IELTS vs TOEFL: Which Is Easier?

Study abroad for a brighter future

English language proficiency Tests like the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) are necessary for studying abroad and immigration in English-speaking countries.

Universities solely utilize the TOEFL Exam for international education, but the IELTS can be used for immigration and academic purposes.

An American organization conducts TOEFL, whereas IELTS is jointly held by the Cambridge Assessment English, British Council, and IDP: IELTS Australia.

They are designed to assess candidates’ command of the English language. Over 10000 institutions and universities around the world accept either test’s results.

Find out which is easier and more convenient: IELTS vs TOEFL from the below mentioned.

Exam Pattern: IELTS vs TOEFL

Exam Pattern
There are significant between IELTS vs TOEFL exams

The test patterns for TOEFL and IELTS are quite similar because they are both awarded marks based on listening, reading, writing, and speaking. However, the marks for each criterion and the test duration are different. 

Let’s go through how it is different.

Length of test4 hours2 hours 45 minutes
Listening test60-90 minutes30 minutes
Reading test60-80 minutes60 minutes
Writing test50 minutes60 minutes
Speaking test20 minutes11-14  minutes
Scoring scale0-1200-9

2. Length Of The Two Test: IELTS vs TOEFL

Length Of The Two Test
Know the exam duration for IELTS vs TOEFL

TOEFL takes about 4 hours, whereas IELTS takes 2 hours and 45 minutes. Some of the sections in TOEFL have a longer duration compared to IELTS. 

So the duration of the entire TOEFL test varies from person to person depending on the time it takes one to answer questions. 

But in general, the TOEFL test duration is longer compared to IELTS.

If you prefer short-duration tests, then IELTS is the right choice. However, keep in mind that a short duration is not equal to easy questions.

But in general, the TOEFL test duration is longer compared to IELTS.

If you prefer short-duration tests, then IELTS is the right choice. However, keep in mind that a short duration is not equal to easy questions.

Writing Section: IELTS vs TOEFL 

Writing Section
In TOEFL, you can use the laptop for typing your essay

In writing sections in IELTS, there are two questions that you must answer. 

In the first question, you will have to explain the data presented in the shape of a diagram, table chart, or other visual aid. 

Write the answer in an academic or semi-formal style, and make sure to include the most significant and relevant points. 

You don’t have to cover every detail as you can overlook minor details. You will get 20 minutes to complete this task.

In the second question of your IELTS exam, you will have to write 200-250 words about an argument, backing it with examples and evidence in clear, correct and concise language. 

Justify your opinion by discussing the argument, proposing possible solutions, and supporting your position. 

If you take the TOEFL exam, you are asked to read a short text of about 230–300 words on an academic topic for the first question. 

After three minutes, the reading passage disappears from the screen, and applicants are asked to listen to a lecture that discusses the passage from different points of view. 

After that, You must write a five-paragraph essay in 300-350 words. 

For the second question, there will be typical essay questions beginning with statements wherein you must write answers in around 150-225 words on whether you agree with a statement or not by giving reasons.

Speaking Section : IELTS vs TOEFL

Speaking Section
You can have a normal conversation with a person in IELTS

The most significant distinction between IELTS and TOEFL is the speaking section. 

In IELTS, you will have a conversation with a real person, whereas in TOEFL, You will speak with a machine through the microphone, and your recorded voice is sent to judges for marking.

For some people who find it strange to answer the machine, you can apply for IELTS. For those applicants who are not confident talking with real people, TOEFL is the right choice for you.

The TOEFL test consists of six questions and lasts approximately 20 minutes. The applicant will be asked two questions about topics such as your hometown or family. 

You will also be asked to summarize and express your opinion on facts from a text or conversation.

In IELTS, the speaking sections are divided into three sections and last around 15 minutes. This test is conducted with a person, and it feels like a discussion. 

The first section focuses on things familiar to you, such as your house, career, or academics. 

The applicant will be given a topic and allowed one minute to create a monologue that will last between one and two minutes. 

Remember that, in IELTS, you can ask to repeat the question and clarify it. However, you cannot do this in the TOEFL because you must answer the machine.

