GRE, toefl

It is the dream of most students to study abroad and to fulfill that dream, students have to take the English language test. 

Some of the most famous English language tests students can take to study in countries like New Zealand, Australia, the USA, the UK, Canada, and Germany are

  • IELTS 
  • PTE
  • Duolingo
  • GRE
  • CanTEST

NOTE: CELPIP and CanTEST both are only applicable in Canada.

In this blog, we will discuss two of the most taken tests GRE vs TOEFL. We will provide every important information about both exams so students can easily choose which exam is better for them.

But before discussing that you should also know about what is the need of English language test.

Need Of English Language Test

English language tests are necessary to take if you want to go migrate to an English-speaking nation. 

To start your application, you have to submit your score in English language tests. English language test scores ensure that you can easily settle yourself in the English environment and do not have any difficulty studying in English.

The minimum English language score requirement differs for different countries and institutes.

So this is the main reason why students are required to take the English language test. So that the students don’t face any difficulty while studying in an English environment. 

Now let’s move to the GRE vs TOEFL without wasting any more time. So you will know which test is good for you.

GRE Vs TOEFL: The Main Differences

Here, we will differentiate between GRE and TOEFL based on different criteria. Here you will understand which test you should choose and why to prove your English language proficiency. We will differentiate both the exam based on the following criteria:

  • Definition
  • Syllabus & Pattern
  • Type Of Questions
  • Result
  • Score Validity
  • Fees

NOTE: To prove their English language proficiency for tests like the GRE and GMAT, students must take the TOEFL exam.


Both exams are for testing the English language proficiency of students, but both exams are quite different. To understand that, we must understand the definition of both exams.

What is GRE?

The full form of the GRE is Graduate Record Examination. This exam is conducted by the ETS (Educational Testing Service). This standard exam measures a student’s general academic ability for graduate programs.

GRE is an exam for graduate students to be admitted to top business schools or institutes worldwide. 

This exam is beneficial for graduate students because this exam is for admission in programs like MBA or master’s in business-related programs. 

There are two types of the GRE:

  • GRE General test

The test takers’ reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical writing skills are tested. This helps the college authorities to understand the basic and required skills of the students to study abroad.

  • GRE Subject test

With this test, students’ knowledge in a particular area of study is tested by the authorities. This test is for those students who have a strong base of any subject that are listed below:

  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
  • Physics
  • Psychology

What Is TOEFL?

This test is also conducted by the ETS. This test is for measuring the English language proficiency of the students. 

There is no requirement for graduation to take this test. Students can take this test even after high school. 

This test is widely accepted worldwide and is very popular among students to prove their English language proficiency for college or university admission. 

This test is good for both graduates and high school pass-outs. 

TOEFL is of mainly three types:

  • TOEFL iBT (internet-based test)
  • TOEFL at home (Home-based TOEFL test)
  • TOEFL paper-delivered test 

Syllabus & Pattern

GRE vs TOEFL; both exams are conducted by the ETS. There is a huge difference between the syllabus and the pattern of both exams. Below we will discuss the syllabus and pattern for both exams one by one.


The syllabus and the pattern for the exam are set by the ETS itself. The syllabus and the pattern of this exam are set in a way that can test the student’s accurate skills to study for graduate programs.

GRE Exam Syllabus

According to the ETS, the GRE syllabus 2023 covers these 3 sections of the exam.

  • Verbal Reasoning
  • Quantitative Reasoning
  • Analytical Writing

GRE Exam Pattern

The GRE exam pattern is shown in the table below:

GRE Section NameNumber of QuestionsDuration
GRE verbal reasoning40 (2 sections every section has 20 questions)60 minutes (30 minutes for 1 section)
GRE quantitative reasoning2 (First Analyze an Issue & 2nd Analyze an Argument task)70 minutes (35 minutes for 1 section)
GRE analytical writing assessment40 (2 sections every section has 20 questions)60 minutes (30 minutes for 1 task)
Total82 questions190 minutes


The Syllabus and the pattern of this exam are also set by the ETS, same authority that set the GRE syllabus and pattern. Let’s have a look at the syllabus and pattern of the GRE.

TOEFL Exam Syllabus

There are 4 parts in the TOEFL exam syllabus:

  • Reading 
  • Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking

TOEFL Exam Pattern

SectionNumber of QuestionsTasksDuration
Reading30 to 40 questionsRead 3 or 4 passages and answer the given questions54–72 minutes
Listening28 to 38 QuestionsListen to the recording and answer the given questions.41-57 minutes
10 minutes break
SpeakingQuestions: 4 tasksRecord your answer for the given questions.17 minutes
WritingQuestions: 2 tasksTask 1: Students have to read or listen to the short passage given.
Task 2: write your opinion based on what you hear in task 1. 
50 minutes
DurationAround 3 hours

Type Of Questions

GRE vs TOEFL, the GRE is mainly for graduate students, so the type of questions in the GRE is quite different from TOEFL. Let’s have a look at the type of questions for both exams.


