TOEFL Exam 2023: Eligibility, Syllabus, Test Preparation & Results
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TOEFL Exam 2023: Fees, Registration, Syllabus, Results & Scores

Updated on Sep 6, 2022

Table of Contents

1 Preparation Advice

Given the significance of the TOEFL exam for students wishing to study abroad, it's understandable that it can be intimidating. However, it does not have to be as terrifying as you may believe. Preparing properly and familiarizing yourself with the procedure can help alleviate any nerves, as it will with almost any task.

  • Learn how to use the format.
  • Take a look at a study guide.
  • Make a study schedule.
  • Outside of TOEFL, read and listen to English.
  • Make speaking practice a priority (even to yourself).
  • Practice writing in a timed environment.
  • Make note-taking a habit.
  • Take a practice exam
  • Make it into a game.
  • Remember to bring your QWERTY keyboard

2 Section-by-Section TOEFL Preparation Advice

The TOEFL exam, as previously mentioned, is made up of several portions that combine to form the TOEFL test. Continue reading for key section-by-section preparation recommendations for applicants preparing for the TOEFL exam.

3 Advice for the Reading Section

  • Candidates must read 3–4 readings and answer 10 questions on each passage on the TOEFL iBT reading portion. The number of correct reading comprehension responses determines the section's grade. In a nutshell, candidates will get 54 to 72 minutes to answer around 40 questions.
  • Candidates are encouraged to read as much as possible, preferably in English. The goal of this activity is to keep the student's mind engaged with the English language at all times.
  • Reading brief paragraphs and transforming them into question-and-answer format to completely understand the idea behind the passage is a tried and true method of mastering the discipline of reading. 
  • Newspapers, magazines, and articles written in English are excellent resources for learning new terms and comprehending the written language. 
  • Exchange articles and literary works for grading or self-rating. Your work can also serve as a benchmark for determining your success rate.
  • If a candidate wishes to do well in the TOEFL Reading Section, he or she must expand their vocabulary. Candidates should practice expanding their vocabulary regularly, as this will only help them perform better in the TOEFL Reading Section. 

4 How to Prepare for TOEFL Reading Advice

  • Study university books as well as other materials that cover a variety of topics such as sciences, social sciences, arts, business, and so on and so forth on the internet or in other literature you can find like articles, journals, magazines, etc.
  • Instead of reading each word and sentence attentively, scan a chapter to gain a basic sense of the primary idea.
  • After perusing the passage, read it thoroughly again and make notes of the primary idea, essential points, and key details.
  • Increase your reading velocity and fluency by practicing regularly.
  • Choose a few unknown words from the passage and derive their meaning from the context before looking them up to see what they mean. 

5 Listening Section

Candidates must listen to three to four lectures and two to three conversations on the TOEFL iBT's hearing part and answer six questions on each recording. The amount of right listening replies determines the section's grade. In a nutshell, candidates will have 41–57 minutes to answer around 40 questions.

Take accurate notes: The ability to take accurate notes when someone is dictating to you is crucial to passing the TOEFL listening exam. As a result, candidates must recognize that one of the most appreciated abilities in the TOEFL Listening test is taking accurate notes rapidly.

Developing your listening skills:  This is yet another crucial factor that candidates must focus on is that they might struggle to listen for lengthy periods due to their inability to absorb information beyond a certain point. As a result, it is critical for the candidate to cultivate the habit of listening to extended audios and then extracting useful information and applying it to questions.

 Recognizing the Flavours: Once the candidate grasps the conversation's genre, half the battle is won. Because the flavour of the dialogue is frequently the subject of many questions.

6 Advice for the Listening section

  • Look for words that indicate how ideas are connected and related. Identify the connections between ideas, such as cause and effect, compare and contrast, and process phases.
  • Stay focused by anticipating what someone is going to say. Listen to the recorded material and pause it at different places. Predict the next piece of information or thought to be shared.
  • Determine whether the statement or conversation is intended to be an apology, a complaint, or a recommendation.
  • Take note of whether the language is official or informal. Pay close attention to the speaker's voice tone. Is the tone of the speaker calm or emotional? What level of certainty does the speaker have regarding the facts he or she is presenting?
  • Make a mental note of any shifts in the topic or digressions.

7 TOEFL Writing Section Preparation Advice

Candidates must compose an essay and effectively define a topic in the TOEFL writing portion. The response should be well-organized and well-developed, with pertinent explanations and supporting details. It should also have a sense of unity, progression, and cohesion. If you want to get a good writing grade, make sure you show syntactic variation and acceptable word choice while avoiding minor grammatical mistakes. To thoroughly comprehend the recordings, candidates should first listen to brief portions or readings and then provide a synopsis of the same. The candidate would be able to explain his or her interpretation of the recording in this manner. 

  • Candidates can also obtain a book that instructs them on the many forms of connecting words. Connecting words is crucial because they indicate the relationship between sentences and paragraphs, as well as link two or more short sentences into a single lengthy sentence.
  • Candidates can identify the writer's opinion or opinions while listening to recordings, interpret them, and write about them in-depth.
  • Candidates frequently come across opposing viewpoints in a single text. As a result, the reader must pay attention to how the writer tackles any potential objections to the viewpoint if they exist, and then express the same in their own words.

