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Admission to the TOEFL

What is the TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language)

The TOEFL or Test of English as a Foreign Language is a test used to evaluate the proficiency of individuals whose native language is not English and it is scored on a scale of 0 to 300. The test is widely used by the admissions offices of universities and business schools across the English speaking world and particularly in the USA and Canada.

The key aim of the TOEFL is to establish whether your command of English is sufficient to allow you to conduct higher education studies in the language. A score in excess of 200 is usually required, but certain more competitive schools will ask for scores of 250 or above.

The TOEFL is a standardised test, so wherever in the world you take it, you will follow the same basic format and it is broken down into four sections – Listening, Structure, Reading and Writing. The Listening, Structure and Reading sections consist of multiple choice questions for which you must select the most appropriate answer. The Writing section requires you to compose a short essay on an assigned topic.

The TOEFL is administered worldwide by an organisation based in the USA named ETS or Educational Testing Service. This is a private company and is not in any way associated with agencies of the government of the United States.

These days the test is taken on a computer rather than on paper at a dedicated test centre. You can however elect to write your essay on paper if you wish.

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Last updated: 17 May 2010

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