If you are aiming to study abroad or want to have job experience in an English speaking country, then it is important for you to sit in either of the standardized exams to evaluate your level of English proficiency. The two major English language tests are IELTS (International English language test system) and TOEFL (Test of English as a fluency language) which are somewhat similar but not completely.
Both the tests will check your proficiency accurately based on their scoring scheme. The tests are accepted widely at different universities and institutions worldwide. They have slight differences in their writing, speaking, listening, and reading sections.
Read the following differences and similarities that will surely help you to choose your path and will clear your confusions as well.
What is IELTS?
IELTS is a paper-based test which tests the English proficiency of non-native English language speakers who are intended to take admissions for higher studies in foreign countries like Australia, America, New Zealand. IELTS is available in two modules: one is academic and the other one is general training. IELTS academic is especially for those who want admission at universities of higher education in an English speaking nation. IELTS general training is for those who want to work outside and for immigration purpose. The exam duration is 2 hours and 45 minutes.
What is TOEFL?
TOEFL is mainly an internet-based test which is required by most of US institutions and universities during the admission process to check the proficiency of non-native English speakers. Based on the scores, the universities decide whether the applicants can take the admission or not. TOEFL only offers you academic test to the students who want to enroll in the US institutions. The exam duration is 4 hours including 10 minutes break.
Both the tests contain 4 sections i.e reading, writing, speaking, and listening. In addition, the fee for both the exam cost $250.
Availability and University acceptance
Well, this is the major factor to look into.
TOEFL is available in 4,500 centers whereas IELTS is available in 900 centers worldwide. This is because TOEFL is the older test and has a wider acceptance in the US colleges. You need to ensure the requirements of your university and then decide that what to choose further.
Some Major Differences between IELTS and TOEFL
Coming to the major differences between both the tests, now these points will test your abilities. If you like the format of TOEFL then go for it and if your abilities match with the IELTS then it’ll be the right option for you.
Speaking: In this section of TOEFL, you’ll be dealing with a computer. The test lasts for 20 minutes and contains six questions. Topics would be general but the computer will give you the command and based on this you have to record your opinion. Well, some of you will find it strange to talk to a computer but it can be beneficial for those who have phobia of talking to strangers whereas in IELTS you will have a face to face interaction with a person where the interviewer will ask general questions.
Reading: The difference is between the questions and context. TOEFL only offers MCQs whereas IELTS offers you question in different patterns like MCQs, fill in the blanks, matching, true or false, and flowcharts. Many students have remarked TOEFL as the lengthy paper than IELTS.
Listening: In this section, the only difference between IELTS and TOEFL is the accent and length of the paper. TOEFL test is very long and this leads to losing the concentration amidst the exam. You will hear different kinds of accent in IELTS from English speaking countries such as Ireland, Scotland but in TOEFL there will always be an American accent.
Writing: In TOEFL, you will be typing everything on the keyboard. Here, you first have to read the text and then listen to the audio of the same text, after listening to it, you have to write your response. But in IELTS you have to write an essay or a paragraph on a particular topic.
After a series of differences and factors that are mentioned above will surely help you in deciding for which test you should take. So, select the one which you feel suitable and better for you.