Journey to Australia : Cracking PTE

A test to prove your English proficiency is the only Exam you have to pass to get an Australian permanent resident visa. You have a choice to take PTE or IELTS. In case of PTE, you need a minimum score of 50 for all categories to be eligible to apply for visa. However, this wouldn't help you reach your 65 points as 0 points are awarded for a score of 50 - 65. 65 - 79 gets you 10 points, and 79+ gets you 20 points. If it's IELTS, you need minimum of 6.0. Above 7.0 fetches you 10 points and above 8.0 gets you 20 points. Note : You need to get the score mentioned for ALL the categories i.e., Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Details on the points distribution can be seen here -English Language Test and Points Table

Source : https://www.economist.com
Now why did I take PTE? I never wanted to give a test per se, but unfortunately I had to be the primary applicant as Anitha was an Electronics Engineer doing Software Engineer and things won't be easy if she applies. But then why not IELTS? Because I've been hearing IELTS everywhere, and it was kinda a scary exam for me. I had no idea what it is, but somehow there was a frightening picture painted in my mind. Probably because it has popped up in huge fancy banners as seen in this picture - >

So how did I go about the preparation? As we engineers do in this generation - Google. I collected all the information I could, plus the free sample tests online. Here is a short list of useful information I've collected - Note : This is as per the test format in Jan 2017, things might've changed recently
    • Official guides - Test Tips and use the Offline practice test available in the official site
Just get used the format mentioned in the above materials and you should be good. As for my personal experience, the Bangalore PTE  centre wasn't a very appealing place. The cubicles are very close spaced and your neighbours chatter can distract you very easily. While starting the exam - the first section being Listening was very overwhelming, I even had a timeout on one of the answers. I wasn't very confident after the exam, and was preparing to give a shot at the exam again.

BUT - a couple of days later I got the result, and TA-DA! I had scored an overall of 85+! I strongly recommend the materials shared above, as those were the only information I had about the test and I was very much successful. This high score added up 20 points in my application which helped the process as well. Because of this I got the EOI within a week(usually takes 2-3 months)!

Good luck if you are giving a shot at this. Be calm, and be confident!

Read all the posts related to my Journey to Australia -
  1. The Beginning
  2. Road to get a Visa
  3. Cracking PTE
  4. Visa granted, now what?
  5. Job Hunt Part -1 
  6. Time to Fly!
  7. Arrival
  8. Job Hunt Part - 2