Reading Section: IELTS vs TOEFL

Reading Section
Whether in IELTS or in TOEFL, read the passage well to answer correctly

The IELTS exam uses academic texts and passages from newspapers and magazines. The TOEFL only uses academic texts, and it is denser with more challenging vocabulary and concepts to understand.

The TOEFL exam will give you 3-5 reading questions to answer in 20 minutes. 

The IELTS exam will have three questions in the reading sections, and applicants will be asked to answer questions in various styles, such as gap fillings and short responses.

In the TOEFL iBT, applicants are told which paragraph has the information needed for each question item’s correct response so that they can focus more on that paragraph.

The IELTS reading texts have a higher average readability score, indicating less difficulty than TOEFL.

Listening Section: IELTS vs TOEFL

Listening Exam
Listen to the conversation played and answer the questions at last

The Listening skill test of both the exams is very different. Students can answer the questions in the IELTS test while listening to the recording. 

Whereas the TOEFL test will be based on classroom lectures and applicants take notes while listening to the audio. 

The IELTS listening test also includes visuals, maps and diagrams, and gaps to fill out with up to three words. 

The IELTS test is not only about academic and university student life, but it is also about everyday skills you will need in life. For example, hiring a car, complaining about a broken product, or scheduling an appointment.

TOEFL’s listening tests are quite simple and easy. The audio is lectures and individuals discussing regular campus issues, but not much about matters outside of the university. 

Additionally, there are no charts, maps, or spelling errors. So most people find it easier. Students have to solve MCQs in a given duration of 40-60 minutes in the TOEFL listening component.

2. Where Are The Scores Accepted? IELTS vs TOEFL

Where Are The Scores Accepted
A high standard university like Oxford requires higher scores on IELTS vs TOEFL

The most important factor to consider when deciding IELTS vs TOEFL is which test’s result your dream institution accepts.

Although most institutes across the world accept the results of both exams, some prefer one over the other, and just a few others accept only one. 

TOEFL scores appear to be preferred by most American universities and colleges. Some universities in the United Kingdom, Australia, and European countries recognize IELTS scores.

Make your IELTS vs TOEFL choices based on your preferences for the university or institution you want to attend. 

Consider your location, as well as your skills and weaknesses, while deciding which exam is right for them. If you wish to attend a university in the United States, go for TOEFL.

Which Is A Good Score?

Which Is A Good Score
Know the cutoff score of the university you are applying

most institutions accept a score of 80 or more. 

The best institutes and universities have a higher standard and accept scores in the range of 90-100  

Additionally, most universities take sectional marks into account, so aim for a score of at least 20 in each section.

In IELTS, the cutoff standards for the top-ranked institutes are an overall band score of 6.5-7.5 and a sectional band score of 6. However, some institutes do not have a sectional cutoff. 

Most other universities demand a minimum band score of around 5-5.5.

Multiple-Choice vs. Short Answer

In TOEFL, you will get multiple choice questions

Are you still confused between IELTS vs TOEFL? IELTS requires you to create your answers to many of the questions in the Reading and Listening portions, but TOEFL provides you with all answer options. 

Although not all of the TOEFL questions in these sections are multiple-choice, most of them are, and you won’t have to come up with your answers for those that aren’t. 

Both tests have questions that require you to build a properly ordered list of events or actions. 

The procedures are already laid out for you on the TOEFL exam; all you have to do now is arrange them in the correct order. 

You must compose the steps on your own and order them properly for the IELTS exam. You may feel more at ease with the TOEFL exam if you enjoy multiple-choice questions. 

Computer-Based vs. Paper-Based

Computer-Based vs. Paper-Based
IELTS is paper-based questions and answers

TOEFL is done on the computer, whereas IELTS is mainly done on paper. You can take notes on scratch paper in TOEFL, but official answers are submitted on the computer. 

In IELTS, you will be offered either a computer or pencil and paper to write the answer.

If you are good at typing and have messy writing, go for TOEFL. TOEFL is based on computer assessment. 

However, If you prefer to write your answers down and are nervous about computer-based tests, the IELTS may be a better fit.

