Everything you need to know about test preparation (TOEFL)

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Everything you need to know about test preparation (TOEFL)

TOEFL Test Preparation

The TOEFL is one of the most important official English exams in the world. TOEFL means Test of English as a Foreign Language, that is, it is a test that evaluates the level of English of international students from the academic point of view.

The qualification of this exam is necessary to study in many English-speaking universities and to apply for a work visa in countries such as the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, the United States or Canada.

What differentiates the TOEFL from the rest of the official English exams like the Cambridge exams, for example, is that it is not approved or suspended; nor is it divided by levels, but depending on the result obtained, certifies the level of English of the students according to a pre-established scale.

Another of the main features of the TOEFL is that it can be done on paper or digitally via the Internet, according to the preferences of the students. Both exams qualify the same competences and have the same duration of approximately 4 hours, divided into 4 different types of tests:

  • Reading: the reading skills test has between 36 and 56 questions and lasts between 1 hour and 1 hour and 20 minutes.
  • Listening: the listening test has 34 to 51 questions with a maximum duration of 1 hour and a half.
  • Speaking: the oral part has 6 questions and lasts 20 minutes.
  • Writing: the written part consists of 2 texts that students must write in 50 minutes.

You already know this exam a little more, now we are going to give you some tips and resources so that you can prepare it thoroughly and improve your English qualification.

  1. Find your study in academic English:

The TOEFL assesses the level of academic English so you must master this type of language, which is spoken in the classes of the university and the official courses. That is why we advise you to read textbooks, newspapers, and university articles. If you want to combine reading with television programs or movies, we recommend that you watch television debates or academic-themed films.

  1. Practice with exams from previous years:

The best way to learn how the exam works and to deal with it more efficiently is to practice with real examples from previous years. The more you do, the better, but at least we advise you to do three: one when you start preparing your exam to see what level you have, another a few months before the test to see which parts you should reinforce, and the last just before taking the official exam to check how much you have improved and to feel safe on the day of the test. On the Internet, you will find numerous examples of exams and on the website of the Educational Testing Service (ETS), the organizer of the exam, you can find them all.

  1. Organize your notes:

Listen to podcasts about the exam competencies, study the grammar, list suitable expressions for your writing, and type everything down so you can review it regularly. Writing, reading, and listening will greatly improve your English skills.

  1. Establish a study calendar

For the preparation of an exam, it is best to set a weekly study schedule and set specific goals for each period. For example, the first month you must be able to do the written part in the established time. Avoid memorizing answers, the TOEFL is not a test that evaluates a specific level of English, but it tells you which is yours. Focus on improving it and learning to demonstrate it; you will get better results.

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