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Is PTE easier than IELTS?

Which is relatively easier to score points?

  • IELTS

    Votes: 5 16.7%
  • PTE

    Votes: 20 66.7%
  • TOEFL

    Votes: 1 3.3%
  • CAE

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • OET

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • All are similar

    Votes: 1 3.3%
  • I have no idea

    Votes: 3 10.0%

  • Total voters
    30

MysticRiver

Administrator
Staff member
Messages
15,037
Points
113
There are differences in opinions about the relative difficulties between IELTS, PTE and other tests. Some people suggests PTE is easier to score, some other says they are all the same.

I think it is a good topic for debate, also would help people who are trying to score some points against their English proficiency level.

I also have created a poll, feel free to cast your vote. The poll is open only for the members, but any non-member is welcome to join the discussion.

Below is the comparison table of different standards, for your reference.

Points in Skill MigrationIELTSTOEFL iBTPTECAEOET
20 points8 in each sectionL-28, R-29, W-30, S-2679 in each section200 in each sectionA' in each section
10 points7 in each sectionL-24, R-24, W-27, S-2365 in each section185 in each sectionB' in each section
0 points (but eligible to apply)6 in each sectionL-12, R-13, W-21, S-1850 in each section169 in each section-
Minimum for 18+ dependents to avoid 2nd installment of paymentAverage band score of 4.5Total band score of 32Overall band score of 30 Overall band score of 147 -
 

Nadeesh

Commoner
Messages
56
Points
8
MSA
2015-10-27
Skill
261311
SC
190/189
Point
65/60
EOI
2016-12-04
I've done IELTS 4 times and PTE once. In the first attempt of IELTS, I was able to score 7+ for each section. Still I tried few times hoping to get 8+ for each section. But was not successful so far. So, I thought of trying PTE and I did. But was able to score 80 + for writing only. All other sections were below 60.

In my opinion, to be successful in PTE, candidates have to have some other skills in addition to English. One such a skill is the speed. Candidate needs to be very quick throughout the entire exam because PTE is entirely based on the ability to respond quickly. If you are not very quick, you will find very difficult to score high, specially in Speaking and Listening sections.

Another skill is the concentration ability. Normally PTE takes place in a crowded room where, there are several candidates take the test at the same time. When you are taking the speaking section, there's a high chance that another candidate takes the same section, thus overlapping the voices of each other. Also this badly affects for other sections as well. Most probably you will be disturbed by the voices of others when you're taking reading and writing sections, so that you will find it very difficult to concentrate.

So, in my opinion, the results of PTE, largely depends on the luck you have on the day of the test. Even though you have prepared well, still you can receive a low score if the test environment was not favorable on the day of the test.

But in IELTS, you have to only focus on improving your English knowledge. If you had prepared well, your results will not depend on the luck you have on the day of the test. No one is there to disturb you, because the test environment is completely calm and quiet. Even though you need to be quick when answering questions in reading, writing and listening, speed will not be a very critical factor such as in PTE.

So my advice to those who are going to take PTE just because someone has mentioned it is easier than IELTS, do not believe it. Instead, if you are really quick and if you can concentrate on a noisy environment, then go for it. Most probably you will be successful.
 

maandeswal

Collaborator
Entitled Member
Messages
258
Points
28
Skill
232414
SC
186 ENS
Point
70/75
Well, I have different experience with PTE. I prepared for IELTS for a month and then appeared in exam and I was quite confident for my required scores 6.5 overall and 6 in each. But unfortunately, I failed in one section which was my best part during training. I scored R7, L7, S6.5 & W5.5 and could fulfill the requirements for student visa.

Then agent suggested me to go for PTE and I again prepared only 3days for PTE which was not enough to gain good score, but I was confident that I will score at least required numbers and got S67, W66, L68 & R65.

Well, that was not end of my misfortunes and later my visa got refused due to some lack of awareness that my university had some issues with governing authority ( UGC ), and for the same reason case officer rejected my visa.

