal scores and know what to expect now. It’s up to you, and definitely depends on whether or not you just find the noise in PTE to be too overwhelming.

      Good luck!

      1. Hi Kaia,

        Thank you so much for your valuable suggestions. Much appreciated.

        I would definitely like to give one more try no matter what it takes! Preparation time is not constraint in my case. As I already practiced PTE format it could be worth pushing my limits in the same direction. What seems to be missing here is “Assessment”, how I am doing and what/how it needs to be improved. Applying right methods is crucial, key to success.

        I would be interested to enroll for E2pronounce, could you please suggest which package suits my requirement.



        1. Hi Kamal,

          I’m glad to hear you are determined!! Honestly, our second package (199USD) will probably suit you best, as you’ll not only have access to E2pronounce and the full course, but also 4 speaking and 4 writing assessments (which are assessed using direct PTE criteria and provide helpful feedback) as well as 2 expert tutorials. Our students usually find that the assessments and tutorials make all the difference because of the support and feedback they include- as well as the helpful tips! In addition to that, you’ll obviously have full webinar access, plenty of practice questions, video lessons and grammar and vocabulary builders.

          If you haven’t already, email us at hello@e2language.com and ask for the PTE word list- it’s super helpful to use with e2pronounce!

          If you have any further questions about the courses or anything else, feel free to chat to me here or email us!

          GOOD LUCK Kamal! Please let me know how everything goes 🙂

  18. I appeared my ielts xam 3 tyms…but my band score is 5.5..I need six to get admission in Australia university..so what I should to do…I want to write pte…so which is one is better to score higher marks…plz suggest me…

    1. Hello there,

      If you’re having issues with IELTS because of the speaking or writing sections, it may be worth switching to PTE. The PTE speaking section doesn’t involve speaking to a human examiner, so many people find it less nerve-wracking. The writing section is also slightly shorter. You aren’t too far off with your IELTS score however, so if it’s just a matter of giving yourself enough time to prepare and potentially getting some professional help with studying, stick with IELTS. Good luck!

  19. Hi Kaia,

    My last score around 52. Before last one was 55. my reading was reduced from 63 to 52. speaking from 62 to 52. Listening section always around 55. I really cannot figure from where should I start. Could you help me with this ?


    1. Hi Tara,

      Don’t worry, you aren’t the only one who has had the experience of a lower score on the second time around! This is why it’s so incredibly important to go into each task with a good method (AND to study each section extensively, even the ones your are more confident about). You need to set aside at least 4-6 weeks to prepare for your next PTE exam and you also need to get a good study plan together.

      Check out our free methods webinars for PTE speaking, reading and writing on YouTube to get a sense of what I mean by “a good method”:

      Speaking (Describe Image)

      Reading and Writing (Fill in the Blanks)

      Writing (Essay)

      Also, if you haven’t already- take a look at our free trial and get a sense of which practice questions you are struggling with. Do the same with our PTE activities on this blog. This might help you pinpoint some of the issues you are having with the tasks!

      Take a look at our courses too. Our PTE courses offer:

      -A study plan consultation with a PTE expert to help you figure out where to begin and where to focus your efforts. These consultations take place at a time of your choosing and the study plans are tailored to suit your timeline, schedule and individual needs.

      – One or more tutorials with a PTE expert to help you pinpoint your weaknesses and build skills and strategies to overcome them. These tutorials are scheduled by you and are one-on-one tuition via Zoom (which is similar to skype).

      – Full access to our webinars (we have method webinars for every task on the PTE, not just the free ones on youtube!)

      – Full course material access until you pass, which includes: video lessons, practice questions, grammar & vocabulary builders and access to our pronunciation app, E2Pronounce

      I know it’s hard trying to figure out how to get started, but we are here to help!! You can check out our course options here or email us at hello@e2language.com with any further questions you have.

      Good luck!!

  20. Hi,I m getting almost 17 wrong out of 57 in Pte reading practice tests.I need 65 each.Is it possible in reading? I got 7 each in ielts except writing.In pte writing isnt a problem but i find reading rather difficult. I m a regular viewer of ur videos which all r perfect. Plz answer my questions. I m so confused.

    1. Hi Rufi,

      Sorry to hear about your reading difficulties- it can be REALLY tough if you don’t know what you’re looking for. It sounds like you need some reading strategies and a method for tackling each type of task. I really recommend that you enrol in a course with us so a PTE expert can work with you one-on-one and help you identify what’s going wrong for you personally, and how you can overcome it. In addition, you’ll have access to many reading practice questions and all of our reading webinars (which describe strategies and methods like our YouTube webinars do!). You can check out the options here: http://www.e2language.com/home/pte

      A few quick tips:

      1. For multiple choice questions, make sure you always read the questions and answer options first, before even looking at the text. This will direct your reading and give you an idea of what keywords to scan for.

      2. In “Multiple Choice, Multiple Answers”, it’s better to pick one answer you are sure of, rather than guessing on multiple answers. This is because each incorrect answer will cancel out a correct answer. So if you only pick one answer that you are absolutely sure of, you will definitely get a point, whereas if you guess a second one and get it wrong- you will get 0.

