Skip to main content

2020 PTE and IELTS Concordance Report: summary and FAQs

Read Time

3 minutes

An update on the Report

We know that some of you have been worried about aspects of our Concordance Report, published below. We didn’t intend to confuse anyone so we hope that this message helps explain.   

The report is about how PTE scores align with IELTS scores. Nothing has changed with the PTE exam itself, how it is scored, or the scores that you need to achieve for your Australian, New Zealand, and UK visas, or for university admissions. 

Your PTE test result is still valid and will not change. A candidate who scored 79 will continue to score a 79; their level of English Proficiency will remain the same.

We’d like to explain a little about the purpose of the Concordance Report – it is to enable governments, universities, and professional bodies to see how we have updated our score ranges against IELTS bands.

It does not require them to make any changes or to take any action regarding your PTE test scores. For the majority of universities, where the test scores are typically set in the mid-range for academic admissions purposes, there is minimal change to the scores.

If universities, professional bodies, such as Nursing, or the Australian, New Zealand, or UK governments decide to review their PTE Academic score requirements and make changes, we expect this would happen over a period of months and years and that notice would be given if the score requirements change so that everyone is aware and can prepare.

We hope this has clarified the purpose of our report. If you have the time, we do have more information and FAQs available below.

We would also be pleased to hear from you if you have any further questions. Contact us


The Concordance Report: a summary – Dec 1, 2020

Today we have published the latest concordance report from the PTE Academic Standards and Measurement team. 

Like other language test providers, the PTE team undertakes periodic reviews of its score concordance with other tests. 

This enables us to re-evaluate, validate, and update our concordance as appropriate, to ensure we maintain the highest levels of accuracy when scoring test takers. 

The concordance research only compares PTE Academic and IELTS Academic tests. The alignment of PTE Academic to TOEFL and the industry-standard used to describe language proficiency, the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR), has not changed.  

The original concordance table between PTE Academic and IELTS Academic test scores was based on a linking study conducted in 2009 (published 2011). Following the recent research study, using data collected over several years, the concordance table has been updated. 

The research involved collecting score data from candidates who each undertook PTE Academic and IELTS Academic tests within a short time period. Test takers were generally representative of PTE Academic test takers in terms of gender, age, primary language, and country of citizenship. 

PTE Academic remains the most accurate and reliable test of academic English. There have been no changes to the construct and scoring of PTE Academic. 

What has changed 

In the mid-range, where the test is typically used for academic admissions purposes, the updated concordant scores have been minimally adjusted. 

At IELTS 7.5 and above, the concordant PTE Academic scores, while in the same range, are at some points higher on the scale. 

At IELTS 6.5 and below the concordant PTE Academic scores, while in the same range, are at some points lower on the scale

If you are a test taker and require more information, please contact our support team via the Help Center page.

If you are an institution and require more information, please contact us here.

Read the full research