So, I must insist for PTE, if I would have prepared more and understand the format of the test then its easy to score 79+ for person who can score 7+ in IELTS.

You need to understand the format of the test and management of time in PTE , rest you could prepare for test while radio is on behind you to learn focusing in high noise.
 

JanithaR

Collaborator
Entitled Member
Messages
551
Points
43
MSA
2018-02-22
Skill
261313
SC
189/190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-04-21
@Nadeesh nailed it on the head with his explanation. As someone who took both IELTS and PTE I can guarantee with utmost certainty that PTE is not a true English exam. I hated it. The only reason I took PTE is was because I made a hasty decision in the hopes of getting a high score within a couple of days and boy was I wrong.

Before I took PTE my IELTS score was 7, 8, 8.5 and 9. All my scores on PTE were below 75 except for writing. The results were shocking to me and I couldn't even explain how. Then after only I got to know, during parts where I have to verbally answer, the background noise factors in so badly! It's such total BS!

The reason why people excel in PTE is if they know how to trick the system and that is by no means true English knowledge and to be honest I don't really know why DHA allow it. Coping with a noisy environment, being quick in responding within seconds or keep talking until the timer runs out has nothing to do with having good English, it's just all there to make the software misinterpret that you are good, nothing else. E2Language is quite popular in teaching the tricks if anyone is interested in taking PTE.
 

maandeswal

Collaborator
Entitled Member
Messages
258
Points
28
Skill
232414
SC
186 ENS
Point
70/75
@Nadeesh nailed it on the head with his explanation. As someone who took both IELTS and PTE I can guarantee with utmost certainty that PTE is not a true English exam. I hated it. The only reason I took PTE is was because I made a hasty decision in the hopes of getting a high score within a couple of days and boy was I wrong.

Before I took PTE my IELTS score was 7, 8, 8.5 and 9. All my scores on PTE were below 75 except for writing. The results were shocking to me and I couldn't even explain how. Then after only I got to know, during parts where I have to verbally answer, the background noise factors in so badly! It's such total BS!

The reason why people excel in PTE is if they know how to trick the system and that is by no means true English knowledge and to be honest I don't really know why DHA allow it. Coping with a noisy environment, being quick in responding within seconds or keep talking until the timer runs out has nothing to do with having good English, it's just all there to make the software misinterpret that you are good, nothing else. E2Language is quite popular in teaching the tricks if anyone is interested in taking PTE.
That's true, PTE is more about tricking the system, if you knows test format and good at time managing then you can easily score 79+. However there can be little distraction around you on test center, so always choose small test center and practice while radio is on behind you.
 

smartbuddy

Wanderer
Messages
37
Points
8
MSA
2018-11-19
Skill
261112
SC
189 / 190
Point
70 / 75
EOI
2018-11-29
PTE is lot more easier provided you know the tricks how software evaluates you. I could score only 7 each in IELTS, but with right tips and tricks, I was able to score 90 each (9 band) in PTE.
I agree PTE is not really a test of English but its all about mastering and understanding how the software scores you, can you help me some more tricks...

PTE is not available in my country of residence so it costs me much more in Intl tickets, hotel stay etc than for the exam, should I go for IELTS instead as atleast its available where I stay?

Attached are my Attempt 1 and Attempt 2 scores, notice how my enabling scores are much higher in Attempt 2, but still my communicative and overall score is lower than Attempt 1, I am seriously fedup and unable to understand how its working.