      3.For “re-order paragraphs”, identify the transitional (middle) sentences first. Then, pick out the introduction and find the transitional sentence that best fits the intoductory sentence. Next, identify the conclusion. Then, find the transitional sentence that best leads into the conclusion. In other words, break this task up into pieces to make it more manageable, and think about each individual sentence as it relates to ONE other sentence, not the whole text.

      Good luck to you! Definitely contact us at hello@e2language.com if you have any questions about doing a PTE course with us to improve your reading- we’d love to help you out!

  21. Thanks a lot. These tips ll really help me a lot. But ,I want to know regarding the marking of pte reading. If m getting 17 wrong out of 57 in practice tests than it would possible me for me to achieve 65 in reading. Thanks. Plz answer my question. E2Language is really a wonderful site .

    1. Hi Rufi,

      Yes, it is still possible to achieve a 65 in reading on the real test, but your current score shows that you need some time (ideally 4 or more weeks) to build your skills. On top of this, you need to adopt a method for each task that works for you. That’s where we could help you out. So a 65 is achievable, you just need to identify what’s going wrong so you can work on your weak areas. We have students who scored similarly to you on practice tests and managed to obtain 65 or higher on the real test because they recognized that there was a weakness and invested the time and practice into building it up!

      Don’t lose hope, a 65 is not impossible by any means!

  22. Hello, I could not able to score 7 in IELTS, even after giving 2 attempts. My friend-cum-tutor suggested to try PTE for Australia immigration >>IELTS 1st attempt – L-7.5 R-5 W-6.5 T-7 and 2nd attempt -L-6.5 R-6 W-6 T-6.5. I found that writing and reading tasks are difficult to get through, mostly writing for Essay (Task 2) in IELTS. I am confident about Listening and no problem with speaking in front of mic too, additionally, I am good at typing on a computer. However, having a month’s time, will it be a good decision to switch to PTE (after giving a PTE mock test) or should I stick to IELTS?
    Will you suggest how much I should score in the mock test to move with the decision of switching to PTE?

    Your guidance will be of great help to me. Thanks.

    1. Hello Gary,

      It sounds like PTE might be a good option for you, just because your scores on IELTS are pretty close to what you need, and it might be that the tasks on PTE will be more suited to you and will push your score over the edge! With that being said, I must warn you:

      1. You need to know the format of every single PTE task back to front, it’s a lot different from IELTS.

      2. You need to be comfortable with the somewhat noisy testing environment that is the PTE. It’s not silent by any means- everyone is speaking at the same time and you can hear keyboards typing furiously after that! You need to know this going in.

      What I would suggest is this: Watch some of our free YouTube videos and try out some free practice questions either here on our blog or in our free trial course. Take about 3-4 days. Then, go to the practice PTE website and pay for a mock exam. If you score 65 or higher on the mock exam, PTE is probably a good option for you. You then have over 3 weeks to build on your weaker skills and learn the PTE format through and through. And of course if you need a bit of a boost, you can sign up for a paid course with E2Language and get some one-on-one tutoring, feedback, and practice materials! We would love to help you out. 🙂

      If you score less than a 60 on the PTE practice test, I would absolutely stick with IELTS. You are very close to the score you need and would benefit more from using your month to prepare for that instead. Again, we have an IELTS course that can identify where you are going wrong and give you that extra boost you need!

      Best of luck, whatever your decision!

  23. In this answer I will outline why I am convinced, that the PTE is much easier than IELTS and why everyone attempting to receive “superior” English results in an English proficiency test should ***stay away*** from IELTS ***and go for ***PTE instead***.
    I am a non-native English speaker who will be migrating to Australia permanently, and I was in desperate need to proof superior English to get 20 points for my skilled independent visa. My first choice was the IELTS exam.
    About my background, I lived in New Zealand for a year, did an exchange semester in California and, by the time of sitting IELTS, had been living in Australia for about one and a half years. So I considered myself a fairly good user of the English language. However, I failed the IELTS test consistently, here are my results:

    **Test 1 – 30.07.2016: Overall 8.0** / Listening 9 / Reading 8 / Writing 7 / Speaking 7.5

    **Test 2 – 20.08.2016: Overall 8.5** / Listening 8.5 / Reading 9 / Writing 7 / Speaking 8.5

    **Test 3 – 21.01.2017: Overall 8** / Listening 8 / Reading 8.5 / Writing 7 / Speaking 9

    After my second test, I prepared extensively just for the writing part, wrote about 3–4 essays and 5–6 personal letter every day for around two months and even had ***two private IELTS tutors*** who gave me feedback and individualized tips for improving. When I finally received my scores I was completely taken aback, having receive 7.0 yet another time without any improvement whatsoever. My speaking had improved to 9.0 though which was just as surprising and made me all the more wonder how this was even possible.

