TOEFL® Integrated Writing Practice

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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 150 to 225 words.

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

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Question: Summarize the point made in the lecture and explain how the speaker cast doubt on specific points made in the reading passage.

Chevalier de Seingalt (1725–1798) recounted his life and adventures in a long memoir written toward the end of his life. the Chevalier was a controversial figure, but because of the people he met, his memoir became a valuable historical source about eighteenth century European society.  However, the accuracy of the memoir has been brought into question by critics claiming that the Chevalier distorted or invented events to make his life seem more glamorous than it was.

One point brought into question was that, in his memoir, he Chevalier claims he was very wealthy while living in Switzerland. While it was known he spent large amounts of money on parties and gambling there, evidence has recently surfaced showing that the Chevalier borrowed large sums from a Swiss merchant.  Critics argue that because of his need for borrowing money he could not have really been very rich.

Critics also question the accuracy of the conversations the Chevalier records in his memoir between himself and the famous writer Voltaire. There is no doubt that these two men met and conversed; however, critics state that it is impossible for the conversations to accurately be captured because they were recorded many years after they occurred. Critics point out that exact phrases from the extended conversation held years before are impossible to remember.

Another disputed event is the Chevalier's account of his escape from a notorious prison in Venice, Italy. The Chevalier claims he used a piece of metal to make a hole in the ceiling and climb out of his cell. Critics argue that, while it makes for an enjoyable reading, it is more likely that the jailers were bribed to free him. They note that the Chevalier had many politically well-connected friends in Venice capable of offering a bribe.

 

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Read a short passage
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Listen to part of a lecture on the same topic.
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Question: Summarize the point made in the lecture and explain how the speaker cast doubt on specific points made in the reading passage.
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Question

Summarize the point made in the lecture and explain how the speaker cast doubt on specific points made in the reading passage.

Your Essay

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Review

THIS IS NOT YOUR REVIEW!

It's an example of what you can expect from our writing reviews



Review Status: No review requested Status: (N/A)
Review Summary (Sample)
Score 2 / 5

Get your essay reviewed which includes a writing score, comprehensive feedback on all parts of the essay, and a TOEFL report on each writing criteria.


The below sample is what you can expect from each writing review.

Writing Review Sample:
Sample writing essay
How we review your writing essay Our TOEFL certified instructors will review your writing essay based on the following criteria:
  1. Task Fulfillment
  2. Relevance & Completeness of Information
  3. Grammatical Usage
  4. Vocabulary Usage
  5. Connections & Coherence
  6. Connection between Lecture & Reading
You will receive a score, feedback, and a TOEFL report on each writing criteria. The average score for all criteria will be converted to a score out of 15. This reviewing process imitates how ETS® TOEFL grades a TOEFL writing response.
Task Fulfillment (Sample)
Criteria Description Score & TOEFL Report
Task fulfillment is about how well you respond to the question you are given. TOEFL raters are looking for a response that answers the question directly, with relevant ideas that are fully developed. Fulfilling the task means answering all parts of the question completely.
Score Description
0

does not address the topic at all or simply repeats words or statements from the reading passage.

1

The response does not fulfill the requirements of the task, as it contains little meaningful information.

2

The response contains some meaningful information, but does not fulfill the requirements of the task.

3

The response is clearly aimed at the task, although it does not satisfactorily fulfill the requirements.

4

The response fulfills some or most parts of the task.

5

The response completely fulfills the task.

Relevance & Completeness of Information (Sample)
Criteria Description Score & TOEFL Report
Relevance and completeness of information selected is about how you understand and provide information from the reading and lecture. Raters want to see that you can understand main ideas from the lecture and reading passage.
Score Description
0

does not address the topic at all or simply repeats words or statements from the reading passage.

1

includes very little, if any, relevant information from the lecture

2

includes some relevant information from the lecture, but omits major ideas

3

includes some relevant information from the lecture, but may fail to include one main idea from the lecture

4

includes all major points from the lecture

5

includes all major points from the lecture and relevant details

Grammatical Usage (Sample)
Criteria Description Score & TOEFL Report
Grammatical usage is about how you use English grammar, sentence structure, and the basic conventions of writing. Raters want to see that you can use what you know correctly, and that you can use a wide variety of structures to express your ideas.
Score Description
0

does not address the topic at all or simply repeats words or statements from the reading passage.

