TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language )
TOEFL is a standardized test in order to assess your level of English skills. TOEFL is one of the most popular English language certificates and is often required in order to get admitted to English-taught programmers. Foreign Students Services will explain you the TOEFL test and give you some hints and advice on how to get an optimal result. You will learn about the test structure, the test preparations and experience at the test-day.based test that measures your listening, reading, speaking and writing skills in academic English. The format of the test is: Test time—The complete test is delivered in one session of approximately three hours. There is a timer on each screen to show you how much time remains for the current section. If you are in a room with other test takers, you will each have a different version for security reasons. Do not worry if you see or hear other test takers moving more quickly or slowly than you through the test. Focus on your own screen and how In contrast to the earlier test formats (paper based, computer based), the TOEFL iBT consists of four different parts and takes about four hours in total.
- Reading Comprehension
- Listening Comprehension
- Written Expression
In each of the four parts you can achieve up to 30 points which adds up to a maximum score of 120 points.
The Reading Comprehension part takes approximately 60-100 minutes during the test. You will get 3-5 short texts (ca. 700 words). The texts are academically-related and cover different topics (e.g. astronomic, history, biology etc.). After reading a text you have to answer 12-14 multiple choice questions about the content as well as the grammar (e.g. To which person refers the word xy in the following sentence.The time limit to read the texts is quite short. Therefore, it is a good strategy to skim through the text first and then read single paragraphs more thoroughly when it comes to the questions. Although the text have an academic context, they are usually quite easy to understand. Only few technical terms and less-known words are used. Since the important points in the text are described redundantly and in different ways, you can guess the meaning of those words out of the context most of the times in case you do not know the meaning.
The writing section consists of two parts. The first one is an integrated task where you read a short text and then listen to a conversation which is related to the text. After that you have 20 minutes to give a written answer to a question. Usually you have to summaries the most important points of the text and the listening part and point out the connection and the difference between the two with 300 words. While you are writing your answer the text is displayed again as well as the number of words you already typed. After the time is up, the text will be immediately hidden and cannot be edited anymore.The second part demands some creativity. You will get a question about a controversial topic and then you have 30 minutes to state your opinion about that topic by using pro and contra arguments. Usually the questions are yes/no questions for example Should students wear a school uniform?. As for the other part, about 300 words are expected.While writing, you should keep in mind that a well-structured text is more important than the content or your actual opinion about the topic. Sometimes it might be easier to find arguments for the opposite opinion, even if it is not your personal belief. During the evaluation, special attention is paid to so-called linking words that you use to connect your different thoughts, arguments and conclusions.
The Listening Comprehension part tests your ability to understand academic related lectures and discussions. This part of the test takes about 60-90 minutes and you will hear 4-6 different lectures and discussions in the classroom as well as 2-3 conversations about general topics about university life. Each listening part is about 3-5 minutes long is only played once! You are allowed to take notes on provided sheets, though. After listening, you have to answer 5-6 multiple choice questions about the content of the lecture/conversation. Sometimes, short sections of the listening part are repeated before you have to answer the question.The speakers can have a (very slight) accent and behave quite realistically during the conversations including for example harrumphing, Um..s and misspeaking. Although academic-oriented as in the reading part, the topics are rather easy. Important details are repeated during the talk several times. For this reason, it is quite easy to follow the conversation and remember all important details later. Since the listening parts are rather short, I made quite good experiences with just taking a few notes since you can better focus on the conversation, then. Usually, you can answer most of the questions without looking into your notes.
For many people, the speaking session is the most difficult one especially due to its unusual test setting. In contrast to other tests (e.g. IELTS), where you get individually interviewed by an examiner, the speaking part of the TOEFL test is entirely conducted on the computer by using a headset. Your answers are recorded and are later sent to and evaluated in a test center.The speaking part takes in total about 20 minutes among them about five minutes of actual speaking. It consists of two independent tasks and four integrated tasks. For the independent tasks you will get a trivial question (e.g. Do you prefer to eat out in a restaurant or do you rather prefer to cook at home?). After just 15 seconds of preparation time you have to record an answer of about 45 seconds. For the integrated tasks you have to read a short text and/or you listen to a small listening section. After that you normally have 30 seconds of preparation time and 60 seconds to record a statement about the listening section It is also allowed to take notes in the speaking section. Since the time limits are extremely.