TOEFL Exam 2019 – 2020 | India

General information on TOEFL eligibility, format, pattern, exam dates, test centers in India & exam fee

 

What is TOEFL?

TOEFL or the Test of English as a Foreign Language tests its fluency in non-native English speakers. It is offered by ETS.org, the same organization that conducts the GRE exam.

Qualifying the test ensures your ability to follow university classroom level listening, reading and speaking.

TOEFL scores are widely accepted, in fact the preferred language test, in over 1,000 universities around the world including USA, Canada, Australia, UK and various countries in Europe and Asia.

The TOEFL advantage assures complete fairness in scores through its centralized scoring network, minus the intervention of individual test centres.

According to ETS, multiple examiners evaluate the speaking section thus reducing any subjective bias. There are two types of tests – iBT (Internet Based Test) and PBT (Paper Based Test) – provided to test takers as testing options.
 

TOEFL Eligibility Criteria

Though mainly taken by students who are planning to study abroad where the medium of instruction is primarily English, it is also offered to the following types of candidates.

– Individuals applying for a work visa in a country where English is at least one of the languages of communication.

– Students who want to enrol in an English language learning program, in their home country or abroad.

– Scholarship or certification candidates as part of their eligibility to receive the same.

– Individuals who seek to develop their fluency in English and want to track their progress.

Essentially anyone who wants to evaluate their reading comprehension, writing capacity, and spoken English skills.
 

TOEFL Exam Dates and Test Centres in India in 2019-2020

TOEFL test is offered over 50 times, in a year, across various centres. To book a date and centre for the internet based (iBT) test, check out this link provided by ETS – Find TOEFL iBT Test Centres and Dates

For instance, in Mumbai itself, there are nearly 10 centres across the city where the TOEFL iBT is offered either at the Prometric Testing locations or otherwise.

The test and score reporting dates can be found in this ETS document.

All the authorized testing centres don’t offer the test on the given dates at the same time. You can use their “location” tool to find out which one is available on a particular testing date.

For the paper based test, here is a list of the 2019-2020 test centres and dates – TOEFL PBT Test Centres and Dates
 

Exam Fee

As such the fees vary by country. In India, the current registration fee is 180 USD. You should register at least 7 days before the test date. Any later would activate the late registration fee of 40 USD in addition to the usual fee.

Late registration is open until 4 days prior to the test date. You can also reschedule your test for 60 USD. TOEFL fee can be paid in credit/debit, electronic check, PayPal, paper check or money order, and Western Union QuickPay.

You can receive a refund of half of the total TOEFL test fee if you cancel four days prior to the test date.

TOEFL allows a feed reduction to students with financial need. Unfortunately, this is only available to US residents.
 

TOEFL Exam Pattern and Syllabus

As mentioned before, the content of the TOEFL test is focused on evaluating the test taker’s ability to understand basic instructional level English, needed to actively participate in a classroom environment.

To do so, TOEFL iBT examines your understanding in 4 separate sections – reading, listening, speaking, and writing – for a total of 4.5 hours.

Your communication skills are tested by reading or listening to questions and speaking or writing, in response.

According to ETS, here is the exam pattern and syllabus in the 4 tested sections.
 

Section Time Questions Tasks
Reading
(30 points)
60-80 min 36-56 Read, comprehend and respond to 3-4 academic passages with 12-14 questions on each
Listening
(30 points)
60-90 min 34-51 Listen to conversations and respond to related questions. There are 4-6 lectures about 3-5 mins long with 6 questions on each. There are also usually 2-3 conversations about 3 mins long with 5 questions on each
Speaking
(30 points)
20 min 6 tasks Speak on a known topic (usually 2 independent tasks) or in response to a reading/listening topic (4 integrated tasks)
Writing
(30 points)
50 min 2 tasks Write essays based on independent topic (1 task) and one on a speaking/listening topic (1 integrated task)

 

Reading Section:

Based on the passage provided, there are three question formats in the reading section.

– Multiple choice with one right response

– Multiple choice with one right response requiring you to “insert a sentence” where it fits best in a passage

– Questions related to “reading to learn” where there could be more than one right response. Here, you have to comprehend the flow of the passage and the relation between facts and ideas included in the passage.
 

