TOEFL® Integrated Writing Practice 21

close Filter
search
 
schedule20:00
schedule03:00

You'll have 3 minutes to read a passage. After reading, you'll listen to a lecture regarding the same topic you just read. Finally, you'll have 20 minutes to write a response to a question that asks you about the relationship between the lecture you heard and the reading passage. Try to answer the question using information from the reading passage and the lecture.

Typically, an effective response will be 250 to 300 words.

We recommend you practice taking notes with a pen and paper like you will during your TOEFL exam.

Subscribe to unlock all writing practice content

Subscribe to unlock all writing practice content

Question: Summarize the points in the lecture, being sure to explain how they address the specific concerns about social media described in the reading passage.

Despite the obvious advantages of technology, social media has generated highly negative consequences. To begin with, social media has created a false sense of connectivity and friendship. Additionally, social media has encouraged new forms of harassment through cyber-bullying. One last result of social media is a decrease in overall productivity. These negative attributes make social media a dangerous and controversial set of tools.

The first negative consequence of social media is a false sense of connectedness. People feel a sense of belonging when they can log onto the Internet and see the people they can talk to. Unfortunately, despite the number of people everyone can connect with, there are lower standards for what constitutes a friend. Relationships are casual online interactions rather than legitimate friendships.

Another consequence of social media is the creation of cyber-bullying. People in all age groups now find themselves the object of scorn and derision through message boards. In online interactions, people don’t fear to say things because they don’t have to do so in person. This unfortunate byproduct can have dreadful repercussions for both bullies and the bullied.

Finally, social media has become a distraction and decreased productivity. Students doing homework are likely to be pulled towards scouring social media to check on their friends. Rather than pursuing hobbies, people are more likely to spend time pursuing artificial relationships they established online. Social media has ultimately provided a source of addicting distraction that has turned the world into unproductive workers.

Thus when all factors are considered, the presence of social media has simply brought about too many negative repercussions for people. It has replaced genuine relationships with impersonal interactions. It has introduced a new and almost unpunishable form of bullying. Also, it has become a distraction, turning people into unproductive workers. The snowball effect of negative repercussions is astounding when examined in unison.

Word Count: 0
 
03:00
Subscribe to unlock all writing practice content

Question: Summarize the points in the lecture, being sure to explain how they address the specific concerns about social media described in the reading passage.

Word Count: 0

Listen to part of a lecture on the same topic.

Subscribe to unlock all writing practice content

Sample Essay

Through the reading and the lecture there are many negative consequences of social media presented. Both give many examples to help support the same idea.

First they mention that social media destroys relationships. In both the reading and the lecture they show that people have begun to put more value on computer based relationships rather than real life ones. They frame this idea as people losing touch with the real world and losing genuine relationships.

Next, they both propose that another negative consequence of social media is cyber-bullying. This is when someone uses the internet to tease or harass someone, oftentimes anonymously. The lecture talks about how this is dangerous because people are willing to say things they wouldn’t say in public and they think that there are no consequences of doing so.

Finally, the reading and lecture take a look at productivity. They both use examples to show how social media is a huge distraction for people. Instead of doing work or homework, people use social media to distract them from their obligations. The lecture suggests that this has cost some businesses billions of dollars in lost revenue.


In conclusion, the reading and lecture use a wide variety of examples to support their thoughts that social media is a bad thing. The many negatives of social media are almost overwhelming.

Steps to tackle the TOEFL Integrated Writing Task
Step 1: Read the passage

The passage is important in giving you general background information of the topic. Read the passage carefully and make sure you understand it well. Take notes of the main ideas of the passage but do not go into too many details. Even though there will be a three minute timer for you to read the passage, the passage is actually displayed while you are writing your essay. Your goal while reading the passage the first time should be to understand the main points in each paragraph.

