An Overview of Exams You Might Take To Study Abroad

An Overview of Exams You Might Take To Study Abroad

International education might be your best ticket to chase your dreams. But to secure your spot, you must make adequate preparations and take various tests.

Think of tests as a way to assess your fitness to study overseas. They often examine your academic knowledge or your command of a language. These tests also define the benchmarks of global education that you must meet to qualify. 

Depending on your chosen study destination, university, and program, required tests vary. You may have to take different kinds of tests or take one instead of the other. 

If you find all these test requirements confusing, we’ll break them down for you. Here’s a rough overview of exams you might need to take to study abroad:

English Language Proficiency Tests

It’s common for study destinations, even non-English speaking ones, to require an English test. These exams are designed to test your command of the English language.¬†

Different exams have different marking or scoring schemes. Again, depending on your study destination, university, and program, minimum score requirements vary.

International English Language Testing System or IELTS

The IELTS is one of the most popular English proficiency tests to take. Study destinations like Canada, Australia, and the United States require this exam.

Over 9,000 organizations in the world recognize IELTS. Apart from this global recognition, there are plenty more reasons to take the IELTS test. 

Test of English as a Foreign Language or TOEFL

Many universities require the TOEFL for non-English speaking students. TOEFL scores are valid for two years so you must take the exam again after this period.

In some universities, you can take either the IELTS or TOEFL. Make sure to identify the minimum score requirements for each test as they may vary.

Aptitude Tests

If you’re studying in the US or Germany, you need to take an aptitude test. The most common standardized tests are the ACT and SAT in the US and the TestAs in Germany.


The Scholastic Aptitude Test or SAT is used to assess the core competencies of a candidate. Most universities and colleges in the US require this for every applicant.

ACT is similar to SAT, so you can opt to take one instead of the other. Whatever you choose, you must know you can improve your ACT or SAT score to secure admission.


Universities in Germany use the TestAs to gauge a candidate’s academic abilities. This aptitude exam takes place four times a year in various parts of the world.¬†

Admission Tests for Business Programs

If you want to take a master’s degree in any business program such as an MBA, you must take a prerequisite test. You have two choices: the Graduate Management Admission Test or GMAT or the Graduate Record Exam or GRE.

The GMAT and GRE have different structures and scoring schemes. There are various reasons why you must take the GMAT instead of the GRE. But the GRE can also be advantageous depending on your situation and program.

There are different types of exams you must take to satisfy the requirements of the study destination, your chosen university, or program. Find more test tips here at MSM Unify to make sure you ace these exams like a champ.


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