Listening Section:

Based on the lecture or conversation that you would be asked to listen to, there could be different types of question.

– Multiple choice with one right response

– Multiple choice with more than one right response

– Questions that require you to place events that you listened to in the correct chronology

– Questions that require you to match events to specified relevant categories
 

Speaking Section:

Independent Task

– With 15 secs to prepare and 45 secs to respond, you can speak about a topic, in a given category, based on your personal choice

– With a similar prep and response time you will be asked to compare and defend a personal choice between two contrasting behaviors or actions.

Integrated Task

– (Read/Listen/Speak) You will be asked to read and listen to material about a certain topic and respond based on your comprehension within 30 secs prep time and 60 secs response time.

– (Read/Listen/Speak) You will be asked to relate an academic topic and a related academic lecture in 60 secs

– (Listen/Speak) Listen to a passage and respond to the question

– (Listen/Speak) Listen to an academic lecture and respond to prove your understanding of the lecture

You will be scored on your speech delivery – clarity, pronunciation, expression, etc. – language use, and coherence in ideas.
 

Writing Section:

Independent Task

Typical essay (300 or more words) expressing your opinion on an issue posed in a question which will most likely ask you to explain your side, with supporting facts or ideas, on a set of conflicting and debated issue.

Integrated Task

(Read/Listen/Write) Read and listen to lectures on a topic, take notes, and summarize in 150-225 (or more) words.

You will be scored on writing quality (grammar, vocabulary, coherence, organization, etc.) and content accuracy in the integrated task.

For the independent task, you will be scored on quality of writing alone. The content (your opinion) is free of scoring bias.
 

TOEFL Exam Preparation

ETS provides a set of steps to strategize your TOEFL preparation. To begin with, it helps to know your goal score and the likely time when you will be taking the test.

This is usually based on the average scores of current/former students in programs you are seeking to join and your current fluency in English.

Follow this approach up with a growing familiarity of the test itself. Both ETS and multitude of online sources like Kaplan, Princeton Review, and more, have many free sample tests that you should certainly attempt.

Over the next few weeks, rinse and repeat the practice test process to track your progress.

For all the sections, it helps to read daily newspapers, listen to radio programs in English (preferably British or American programs) to develop an ear for the language spoken with a western accent.

Get the help of teachers to get an evaluation of your writing capabilities. And most of all, read and listen to its use for familiarity. More ETS help is available in this document.
 

TOEFL Exam Booking Process

You can book your test in one of three ways – Online, by Phone, or by Mail. Before you register, you must have a valid Passport ready as an ID proof. The cost of registration is $180 before 7 days prior to your exam.

The late registration penalty of $40 is active until 4 days prior to the test date. For contact and mailing details, refer to this page on ETS.

You can cancel or change your registration until 4 days prior to the test date. The refund amount in each case is 50% of the original test fee. You can avail of the TOEFL Value Pack in case you want to improve your score with a second test.

Remember, you cannot reschedule/retake within 12 days of having taken the test. This is a strict policy and not adhering to it can lead to score cancelation.
 

TOEFL Exam Results: When and how they are obtained

TOEFL scores are available online within 10 days of the test. This score report includes a break-up of the scores of the individual sections, a total score and a performance feedback.

You can even choose to download a PDF copy of the score report within 13 days of the test date.

Since you can choose up to 4 institutions to report your scores for free (or rather, included in your test fee), you may want to check in after 4-6 weeks to find out if they have reached.

On the test date, you can choose to cancel your score if you feel you can do better on another attempt and not have ETS send your scores to the four institutions included in your test fee for free score reporting.

If, however, you wish to reinstate the score, you have to shell out another $60 for it.

You can order additional score reports to be sent to various institutions (check the institution codes on the website) about 10 days after the test date.

An additional $20 per institution is the standard fee for more score reporting. You can order them online, by fax or by mail. Check the ETS website for details.

TOEFL allows you to review your speaking or writing section for a fee pf $80 each.

Remember, if you choose to send the four free score reports, after your test, you will not be able to review your speaking or writing scores.
 

TOEFL Exam Sample, Exam Papers and Tests for Practice

The ETS website provides a bunch of preparation resources here. This includes free sample tests, practice questions, preparation tips, and more. Many of them are free.
 

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