Attempt 1 & 2.jpg
 

JanithaR

Collaborator
Entitled Member
Messages
551
Points
43
MSA
2018-02-22
Skill
261313
SC
189/190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-04-21
If I may say, computerized IELTS is the future. PTE got it wrong how they score from day one. When I did it, it felt nothing like IELTS. I didn't even feel like I was given a fair chance by PTE to show my language skills. It's all about tricking the software and nothing else. I had my wife try out the new computerized IELTS just last weekend. According to her, it's quite similar to PTE but with the main difference of how people are actually assessed. Speaking remains the same and the rest is just done on a computer, NO format change at all. No papers in the future. And I believe the results will be released in 5 business days just like PTE as well.
 

yerkan41

Regular
Messages
177
Points
28
MSA
2017-05-24
Skill
233311
SC
190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-08-30
Inv.
2018-10-15
App.
2018-10-31
CO
2018-12-14
PCC
2018-10-17
HC
2018-12-21
Grant
2019-01-22
IED
2019-10-17
I got S90, R90 from PTE in my first try whereas S6.5, R7 from IELTS GT. I honestly don't believe that my speaking and reading skills are so perfect as it is in the result. Though just by understanding the techniques of PTE, you can ace the top score, especially for reading and speaking.

Writing was the main reason that I chose PTE. In IELTS there's the killer 6.5 pts issue for thousands of people. In my first try I got 82 in PTE. And in listening, I don't know what went wrong there that I got 77. I tried IELTS twice, and PTE only for once.

And of course, the sulky, stressful, army style of exam and 2 huge weeks of waiting of IELTS is another trouble. I got my exam result in 1 (ONE!!) day in PTE.
 
MSA
2017-05-24
Skill
233311
SC
190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-08-30
Inv.
2018-10-15
App.
2018-10-31
CO
2018-12-14
PCC
2018-10-17
HC
2018-12-21
Grant
2019-01-22
IED
2019-10-17

yerkan41

Regular
Messages
177
Points
28
MSA
2017-05-24
Skill
233311
SC
190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-08-30
Inv.
2018-10-15
App.
2018-10-31
CO
2018-12-14
PCC
2018-10-17
HC
2018-12-21
Grant
2019-01-22
IED
2019-10-17
If I may say, computerized IELTS is the future. PTE got it wrong how they score from day one. When I did it, it felt nothing like IELTS. I didn't even feel like I was given a fair chance by PTE to show my language skills. It's all about tricking the software and nothing else. I had my wife try out the new computerized IELTS just last weekend. According to her, it's quite similar to PTE but with the main difference of how people are actually assessed. Speaking remains the same and the rest is just done on a computer, NO format change at all. No papers in the future. And I believe the results will be released in 5 business days just like PTE as well.
Speaking to a person is also not an objective way of assessment according to my experience. In my first IELTS, I spoke fluently, with lots of examples and a variety of vocabulary. The American chick gave me 6.5. OK, let's say it's just my impression that I spoke well. So, in the second attempt, I could speak only about 30 seconds in part 2, where you are expected to speak 2 minutes. The old British fella asked me to continue. I said I cannot. And for part 3 and 4 I gave short answers, cos I thought I already failed again. And, guess what; I got 7 from this British man! How come?! It was the day that I decided not to take IELTS never again.
 
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Reactions: xtremeeran
MSA
2017-05-24
Skill
233311
SC
190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-08-30
Inv.
2018-10-15
App.
2018-10-31
CO
2018-12-14
PCC
2018-10-17
HC
2018-12-21
Grant
2019-01-22
IED
2019-10-17

jaspal29

Wanderer
Messages
45
Points
8
Timeline missing
I agree PTE is not really a test of English but its all about mastering and understanding how the software scores you, can you help me some more tricks...

PTE is not available in my country of residence so it costs me much more in Intl tickets, hotel stay etc than for the exam, should I go for IELTS instead as atleast its available where I stay?

Attached are my Attempt 1 and Attempt 2 scores, notice how my enabling scores are much higher in Attempt 2, but still my communicative and overall score is lower than Attempt 1, I am seriously fedup and unable to understand how its working.