Section nameSub-areasTypes of questions
GRE quantitative reasoningRatio and proportion
Profit and loss
Simple and compound interest
Speed, distance, and time
Permutation & combinationLinear equations
Quadratic equations
Sets Theory
Powers and roots
Pipes, cisterns, work, time
Lines and angles
Coordinate geometry
Order of operations
Volume and surface area
PercentageNumber properties
Quantitative Comparison Questions, Numeric Entry Questions
GRE verbal reasoning_Reading ComprehensionText Completion
Sentence Equivalence
GRE analytical writing assessment_Analyzing an Issue
Analyzing an Argument


SectionTypes of Questions
ListeningGist – content
Gist – purpose
Understanding the speaker’s attitude
Understanding the function
Making inferencesUnderstanding organization
Connecting content
ReadingFactual Information
Negative Factual Information
Rhetorical Purpose
Reading Vocabulary
Sentence Simplification
Insert Text
Prose Summary
WritingIntegrated writing task – 20-minute task
Independent writing task – 30-minutes task
SpeakingAgree or Disagree
If / Imaginary
Three Choices
Description or Explanation
Advantage and Disadvantage


GRE vs TOEFL, there is also a big difference between the declaration of the result for both exam. To know how many days each test takes to deliver results continue reading.


The GRE result will be available on your ETS account within 10 to 15 days of taking the test. You just need to log in to your official ETS account to see your test result. You can easily send your GRE result to different institutes to which you want to apply. Your result will be available for your choice of institutes when you send the result.


6 days after taking the test, the TOEFL score will be available on the ETS account. You can see your score by logging into the TOEFL exam’s official website. You can see the score in different sections of the exam separately.

Score Validity

GRE vs TOEFL, the score validity is quite different for both exams. Let’s have a look at the score validity for both exams.


The GRE test score is valid for 5 years from your test date. For example, if you take the test on 2 January 2023, your score will be valid until 1 January 2028.


The TOEFL test score is valid for 2 years from your test date. For example, If you take the exam on 2 March 2023, your score will be valid till 1 march 2025. 

After knowing GRE vs TOEFL, you must know some of the best books for both exams. This will help students to get a good score and fulfill their requirements.


GRE vs TOEFL; for both exams, the fee structure is different, let’s look at the fees for both exams.


To take the GRE, students must pay a minimum fee to register for the GRE. The fee to register for the GRE is $228 in India, $231.30 in China, and $220 for the rest of the world.

You can verify the fee for the exam here.


To take the TOEFL exam, there is a registration fee that students must pay, without paying this fee, it won’t be possible for them to take the exam. The fee to register for the TOEFL exam is $195. You can verify it here.

GRE Vs TOEFL Which Is Better?

We hope that now it is clear that out of GRE and TOEFL which exam is more suitable for you. 

As you can see that the score validity for the GRE is higher than the TOEFL. As the TOEFL exam score is valid only for 2 years but the GRE score is valid for 5 years.

But the TOEFL exam is cheaper than the GRE and its result is available within 6 days of taking the test whereas, for the GRE result, you have to wait for 10 to 15 days.

You can choose the test according to your convenience and after reading properly about both exams.

Best GRE Preparation Books 

Here, you will get to know the top 5 GRE preparation books; let’s look at the list of books to prepare for the GRE.

  • Magoosh GRE Prep
  • Kaplan GRE Prep Plus
  • Test Prep Books GRE Prep
  • The Princeton Review GRE Prep
  • Manhattan Prep 5 lb. Book of GRE Practice Problems

You can also visit our other blog, “GRE Practice Papers – Best 20+ Practice Paper,” to get free GRE practice papers.

Best Books For TOEFL Preparation

Best Books For TOEFL Preparation

To ace the TOEFL exam, you need to prepare from the best books. To help you get a good score, we have brought the list of the best books for the TOEFL exam.

  • The Official Guide to the TOEFL iBT Test (Latest Version)
  • Kaplan TOEFL iBT Premier
  • The Official TOEFL iBT Tests collection
  • “TOEFL iBT, 17th Edition” by Barron’s
  • “Essential Words for the TOEFL, 7th Edition” by Barron’s
  • “TOEFL Preparation Book, 2020 and 2021” by Test Prep Books
  • “TOEFL iBT Prep, 2021” by The Princeton Review
  • TOEFL Integrated Study Guide by Manhattan Review


In this blog, we have discussed GRE vs TOEFL. We have differentiated both exams in a way so you can easily understand which test is best for you to take.

If you are planning to take admission to any business institute after graduation, then the GRE is best for you. This is because this exam is especially for graduate students who want to study business courses from top institutes.

If you are planning to take the English language test after the 12th, then the TOEFL exam is a good option for you. The reason behind this is that the difficulty level for the TOEFL exam is low compared to the GRE. 

So we hope now it is clear to you which exam you should take to prove your English language proficiency. 

We hope we have cleared all your queries about GRE vs TOEFL. For more content like this, keep visiting CourseMentor™.


Is GRE hard for international students?

For most international students, the GRE exams’ difficulty level is moderate. This is because this test is in English, and international students whose first language is English can easily perform well in this exam.

Can I prepare for Toefl in 2 weeks?

This depends upon person to person and how well you are preparing for the exam. Also, it depends upon your base English language. So if you have a strong base in the English language and prepare for the exam with full concentration, you can easily prepare for the TOEFL exam in 2 weeks.