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What is the TOEFL exam? How to prepare for TOEFL


A worldwide test to determine your level of English language ability is the TOEFL (Testing of English as a Foreign Language). Like IELTS and PTE, it is one of the most popular tests for the English language. The TOEFL score is accepted in more than 150 nations, including the US, UK, Australia, New Zealand, and Canada. You can take this English language proficiency test if you plan to travel abroad.

How to prepare for TOEFL?  Once a test-taker decides to take the exam, this thought immediately crosses their mind. You will learn some unique and enjoyable TOEFL preparation strategies in the paragraphs that follow.

But first, you should fully understand the TOEFL test before you can understand how to prepare for it. You should be familiar with the TOEFL’s definition and exam format. In addition, you should be familiar with the various TOEFL formats.

What is the TOEFL exam?

The TOEFL exam is conducted by ETS (Educational Testing Service). The TOEFL test was first introduced in 1964, and a lot has changed since then in the test. The TOEFL underwent its most recent revision in 2005. Although the TOEFL exam is primarily an online computer test, you can also take a paper version in select locations due to network problems. You will be better able to prepare for the TOEFL if you are well informed about it. The range of a candidate’s English proficiency on this test is 0 to 120.

Types of TOEFL

The TOEFL comes in three primary categories:

  • iBT TOEFL (internet-based test)
  • TOEFL at home (Home-based TOEFL test)
  • paper-based TOEFL test

iBT TOEFL (internet-based test)

It is the online version of the TOEFL exam, as suggested by its name. Due to its minimal resource usage, this is the most commonly used TOEFL exam format.

Paper-based TOEFL

Only places with poor or limited connectivity can access it. It exclusively evaluates a test taker’s writing, listening, and reading skills. Due to a lack of equipment, it lacks a speaking part.

TOEFL at home (Home-based TOEFL test)

ETS introduced this style of TOEFL test during the coronavirus outbreak. However, ETS has only made this available in the areas where the TOEFL iBT was previously unavailable. However, a candidate must confirm that he satisfies all ETS system equipment criteria before registering for this test.


TOEFL exam pattern

The TOEFL tests candidates’ English language proficiency using four components, the same as other English language exams. 

  • Reading 
  • Listening
  • Writing
  • Speaking


The candidate has to read three or four passages totaling 700 to 800 words in this section. In the reading phase, you have to respond to about 40 questions. The TOEFL exam consists of ten basic categories of questions.

The purpose of this exam is to test a candidate’s reading and comprehension skills. The TOEFL includes a variety of topics in this part. It implies that you can succeed in physics, math, and social science in addition to English. This section has a score range of 0 to 30, which takes 54 to 72 minutes to complete.


If you are concerned about how to prepare for the TOEFL, you should look at the TOEFL listening exam pattern.

The TOEFL listening section primarily has two components: a conversation and a lecture. It indicates that you either overheard a lecture or a group of individuals speaking.

This TOEFL test measures how well you can follow a conversation. You will have 27 to 39 questions to answer in this phase of the test, which will last 41 to 57 minutes overall. The score range is the same as the reading for this exam. 


TOEFL independent and TOEFL integrated. These two tasks are part of the TOEFL test’s writing section. Candidates have 50 minutes to compose 500 to 600 words for this portion. The TOEFL test’s final and most challenging section is this one. Similar to listening and reading, this section has a similar scoring range.


In speaking There are three integrated speaking activities and one standalone speaking challenge in this section. There are six questions in all. The first two questions cover well-known subjects, while the next four take the form of lectures, conversations, or quick reads.

This phase of the test lasts for roughly 15 to 20 minutes. Additionally, the scale runs from 0 to 30. 

To make TOEFL easier to understand, a table is provided below. 

Listening54–72 minutes30 – 40 
Reading41-57 minutes28 – 39
Break10 minutes
Speaking17 minutes4 tasks
Writing50 minutes2 tasks

How to prepare for TOEFL: Some important tips

You must follow the supplied advice if you wish to pass your TOEFL exam on your first try. Using this advice, you can achieve an exam result of 80 or above. So without further thought or care, let’s look at some preparation advice on how to prepare for TOEFL test.