View attachment 2676
@smartbuddy Sir, I know what people miss out in listening and writing and problem behind this is that most of online material available does not address how software evaluates. If you want to know this, you can drop out a mail to me at <no personal information allowed>, probably we can sync-up at some convenient time. As per me, you can easily score 79+ in all modules if you grab a few smart ticks. Also, as a piece of advice, enabling skills do not decide your main score (many people think so, but this is not the case.). All you need to do is to know some smart trips to fool the software.
 
Last edited by a moderator:

smartbuddy

Wanderer
Messages
37
Points
8
MSA
2018-11-19
Skill
261112
SC
189 / 190
Point
70 / 75
EOI
2018-11-29
@smartbuddy Sir, I know what people miss out in listening and writing and problem behind this is that most of online material available does not address how software evaluates. If you want to know this, you can drop out a mail to me at [email protected], probably we can sync-up at some convenient time. As per me, you can easily score 79+ in all modules if you grab a few smart ticks. Also, as a piece of advice, enabling skills do not decide your main score (many people think so, but this is not the case.). All you need to do is to know some smart trips to fool the software.
Email sent Sir. Thanks for ur offer to share ur experience and tricks, waiting for your reply.
 

JanithaR

Collaborator
Entitled Member
Messages
551
Points
43
MSA
2018-02-22
Skill
261313
SC
189/190
Point
65/70
EOI
2018-04-21
Speaking to a person is also not an objective way of assessment according to my experience. In my first IELTS, I spoke fluently, with lots of examples and a variety of vocabulary. The American chick gave me 6.5. OK, let's say it's just my impression that I spoke well. So, in the second attempt, I could speak only about 30 seconds in part 2, where you are expected to speak 2 minutes. The old British fella asked me to continue. I said I cannot. And for part 3 and 4 I gave short answers, cos I thought I already failed again. And, guess what; I got 7 from this British man! How come?! It was the day that I decided not to take IELTS never again.
The outcome of both tests are subjective to the examiner, I'm not denying that. But I'd rather be assessed by a human being rather than a computer. Because at the end it's with humans that I'm gonna speak English, not a computer. So where does that leave me if I simply used trickery to convince a computer software that I have excellent command of the language in a real with scenario? Would you be able to confidently sit with business partners in a corporate meeting and take control of the room through your speech?
 

sky1988

Collaborator
Entitled Member
Messages
485
Points
28
MSA
2018-09-20
Skill
233512
SC
189
Point
80
EOI
2019-02-25
Inv.
2019-03-11
App.
2019-03-23
PCC
2019-04-15
HC
2019-04-08
Grant
2020-03-03
IED
2021-03-02
Hello guys...
There has been a lot of discussion here on IELTS and PTE-A. Some like IELTS whereas others suggest PTE-A. I believe both are different test formats and some also feel that PTE-A is not a real test of English. I feel that if DHA has allowed PTE-A, it means that they must have gone through the PTE-A format before permitting it for the Australian immigration program. However, I believe that to get 65+ in PTE-A may be easy but to get 79+ in all, is a real challenge. PTE-A has its own sets of challenges which the test taker need to get familiarised with. For example, the background noise, speed, fluency, time management etc. Moreover, all the sections in PTE-A are interconnected. When I answered IELTS 6 months ago, I scored L8.5 R7 W7 S7.5 which was my second attempt. However, in my first attempt, I had answered the speaking section very well but the British examiner gave me 6.5 in speaking. But, in my 2nd IELTS attempt, I didn't do well in speaking section. I even stopped before time but the examiner told me to continue and I scored 7.5 in the speaking. That was surprising to me. Also, in IELTS speaking, you are scored by 3 different examiners for various aspects of language so your score may be the average of 3 different scores. I thought of giving PTE-A as I heard a lot about this exam and felt that I would be able to score an IELTS 8 equivalent in all. But, when I took the official mock test offered by Pearson, my scores were horribly low. Well, I investigated a bit to understand and found that you need to understand the PTE-A format, as there are so many different question types. Also, IELTS general is not academic or less academic whereas PTE-A requires the use of formal academic vocabulary. I took 2 months to completely familiarise with the PTE-A format and then practised rigorously for a month. I also referred many YouTube channels. However, I would like to suggest that those who are planning to take PTE-A, be aware of the free material available online as not all can give you a good practice. So be selective and have a thorough study of the test format and the scoring criteria. Go through the Pearson official website and read everything they have given, it can help you understand the exam format. The best way would be to compare the pros and cons of both these exams and then decide which suits you the best. I loved PTE-A only for the reason that it is easy to book and the results are out in less than a day. However, I had to adjust for various other unfavourable test factors of this exam but a good practice and knowledge of the exam can help you cope up with these issues. Also, my test centre was quite small with a sitting capacity of only 6 candidates and during my 2nd PTE-A attempt there were only 3 candidates including me on the day of the test. Finally, I would say each person will have to consider their own conveniences and suitability before taking any of these tests rather than just following what others say.
 
