Why Should You Take IELTS and Not TOEFL for Study in Canada?

IELTS Vs TOEFL

Pursuing education in Canada might be your dream, but do you have what it takes to get an entry in Canada? You might have done your whole education with English as a first language, but do the Canadian universities accept it? No they don’t!

So what to do? You have to prove your English language efficiency by taking language exams that are internationally accepted. The two most commonly taken English language exams are IELTS and TOEFL. Which one of these should you take before applying to Canadian universities? Or do you have to take both?

We would like to advise you to go for the

IELTS exam. Let us take a look at the reasons why IELTS is better than TOEFL for study in Canada:

  IELTS TOEFL
Test Description IELTS stands for International English Language Testing System and is jointly British Council, University of Cambridge ESOL Examinations and IDP Education Australia. TOEFL is the abbreviation for Test of English as a Foreign Language and is administered by Education Testing Service (ETS), which is a US based organization.
Acceptability IELTS is accepted by 9000 institutions in 145 countries. TOEFL is accepted by 9000 institutions in 130 countries.
Types It is divided into two types:IELTS GeneralIELTS Academic One universal test called TOEFL iBT
Sections Like other language exams IELTS is divided into four sections: reading, writing, listening and speaking. TOEFL also contains the same four sections as IELTS.
Pattern Even though both tests have similar pattern they have significant section specific differences: Writing: While writing both US and UK spellings are accepted in the test. Writing: TOEFL being a test governed by a US organization; accepts only US spellings. Since we follow the British system in India, you should consider taking IELTS instead of TOEFL.
Listening: IELTS listening section is a bit tougher than the TOEFL one as it has audios with varying accents (Canadian, Australian, British, American, etc.) It might be tough but it prepares you well and helps you in communicating not only inCanada but in others parts of the world as well. Listening: TOEFL has audios only in the American accents, so if you are a fan of American television and films, you can get through this section pretty easily.
Speaking: IELTS speaking section is like an interview, where the examiner askes you questions and you have to answer it. You would also be asked to speak on a given topic for a few minutes and questions would be asked related to the answer that you give. Speaking: TOEFL speaking section requires you to speak into a mike. There is no examiner sitting right in front of you (making you nervous!). You also have to listen to audio clips and voice you opinions on the content of the clip.
Duration of exam 2 hours 45 minutes 4 hour
Scoring pattern Graded on 1-9 band scale of which 6/6.5 bands and above are accepted by institutions Graded out of a total of 120 points out of which 90 points and above is the eligibility criteria for most institutions
Cost of test INR 9300 $165 (approx. INR 11000)
Test centers 1000 test centers in 140 countries 4500 test centers in 165 countries
Test dates Offered 48 times a year Offered 50 times a year

Based on the above comparison you’ll notice that even though TOEFL is offered at more test centers, it is basically for the students who have inkling towards American English. Whereas, when you are going to Canada, IELTS is the better choice. Like many other countries, Canada, even though it is in the continent of America, follows British English. There are 98 universities in Canada of which almost 90 universities accept the IELTS score. Hence, taking the IELTS is a good choice.

People who wish to immigrate to Canada need to take either CELPIP: Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program or IELTS. Note that TOEFL is not accepted for immigration to Canada. So in case you plan for a future in Canada, you’ll need to take the IELTS.