TOEFL Guide: Requirements, Eligibility, Exam, Syllabus
8 min

TOEFL Guide: Requirements, Eligibility, Exam, Syllabus

8 min
Uploaded on
Aug 24, 2022
Last updated on
Mar 13, 2023
Uploaded on
Aug 24, 2022
Last updated on
Mar 13, 2023
eyeglasses on white paper
TOEFL Test To Test You


You tend to feel nervous when you are about to give an examination, but the nervousness doesn’t last long. Knowing the pattern, syllabus and format in detail help you take another step towards excellence. Similarly, you can crack TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) by knowing the correct method, eligibility and requirements. TOEFL is among the best and most popular English Language Assessment Tests. So, take a sigh of relief and understand what TOEFL is, the preparation method, the TOEFL exam pattern, exam dates, fees, and test centres with the help of this guide.

What is the TOEFL Exam?

In the United States, the TOEFL test was first given in 1964. As time has passed, many universities have recognised the TOEFL as their official English proficiency test. The Educational Testing Service (ETS) administers the test known as the TOEFL, which stands for Test of English as a Foreign Language. The Educational Testing Service (ETS) is a private non-profit organisation that develops and delivers the exams. 

ETS is the owner of the TOEFL trademark. A standardised test known as the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is used to determine how well-versed non-native speakers are in the English language before they are admitted to schools or universities in English-speaking nations. More than 190 nations and territories, including more than 11,000 universities, recognise the test. The TOEFL scores are valid for 2 years from the test date.

Difference between TOEFL iBT and PBT

The terms TOEFL PBT and iBT refer to the paper-based and internet-based tests, respectively.

Importance of TOEFL examination

Being fluent in a language doesn't always indicate intelligence or skill. The TOEFL is the English language proficiency test most widely used for immigration, employment, and study. You may be sure that you'll stand out to admissions officers where it matters because more universities and institutions like it. For the purposes outlined above, the USA strongly favours the TOEFL, which will be used as the specified English proficiency test. To apply to schools and universities in the USA and Canada. The following are justifications for why a candidate's TOEFL score is crucial.

  1. Access to top study abroad opportunities is made possible by TOEFL scores.
  2. Look into a thriving job market
  3. Get immigration access

Parts of the TOEFL exam, syllabus and pattern

Writing, Reading, Speaking, and Listening are the four test components of the TOEFL. The purpose of these sections is to provide a thorough evaluation of the applicant's English language ability. These TOEFL test parts must be familiar to anyone taking the exam this year or in the future.

a. TOEFL Reading section

The goal of the TOEFL reading part is to assess how well applicants can read, comprehend, and present the written material in their own words. The readings come from various college and university-level textbooks and modules that can be used to define a discipline or a specific topic. Even if you are unfamiliar with the section, the passage will contain the solutions to the questions. This component evaluates the student's fluency and reading comprehension in English and their capacity to comprehend, peruse passages, and identify the author's point of view, attitude, and line of reasoning.
Syllabus and Pattern

Question type: 3–4 passages, 10 questions each
Total no. of questions: About 40
Total time: 54-72 minutes
Syllabus: Academic and General interest extracts. 

b. TOEFL Speaking section

Your fluency in academic English is evaluated in the speaking section. The speaking component consists of four challenges relating to real-life circumstances that applicants will encounter inside and outside the classroom. The speaking portion lasts for a total of 17 minutes. The TOEFL examiner conducts a face-to-face informational interview. The speaking component consists of four exercises intended to resemble real-life circumstances that applicants will face inside and outside the classroom.
Syllabus and Pattern

a) One independent task (prep time: 15 sec; response time: 45 sec)
b) Three integrated tasks – Read/Listen/Speak (prep time: 30 sec; response time: 60 sec)
Total no. of questions: 4
Total time: 17 minutes

c. TOEFL Writing section

The writing part aims to assess the applicant's capacity for academic writing. The applicants must provide a thorough essay with accurate and well-organized ideas, viewpoints, grammar, fluency, and vocabulary.
The issue should be effectively addressed in the essay. The essay must be created with all the necessary elements and material and organised correctly. To get a high writing grade, you must complete the write-up activities flawlessly, without any grammar mistakes.
Syllabus and Pattern

a) One integrated task – Read/Listen/Write (20 minutes) (reading time: 3 min; listening time: 2 min; writing: 15 min)
b) One independent task (30 minutes)
Total no. of questions: 2
Total time: 50 minutes