    After becoming really frustrated and almost giving up on the idea of sitting another test I revised the website of the DIBP again and discovered, that I could also take the PTE test to prove the same superior capabilities. I did a little background research on the PTE and found out that many people who had failed IELTS scored excellent in PTE, particularly in the Writing part of the test.
    I prepared myself for about two weeks, familiarizing myself with the exam format and scoring criteria, did two scored practice tests and last week sat the actual exam. Here are my scores, including those for the two mock tests:

    **Scored Practice Test A (25.02.2017): Overall 79**
    Listening 86 / Reading 78 / Speaking 71 / Writing 87

    **Scored Practice Test B (28.02.2017): Overall**** 79**
    Listening 85 / Reading 75 / Speaking 75 / Writing 81

    **PTE Academic (03.03.2017): Overall 90**
    Listening 88 / Reading 90 / Speaking 90 / Writing 90

    I received my results for the scored practice test about 3–4 hours after the test and my exam results the ***next morning*** after the test, at ***6.52am*** I received a mail notifying me of the availability of exam results, how fast is that!!!

    I was also quite surprised that I had scored that high in the actual test, as I had made quite a few mistakes on the exam which include:
    * Not repeating a few words in the ***Repeat sentence*** section in two occasions
    * Selecting only 1 answer in the listening ***Multiple choice multiple answers***
    * Not understanding one word in the ***Fill in blanks*** section
    * Not understanding/writing 2 words in the ***Write from Dictation*** section
    * Constantly still speaking and not finishing my sentence when the microphone turns of in the ***Describe Image*** and ***Re-tell Lecture*** sections

    So apparently, **unlike the IELTS Test**, you can still receive full scores even if you make a few mistakes !!!
    And apparently the actual exam was being assessed with a much higher score than the scored practice tests, otherwise how could I have ***improved ******my Oral Fluency and Pronunciation (among other things) from 68 and 76 to 90 and 90 in just 5 days ??

  24. Hi.
    I appeared in PTE exam last month and was able to score 66 in writing section only. My score in Oral Fluency, Pronunciation & Spelling was 54, 43 & 20. However, when I appeared in IELTS last year, then I scored 6.5 in speaking & 6 in writing. Now what do you suggest that either I give IELTS or PTE as I’m not sure that I will be able to achieve 7 band in speaking section.

    1. Hi Farrukh, it sounds like you were a lot closer with IELTS than with PTE, but I would say overall that you have a much higher chance of hitting a 70 in PTE writing than a 7 in IELTS writing. When it comes to speaking, knowing the technology of the test, the format of the test & the methods for how to approach each task is key. If you are willing to put some time and effort into practicing oral fluency and pronunciation- you might be surprised at how high your PTE score could jump from your last attempt.

      Send us an email at hello@e2language.com with your score card from last time and some info (when you will take the test, what you need overall etc.) and one of our duty tutors can make some recommendations for you!

      Here are some free resources to get you started:

      Oral Fluency Tips: https://blog.e2language.com/increase-pte-oral-fluency/

      PTE Technology FAQs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QNhKkdgdYzE&t=193s

      PTE or IELTS, Which is easier? : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=19qCQtaZW3Y

      Mistakes everyone makes in PTE Speaking: https://blog.e2language.com/common-mistakes-make-pte-speaking-tasks/

      Tips for a PTE 90: https://blog.e2language.com/pte-90

      Good luck!!!

  25. Hi Sir,

    I have already done my MBA in India and planning for the further studies in Australia . So which course I should prefer for the further studies. Please suggest me.

    Thank You.

    1. Hi Adil,

      You can take either test, it’s just a matter of which one best fits your testing style! Check out this video for some more guidance, and contact us if you would like a preparation course recommendation from one of our experts! 🙂 Good luck!!

    1. Hi Harmandeep,

      Both tests are accepted (and equally valid) for Australian immigration, it’s just a matter of which test you think will work best for you!

  26. Sir I hav appeared for pte twice but first attempt I got overall 47 then second time 50 but in oral fluency i am like shocked 10 and 20 in pronounciation I am not that bad in speaking and also after so much practice i did not get 65 atleast in one module and results were up after 10days totally disappointed what do you suggest ? I need 65 each .

    1. Hi Saiyada,
      I’m sorry to hear about your low pronunciation and fluency scores. This is a very common issue that a lot of our students face. The PTE is looking for “near native pronunciation”, which means they are looking for a very specific kind of pronunciation, and unfortunately many people don’t speak this way, even if they have excellent English skills. It’s the same story with oral fluency, they are looking for a specific rhythm and speed that matches the fluency commonly demonstrated by Western English native speakers. This is a frustrating issue but it can be overcome! Our teachers are excellent at training students on how to speak for the purposes of the PTE. Send us an email at hello@e2language.com with your previous score report and some information about when you plan to take the test again, and one of our excellent duty tutors can recommend the right course for you!

      Here is some further information about your issue as well:

      Video: High Risk Accents that will Affect Your PTE Score

      Video: PTE Pronunciation: What is it and How Can I Improve it?

      Video: PTE Oral Fluency: What is it and How Can I Improve it?

      Blog: Common Mistakes People Make on PTE Speaking

      Blog: Improving PTE Speaking Score (For South Asians Specifically)
      Good luck!

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