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How to prepare for TOEFL® writing section

Madison Oster June 15th, 2018

How to prepare for TOEFL® writing section

Before progressing to any targeted level of practice, you must cement fundamental writing skills. Ensure you learn the conventions of spelling, punctuations and paragraph creation. Can you plan logically before commencing on the writing? Read and reread your writing checking for mistakes or other ways in which it could be improved and go ahead to improve it. Practice transition in your sentences using appropriate words and phrases. Finally, ensure that you have enough practice typing on a QWERTY keyboard as you will need to type in the test.

When practicing for independent writing, come up with a list of familiar topics and write essays about them. Practice timing your activities so that you take thirty minutes to plan, write and revise each essay. Prewriting entails thinking about and listing all ideas related to a task before writing. Pick out one main idea and create a list of the major points you would use to support it. Then you are ready to develop an essay using appropriate explanations and details. Once you have the essay written, reread it to ensure all the points you have written are relevant to the main idea, developed in detail and grammatically correct.

To identify more that you may need to learn, read articles and essays written by professional writers expressing their opinions on a given issue, be it environmental, social or educational. Pick out the writer’s stance on the issue and how it is expressed. You should also pay attention to how they address possible objections to their opinion. You can now go ahead and try to implement the same style of writing and have a tutor or teacher take a look at your essay. This is one of the reasons you need to register as a member on our site to have these resources available to you as you practice.

In academia, it is vital that you avoid plagiarizing other people’s ideas. This is the importance of paraphrasing as you can be able to express ideas from a source in your own authentic words. To practice paraphrasing, learn synonyms of words by heart. Practice writing sentences in their noun form and in the verb form, converting from one form to the other without strain. Start off your paraphrasing with one sentence moving on to sentences and finally entire passages using your own notes only.

For integrated writing, find a textbook in English that includes questions about the content at the end of a chapter and practice writing answers to questions. In addition, read academic articles and listen to related lectures, taking notes in your own language first and then in English. Note the major points and important details which you then use to write a summary of the article, ensuring that you have paraphrased appropriately. Once that is accomplished, focus on reducing the time taken for the same.

Read two different articles on the same topic and write a summary explaining their similarities and differences. You can do the same thing for different media such as a news reading and a newspaper story and explain how the material relates. The key here is to integrate all four language skills. One way is to listen to an online lecture as well as read an article on the same topic and take notes. Prepare both an oral and written summary of both. Discuss the two materials with a friend and prepare a vocabulary list of important words on the topic.

Evidently, there are a lot of ways to develop writing skills but there is also the need for guidance. To know precisely where you need more guidance or otherwise, enroll for our TOEFL® preparation course and take a test on this very website after you register as a member. You will be sure to come back with a success story such as those in our reviews section.


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