8 TOEFL Writing Preparation Advice

  • Increase your vocabulary and understanding of colloquial speech so that you can really utilize it effectively. 
  • You should master grammatical structures to the point where you can utilize them naturally in your writing. 
  • Learn the rules of grammar, punctuation, and layout (e.g., paragraph creation). 
  • Find textbooks with material-related questions at the end of each chapter and practice answering the questions. 
  • Read a short article of roughly 300–400 words. Make an outline that incorporates the article's main themes and important details. Make a summary of the material and concepts using the outline. Summaries should be concise and communicate only the most significant ideas and details. Make sure to use a variety of vocabulary and grammatical structures while paraphrasing.

9 Advice for the TOEFL Speaking Section

This portion assesses the candidate's ability to communicate effectively in a classroom context. Candidates would be judged on how well they delivered their responses, their ability to talk clearly and eloquently, and, most importantly, their vocabulary and grammar. 

  • Students can begin by establishing a list of topics they are familiar with and practice speaking about them. Academic and non-academic themes are also acceptable.

  • Candidates can collect photographs from periodicals and newspapers as part of their self-examination and then describe them in under one minute.

  • By explaining the same subject numerous times, using different adjectives, and adding details, candidates could make the exercise more challenging.

  • Applicants might also choose opinion pieces to express an opinion or a favour for or against the topic, along with clear, thorough justification. Applicants should utilize linking words or phrases to help them express their position in this activity.

  • Students can also assess their TOEFL iBT speaking skills by considering activities linked to student life, writing reasons to support their preferences, and speaking for one minute about them.

  • Candidates can also cultivate the habit of reading newspapers and articles online and discussing current events with their colleagues.

10 Advice for Speaking section

  • Improve your vocabulary and learn how to utilize colloquial expressions correctly. 
  • Learn grammatical structures and apply them in your conversation naturally. 
  • When practicing pronunciation, focus on word stress, intonation patterns, and pauses. (There is a variety of tools and websites that can assist you in improving your pronunciation.) 
  • Before you talk, take some time to consider what you're going to say. Make a list of keywords and concepts, but don't try to write down everything you're going to say. (Examiners will be able to tell when responses are read and will award them a lower score.) 
  • Introduce new information, thoughts, and ideas, and highlight essential ones with signal words and expressions. This will make it easier for the audience to understand what you're saying. 

11 What is the best TOEFL preparation method?

To begin, candidates should be aware that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to preparing. Something that works well for one applicant may not work well for another, and vice versa. As a result, we've included a list of several IELTS preparation methodologies in this post, and we want our readers to choose the one that best meets their needs and apply it to enhance their TOEFL scores.

12 How Can I Study at Home for the TOEFL?

Candidates should not be confused between TOEFL preparation at home and at the exam center. The one and the only difference between the two tests is the test environment. Candidates may become overwhelmed at times. Candidates should be aware that ETS, the TOEFL exam's governing organization, has commenced administering TOEFL examinations at home for candidates who want to take the test in the comfort of their own homes. If the COVID-19 local constraints allow, applicants who do not have a conducive atmosphere at home or the appropriate system requirements can take the test at a TOEFL testing center. 

13 How Long Should You Study for the TOEFL Exam?

This is yet another highly subjective question. While some candidates may need a couple of months to reach their optimal level of TOEFL preparation, others may need to study for longer or shorter periods. As a result, there is no predetermined time limit. Candidates are advised to schedule their TOEFL tests only after they have completed their TOEFL preparation. 

14 Best TOEFL Preparation Books

If you choose to self-study, there are many books and resources, as well as TOEFL study plans, available to help you prepare for the TOEFL. Official ETS preparation books and online preparation are available. To aid in the creation of a study plan, consult the following TOEFL books. 

  • The Official ETS Study Guide for the TOEFL iBT - This exam guide includes a great deal of information, practice exercises, and skill-building techniques to help you prepare for the TOEFL test. Hundreds of real TOEFL exam questions and essay topics, full-length, authentic tests, insightful suggestions, and practice exercises for all four linguistic skills tested—listening, reading, speaking, and writing—are included in this best-selling resource. 
  • The IBT Edition of The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test: This guide has a strong emphasis on developing the skills required to take the test, which is fantastic and will surely help in your TOEFL preparations.  
  • Delta's Key to the TOEFL IBT-Advanced Skill Practice: Nancy Gallagher: The book includes an audio CD with approximately nine hours of audio. This comprises around 35 modules in reading, listening, speaking, and writing. It also contains four full-length TOEFL iBT examinations and 1,200 questions divided over the units, quizzes, and tests. There are score charts, an audio script, and key answers.

15 FAQs

Q. How should I begin studying for the TOEFL?

A. You have a limited amount of time. Candidates should remember to start studying early, go over the entire curriculum carefully, pay special attention to the challenging sections, and complete as many TOEFL practice papers as feasible. Candidates can focus on acing their preparation and scoring well on the TOEFL exam in this manner.

Q. How can I pass the TOEFL successfully?

A. Interestingly, the TOEFL exam does not have a pass or fail option. Every institute or university has its own TOEFL cut-off score, and students must acquire scores that are equivalent to or higher than the required grade. Candidates should be aware that higher TOEFL scores will immediately boost their chances of gaining admission to the institution and will also put them in the running for any scholarships that the university may provide. A low TOEFL score would require the student to attempt the exam again to enhance their proficiency.

Q. Where can I get TOEFL practice papers?

A. We always recommend that applicants get their study materials from the official ETS website for accurate and up-to-date information. They can also solve practice problems found on our website here: TOEFL Sample Papers.

Download TOEFL Exam guide

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