Factors that affect your TOEFL score
So you have finally made up your mind and want to take the TOEFL exam. So congratulations to take the first step forward. So now you have to figure out how to get the best score for the TOEFL. In this article, we will discuss the various factors that affect your TOEFL score.
If you are taking the TOEFL exam, then you must have a score in mind and you would try to achieve your desired score. However, getting a good score needs good practice and also dedication.
We have studied an ETS’s 2016 report and it looks like five main factors affect the TOEFL score.
So, if you are willing to take the TOEFL and get a good score, follow this article we will list down the five main factors that affect your TOEFL score.
The similarity between your language and English can affect average TOEFL Scores
One of the very interesting factor what we have observed is that the region or the country where you live has an impact on your TOEFL score. You can see that European language groups and European countries have better TOEFL score, and the reason is most of the European languages are very similar to English and that’s the reason why Western European countries tend to have higher TOEFL scores.
The same logic applies to South American countries where the TOEFL scores are relatively higher than other parts of the world, as they also speak the languages that are similar to English. Countries speaking Spanish or Portuguese have a trend of getting a higher TOEFL score. The phonetics and vocabularies of these languages are similar to English compared to French.
CEFR Assessment Test
So it’s quite normal that the French-speaking population has a bad TOEFL score. That’s the reason why people from France and other French islands of Haiti, Guadeloupe, and Martinique have some of the lowest average TOEFL scores in the region otherwise known as “Latin America.”
National Education has an impact on average TOEFL score
The average TOEFL score of a country depends on how well the education sector is funded and what is the educational infrastructure of the country. The best example of this is of an African country Liberia, interestingly the official language of the country is English, however, the average TOEFL score of the country is 67, which is on the bottom of the average score for countries. The reason is the lack of a proper education system and also the country struggles with severe poverty.
TOEFL Vocabulary Quiz 1
Similarly, if you see the European countries like Albania and Kosovo their average TOEFL score is 82, the reason is both the countries education sector is not well funded. Whereas if you compare the countries of Romania and Hungary with the former has much higher TOEFL score. The reason behind is that these countries are well funded in the education sector.
Availability of English education is a determining factor
Another major factor is how does your country focus on English education, in short, the availability of English education. For example, Japan, France are all developed countries and their education sector is very well funded and structured, but their focus is less on English education and that’s the reason all these countries have relatively lower average TOEFL score. Whereas Korea has made English education compulsory and that result can be seen on the TOEFL score. Japan has an average TOEFL score of 71 and Korea has an average score of 83. Factors that affect your TOEFL scoreFactors that affect your TOEFL score | a 2019 study by ETSClick To Tweet
TOEFL score is directly proportional to Cultural and economic ties to the English-speaking world
Your average TOEFL score is influenced by how your country has cultural and economic ties with the English speaking world. Finland, for instance, has one of the most non-English-like languages in Europe. But the nation of Finland has lots of ties to the global community and English speaking economic powers, such as Canada, America, and the U.K. This helps Finland have an average TOEFL iBT score of 95, placing it in the top half of European countries and territories.
If you see some of the American countries like Uruguay and Costa Rica, they have a high TOEFL score the reason behind they have a very good connection with the United States and Britain. Uruguay is a small nation where people are very enthusiastic about British and American pop culture. Costa Rica is a country that relies a lot on tourism, especially for tourists from the U.S. and Canada. The nations’ cultural and economic ties to the English sphere give them high average TOEFL scores.
The use of English as a lingua franca
You also see consistently high average TOEFL scores in countries where English is lingua franca–a common language that different groups of language speakers use when they talk to each other. For example, native speakers of Assamese, Hindi, and Bengali all had high average TOEFL scores. These languages are spoken in India. India has a lot of different local languages but uses English as a public language of communication between all its different language speakers. The “English-as-lingua-franca” phenomenon also helps South Africa, the Philippines, and Antigua & Barbuda to have high average scores on the TOEFL iBT.
Key takeaways about – Factors that affect your TOEFL score
It’s important to remember that the group averages for TOEFL in ETS’s 2017 report are just that: group averages. TOEFL scores by individuals in each group can vary a lot. Being from a country like Germany doesn’t guarantee you’ll get a good TOEFL score. And if you have a native language that’s associated with low TOEFL scores–such as Tajik or Khmer–this doesn’t mean that your TOEFL score will be low.
To get a top TOEFL score, understand the ways that your language is similar and different from English, and recognize how these differences and similarities influence you as you learn English. And seek out educational opportunities, either online, through a tutor, or a local school. Besides, look for aspects of English language culture that you can enjoy and learn from–maybe movies, TV, or music. And talk to fellow ESL students and TOEFL preppers in English; use English as a lingua franca with your peers.
How to improve your TOEFL score?
The above points are just a number and you don’t have to be disheartened by the ETS scores. If you have the dedication and the time to practice then you can be sure of achieving your target score. Factors that affect your TOEFL score
Some of the key points you must follow –
- Recently the TOEFL exam structure has changed, so get used to the new format.
- Time management – this is one of the most crucial factors. You must be accustomed to the exam structure and the time. The better you manage the time, the higher the score is.
- Get used to the computer keyboard – If you are taking the TOEFL iBT then you have to type on the computer and most of the time people face difficulties with typing. So better start practicing typing with a keyboard.
- Focus on your Writing and Speaking section – These 2 sections are the score deciding factor. If you want a better score then you must focus on writing and speaking. The better you score on these 2 sections, you will get an overall better score.
- Take a mock exam – Don’t think of scoring the perfect score in the 1st time. The best approach is to take several real-time mock exams to understand strengths and weaknesses and act on them.