5 things you have to know about TOEFL

  • Rozelle Laha, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Dec 10, 2014 13:41 IST

Those of you keen to work in Australia should know that the Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-based test (TOEFL iBT) is now being accepted as a proof of English-language competence for new skilled migration and post-study applications.

The TOEFL test is, from November 23, being accepted for graduate, skilled, business and work and holiday visas, including the SkillSelect system. “ETS’s 50 years of experience in the Australian market showed us that employers were missing out in the global competition for skills due to disjointed visa English-language proficiency settings,” said David Payne, vice president and chief operating officer of Global Education for Educational Testing Service (ETS).

Skilled migrants were choosing to go elsewhere, like the United States and Canada, an ETS statement said. So, if you are planning to prepare for the TOEFL and score well, here are some more things you should know

1 The best part about TOEFL is that you can take the test as many times as you wish, but not more than once in a 12-day period.

2 In India, the test costs US $170.

3 When it comes to reading tips for TOEFL, summarise and paraphrase reading passages. Use outlines to assist organisation of ideas. Become familiar with reading and answering questions on a computer screen as this is the format for the TOEFL iBT test.

4 Our speaking tips are: Read a short article from a newspaper or magazine aloud. Give a one-minute oral summary of the article. Express your opinion regarding the article. If there is a problem discussed, outline a solution.

5 For better writing skills, watch your favourite television show. Write a summary of the episode. Explain the television programme, the way it made you feel, and how it was similar or different from past episodes. Have a family member read your essay.

“The best advice for TOEFL test takers is to prepare,” says Jennifer Brown, executive director of the TOEFL Programme, ETS.

Want to take the test?

Who should take the test?
Undergraduates, graduates, and post-baccalaureates of any nationality

Countries and departments accepting TOEFL
About 9,000-plus colleges, agencies and other institutions in over 130 countries. Immigration departments for residential and work visas and medical and licensing agencies for professional certification purposes

Test pattern and duration
The test has four sections: listening, reading, speaking and writing. It takes approximately four hours to complete the test.

How to give it your best

Learn more about a favourite topic and share what you learned with a friend: Listen to Podcasts, recorded lectures, and read articles on your favourite travel destination. Determine the main idea, major points and supporting ideas being presented.

# Find a speaking partner, preferably with an original English speaker or try an online video chat. The more occasions you have to speak English, the more familiar and comfortable you will become

# Flash Cards - Create your own vocabulary cards and carry them wherever you go. It’s a great way to practice and pass the time!

The tips here have been given post discussion with Jennifer Brown, ED of the TOEFL Programme, ETS.

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