Study Abroad Exams 2024: Ace Your Way to Overseas Education
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Unlock Your Dream: Top Study Abroad Exams to Conquer in 2024

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Top Study Abroad Exams in the World 2024

Get ready to put your brain to the ultimate test! We’re diving into the realm of the toughest exams in the world for 2024. These exams are not for the faint of heart or the weak of mind. They have been designed to challenge even the most brilliant individuals out there. So, sharpen your pencils, buckle up, and let’s explore the top study abroad exams that will make you question your life choices! In the pursuit of higher education abroad, acing standardized exams is paramount. This comprehensive guide unveils the intricacies of the top study abroad exams to study abroad, delving into IELTS, TOEFL, GRE, and more. Let’s unravel the keys to success in these critical assessments.


IELTS, or the International English Language Testing System, is a language proficiency exam widely recognized by academic institutions worldwide. It assesses your ability to communicate effectively in English, covering listening, reading, writing, and speaking. To conquer IELTS, familiarize yourself with its format, practice consistently, and consider enrolling in preparatory courses.

There are two modules of IELTS:

  • IELTS Academic Module: It is focused on higher education levels abroad. You need to clear an IELTS Academic when applying for foreign universities, research positions, or other work related to academics.
  • IELTS General Training Module: the General Module concerns social skills and workplace practices. You need to clear a General test while applying for work, or immigration purposes.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
2 YearsINR 16,250(approx)2 Hours 45 Minutes5.5-6.0

It is to be noted every educational institution has its minimum score eligibility criterion for this test. Students need to score at least above 6 to be eligible to pursue a degree in top universities. Check the IELTS score requirements for your referred institution beforehand.


The Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is another gatekeeper to international education. It gauges your English proficiency for academic settings. Unraveling the TOEFL landscape involves mastering its structure and excelling in the speaking section. It is conducted to measure the English language knowledge and proficiency of non-native English speakers. Colleges and universities from Australia, the United Kingdom, Canada, the United States, and many other countries seek TOEFL scores to enroll with them. There are two methods of attempting this exam- the Paper-Based Test and the Internet-Based Test; however, the internet-based test is comparatively more popular than the paper-based test.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
2 YearsINR 16,900 (approx.)3 Hours90-100

There is no passing score for TOEFL. However, a minimum score of 90-100 is preferred by most universities. This test is accepted as much as IELTS in Australia and the United Kingdom, whereas American education institutions tend to favor TOEFL over the IELTS test.

Tips And Strategies For TOEFL Preparation


Let us do a comparative study to understand the tests more.

Format Academic and General TrainingIBT and PBT
Time 2 Hours 45 Minutes3 Hours (Approx.)
Sections Listening, Reading, Writing, and SpeakingListening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking
Scoring Band 1-9Score 0-120
Tasks Multiple choice, Sentence Completion, Short answer, Essay, and SpeakingMultiple choice, Sentence Completion, Short answer, Essay, and Speaking
Acceptability Over 11,500 organizations worldwideOver 130 countries

The duration, minimum score, and frequency of the test vary according to your test type, and other requirements.


PTE, or the Pearson Test of English is very different from the preceding two due to some distinguishing aspects. Firstly, the scoring patterns of this test are very different owing to the complete dependency on computerized technologies. Secondly, the results of this test also come quicker than similar tests. Generally, the declaration of the results comes within five days of the test.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
2 YearsINR 15,900(approx.)2 hours 15 minutes51-60

PTE majorly focuses on the daily use of the English language, rather than the university level. PTE is conducted around the year. The availability of the test date depends upon your test center and test type.

Read More: 5 Emerging Study Abroad Destinations Every Indian Student Must Know


Duolingo is one of the latest language proficiency tests used by international students. Accepted by over 4,500 institutions across the world, the test assesses your ability to use English in real-world situations.

Consisting of four modules; Reading, Writing, Listening, and Speaking, the test is available in both online, and offline modes. it is more popular in the USA and Canada.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
2 YearsINR 4852(Approx)45 minutes10

Duolingo is recommended when you need to take a test urgently and need to get the results faster. Once you take the Duolingo test, you can get your results within 2 days.  .

Standardized Entrance Exams to Study Abroad

Although the language proficiency tests are the first requirement for your study-abroad plan, you also need to clear an entrance test required for your course. The entrance exam you need to clear, to join an undergraduate program is SAT, MCAT, and ACT.

In order to join a postgraduate program, you need to crack an LSAT, GRE, or GMAT. Problem-solving, critical thinking, and writing skills of the aspirants, along with the knowledge about principles and concepts of science directly related to the study of a specific niche, are evaluated in these examinations.

