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Difference Between Ielts & Toefl

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Difference between IELTS & TOEFL

IELTS & TOEFL are English language prophecy test required by many Nation while entering to pursue higher studies or job. Even though both are aimed to check English fluency, each of them has a different approach, timings, and origin.

Any non-native English speaker from any Country has to go through either IELTS or TOEFL for easy entry of those Nation where English is an official language or one of official languages such as the UK, US, and Australia. So we need to fix some standard for the same as a benchmark based on scores. As a consequence, only IELTS (International English Language Test System) and TOEFL Test of English as a Foreign Language evolved.

Although both tests are accepted by various reputed universities globally, they have some basic difference in question pattern, test duration, and their objectives. Based on the purpose and Nation a student or a job seeker chooses to move, he has to decide the apt test among these two. Both tests mark a standard set by an exam body.

Now Let’s see the differences between IELTS and TOEFL

What is IELTS?

The IELTS is an English language test used for educational, immigration and occupational purposes, and is accepted by over 9,000 institutions across 130 countries globally. This is the test is conducted by the British Council, University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations and IDP Education Australia. IELTS is based on British English and obviously, it is preferred by UK, New Zealand, and Australia.

What is TOEFL?

The TOEFL test aims to test one’s ability to communicate in English particularly in academic, classroom-based settings. It is also accepted by over 8,500 institutions in 130 countries, worldwide including the UK, USA, and Australia, as well as all of the world’s top 100 universities. TOEFL has conducted US organization “The Education Testing Service”, and conducted in American English. So TOEFL is more likely to be favored by American educational Institutions.

Differences between IELTS & TOEFL



TOEFL: Almost American English accents.

IELTS: Variety of international English accents.

Test Duration

TOEFL: 4 hours

IELTS: 2.45 Hours


TOEFL: 60–100 minutes (May vary not a fixed one).

Here you have to read 4-6 academic English passages and answer objective questions thereof. Questions test comprehension of the text, main objectives, crucial details, vocabulary, guessing, rhetorical devices, and style.

IELTS: 60 minutes in which candidate has to go through three passages that start easy and get tough. Questions are taken from academic textbooks, newspapers or magazines. There are about 15 different types of questions which IELTS may choose to use. These comprise short answers, objective questions, matching, True or False type questions, completing a summary, locate the information etc.


TOEFL : Duration: 40-60 minutes Campus conversations & Lectures Take notes 40-60 mins multiple choice The Listening Section presents 2 or 3 longer conversations and 4-6 lectures. The situations are always around things that happen in university life such as a conversation between a teacher and student. All questions are multiple choices and you will be asked you about important details, inferences, tone, and vocabulary.

IELTS : Duration: Around 30 minutes(Approx) The IELTS encompasses four listening sections. The first is a “transactional conversation” in which someone may be applying for something (eg: a driver’s license, a library card) or asking for an information. The second section is an informational lecture of some kind. The third section is a conversation in an academic context and the final section would be an academic lecture. Questions might be of below types: complete a summary, fill in a table, multiple-choice, and label a diagram or picture, segregate information into different categories. Answers are first written into a test booklet and then transferred onto an answer sheet later.


TOEFL : Duration: 20 minutes. (Approx) You need to sit at a computer, with headphones and a microphone. 6 different university-type questions would be asked and recorded. Your test would be assessed by an examiner on another day, after the test. Two questions will be on familiar topics and ask you to give your opinion and /or describe something familiar to you (eg: your town or your favorite teacher). Two questions would be to summarize information from a text and a conversation – you might be asked your opinion as well. Two questions will request you to summarize information from a short conversation.

IELTS : Duration: 12-15 minutes. The test is recorded. The speaking module may be held on the same or different day from the rest of the test. It is conducted by a trained, live examiner and consists of 3 Parts. Part 1 is a brief introductory conversation followed by some short questions about familiar topics (eg: the interviewer may ask about your hometown, your job, your favorite food, your hobbies, etc). In Part 2, you will be given a card with a topic and a specific question to answer. You will have to speak for 1-2 minutes on this topic. In Part 3, the interviewer will ask you questions related to the question asked in Part 2.


TOEFL : Duration: 50 minutes. Two questions & answers are typed into a computer. The first question is an ‘Integrated task’ which involves reading a small content (Approx 300 words length) and listening to a 2-minute lecture about the same topic (the listening may support or contradict the reading). Candidate must take notes as you listen. After listening candidate must write a 150 – 225-word answer to a question about what he/she has read and listened to. Candidate will be given 30 minutes to plan, write and edit your essay. The second question is about writing an essay of 300-350 words. The essay must state, explain and support your thinking on a particular issue.

IELTS : Duration: 1 hour Two tasks. Answers are handwritten. For Task 1, the candidate will need to describe information with minimum 150 words and with the support of a graph, table or diagram. For Task 2, you will need to write an argument (Eg: Lack of attention on children by parent increase suicide rates) or discussion (eg: what is life) on a topic. Candidate needs to write 250 words and IELTS suggests spending 40 minutes on the answer.

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