TOEFL Test Overview

In response to the rapidly evolving situation around COVID-19, TOEFL testing is offering an at-home test option for various locations. To view current-at-home test locations and view the most up to date information visit the ETS website.

What is the TOEFL® exam?

The Test of English as a Foreign Language (internet-based test) is designed to measure whether someone is prepared to live and thrive in an English-speaking environment. Over 1 million people worldwide opt to take an English-speaking proficiency exam each year in order to attend an English-speaking university or simply as a refresher course to improve their English skills.

TOEFL scores are often used by universities and colleges as an admission requirement for students who have received their education in a non-English speaking country.

The TOEFL Structure:

The exam consists of 4 sections and takes approximately 3 hours in total to complete. You can score between 0 - 120 on the TOEFL and the exam does not give a pass or fail grade as higher education institutions set their own TOEFL requirements. However, the scores students receive are valid for a period of two years after the test date. You can also combine your best section scores from tests taken within 2 years.

When you finish your exam, you will see your unofficial scores for the Reading and Listening sections on the screen. This will give you more control over your score and you can get an idea of how you did on the test and help you determine whether to report or cancel your scores.

Find out more on the TOEFL ETS Better Test Experience website.

TOEFL Section Overview Questions Length Scoring
Reading This section of the TOEFL exam includes two main question types: Multiple Choice and Drag-and-Drop. You read three or four passages from academic texts and answer questions. 3-4 passages, 10 questions each 54-72 minutes From 0 to 30 (Raw scores converted to scaled scores)
Listening Section This section contains similar types of questions as the reading section (Multiple Choice and Drag-and-Drop). You listen to lectures, classroom discussions and conversations and answer questions. 3-4 questions, 6 questions
2–3 conversations, 5 questions each
41-57 minutes From 0 to 30 (Raw scores converted to scaled scores)
Speaking Section Test takers are provided with a microphone to record themselves responding to two types of prompts in the speaking section. You will express an opinion on a familiar topic; speak based on reading and listening tasks. 4 tasks: 1 independent, 3 integrated 17 minutes From 0 to 30 (0-4 score per task; sum of task scores converted to scaled scores)
Writing Section This is the final section of the exam. It requires test takers to compose written responses to two tasks. You will write essay responses based on reading and listening tasks. 2 writing tasks 50 minutes From 0 to 30 (0-5 score per task; sum of task scores converted to scaled scores)

Free TOEFL Practice Test

How will you score? Take our free test and find out.

Sign up