Comparison of English language exams

Cost245–430 $180–260 $130–300 $60+ $200–250 $130+ $
Duration225 min.270 min.70–235 min.140–180 min.170 min.230
Frequency48 per year>50 per year~ 1 per month~ 6 per year~ 1 per month~ 1 per month
Results13 days13 days2–9 weeks5–9 weeks5 days3–4 weeks
Validity2 years2 yearsUnlimitedUnlimitedUnlimited2 years
Locations140 states165 states130 states130 states50 states150 states
AdmissionYesYesYes(FCE, CAE, CPE)NoYesMBA(Several business schools accepts the results)
New Zealand
AustraliaAustralia(Экзамен CAE)NoAustralia
New Zealand
Job placementNoNoYes(FCE, CAE, CPE)YesYesYes
Min.–Max. scores0–90–120100–230120–21010–90● 10–990
● 0–400(Different scores for each part of test)
Type● Academic
● General Training
● Internet-based
● Paper-delivered
● Paper-based
● Computer-based
● Paper-based
● Computer-based
OrganizerBritish Council
IDP Education
CELA(All organizers are from the UK)
Established198019641913(Certificate of Proficiency in English was introduced by Cambridge University)199320091979

IELTS – International English Language Testing System

IELTS — is a worldwide-recognized international testing system designed to confirm the level of proficiency in English, it is widespread in the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. Applicants for 2 hours and 45 minutes must go through the appropriate modules: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing (Letter), which differ depending on what type of the test the candidate passes:
  • Academic — for candidates who plan to study in English-speaking schools, and
  • General Training — this test option is appropriate for all other cases.
The test can be taken in 140 countries in more than 500 certified centers. Test results are represented on a scale from 0 to 9 points and are valid for two years. IELTS results are recognized in more than 6,000 universities, government and professional organizations worldwide.

TOEFL - Test of English as a Foreign Language

TOEFL — a standardized test on the knowledge of the English language, which is widely used in the U.S. and Canada, it is designed for non-native English speakers. Test results are recognized in more than 6,000 institutions of higher education, as well as business structures, research centers in over 100 countries, making TOEFL the most widespread testing for confirmation of English language skills.
The maximum possible score is 120 points. It includes the sum of scores of sections where the reading skills (Reading) are tested, as well as listening comprehension (Listening), writing skills (Writing) and the ability to conduct a conversation in English (Speaking). The test formerly came in two versions: paper version (PBT — paper based test) and online version (iBT — internet based test). Today iBT version became the main one (98 percent of the test takers) and the new one TOEFL Paper-delivered Test, which remains only in countries where iBT is not available. TOEFL PBT scores will be valid until their expiration date (two years after exam).

GMAT - The Graduate Management Admission Test

GMAT — international exam in English, which allows to assess the mathematical and analytical abilities of the candidates for further study in business schools in the field of management, economics, business and finance.
GMAT results are valid for 5 years and are recognized in 1,500 schools around the world — that is almost all business schools and the majority of American universities. The test can be taken in certified centers worldwide. The cost of the exam is US $250. Details are on the official website.

GRE - Graduate Record Examinations

GRE — is a standardized test that is an admissions requirement for most master's, doctoral or other postgraduate courses in U.S. universities, as well as in Canada and Australia. GRE test results are taken by the admission departments of thousands of universities and business schools. Testing is conducted on a computer or on paper, for 3 hours and 45 minutes with the maximum possible score is 340 (170 on Math and 170 on English).
There are two types of exams:
  • General Test — in addition to the high school curriculum in Mathematics, it includes verification of knowledge of the English language, where great attention is paid to the student's vocabulary;
  • Specialized test (Subject) - conducted to assess the level of knowledge in a particular area of study: Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, Biology, Psychology, and the coverage of the material is comparable to the third or fourth year of university.