  • The most crucial advice is to give yourself enough time to study for the TOEFL exam. Not everyone is a fan of the TOEFL exam. Yes, some students may indeed pass the test with less than a month of preparation, but in general, the TOEFL exam preparation period lasts about three months. So allow yourself enough time to prepare.
  • Then comes the phase where you need to start thinking. You must begin to think and communicate in English. When you get the opportunity, start speaking in English. Your confidence will soar, and your communication abilities will advance.
  • If you want to enhance your writing, start reading and writing in English. Additionally, this will help with your grammatical improvement. You can establish a daily English blog or diary writing routine. Many pupils benefit from this in order to raise their writing test scores. Additionally, make sure to reread all of your writing. 

After reading your writing again, try to spot any errors you may have made on your own. You can also ask a buddy for assistance in detecting errors in your writing. This is the most important tip on how to prepare for TOEFL.

  • Understanding the test format will be very beneficial to your TOEFL preparation. Knowing the format of the exam will allow you to begin preparing accordingly.

You can choose which TOEFL module needs more time and which section is difficult for you.

  • You can also buy books to help you study for the TOEFL exam if you have trouble locating information online.

For TOEFL preparation, PDFs are also available on Google. If you are having trouble finding books at the bookstore, you can also download them.

  • This is the most crucial advice if you’re feeling highly worried about how to prepare for TOEFL. You must be familiar with every possible category of exam questions.

As many different questions as you can, practice them because it is stated that practice makes a man perfect.

  • Start taking the TOEFL iBT practice test after a few days of studying.

You’ll feel more confident as a result. You can complete your exam whenever you feel assured and start doing well on the TOEFL iBT practice test.

Here are some pointers on how to prepare for TOEFL. You can do well on your TOEFL exam if you correctly implement the advice.

Important books for TOEFL preparation

How to prepare for TOEFL? When preparing for the TOEFL exam, the books are really helpful. The books provide you with accurate information about the exam format, syllabus, and types of questions you will encounter on the test. The titles of a few books that will help in your TOEFL exam preparation are listed below.

“The Official Guide to the TOEFL iBT Test, 6th Edition”

Kaplan’s “TOEFL iBT Prep Plus, 2020-2021”

Barron’s “TOEFL iBT, 17th Edition”

Barron’s “Essential Words for the TOEFL, 7th Edition”

“Official TOEFL iBT Tests Volume 1, 4th Edition”

Test Prep Books’ “TOEFL Preparation Book, 2020 and 2021”

Mometrix’s “TOEFL Preparation Book, 2021-2022”

The Princeton Review’s “TOEFL iBT Prep, 2021”

Online preparation courses for the TOEFL

You may also find some online TOEFL prep classes if you’d like. Online courses have the advantage of being accessible at any time and from any location. You have freedom if you study online. With the aid of online classes, you can study while working. This is also a helpful method if you are searching how to prepare for TOEFL.

Below are some top online courses that can help you achieve them.

ETS: Official TOEFL Test Prep

ETS provides online prep courses through edX ( a massive provider of online courses ).

Course Options:

  • TOEFL Audit Track Course: Free
  • TOEFL Verified Track Course: $49


Kaplan is a well-known, established company that provides online courses for different standardized exams.

Course Options:

  • Self-Paced, 3-Month Course: $349


The PrepScholar gives you a 5-day free trial along with it gives you one-on-one assistance while preparing for any course from it.

Course Options:

  • Free Trial Course (5 Days): Free
  • Best-Selling Course (1 Year): $187
  • Master’s Course (Unlimited): $385


Magoosh guarantees that the student who takes its online TOEFL course will improve his score by at least 4 points.

Course Options:

  • 1 Month Premium: $109
  • 6 Month Premium: $129


BestMyTest provides more than 2000 practice questions for students to practice, as well as practice tests for TOEFL to check your level.

Course Options:

  • Last Minute Package (7 Days): $39
  • Premium Package (6 Months): $189
  • Custom Packages (1-6 Months): $69-$129

Final words

We have covered how to prepare for TOEFL in this post. The best and most crucial exam preparation advice has been covered in this post. The correct definition of the TOEFL test and the various TOEFL test types are also discussed to ensure that you fully understand it.

It’s critical that we understand an exam’s topic before we start studying for it. Before discussing TOEFL suggestions, the TOEFL exam’s structure is also explained.

We sincerely hope you have enjoyed reading this post on how to prepare for TOEFL. Keep visiting the website regularly for more interesting posts like this.

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