Test of English as Foreign Language – TOEFL
About the TOEFL Test
The TOEFL test, administered via the Internet, is an important part of your journey to study in an English-speaking country. In addition to the test, the ETS TOEFL Program provides tools and guidelines to help you prepare for the test and improve your English-language skills.
What Is the TOEFL iBT Test?
The TOEFL iBT test measures your ability to use and understand English at the university level. And it evaluates how well you combine your listening, reading, speaking and writing skills to perform academic tasks. There are two formats for the TOEFL test. The format you take depends on the location of your test center. Most test takers take the TOEFL iBT test. Test centers that do not have Internet access offer the Paper-based Test (PBT).
Who Takes the TOEFL iBT Test?
Each year, nearly a million individuals of all ages take the TOEFL test to demonstrate their English-language proficiency. More than 25 million people from all over the world have taken the TOEFL test since it was first offered. The average English skill level ranges between Intermediate and Advanced.
• Students planning to study at a higher education institution
• English-language learning program admissions and exit
• Scholarship and certification candidates
• English-language learners who want to track their progress
• Students and workers applying for visas
Who Accepts TOEFL iBT Test Scores?
More than 8,000 colleges, agencies and other institutions in over 130 countries accept TOEFL scores. Other organizations rely on TOEFL scores as well:
• Immigration departments use them to issue residential and work visas
• Medical and licensing agencies use them for professional certification purposes
• Individuals use them to measure their progress in learning English
Where and When Can I Take the TOEFL iBT Test?
The TOEFL test has more test dates (30–40) and locations (4,500 test centers in 165 countries) than any other English-language test in the world. You can retake the test as many times as you wish.
What Resources Can Help Me Prepare for the TOEFL iBT Test?
ETS offers a variety of paid and free preparation materialsto help you get ready for the TOEFL test.
What Does the TOEFL iBT Test Cost?
The cost of the test can range from US$150 to US$225 and varies between countries. For information on registration, fees, test dates, locations and formats, select your test location. The TOEFL test is given in English and administered via the internet. There are four sections (listening, reading, speaking and writing) which take a total of about four and a half hours to complete.
During the test, you are asked to perform tasks that combine more than one skill, such as:
• Read, listen and then speak in response to a question
• Listen and then speak in response to a question
• Read, listen and then write in response to a question
TOEFL iBT Test Sections
||Read 3–5 passages from academic texts and answer questions.
||Listen to lectures, classroom discussions and conversations, then answer questions.
||Express an opinion on a familiar topic; speak based on reading and listening tasks.
||Write essay responses based on reading and listening tasks; support an opinion in writing.
Please read timing instructions for the Reading Section carefully. The instructions will indicate how many passages you will receive and the amount of time you have to respond to questions for those passages. Be sure to pace yourself so that you will have time to answer all of the questions. A standard English language (QWERTY) computer keyboard is used for the test. We recommend that you practice typing on a QWERTY keyboard before taking the test.
The Reading section consists of 3–5 passages, each approximately 700 words in length and questions about the passages. The passages are on academic topics; they are the kind of material that might be found in an undergraduate university textbook. Passages require understanding of rhetorical functions such as cause-effect, compare-contrast and argumentation.
Students answer questions about main ideas, details, inferences, essential information, sentence insertion, vocabulary, rhetorical purpose and overall ideas. New types of questions in the iBT require filling out tables or completing summaries. Prior knowledge of the subject under discussion is not necessary to come to the correct answer.
The Listening section consists of six passages 3–5 minutes in length and questions about the passages. These passages include two student conversations and four academic lectures or discussions. A conversation involves two speakers, a student and either a professor or a campus service provider. A lecture is a self-contained portion of an academic lecture, which may involve student participation and does not assume specialized background knowledge in the subject area. Each conversation and lecture stimulus is heard only once. Test-takers may take notes while they listen and they may refer to their notes when they answer the questions.
Each conversation is associated with five questions and each lecture with six. The questions are meant to measure the ability to understand main ideas, important details, implications, relationships between ideas, organization of information, speaker purpose and speaker attitude.
The Speaking section consists of six tasks: two independent tasks and four integrated tasks. In the two independent tasks, test-takers answer opinion questions on familiar topics. They are evaluated on their ability to speak spontaneously and convey their ideas clearly and coherently. In two of the integrated tasks, test-takers read a short passage, listen to an academic course lecture or a conversation about campus life and answer a question by combining appropriate information from the text and the talk. In the two remaining integrated tasks, test-takers listen to an academic course lecture or a conversation about campus life and then respond to a question about what they heard.
In the integrated tasks, test-takers are evaluated on their ability to appropriately synthesize and effectively convey information from the reading and listening material. Test-takers may take notes as they read and listen and may use their notes to help prepare their responses. Test-takers are given a short preparation time before they have to begin speaking. The responses are digitally recorded, sent to ETS's Online Scoring Network (OSN) and evaluated by three to six raters.
The Writing section measures a test taker's ability to write in an academic setting and consists of two tasks: one integrated task and one independent task. In the integrated task, test-takers read a passage on an academic topic and then listen to a speaker discuss the same topic. The test-taker will then write a summary about the important points in the listening passage and explain how these relate to the key points of the reading passage.
In the independent task, test-takers must write an essay that states, explains, and supports their opinion on an issue, supporting their opinions or choices, rather than simply listing personal preferences or choices. Responses are sent to the ETS OSN and evaluated by four raters.
TOEFL Test Fees
Below are details on our payment policies:
||Fees Vary by Country
|Reinstatement of canceled scores
|Additional score reports (per institution or agency)
|Speaking or Writing Section rescore
|Speaking and Writing Section rescore
|Returned personal check (paper or electronic)
Fees are subject to change without notice and do not include Value-Added or other taxes.
Payment Policies.Please make sure all payments for tests and services:
• are paid in full at the time the service is requested
• have the correct numeric and written dollar amount
• have appropriate signature(s)
Any outstanding balances from prior ETS tests or services must be paid in full before you register. Services or test scores may be withheld for non-payment. If you do not submit the correct fee, your registration form or request for service will be returned. Payment methods are subject to change without notice.
Forms of Payment
1. Credit/debit card — American Express, Discover, JCB, MasterCard or VISA.
2. Electronic checks (e-checks) — drawn on a bank in the United States or its territories. E-checks can be used to register online or by phone.
3. In some areas, you can purchase TOEFL Test registration vouchers with local currency and/or register in person at TOEFL iBT Test Resource Centers. Registration vouchers are unique numerical codes that you can use in place of credit cards as payment when you register for the test. If you don't want to register at a TOEFL iBT Test Resource Center, you can use a registration voucher to register online from any computer or by phone.
Check with your local center as to what mode of payment they accept
To receive a refund, you need to cancel your registration by the deadline (three days before the test date, not including the day of the test or the day of your request). Refunds are in U.S. dollars for half of the original test fee paid. The balance is retained to cover expenses for processing your registration and holding a seat for you at the test center.
• Cash refunds are not available.
• Refunds cannot be given if registration procedures were not followed or you failed to present the required identification documents at the test center.
• Refunds for registration vouchers prior to registration are handled by the TOEFL iBT Test Resource Center where they were purchased.
• If you paid by credit/debit card or e-check, the refund will be credited back to the original credit/debit card or bank account.
• If payment was made with a personal check drawn on a U.S. domestic bank, please allow eight weeks for processing.
• If payment was made in non-U.S. funds drawn on a bank outside the United States, please allow 12 weeks for processing.