1. One way to improve
in all skill areas is to increase your vocabulary knowledge. Use flashcards to write down new words. Write all forms of a
word, and note whether it can be used as a noun, verb, adjective, or adverb.
2. To improve your
reading skills, scan a passage to find and highlight key information and facts (dates, numbers, terms). Practice this frequently
to increase reading rate and fluency.
3. To practice for
the reading to learn questions, practice organizing the information in the passage. If the passage categorizes information,
create a chart and place the information in appropriate categories.
4. To prepare for
the TOEFL Reading section, become accustomed to scrolling techniques and reading on a computer screen. You can do this by
reading on the Internet or reading electronic documents at the library.
5. To prepare for
the Writing section, increase your vocabulary and learn to use idiomatic speech appropriately. Learn grammatical structures
so well that you can use them naturally when writing. Learn the conventions of spelling, punctuation, and layout (paragraph
6. To practice writing,
find a textbook that includes questions about the material at the end of chapters. Practice writing answers to the questions.
7. Ask an English
teacher or tutor to evaluate your writing by using the appropriate TOEFL Writing rubric.
8. To practice answering
the independent Speaking questions, make a list of familiar topics, then talk out loud for one minute about each. You may
want to begin by describing a familiar place or talking about a personal experience.
9. To impove your
speaking skills, practice conversing with native speakers of English. Ask them to correct you when you make a mistake.
10. When practicing
for the Speaking portion of the test, take around 15 seconds to plan before beginning to speak. Write down a few key words
and ideas, but do not attempt to write down everything you are going to say. Raters will give a lower rating to responses
that are read.
11. To strengthen
your grammatical skills for the Speaking portion of the test, learn grammatical structures so well that you can use them naturally
on the current question. You should avoid trying to identify which questions are “easy” or “difficult”
and try not to worry about incorrect answers. You should concentrate on doing the best you can on the current question. This
is a habit that you can learn through practice.
13. The best way
to improve your listening skills is by listening frequently to various types of material in many different subject areas (sciences,
social sciences, arts, business, etc.).
14. In the Listening
section, focus on the content and flow of material. Do not be distracted by the speaker’s style and delivery.
15. One way to stay
focused during the longer listening passages is to try to anticipate what a person is going to say next.
16. In the Listening
section, think about what each speaker hopes to accomplish. What is the speaker’s purpose for giving the speech or starting
the conversation? Is the speaker apologizing, complaining, making suggestions, etc.?
17. The Internet
is a great resource for listening material. Two Web sites of the British Broadcasting Corporation (BBC) —www.bbc.co.uk/radio
and www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish— provide streaming audio.
18. For TOEFL Listening
and Reading, remember that you do not need any special background knowledge to answer the questions. All the information needed
to answer the questions is contained in the material presented.
19. When taking
a test you may need to pace yourself so you have enough time to answer every question. You should try to budget enough time
for each question so you will be able to complete the questions without having to rush at the end. You should keep in mind
the average amount of time you may want to spend per question.
20. Avoid spending
too much time on any one question. If you have given the question some thought and you still don’t know the answer to
a question, eliminate as many answer choices as possible and then select the best choice. You can review your responses in
the Reading section by clicking View.