All you need to know about the enhanced TOEFL iBT Test


4 mins read
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert
Updated on Dec 19, 2023 12:49 IST

This article highlights the key updates to the new TOEFL iBT test, benefits for Indian test takers, and strategic tips for effective TOEFL iBT preparation.

TOEFL exam

TOEFL Exam: The path to academic distinction starts with a thorough comprehension of evolving assessment methods. A prime example is the recent enhancements to the TOEFL iBT test, effective from July 2023. This article will explore the significant changes made to the test, its widespread recognition, and practical tips for effective TOEFL preparation. We will also examine the revised TOEFL writing section, now designed to evaluate candidates' skills in academic discourse.

Global Recognition: 100% Acceptance by Universities Worldwide

The TOEFL iBT test stands out for its global recognition. It is accepted by over 12,500 institutions in more than 160 countries, including 100% of the top universities in the United States, Canada, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, and universities in UK. This widespread acceptance underscores its status as one of the most recognized English-language tests, providing test-takers with unparalleled opportunities to study abroad.

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Recent data from the Bureau of Immigration (BoI) sheds light on the soaring number of Indian students pursuing education abroad. In November 2022, despite the lingering impacts of the pandemic, a staggering 648,678 Indian students ventured overseas for education, surpassing pre-pandemic levels.

For those eyeing Canadian institutions, the Student Direct Stream (SDS) is an expedited study permit program. TOEFL iBT is one of the approved English language tests for SDS, further emphasizing its relevance for students aspiring to study in Canada.

The Enhanced TOEFL iBT Test: What's New?

  1. Reduced Time: The most noticeable change in the enhanced TOEFL iBT test is the reduced overall testing time. The test now takes less than two hours to complete – previously three hours. ETS has streamlined the test-taking experience, ensuring efficiency without compromising the assessment's integrity.
  2. Updated Writing Section: The writing section has undergone a facelift, incorporating new question formats and assessment criteria. The "Writing for Academic Discussion" task is a new addition that assesses candidates' ability to present ideas effectively and engage in academic discussions. This change is designed to evaluate the test-taker’s proficiency more accurately in written English, aligning with the evolving standards of language assessment.

Benefits for Indian Test Takers

Indian test takers stand to gain several advantages with the enhanced TOEFL iBT test. The updates include a limited-period 25% discount for taking both TOEFL iBT and GRE tests together. Furthermore, localised payment options in Indian Rupees (INR) are now available, making the TOEFL registration process more convenient. An India-based Toll-Free number has been established to provide candidates with test registration support.

Techniques to boost TOEFL iBT Preparation

With the reduced test duration, efficient time management becomes crucial for candidates. Familiarity with the test format and question types, and practising with mock tests is essential. To excel in the TOEFL reading section, candidates should explore English texts in newspapers, magazines, and online articles, focusing on academic topics and improving reading comprehension skills. For the TOEFL Listening Section, engaging with English podcasts on various topics, note-taking, and summarizing content can enhance concentration and multitasking abilities. The TOEFL Speaking Section benefits from practice conversations on personal interests, recording and reviewing responses to improve pronunciation and fluency. In the writing section, students can write about topics of interest, expand vocabulary, and practice timed essay writing to convey ideas effectively.

TOEFL Test Prep Resources

ETS provides a wide range of official, free resources for TOEFL iBT preparation, including a comprehensive 6-week course TOEFL Test Preparation: The Insider's Guide. The Official Guide to the TOEFL iBT Test and Official TOEFL iBT Tests, Volume 1 & 2 are comprehensive guidebooks available in eBook and paperback formats on the official website. These prep resources offer interactive online versions of all tests, valuable tips, scoring criteria and sample questions.

Strategic Tips for Effective TOEFL iBT Preparation:

  1. Familiarize Yourself with the Test Format: Understanding the TOEFL exam pattern is paramount. Regularly practice with sample questions and familiarize yourself with the different sections to build confidence.
  2. Develop Time Management Skills: Given the reduced overall testing time, honing time management skills is crucial. Create a TOEFL study schedule that mirrors the actual test conditions to improve pacing.
  3. Focus on Writing Proficiency: With the updated writing section, allocate ample time to enhance your writing skills. Practice essay writing, paying attention to grammar, coherence, and overall clarity.
  4. Leverage Official TOEFL iBT Resources: Utilize the official TOEFL iBT resources provided by ETS. These materials offer authentic practice opportunities and insights into the test's nuances.
  5. Seek Professional Guidance if Needed: Consider enrolling in TOEFL preparation courses or seeking guidance from language professionals. Their expertise can provide valuable insights and personalized strategies for improvement.

The enhanced TOEFL iBT test marks a significant milestone in the realm of English language proficiency assessment. Aspiring students and professionals can navigate these changes successfully by staying informed, preparing strategically, and leveraging the wealth of resources available. With its global recognition and the doors it opens for academic pursuits, the TOEFL iBT test remains an invaluable tool for those embarking on international educational journeys. Candidates looking for assistance with university admissions can request a call back from our Shiksha Counselling Services. Candidates can get in touch with us in the comments below. 

About the Author
Written by
Rahul Singha
Study Abroad Expert

Rahul Singha is a seasoned editor with Shiksha Study Abroad, specializing in overseas education. With over 8 years of domain experience, he has made a significant impact in contributing to the study abroad industry ... Read Full Bio

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