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PTEA to Replace TOEFL and IELTS?

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.


  1. Jason Renshaw on October 1, 2009 at 8:18 PM

    Good post, and interesting developments with the PTEA.

    I agree that it will take a very long time for PTEA to remotely challenge TOEFL and IELTS, but then again – Pearson is a seriously big and powerful company that is pretty good at getting its own way in a lot of things…

    IELTS has risen in status a lot over the past decade or so as well, with (in addition to Aus and UK) many hundreds of universities in the US accepting IELTS scores alongside TOEFL ones. I think a number of Australian universities also accept TOEFL as well as IELTS.

    Definitely TOEFL and IELTS are the two tests people should be aiming to pass with good scores.

    All the best,

    ~ Jason

  2. easwaran on September 22, 2009 at 5:32 PM


    this is the link to PTE A website



  3. Nicole on September 22, 2009 at 8:08 AM

    The IELTS test is becoming much more widely accepted in the US, and is accepted by all Ivy League schools and, like the PTE, you can take it in general or academic formats.

    Be careful with the PTE – according to their website, only certain programs/schools within a larger college accept the scores.

  4. easwaran on September 18, 2009 at 8:02 PM


    from 2011 admission in to MIT-Massachusetts Institute of Technology

    77 Massachusetts Avenue

    Cambridge, MA 02139-4307

    will be accepting only PTEA instead of TOEFL

    i am sure many universities will follow

    this i found in MIT WEB
    thank you for informing earlier

    with gratitude


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