Step 2: Take notes during the lecture

Needless to say, you need to take careful notes during the lecture. Unlike the passage, you will not have a chance to listen to the lecture again, so make sure you take careful notes of either the contrast between the passage and the audio or the similarities. The lecture will provide wither counter examples and disagreements or will provide examples to further prove the passage correct. Every main point from the passage is discussed again in the lecture, but with a different angle and attitude. For example, if the lecture is disagreeing with the reading and the reading says "teamwork allows individuals to respond quicker to their assignments", then the lecture might say "teamwork takes away the opportunities for hard working, talented individuals to be recognized".

Step 3: Organize your response

There are many ways to organize an essay, but there are still a few good rules you can follow. The essay should have three sections: introduction, body, and conclusion. See the "TEACHING" tab in Independent Writing for an overview of the basic essay format.

1) Introduction
Write a short and concise introduction for your essay. This introduction should include an explanation of your topic, and how the article and the professor either agree or disagree with each other about the topic. Keep this introduction short. Do not go into details of the reasons. You will only need to introduce the topic briefly, so the reader knows what to expect in the body section.

2) Body
This section should include 2 to 3 paragraphs, each one with the main point that is mentioned in the reading. So each paragraph should start with a sentence that introduces the point to be discussed in the paragraph. Use the specific examples from the article and lectures. Use the same paragraph structure for all the paragraphs in the body section. Remember to start a new line for every paragraph. Don't clump all the paragraph together as a big block, and also do not break a paragraph into many small paragraphs. Each topic should be contained in one paragraph only. Do not copy the article or the lecture into your essay. This is your essay so all the information should be conveyed in your own words. Paraphrase as much as you can. Use a variety of words and sentence structures to avoid repetition in your essay, as well.

3) Conclusion
Write a short conclusion to sum up the whole essay. This conclusion can be considered a paraphrased version of the introduction. Restate the list of the main points and how the article and the professor either agreed or disagreed. Because this is the last section of the essay, many people tend to run out of time do not write a conclusion. First of all, running out of time can be avoided with proper organization and following our process. Secondly, forgetting to write a conclusion is a big mistake that you should avoid. Even if there is only one sentence in the conclusion, you still need to have one. It is essential for an essay to have three sections. Missing one section will make the essay incomplete, and that will cost you some points.

Step 4: Review

You should time yourself so that you have about 5 minutes left to review your essay. Fix typos, check for inconsistencies of the tenses of the verbs, the plurality of the subjects and verbs, and add transition words wherever you see fit. Having good transitions will gain you some extra points. Make sure the essay flows in a logical order.

Writing Template for Scenario 1: Contradiction

This scenario is the most common scenario. In this scenario, the lecture will contradict or cast doubt on the key points in the reading passage.

Writing Template:
The reading and the lecture are both about ______. Whereas the author of the reading states that _______, the lecturer suggests that ________. The lecturer casts doubt on the main points made in the reading by providing two/three reasons.

First of all, according to the reading, _____________ .However, the lecturer disputes this point. He/She says that _________. Furthermore, he/she mentions that ___________

Secondly, the reading states that _______. Nevertheless, the lecturer refutes this argument. He/She argues that __________. In addition, he/she points out ________.

Finally, the reading claims that _________. On the other hand, the lecturer believe that _____. He/She thinks that _______. Moreover, he/she feels that ________

In conclusion, although the reading and the lecture are both about _______, the two/three main points made in the reading are effectively challenged by the lecturer.
Writing Template for Scenario 2: Supporting with examples

In this scenario, the main points of the lecture are examples that support the key points in the reading passage.

Writing Template:
The reading and the lecture are both about _____________. The reading states that ____________. The lecture builds upon those same ideas to give a more comprehensive picture with two/three examples.

First of all, according to the reading, _________. Supporting this idea, the lecturer explains that _________. Furthermore, he/she mentions that __________.

Secondly, the reading states that_______. The lecturer then goes on to explain that ________. In addition, he/she points out ________.

Finally, the reading claims that _______. In support of this idea, the lecturer brings up the point that ________. (Optional) Moreover, he/she feels that _________.

In conclusion, although the reading and the lecture both discuss __________, the two/three main points made in the reading are effectively supported by the lecturer.
 
close
Hi, there!

Get 5 Ask Instructor questions as a reward
for singing up free today.

close
Start free today!