Different English Proficiency Tests Types For International Students

Dreaming of studying abroad? Then you might already know that you need to take up an English language test as a part of your admission requirements. It is also a mandatory requirement while applying for your student visa.

English language proficiency tests are designed to help students (whose first language is not English) have a chance of studying in the US, the UK, Australia, Canada, and other countries where English is the first language.

Apart from these reasons, an English language test also helps you understand, read and write the language better. It also prepares you in applying both written and spoken English seamlessly once you migrate to your dream study destination.

Students who wish to study abroad should take up an English language test as a mandatory requirement to get their applications accepted in universities. Some universities also require students to have a minimum test score, depending on the course requirements.

If you are interested in traveling abroad for studies or if you’re simply looking for resources to help you understand English language proficiency tests, this is the right place to check out the related details.

English Language Proficiency Test Types

There are 4-major English Language Tests prescribed and recognised by most educational institutions worldwide, such as IELTS, TOEFL, OET, and PTE.

Some of these are standardised tests and test your English knowledge, and some are field or career-specific, which test your understanding of technical terms and jargon.


If you want to study in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the US, or the UK, IELTS is a great choice. IELTS tests can be used to apply for all fields of study across universities. The IELTS test can be taken right after schooling or after completing your bachelor’s degree, depending upon your requirements.

  • IELTS is recognised globally by immigration bodies and institutions to process student applications.
  • The tests are graded on a scale of 0-9; the higher the score, the better your command over the language. Some universities, immigration bodies, and organisations have a minimum IELTS score for eligibility.
  • IELTS English language proficiency tests is developed in such a way that it delivers an accurate and fair assessment of your knowledge.
  • IELTS tests evaluate your proficiency in 4 major sections: Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking.


TOEFL tests are designed to help students understand and communicate effectively and efficiently in a university setting or environment. TOEFL tests are usually 4 hours long and have an optional 10 minutes break in between. TOEFL tests are predominantly designed for students who wish to study abroad.

  • TOEFL English language proficiency tests are graded on a scale of 0 – 120
  • The test comprises 4 parts: Listening, Speaking, Writing, and Reading.
  • The tests are graded by mentors online and anonymously, making it an unbiased and fair grading system.
  • This is the only English language test that combines AI technology with real-life graders.
  • Your test scores are valid for 2 years from the date of results, the test pattern also allows you to retake the test an unlimited number of times, but it can be attempted only once in 3 days.


Occupational English Test or OET is prescribed for aspiring doctors and healthcare professionals to ensure efficient communication with patients and internal requirements. This English language proficiency test comprises real-life tasks and scenarios that evaluate international students’ communication and comprehension skills.

  • OET has been developed for 12 healthcare professions like Dentistry, Medicine, Physiotherapy, Optometry, Veterinary Science, and a few others.
  • OET tests can be done at an offline centre or online at a designated test venue. They are both of equal value, weightage, and pattern.
  • OET tests your listening, reading, writing, and speaking skills.
  • It is trusted and recognised by universities and hospitals in the UK, the US, Australia, Dubai, New Zealand, and Ireland.
  • The OET test is graded on a scale of 0 to 500 and A to E (a higher score represents a better understanding of the language).


Pearson PTE is recognised by all universities and other institutions in the UK, Australia, and New Zealand for all immigration and visa requirements. They offer a quick and fair assessment of skills with AI-based technology.

  • PTE test evaluates your listening, reading, writing, and speaking proficiency in the English language.
  • Tests can be taken up at any time. You can schedule your test 24 hours prior, 365 days. The results are typically available within 48 hours from the time of completion.
  • PTE is the first-ever completely AI-based English language test recognised by universities.
  • PTE tests are conducted globally at specified centres.

Looking for some help with your English language proficiency tests preparation? Check out our free resources on IELTS, TOEFL, PTE & OET or just fill the enquiry form on this page to connect with our expert counselors for guidance on your study abroad journey today!

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