Want To Study Abroad? These 5 Exams Are A Must Know!
In recent years, the number of Indian students going abroad to pursue higher education has increased significantly. Many give credit to the changing mindset of parents and easy availability of low-interest student loans, for this transition. Having said this, there is no denying the fact that studying abroad is a tedious process but the first step is always clearing the required examination and becoming eligible for the admissions. In this blog post, we take a closer look at five important exams that have international recognition and are taken by students who aspire to study abroad.
Graduate Management Admission Test or GMAT
Management schools across the world consider GMAT scores for accepting international students. The test assesses the applicant’s problem-solving abilities along with their critical and logical reasoning skills. With the GMAT test score, you can apply for more than 6000 business and management courses in more than 2,100 institutions and universities across 114 countries. Having said this, the test scores are valid for up to 5 years, though it may depend on an institution’s own validity criteria.
In India, there are about 29 test centers and the fee for taking the test is approximately Rs. 16,500 (variable to the changing USD to INR exchange rate). Additionally, you can take the test up to 5 times in a year; however, two subsequent test attempts must be 16 days apart.
After taking the exam, candidates can view their Official Score Report online by using their date of birth as authentication. Both GRE and GMAT test scores can be used for taking admission in management schools. Also, you can even convert their GRE score to GMAT online through ETS, if required.
Graduate Record Examination or GRE
Students applying to graduate and business schools for pursuing a Master’s Degree, MBA, post-graduation, doctoral degree or specialised Master’s degree in business may take the GRE test. Universities, especially in North America (the USA and Canada), require international applicants to take the GRE. The test scores can also be considered as an admission formality or a selection criterion for jobs.
Similar to the GMAT test, you can attempt the GRE revised General Test in more than 1000 test centers across 160 countries. Also, the computer-delivered test is available on a continuous basis throughout the year in most regions of the world. Therefore, there are no specific exam dates for taking the GRE test.
In India, the fee for taking the GRE revised General Test comes to Rs. 12000 (variable to USD and INR exchange rate), while the test score is valid for 5 years after the testing year. There is one specific eligibility requirement for the test – you need to have a valid passport first.
There has to be a 21-day gap between two successive GRE revised General Test attempts, up to five times within a year. On the other hand, you can take the paper-delivered GRE revised General Test as often as it is offered.
Scholastic Assessment Test or SAT
The SAT or Scholastic Assessment Test is generally taken by students who seek admission into undergraduate courses. The test attempts to assess the applicant’s knowledge of reading, mathematics, and writing, while its scores are accepted in US and Canada. Every year, more than 2 million students from 175 countries attempt the SAT exam.
In India alone, over 13000 students take the test every year. The fee for taking this exam is approximately Rs 3500 while the test scores are valid up to 5 years. Unlike GRE or GMAT, the SAT is conducted only a few times a year, usually in the months of October to December.
You need to score a minimum SAT score of 2100 to 2400 to be able to get admission into a college or admission of your choice. You can even attempt the exam as many times as you wish; however, some universities consider your scores in all the attempts while deciding on giving you admission.
International English Language Testing System or IELTS
IELTS or International English Language Testing System is used to assess your language capability for countries where English is the preferred language of communication. In countries like the UK, Canada, Australia and New Zealand, IELTS test scores are recognized by their governments while considering immigration applications. In fact, IELTS test scores are now one of only two exam scores that are recognised as Secure English Language Tests (SELTs) in the UK.
IELTS test scores are considered by more than 9000 educational and professional bodies, along with employers and immigration authorities. In addition, applicants can attempt the test in any one of the 1000 test locations across 140 countries.
In India, the British Council offers the test in 42 locations, at an exam fee of approximately Rs. 11,000. Having said this, the test scores hold validity of up to 2 years. You can expect your IELTS test scores to be available online within 13 calendar days after taking your test.
Test of English as a Foreign Language or TOEFL
If you are a non-native speaker who is looking to take admission into a foreign university, you would have to take the TOEFL or Test of English as a Foreign Language. The TOEFL tests your English Language abilities, while its scores are considered by several immigration departments to issue residential and work visas to applicants. Similarly, more than 9000 colleges in 130 countries, including the top 100 colleges in the U.S. accept TOEFL test scores.
Till date, more than 27 million people worldwide have taken the TOEFL. In India, the fee for taking the test is Rs. 11,500 while the validity of the test scores is 2 years.
In India, studying abroad is an exciting opportunity for many young students. To achieve that goal, it is important to get good scores in internationally-recognised exams like GRE, GMAT and IELTS. Along with getting good scores, applicants must also take steps to fund their education and accommodation in the foreign country. To help, there are a number of foreign education loans in India with low interest.