Last edited:
MSA
2018-09-20
Skill
233512
SC
189
Point
80
EOI
2019-02-25
Inv.
2019-03-11
App.
2019-03-23
PCC
2019-04-15
HC
2019-04-08
Grant
2020-03-03
IED
2021-03-02

CampDavid

Regular
Messages
245
Points
28
MSA
2018-12-13
Skill
225311
SC
190 (ACT)
Point
65+5
EOI
2019-01-07
Inv.
2019-05-22
App.
2019-06-04
PCC
2019-06-06
HC
2019-06-24
Grant
2019-10-30
IED
2020-06-24
Just to share my experience with regards to IELTS and PTE-A test.

I did the IELTS about five years ago, if you are more comfortable speaking to people instead of working off a computer, this is a plus for IELTS. Time management is also easier with IELTS because it is more structured. BUT having said that, as a native English speaker, I got 8 in everything except speaking. That is because the question that was asked (though i can't remember what it was about, was ridiculous. It was something about being in a jacket and feeling hot next to a fire place. what would i do. Something like that). So i think i gave some ridiculous dialogue which dragged my score down to a 7. I spent about a month prepping for this, and found the test environment less stressful as compared to the PTE. Th minus in the IELTS format is that there are very few templates/cheats to follow.

The plus with PTE, the study material from E2 and from the pearson website is EXCELLENT. heaps of formats on E2 which helped with the test. I purchased the three trial test on Pearson as study material....went through all the E2 youtube free videos as study prep. Granted, i crammed all my studies in just one full day and three evenings, it was overwhelming. The first test, the speaking portion, i got a mere 30!!! So i concentrated on improving there. In the second test which I did the day before the actual test, I scored a mere 38. Still not what i needed. And from online comments, it is said that the second test scoring is easier than the actual test. I went into full on panic mode, and mugged and mugged the full day.

I got myself so stressed, that I gave up doing the last test i had paid for. Decided to just give myself the evening off and do the test the next day. It is what it is. Did the test, and thankfully all the E2 tips came in handy for time management. This forum and another was helpful with tips on where to place the mic, and what I should spend more time on. Walked out of the test, fully ready to book a new timeslot. I knew i was not going to do well. But PTE clearly states that you can only book a timeslot after you receive your results.

Good thing I waited. Achieved the score i needed! 79+ for all categories, and a 90 for speaking! So in my longwinded way, what I am saying is, if you are able to manage your time well, and you are comfortable with structured learning....PTE might be the better alternative between the two. Just my honest and humble opinion. I hope that helps
 
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Reactions: samjag2000
MSA
2018-12-13
Skill
225311
SC
190 (ACT)
Point
65+5
EOI
2019-01-07
Inv.
2019-05-22
App.
2019-06-04
PCC
2019-06-06
HC
2019-06-24
Grant
2019-10-30
IED
2020-06-24
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