Unveiling the Duolingo English Test

Unveiling the Duolingo English Test

December 31, 2023 Off By Anastasiia Yashchenko

Proving your English proficiency can be both exciting and nerve-wracking. In recent years, the Duolingo English Test (DET) has emerged as a noteworthy player in the realm of language assessment, offering a budget-friendly and convenient alternative for students worldwide. 

Lonet Academy is thrilled to take you on a detailed exploration of the Duolingo English Test, covering its intricacies, cost, pros and cons, scoring system, and a comparative analysis with other prominent exams like TOEFL and IELTS.

What Sets Duolingo English Test Apart?

Duolingo English Test Price

One of the most striking features of the Duolingo English Test is its cost-effectiveness. Priced at a mere $49, it stands as a beacon of accessibility in a landscape dominated by pricier alternatives. This affordability not only opens doors for a broader demographic but also challenges the notion that quality language assessment must come with a hefty price tag.


Picture this: Taking an English proficiency test from the comfort of your home, in your pajamas, with your favorite mug of coffee by your side. That’s the reality with DET. The online format allows test-takers to sidestep the traditional stress of traveling to a test center, offering a level of convenience that resonates with the contemporary lifestyle.

Quick Results

In a world where instant gratification is the norm, waiting weeks for test results can be agonizing. DET addresses this by providing scores within a mere 48 hours. The swift turnaround not only reduces anxiety but also caters to the fast-paced timelines often associated with academic and professional applications.

Breaking Down the Duolingo English Test

Testing Format

The Duolingo English Test checks how good you are at four important language skills: reading, writing, listening, and speaking. It’s not like those old-school exams with set questions – it’s way cooler. The test adapts to how you’re doing, making sure it’s all about you. That means you get a test that really gets what you’re good at in English.

Taking the Duolingo English Test is like a one-hour adventure split into three parts:

  • Introduction:
    • This part kicks things off, guiding you on how to tackle the test and making sure you’ve got your microphone and camera ready to roll.
    • You’ll need to keep that camera and microphone on throughout the entire test to show you’re the star of the show, answering all the questions.
  • Adaptive Exam:
    • Now, for the 45-minute thrill ride! This part mixes things up with speaking, writing, listening, and reading exercises.
    • The questions change based on how awesome you are with the language. So, as you tackle them, you’ll get different levels to figure out the score that suits your language skills.
  • Video Interview:
    • Time to shine in the speaking interview! You’ll get prompts and have to talk for 1 to 3 minutes straight.
    • The prompts cover everything from describing stuff in detail to educating the listener on a topic or throwing in your opinion on something with some solid reasons.

Scoring System

Duolingo English Test scores go from 10 to 160, giving you a score for each of the four skills. This breakdown helps you see where you shine and where you can polish up a bit.

duolingo english practice test and duolingo english test fee

The Duolingo English Test (DET) uses a scoring system that checks how good you are at different language skills. Let’s get into the nitty-gritty of how the scoring magic happens:

Reading and Writing:

  • For the reading and writing sections, the scores are calculated based on a combination of factors, including vocabulary, grammar, and comprehension.
  • The adaptive nature of the test means that the difficulty of the questions adjusts based on the individual’s performance. Successfully answering more challenging questions leads to a higher score.


  • The listening section evaluates how well a test-taker can comprehend spoken English in various contexts.
  • Questions in this section may include listening to conversations, lectures, or discussions, and then answering related questions.
  • Like the other sections, the adaptive format tailors the difficulty of the questions to the test-taker’s proficiency level.


  • The speaking section assesses a test-taker’s ability to express themselves verbally in English.
  • Questions may involve speaking on a given topic or responding to prompts.
  • Automated speech recognition technology evaluates pronunciation, fluency, and the content of the spoken response.

Individual Skill Scores:

  • After completing the test, a test-taker receives scores for each of the four skills, providing a detailed breakdown of their language proficiency.
  • Scores for reading, writing, listening, and speaking are reported separately, allowing test-takers to understand their strengths and areas for improvement.

Overall Score:

  • While individual skill scores provide detailed insights, the overall score is a cumulative measure of a test-taker’s English proficiency across all sections.
  • The overall score is especially relevant for institutions and organizations that consider a holistic evaluation of language proficiency.

Score Report:

  • Test-takers receive a detailed score report that includes their overall score and individual scores for each skill.
  • The report also provides a percentile ranking, indicating how the test-taker’s performance compares to others who have taken the test.

Is Duolingo English Test Harder Than IELTS?

Figuring out how tough something is really depends on the person – it’s a bit like asking different folks how spicy they like their food. DET keeps things interesting by tweaking the questions based on how you’re doing. Some might see it as a bit tricky, but it’s also a chance to shine if you’re into dynamic tests. Trying to say DET is harder or easier than IELTS is like saying apples and oranges are the same – they’re both unique and come with their own set of challenges and perks.

duolingo listening and speaking

Which educational institutions acknowledge the Duolingo English test?

Loads of schools around the world are totally on board with the Duolingo English test! Check out the full list of schools that are giving the DET a high-five right here – it’s pretty impressive! 

How to Book Duolingo English Test 

No sweat! Simply head over to the Duolingo English Test website, and sign up for a free account.

Once you’ve set up your account, take a look at the free readiness guide. It’s your go-to resource to get the lowdown on each part of the exam. 

Getting a jumpstart on preparation lets you target any weak spots and build up your confidence. For some additional practice, consider connecting with an online English tutor through Lonet Academy.

Ready, Set, Test!

The Duolingo English Test is like a breath of fresh air in the world of language tests. It’s affordable, super convenient, and adapts to how you roll, making it a cool option for anyone out to prove their English chops.

If you’re thinking about taking the plunge, just remember to think about what you need, what you like, and how much love the test gets from the places you’re aiming for. In the big picture of language tests, the Duolingo English Test has carved out its own space, offering a route to language success that’s both easy to reach and totally unique.

So, as you mull over your next steps, keep in mind that the DET isn’t just a test – it’s your ticket to reaching your goals, unlocking fresh opportunities, and shouting out loud about your journey to English fluency. Get ready to rock the DET, show off those English skills, and let your language prowess shine!