SAT and ACT: Key for Undergraduate Studies

For undergraduate admissions, the Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) and American College Testing (ACT) are vital. Distinguishing between SAT and ACT and mastering their respective math sections is crucial.

SAT vs ACT: Choosing the Right Fit

Selecting between SAT and ACT requires understanding their differences. SAT leans towards reasoning skills, while ACT emphasizes content mastery. Choose based on your strengths and preferences.

Mastering SAT and ACT Math

In both SAT and ACT, the math sections are pivotal. Focus on algebra, geometry, and data analysis. Regular practice, timed simulations, and understanding problem-solving strategies are instrumental for math success.

It is one of the exams to study abroad that students need to take after the 12th to enroll in undergraduate courses in Canada, and the United States of America. The SAT score is also accepted as a valid criterion for admission to a few universities in the United Kingdom as well. However, it is highly suggested that the applicants should conduct thorough research about the criteria of selection of the desired universities and courses before opting for the SAT exam to study abroad.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
5 YearsINR 9,062(approx.)3 Hours400

Apart from the general SAT, there are subject-specific SATs. The cost for an SAT Subject Test is INR 9062 (Approx). However, nowadays, most universities do not refer to a subject-specific test.


ACT, or the American College Testing is a standardized test to secure admission to the universities of the United States of America for various undergraduate courses. It is also accepted by several colleges outside the USA.

The ACT tends to evaluate the level of academic readiness of international, as well as native students, for specific undergraduate courses. This test evaluates the written, mathematical, verbal, and scientific skills of aspiring students.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
5 Years₹16,703 (approx)2 Hours 55 Minutes16-17

Although there is no passing score in the ACT, the majority of the colleges accept a score above 16.


The Graduate Record Examination (GRE) is a linchpin for graduate school admissions, assessing analytical writing, verbal reasoning, and quantitative reasoning. Demystifying GRE involves understanding its structure and formulating a winning study plan.

GRE Exam Structure

The GRE comprises Analytical Writing, Verbal Reasoning, and Quantitative Reasoning sections. Familiarize yourself with question types, allocate study time proportionally, and focus on strengthening weak areas. A strategic approach is the cornerstone of GRE success.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
5 YearsINR 22,550 (approx)3 Hours 45 Minutes130

Apart from the general GRE, there are also GRE Subjects. The cost of GRE Subjects in India is INR 14,500. However, this is not required in most universities. 

Read More: The Complete Guide to the GRE Exam

GMAT: Gateway to Business Schools

For aspiring business professionals, the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) is a gateway to top-tier business schools. Understanding its quantitative and verbal sections is essential for success.

GMAT Quantitative and Verbal Sections

The GMAT assesses your quantitative and verbal abilities. Strengthen your understanding of algebra, geometry, and data interpretation for the quantitative section. In verbal, focus on critical reasoning, sentence correction, and reading comprehension. This test holds immense significance as an admission eligibility test for top business schools and management colleges globally.

GMAT evaluates your problem-solving, critical, logical, reasoning, and analytical skills, and is a mandatory admission test for over 21,000 universities and colleges in over 114 countries.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
5 YearsINR 24,600 (approx)3 Hours 7 Minutes200

Aspirants need to score over 570 to secure admission to top international universities. However, a few schools accept a minimum score of 700 as well.

Read More: Preparing for the GRE/GMAT Strategies for Success in Abroad Study


MCAT, or the Medical College Admission Test is taken to get admission in the Medical Courses, in the United States of America, Canada, and 18 other countries. The Association of American Medical Colleges designs this test with multiple-choice examination patterns. The core purpose of this test is to assess the individuals’ knowledge related to science and medicine.

The structure of the test is given below:

ValidityCost DurationMinimum Score
3 YearsINR 30,750 (approx)7 Hours 30 Minutes118

The MCAT is valid in the US and most medical institutes in Canada, whereas in the UK it is substituted by UCAT or University Clinical Aptitude Test.

Get assistance to study abroad from our international education experts at Gateway International and get free consultancy for study abroad  who can help guide you throughout your study abroad journey & avail our wide range of services for students on destinations like study in UKstudy in USAstudy in Canada,  study in Irelandstudy in Australia study in the Netherlands and many other countries.


Q1. Is it necessary to take preparatory courses for these exams?

Preparatory courses can significantly enhance your understanding of exam formats and provide targeted practice, increasing your chances of success.

Q2. Can I take multiple exams for studying abroad?

Yes, many institutions accept multiple exam scores. Research the requirements of your desired universities to make informed decisions.