The Test of English as Foreign Language (TOEFL) is a highly standardised test used for university admissions in an English-speaking country. This test is for non-native speakers of English and has tasks across all the four skills like listening, reading, writing and speaking. The TOEFL is available in paper-based and computer-based versions. The most popular version is the TOEFL iBT, which is an internet-based test. The paper version is delivered mostly in areas where internet facilities are not available.

The TOEFL is more of an integrated test as each skill is not being tested in isolation, but requires a range of other skills to perform. For instance, the Speaking test involves you to first listen to another person speak (as recorded audio) and then probably summarise that talk in one’s own words. This combines the listening and writing skills to be able to perform the Speaking task. Also, the Speaking test, unlike other assessments accepted across the world, is evaluated using AI technology and by independent raters who are unaware of your identity. TOFEL claims this will ensure fairness in assessment, unlike other tests which require you to sit across an examiner and deliver your speaking test.

What is the format of the test?

The TOEFL test starts with the Reading test which lasts for about 54- 72 minutes and the candidate requires to answer 30 to 40 questions. This is followed by a Listening test which is for 41 to 57 minutes and 28- 39 questions to be answered.

The candidates can avail a scheduled break of 10-minutes after the first two tests, which is very uncommon in any other language assessment test. The Speaking test includes 4 tasks and the test lasts for 17 minutes. The last skill to be assessed is writing which requires the candidates to answer 2 tasks with a total duration of 50 minutes.

What is the required score?

The score requirements are decided by the individual universities or colleges to which you seek admission. Each skill is marked between 0 and 30 which totals to a score of between 0 and 120 in your TOEFL test. The test results will be available in 6-days.