What is the structure of the TOEFL independent speaking task? What types of questions are on it? For how long must you speak? I answer these questions and give five tips on how to prepare yourself for the TOEFL iBT independent speaking task. Watch the video to prepare yourself and get a high score.
Hi, everyone. I'm Alex. Thanks for clicking, and welcome to this lesson on the TOEFL IBT: Independent Speaking Task Structure and Tips. So, this will be a two-part video. In the first section, I will describe the structure of the independent speaking task on the TOEFL IBT; and in the second part of the video, I will give you some tips on how to do well on this. So, if you know the structure, you might want to fast-forward maybe two or three minutes. Okay? If you don't know the structure, here we go.
So, on the TOEFL independent speaking task, there are two tasks that you must complete and there are two different types of questions. So, the first type of question on the TOEFL independent speaking task might be a personal choice question. So, in this section, you'll be asked a question about important people, places, events, or activities that you enjoy. It will always be something related to your personal experience or just general knowledge of life. So, you know, they might say: "Tell me about a person who has meant a lot in your life. If you could learn one instrument, what would you learn and why?" Something related to your personal experience.
And the section type of task, section type of question is a paired choice question. So, in this situation, you have to choose between "A" or "B", either or. So, for example, the questions might ask you to compare, you know: "Do you prefer life in a hot country, or do you prefer life in a country that has seasons? Do you prefer renting or owning a house or an apartment? Would you prefer private or group classes?" And then you basically have to give a response. "Well, I think that private classes are better than group classes because you get more personalized attention and because..." you know, whatever your reasons are.
So, in this task, you actually have 15 seconds of preparation time before you have to speak, and then you are given 45 seconds to speak. So, again, during the IBT... This is for the IBT, so the IBT, you have headphones on. You will hear the question and you will read the question on the computer screen. And once the question has, you know, finished being read, then you have 15 seconds to prepare a response. And I completely recommend a notebook. And then 45 seconds to answer the question. Now, in addition to bringing a notebook, let's look at some other tips that can help you to do well on the TOEFL independent speaking task.
All right, so let's look at some tips on how to do well on the independent speaking task. Number one, this goes for the test as a whole, be honest with yourself. Don't take the test unless you're ready. Now, what I mean by this is if you're a beginner student, don't even consider the TOEFL test. If you're an intermediate student, a high intermediate, then it's more possible for you to do well on the TOEFL. Remember, the TOEFL is meant to prepare people for an academic setting, so a university. So, if you are not a high intermediate or advanced student, you will find the TOEFL to be very, very difficult. And honestly, you would probably be wasting your money in taking the test or a preparation course if you're not an advanced or high intermediate student. So, be honest with yourself. It's hard advice, but it's completely true.
Number two: have a notebook to write your ideas for the independent speaking task. You are allowed to bring a notebook, and a pencil or a pen, and this will help you to write ideas, you know, after you read the question and listen to the question.
Number three: have at least two reasons or two examples to support your opinion. So, you know, if you're having one of the independent opinion choices or the second paired choice questions, make sure you have at least two reasons to support your position. So, if you are doing a paired choice question and the question is about, you know, do you prefer living in a dormitory or living at home when attending university, make sure you have two reasons for why you prefer, for example, living in a dormitory. In a dormitory, you can make friends and you can also make it to classes on time because it's very close to the campus, for example. So, at least two.