PTE Academic (Pearson Test of English Academic) is an innovative and engaging way to demonstrate your English language proficiency to international institutions.
TOEFL is a mandatory requirement for international students applying at U.S. universities. PTEA is a new exam that will be offered starting on October 2009 to gain some share in the standardized English proficiency testing market.
But before students can take the test, PTEA must first be accepted by universities. At present, about 50+ universities in the US are already accepting PTEA exams for graduate school admission, whereas TOEFL is accepted by almost all the American colleges and universities.
So it will take a huge effort for Pearson to market this exam to universities and then get them to accept the test.
PTE Academic vs TOEFL
When an international student starts planning about applying at universities in America, by default, GRE and TOEFL exams come to mind. For Australian, Canadian, and UK universities, IETLS comes to mind.
There are small groups of students applying at US universities who use IELTS. Instead, these groups of students should be planning to apply for admission in UK or Australia.
Also, majority of students will be taking TOEFL if they plan to study in America. It will take a lot of time and effort (many years) to make students take (and universities to accept) PTEA.
The IELTS exam is already well-known among all international students, but majority of those students applying for colleges in the US from India go for TOEFL. So, PETA has to hurdle tough challenges at least in India.