TOEFL Speaking Strategies

The TOEFL speaking section consists of six tasks. The first two are independent tasks while the last four are dependent tasks. Here are a few tips to improve your score on the TOEFL speaking section.

Learn to speak from notes

On the actual TOEFL test you won’t get enough time to prepare a transcript of your answers. All that you will be able to do is to make some fragmented notes. Your success depends upon your ability to speak clearly and correctly with only notes as a guide.

For example consider a question like ‘What are the qualities of a good teacher?’

You won’t get time to write down a detailed answer before you speak. So quickly think about the qualities that we normally associate with a good teacher: patience, knowledge, ability to control the class, willingness to help etc.

Jot down these words or phrases on a piece of paper. While speaking take a glance at these notes and express your thoughts in complete sentences.

Here is a sample answer.

A good teacher should have a lot of patience. He should be a well-informed person who is constantly expanding his knowledge. He must be willing to help and keen on improving the overall performance of his students. He must be good at interacting with students of all types and capable of controlling a large class.

Organize your thoughts

Your answers in the speaking section should be organized, but they are not spoken essays. That means there is no need to use an introductory sentence. Answers should be relatively brief so make your point quickly. Your first sentence should give your main idea. The following sentences should support this main idea.