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PTE Academic and IELTS comparison with score equivalent guide


Pte academic score


PTE Academic Automated Scoring pattern

 Pearson Test of English Academic uses state-of-the-art technology for test scoring. Research supports that, in many ways, automated scoring gives more analytical, objective results than humans do. Unlike human judgment, which is prone to be influenced by a variety of factors, an automated scoring system is impartial.

Automated scoring allows individual features of a language sample (spoken or written) to be analyzed independently so that weakness in one area of language does not affect the scoring of other areas. Human raters often exhibit “transfer of judgment” from one area of language to another. For example, test takers who speak smoothly may be marked as proficient even though their grammar is very poor.

Automated scoring, on the other hand, assesses the different language skills objectively.

 PTE Integrated skills

 As language skills do not occur in isolation, Pearson Test of English Academic uses a variety of integrated skills item types to reveal how well a test taker can use the English language for oral and written communication. Integrated skills items are important for assessing English language proficiency because, in an academic environment, students are often required to combine several language skills to perform a task, for example listening to or reading information and then responding orally.


PTE Academic features 20 different item types, each assessing one language skill or a combination of language skills.



Basic Comparison between IELTS and PTE Academic


Moving to the next question

The test taker has the convenience of progressing to the next question by using the ‘next’ tab which further asks for a confirmation “Yes or No”. Only on confirmation, the screen moves to the next question.

 Speaking Skill

IELTS PTE Academic
•   Introduction

•   Cue Card

•   Cross questioning

•   Read Aloud

•   Repeat Sentence

•   Describe Image

•   Retell Lecture

•   Answer Short Questions


Comment: In PTE Academic the Speaking section is done with the computer which helps in the test takers confidence. Besides, the variety of questions in this skill gives him an opportunity to enhance his score. Since the scoring is automated, it is completely objective.


Writing Skill


IELTS PTE Academic
•   Graph writing – 150 words

•   Essay writing – 250 words

•   Summarize Written Text – 5-75 words

•   Essay writing – 200-300 words – with word count



Comment: In PTE Academic the Writing module is taken by the student on the computer itself. This helps the test taker in presenting the content in a neat and effective manner.

 Editing the paragraphs and sentences is made convenient due to the ‘cut’, copy and the ‘paste’ tab

The word count helps the test taker in aligning his essay  and keeping within the word count limit

 Reading Skill 

IELTS PTE Academic
Length of Passage: 900-1200 words


Types of Questions:

•   Multiple Choice Questions

•   Fill ups

•   Headings

•   True/False/Not Given

Length of Passage: 50-150 words


Types of Questions:

•   Multiple Choice Single Answer

•   Multiple Choice Multiple Answers

•   Reorder Paragraphs

   Reading: Fill in the blanks

•   Reading & Writing: Fill in the blanks


Comment: In PTE Academic each Reading passage has only 1 question associated with which makes it convenient for the test taker to approach each question.


Listening Skill


IELTS PTE Academic
Track length – 7-8 minutes

Attempt while listening


Types of questions:

•   Multiple Choice Questions

•   Fill ups

•   Maps

Track length – 45-60 seconds

Attempt after listening


Types of Questions:

•   Summarize spoken text

•   Multiple Choice Multiple Answers

Fill in the blanks

Highlight correct summary

•   Multiple Choice Single Answer

•   Select missing word

•   Highlight incorrect words

•   Writing from Dictation


Comment – The major difference is that in PTE Academic the test taker needs to answer the questions after listening to the track or answer while the transcript can be seen on the screen

Below are the test score equivalence :


English Language Tests for Student Visas
Test Test Score Band
IELTS 4.0 4.5 5.0 5.5 6.0 6.5 7.0 7.5 8.0 8.5 9.0
TOEFL iBT 31 32 35 46 60 79 94 102 110 115 118
PTE Academic 29 30 36 42 50 58 65 73 79 83 86
Cambridge English: Advanced (CAE) 32 36 41 47 52 58 67 74 80 87 93
OET Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass Pass
TOEFL PBT 433 450 500 527 550 n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a n/a



5 reasons why PTE Academic test is more popular than IELTS for Australia Visa

PTE Academic writing how to write a good summary

 Please click for PTE Academic writing samples

PTE Books-Buy these books for PTE Academic exam preparation

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