USA Admissions TOEFL- IELTS- PTE Tests

In this concluding article on English proficiency tests, we discuss another important aspect of the tests — score reporting.

TOEFL scores are made available approximately within 10 days after the test while IELTS results are released after 13 calendar days and PTE Academic scores in five business days. Test takers may view their scores online by logging into the official website. For IELTS, some test centres also provide SMS alerts. The scores for all three tests are valid for two years, and students may retake the test as many times they wish.

After receiving a score, it is the responsibility of the student to report their score to the institutions where they are submitting their applications. The test fee for TOEFL includes four free official score reports that are sent to institutions that you select before the test. For any additional institution, there is an additional fee of $20 (Rs 1,417) per institution for score reporting. To send scores to institutions, the easiest way is to order online. The scores will be mailed within 4 to 7 business days after the request is received.

IELTS also sends a copy of your test reports to up to five institutions free of charge if you list them on your online registration. Requests for score delivery to additional institutions must be submitted directly to the test administering body through which you registered for the IELTS test (British Council or IDP Education). The cost of sending additional report forms varies by mode of report. For electronic and registered airmail submission of report, the cost is Rs 250 per report. If a student wishes to send a courier, it its Rs 1,250 per university/college. Please take note that institutions choose to either receive the paper test report form or the electronic score, so please consult with your chosen institutions to know their preferred method before submitting your request for score delivery.

PTE Academic test takers can send their scores to as many institutions as they like without an additional fee.

A common question asked is which of the three English proficiency tests they should take for US university applications. The answer depends on what kinds of tests you are good at and where you plan to apply. We suggest you make sure to check the university website to find what tests they accept. Also, read all the information posted about the three tests, take the sample tests available, and make your own choice.

Q. I am applying for MS programmes in the US. I know that there is strong competition for financial support provided by American universities. How do I “win” this competition?

A. Start the application process and financial support search at the earliest. A financial aid or scholarship/assistantship application is typically submitted together with the rest of the documents, but the deadline for financial support can be earlier than the deadline for regular applications. In this case, it is necessary to prepare the whole dossier by an earlier deadline, which is usually in December-February, depending on the university.

While choosing a university, pay special attention to financial support opportunities offered to international students. Also, find out which offices/departments provide such support and request application forms from them. Funds can be managed by the Graduate School, a university department, or decisions can be made jointly. Use all the information sources available – university guides, catalogues, books, Internet resources, conference materials, information from your research advisor, and/or personal contacts with American professors. You may also do scholarship search at and You should study all the funding-related materials carefully since the financial support application process can be rather complicated and time-consuming. Send clarifying questions about the admission procedure and financial support to the admissions office/the department of your academic subject/financial aid office.

All documents must be filled out as fully and accurately. Important strengths of an application for both admission and financial support are: academic achievement and commitment and motivation in the intended field of study, very high English proficiency and standardised test (GRE or GMAT) scores, a remarkable and informative application essay, strong recommendations, leadership potential, personal qualities, and interests.

When you get an offer of financial support, evaluate the offer in general, including tuition and fees, scholarship size, funding period, and your responsibilities. If you get more than one offer, it is necessary to weigh up the advantages of each offer from each university and make the best decision. Your choice of university must never be based on the scholarship size, because it is not factor which determines the quality of educational programmes.

Q. How do I open a bank account after going to the US on F1 student visa? What documents are required? Do I need our local documents and identifications such as Aadhaar?

A: You may open a bank account in the US on an F1 student visa after entering the country. Look for a bank with branch near your residence or university campus. A checking account is the most useful bank account as it allows you to write checks.

The bank will need the following information from you to open the account: name and date of birth, street address, photograph, and passport number with country of issuance. Some banks may also ask for your mother’s maiden name. You will be required to present the following documents to open the bank account: Your passport, I-94 card, I-20 form, and proof of local mailing address (such as signed lease). The bank may also ask for some money to be deposited in your bank account, either in form of cash or check.