d. TOEFL Listening section

Your ability to comprehend conversations and lectures in English will be evaluated and measured on the TOEFL listening component of the test. This test determines whether or not the applicants can listen to and comprehend the lectures given in class throughout the semester. There will be brief lectures and conversations in the listening part.
Syllabus and Pattern

a) 3–4 lectures (3-5 minutes long, about 500-800 words), 6 questions each; About 30 questions in total
b) 2–3 conversations (about 3 minutes long, about 12-25 exchanges), 5 questions each; About 12 questions in total
Total no. of questions: 40
Total time: 41–57 minutes

Eligibility for TOEFL examination

The TOEFL has no set requirements for eligibility. There aren't many things needed. Any student or skilled worker from a non-native English-speaking setting is eligible to take the TOEFL exam. There is no upper age limit. Students who have graduated from at least Class 10 or Class 12 from a recognised board are advised to take the test. Regarding grades or degrees, there are no eligibility requirements. Students need to provide a valid passport as an identity proof to take the exam.

TOEFL examination registration

A detailed step-by-step tutorial for registering for the test online on the ETS website is provided below.

  1. Check out the ETS website.
  2. Register a new account or sign in with an existing one.
  3. Complete and fill in the fields accurately.
  4. Select "Register/Find Test Centers, Dates" from the menu.
  5. Select the times and dates for your TOEFL exam.
  6. After making the payment, the reservation is secured.
  7. In your registered email address and contact number, you will receive a confirmation of your reservation and an acknowledgement of your payment.

TOEFL exam fee

The TOEFL iBT test can be taken as often as possible for somewhere between $160 and $300. $180 is required to take the ETS TOEFL Paper Based Test (PBT). Seven days before the test date, the online applicants’ ETS TOEFL registration period closes. If you register after the deadline, you must pay an extra $40. A $60 charge must be paid before signing up for the new ETS TOEFL exam date if you want to reschedule the exam.

TOEFL examination results

Results for the TOEFL exam are published on ETS's official website. View your result by logging in with your ETS account. The declaration of the test results occurs about 6 days following the test date. Taking the TOEFL exam has a benefit in this regard. After the exam, you will receive a message containing information on the release date for your exam results. The average wait time for a TOEFL score report is 6-10 days. Logging into your ETS account will allow you to examine your scores and review your results. Your PDF score report is also available for download.

How to send your TOEFL scores?

While registering for the test, you can send your TOEFL results to 4 different colleges. The exam cost covers these 4 TOEFL destinations you must pay upon registration. At any moment, you can send your TOEFL results to additional locations besides the four indicated above for a charge of $20 per report per location. Your score reports will be delivered to your specified locations after roughly 13 days. 

TOEFL Scores and Countries accepting TOEFL Scores

Over 10,000 colleges worldwide accept TOEFL results as valid. The TOEFL test scores, according to ETS, are utilised by immigration officials to grant work or stay permits. Licencing and medical organisations use TOEFL results for certification. Candidates track their English language improvement using their TOEFL results. Organisations accept TOEFL results for a variety of purposes in addition to universities all across the world.

The TOEFL iBT test is preferred by nine out of ten American universities above other English-language exams, by more than 80% of graduate schools in Canada over other English-language exams, and all universities in Australia and New Zealand, all immigration services there, accept TOEFL iBT scores.

The TOEFL iBT is preferred by universities in France and Germany, earning the most TOEFL iBT scores overall. Russell Group universities and all other United Kingdom universities accept TOEFL iBT scores, making it a fair and impartial alternative.

TOEFL Preparation tips

  • Examine the test format.
  • Create a personalised study plan.
  • Take a lot of practice exams
  • Increasing reading speed
  • Make your weaker areas stronger.
  • Learn to Take Good Notes
  • Make Use of a Wide Variety of Words
  • Improve your listening abilities
  • Test Your Writing Speed
  • Develop Your Speech


Numerous colleges have established TOEFL as a general eligibility condition that candidates must meet in order to be admitted. Every non-native English speaker who wishes to study or work in an English-speaking nation must take the test; there are no prerequisites. Your TOEFL preparation will get off to a solid start if you keep all the information and these crucial ideas in mind. Before the big day, spend a lot of time practising the example questions and practise exams. So here's wishing you luck on your TOEFL journey.