Essay Lengths: IELTS vs TOEFL

Essay Lengths
IELTS has more advantages when writing essay length answer

For the Writing component of both tests, you must write two essays. On the other hand, IELTS provides you 60 minutes to write a recommended 400 words, while TOEFL only gives you 50 minutes to produce a recommended 500 words. 

You can submit your essays for both exams even if they don’t reach the word counts, but you will likely lose marks for failing to provide a full response. 

If you are not good at writing, the IELTS writing section may be easier because fewer words are required, and you are getting 10 minutes more than TOEFL.

Steps To Prepare IELTS and TOEFL

Prepare for TOEFL/IELTS
Following the right strategy will help to fulfill your dream to study abroad

Though there are a lot of differences between IELTS vs TOEFL, the strategy to prepare for both tests are quite similar.

Step 1: Set Your Target Score

Note that the TOEFL and IELTS are standardized examinations that assess your ability to read, write, and speak English. The English language is crucial if you are studying in English-speaking countries.

Every university has its cutoff scores on TOEFL and IELTS. Depending on the university the applicant chooses to enroll in, you must set the target.

If you do exceptionally well in the test, some universities will offer special benefits or opportunities for students.

Many factors influence a good TOEFL or IELTS result. If you want to apply to top-ranked universities and receive student privileges, you should aim for the highest possible score. 

Average scores may suffice if you’re seeking mid to low-ranking universities or if your chosen major doesn’t place a premium on great English abilities.

Step 2: Collect All Necessary Study Materials

Thorough preparation makes a big difference in your score, and to make that happen, you need to have the right resources. 

You can avail study materials from google or Chundu Training Institute in Bhutan.

If you wish to self-study, you will need additional interactive learning tools because IELTS and TOEFL mostly focus on a person’s ability to speak fluently. 

Highly recommended CTI provides a reasonable, effective, and engaging online course that includes practice tests and video lessons.

Step 3: Create A Study Schedule

Preparing for IELTS and TOEFL can be overwhelming because there are many study materials. 

Nevertheless, having a study plan allows you to break down all of your studying time into smaller portions and organize it into a timetable that you can stick to.

There is no simple study strategy to prepare yourself for TOEFL and IELTS. Know your strengths and weaknesses, prioritize weak points and spend more time on them.

It’s recommended to divide your time between studying each skill, taking the practice test, and reviewing the answers.

Make a to-do list or a note in your calendar for each month or week. Make a detailed list of the subjects you wish to study and the time allotted for each.

Step 4: Fully Understand The Format Of The Exam

After establishing a solid foundation in each of the four reading comprehension skills, academic vocabulary, and standard grammar, the next stage is to become comfortable with the test structure.

Your TOEFL and IELTS study will be much easier and more productive once you understand the exam content, the question and task kinds in each segment, along with the norms, and regulations.

The best method to understand the format is by taking the practice test regularly. Keep in mind that, while both assess the four language abilities, TOEFL focuses on academic issues, whereas IELTS has a more real-world aspect.

Expect multiple choice questions in TOEFL, whereas in IELTS, expect more short essays and gap-filling tasks.

Step 5: Enroll In A Course Or Hire A Professional

The more practice tests you take, the better you will be able to pinpoint your weak places. In this instance, having a tutor by your side will help you make faster and more effective progress.

Enroll in CTI in Bhutan and get help from a professional tutor. Having teachers who are both English specialists and knowledgeable with the test form is preferable.

If you do self-study, it is difficult to determine your progress. It is just you who will be studying like you are applying for normal exams. Even if you make an unobserved mistake, no one will be there to correct you. 

By hiring a professional tutor or teacher, you will have someone to help you find gaps in your learning process, pinpoint your deficiencies, and provide you with the necessary direction to improve each skill and handle each area of the test.

By now, you must know which one is easier for you from IELTS vs TOEFL. You must take into consideration your strengths and weaknesses while choosing the test. If the applicant is very good at typing and loves multiple-choice questions rather than writing short answers, go for TOEFL.

However, if the applicant feels more comfortable conversing with a real person and prefers to write answers on paper, choose the IELTS exam.

Before applying to any tests, prepare well with the right study material and professional lectures from CTI. 

To know more about the service provided by the Chhundu Training Institute, click here!


No responses yet

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *