Test Update: New scale and scoring methodology

To account for additional scored test items and scoring methodology, the Duolingo English Test has a new scale out of 160 in 5 point increments.

Our research team and technical advisory board, comprised of experts in the fields of language testing and psychometrics, developed a scale that has higher confidence at individual score points, helps reduce misinterpretation of scores, and distinguishes Duolingo from other tests. 

The former 100-point scale was commonly misunderstood to be a percentage correct or a linear mapping of test takers’ responses. For example, scoring a 70 on the 100-point scale was often equated to getting 30% incorrect or earning a “C-”. The new scale helps mitigate this misinterpretation. 

When making high-stakes decisions, institutions should always also consider other factors like GPA, other test scores, recommendations, or interviews. As a best practice, when setting minimum thresholds, it is useful to set scores flexibly and conduct periodic reviews of score requirements.

To learn more about score interpretation and comparison with the TOEFL iBT® and IELTS® Academic, visit our scores page.


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