Difference Between IELTS and TOEFL (With Table)

To study abroad in any international institutes, or for the purpose of immigration or even occupational purposes, speakers with a different native language must undergo screening to test their knowledge of the English language. IELTS and TOEFL are two such international English examinations.

IELTS vs TOEFL

The difference between IELTS and TOEFL is that they are conducted by two different examination councils and hence have different criteria of examination, method of examination and also are differently approved in various countries. IELTS is more widely approved than the TOEFL examination.

IELTS is the abbreviation of the International English Language Test System, which is an internationally accepted examination for the understanding and knowledge of the language English as a speaker, reader and writer. For education, immigration and occupation, people take this test.

TOEFL is the abbreviation of Test of English as a Foreign Language, which is also an internationally accepted examination for the understanding and knowledge of the language English as a speaker, reader and writer. It is taken mainly for education pursued abroad.

Comparison Table Between IELTS and TOEFL

Parameters of ComparisonIELTSTOEFL
Full-FormInternational English Language Test System is the full-form of IELTS.Test of English as a Foreign Language is the full-form of TOEFL.
Examination forIELTS is usually taken for educational, occupational as well as immigration purposes.TOEFL is taken for mostly educational purposes.
Accepted InIELTS is approved in 140 countries around the world.TOEFL is approved in 130 countries around the world.
Conducted ByIELTS is conducted jointly by British Council and IDP Cambridge Education.TOEFL is conducted by the US-based American Council.
Type of English ApprovedBoth UK and US English is approved.Only US English is approved.

What is IELTS?

International English Language Test System or the IELTS is an internationally conducted examination for the assessment of the knowledge of the language English as a speaker, reader and writer. This test result is approved internationally in most educational institutions, occupational areas as well as in offices for settlement purposes as a measure for knowing the language English fluently.

A person versed with any other language from any country can appear in this examination. The advantage of appearing for the IELTS is that the examination is approved as a measure for English knowledge in 140 countries around the world. It is also accepted in over 10,000 educational institutions around the world.

The examination is conducted jointly by the British Council and IDP, Cambridge Assessment. This is the reason why the examination approved the knowledge of both UK and US languages, and both the spelling can be used in the written examination. There are two types of papers in this examination, one is the Academic paper, and the other is the General paper.

The examination itself is short and is handwritten. It is scored out of 9 and also has face to face speaking tests with an examiner. Different types of questions of various lengths.

What is TOEFL?

Test of English as a Foreign Language or TOEFL is also an internationally conducted examination for the assessment of the knowledge of the language English as a speaker, reader and writer. This test result is approved internationally in most educational institutions as an assessment of the knowledge of English. It’s is mostly judged in educational institutions for scholars or students pursuing education abroad in countries where English is regarded as one of the main languages.

A person versed with any other languages from any country can appear for this examination as well. The advantage of appearing for the TOEFL is that the examination is approved as a measure for English knowledge in 130 countries around the world. It is also accepted in over 8,500 educational institutions around the world.

The examination is conducted by a US-based council that tests the knowledge of only American or US English and does not approve any UK spellings. There is only one type of paper that is meant only for admission to educational institutions abroad. Usually, this examination is longer than the IELTS.

The examination usually takes place as multiple choice question answers that are solved on a computer rather than a written examination. The test is recorded from a total of 120, and the speaking test is recorded in a microphone, and no face to face test is conducted. It also has a reading test that is similar to the IELTS.

Main Differences Between IELTS and TOEFL

  1. IELTS is approved as a measure of the knowledge of English as a language in more educational institutions than TOEFL.
  2. The examination time of the IELTS is 2 hours 40 minutes, while the TOEFL examination is conducted for a time of 4 hours.
  3. IELTS is a written examination, while TOEFL is solved on a computer.
  4. IELTS has various types of questions like short answers, fill in blanks, multiple choices and even short essays, while the TOEFL examination consists of only multiple-choice questions.
  5. IELTS is taken for all purposes, while TOEFL is taken for mostly educational purposes.
  6. IELTS approves the knowledge of both the US and UK versions of English spellings and pronunciation, while TOEFL approves only the American version.

Conclusion

Both IELTS and TOEFL is taken by individuals wanting to move out of their native Holland to study or settle in a foreign land. The choice of examination, however, depends on the purpose of moving abroad. In the case of educational purposes, only TOEFL is preferred, while for all other immigration and occupational purposes, IELTS is preferred.

IELTS is also more widely accepted and hence also largely taken by individuals. TOEFL, however, is focused on students and is deemed to be easier than IELTS. Before appearing for any of the two examinations, one must determine their purpose of taking the English examination and choose accordingly.

References

  1. https://www.britishcouncil.or.th/sites/default/files/ielts-brochure-online.pdf
  2. https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/026553229601300304
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