1

contains many errors that interfere with meaning

is limited in grammatical range and frequently repetitive

uses mostly simple and repetitive sentence forms (simple and compound sentences)

has few or no attempts at complex senten

2

contains several noticeable problems with form and usage that interfere with meaning

includes some variety of grammatical forms but still contains unnecessary repetition

relies primarily on simple sentence forms (simple and compound sen

3

contains some errors of form and usage that occasionally interfere with meaning

demonstrates reasonable facility with basic structures and clearly attempts complex sentences (though may contain errors)

4

contains some errors of form and usage that do not interfere with meaning

includes a range of structures and sentence types, including some complex structures, used generally effectively

5

contains only very minor errors that never interfere with meaning

includes a variety of grammatical forms used comfortably

makes few or no mistakes with simple sentence forms

includes complex sentences used comfortably and may c

Vocabulary Usage (Sample)
Criteria Description Score & TOEFL Report
Vocabulary usage is about how you use English words. Raters are looking for writing that uses different words correctly and accurately, and that uses a wide range of words that help readers understand.
Score Description
0

does not address the topic at all or simply repeats words or statements from the reading passage.

1

includes mistakes with basic word form

includes limited vocabulary, with repetition and reliance on vocabulary from the question prompt

often uses inappropriate or incorrect words or wording

2

may include some incorrect word forms

attempts to use a range of words and phrases but may make errors that confuse the reader

makes somewhat accurate word choice but at times leaves the reader guessing

3

contains some errors in word form that may cause confusion

uses a limited range of words and phrases that is mostly appropriate

makes generally accurate word choice with only some effort by the reader

4

shows general facility with word forms with only minimal errors

uses a good range of words, phrases and possibly some idiomatic language

includes generally accurate word choice that doesn’t require reader effort to understand and some

5

may have only very minor errors in word form

effectively uses a wide range of words, phrases, and idioms

includes generally accurate word choice and at times demonstrates sophistication and precision in vocabulary

Connections & Coherence (Sample)
Criteria Description Score & TOEFL Report
Coherence and connections are about how you put your ideas together and link different sentences to each other. Raters want to see speaking that flows naturally from idea to idea without confusing the listener.
Score Description
0

does not address the topic at all or simply repeats words or statements from the reading passage.

1

does not connect ideas

does not use expressions of transition, introduction, or conclusion

2

does not adequately connect ideas, causing some reader confusion

attempts only basic expressions of transition, introduction, or conclusion, but may do so ineffectively or incorrectly

does not feel unified

3

shows some connection between ideas, though several connections may be unclear

includes some basic expressions of transition, introduction, and conclusion

needs to be more strongly unified

4

generally connects ideas well, though a few connections may be unclear

includes expressions of transition, introduction, and conclusion

feels somewhat unified overall

5

connects ideas very clearly

includes a wide range of words and expressions of transition, introduction, and conclusion

feels unified overall

Connection between Lecture & Reading (Sample)
Criteria Description Score & TOEFL Report
Connections between lecture and reading relate to how you compare and contrast the information in the lecture and reading. Raters want to see that you can see the relationship between ideas in different sources and explain that relationship.
Score Description
0

does not address the topic at all or simply repeats words or statements from the reading passage.

1

The response does not make connections between the lecture and reading passage

2

The response fails to accurately explain the connection between lecture and reading or does not mention the connection

3

The response connects the lecture and reading but may lack precision or clarity in describing the connection

4

The response connects the lecture and reading generally quite well, though it may include some slightly vague or imprecise explanation of this connection.

5

The response accurately and effectively connects the ideas in the lecture with the related ideas in the reading passage.

 
Sample Essay
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Reading passage
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Audio lecture.
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TOEFL Integrated Writing Tips for Success
These are general tips that will appear on all Integrated writing questions.

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.
 
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