TOEFL® Lessons

Improve your TOEFL® score by learning from our comprehensive TOEFL® lessons. Each lesson was developed to hone a specific skill needed to master the TOEFL.

7 lessons0 / 7 completed

Lesson Type Selected: grammar
Intermediate

1. Countable nouns and uncountable nouns

In this lesson, you will learn how to use countable and uncountable nouns. By the end of this chapter, you will know how to use singular and plural countable as well as uncountable nouns, using the correct structures in the appropriate context.

Intermediate

2. Subject verb agreement rules

This lesson aims to prepare you to learn, use and master subject-verb agreement in English. You'll learn how to understand whether a subject is singular or plural and to match that subject with the appropriate verb. This chapter will show you a variety of contexts and will offer a range of exercises so you can formulate subject-verb agreement accurately in written or spoken situations.

Beginner

3. Use the right article

This lesson presents the usage of both definite and indefinite articles in a variety of contexts. You will learn how to use articles correctly in the given context. This lesson also prepares you for exceptions in English where an article may be omitted. By the end of this unit, you'll understand how to use articles, whether in a written context or dialogue situation.

Intermediate

4. Pick the right quantifier

In this lesson, you will learn when to pick the right quantifier, based on your knowledge of countable and uncountable nouns studied in the previous chapter. You'll learn how to match the appropriate quantifier, given the context and noun used in the sentence.

Advanced

5. Verb complementation - What follow verbs

This lesson aims to prepare you to use verb complements successfully. You will learn how to follow a verb with gerund, infinitive, and that-clause. Consequently, you will be able to formulate sentences more accurately in English, whatever the context.

Intermediate

6. Relative pronouns and relative clauses

In this unit, you'll learn what a relative pronoun is, and how it's used to create a relative clause. You'll also learn how to formulate a defining and non-defining relative clause, and how to use both structures in everyday, practical English. Therefore, this lesson will help you to enhance your writing skills for essays and your accuracy in spoken English.

Beginner

7. Sentence patterns

This lesson will prepare you to use the principle sentence patterns in English. You will learn how to use simple, compound, complex and compound-complex sentences, using the appropriate coordinating, subordinating or adverbial conjunction. This lesson will help you to improve sentence structure and therefore, your writing skills for essay creation.

8 lessons0 / 8 completed

Lesson Type Selected: academic skills
Intermediate

1. Learn common TOEFL synonyms - part 1

In this lesson, you will learn about 18 synonyms that you will often see in the TOEFL exam. In addition, with hands-on exercises provided in this lesson, you will be able to know how to use them in your TOEFL exam by the end of this lesson. Vocabulary is one of the cornerstone skills for passing the TOEFL iBT, and part of having good vocabulary is increasing your knowledge of synonyms, a word which is in some way similar to another word in meaning.

Intermediate

2. Learn common TOEFL synonyms - part 2

This is part 2 of "Learn common TOEFL synonyms". In this lesson, you will learn about another 19 synonyms that you will often see in the TOEFL exam. In addition, with hands-on exercises provided in this lesson, you will be able to know how to use them in your TOEFL exam by the end of this lesson.

Advanced

3. Learn common TOEFL synonyms - part 3

This is part 3 of "Learn common TOEFL synonyms". In this lesson, you will learn about another 16 synonyms that you will often see in the TOEFL exam. In addition, with hands-on exercises provided in this lesson, you will be able to know how to use them in your TOEFL exam by the end of this lesson.

Advanced

4. Learn common TOEFL synonyms - part 4

This is part 4 of "Learn common TOEFL synonyms". In this lesson, you will learn about another 16 synonyms that you will often see in the TOEFL exam. In addition, with hands-on exercises provided in this lesson, you will be able to know how to use them in your TOEFL exam by the end of this lesson.

Advanced

5. Learn common TOEFL synonyms - part 5

This is part 5 of "Learn common TOEFL synonyms". In this lesson, you will learn about another 13 synonyms that you will often see in the TOEFL exam. In addition, with hands-on exercises provided in this lesson, you will be able to know how to use them in your TOEFL exam by the end of this lesson.

Advanced

6. Learn common TOEFL synonyms - part 6

This is part 6 of "Learn common TOEFL synonyms". In this lesson, you will learn about another 17 synonyms that you will often see in the TOEFL exam. In addition, with hands-on exercises provided in this lesson, you will be able to know how to use them in your TOEFL exam by the end of this lesson.

Intermediate

7. Learn compare and contrast transition words

ETS raters view usage of transitional words as proof of strong proficiency in written English. In this lesson, we will focus on learning transitional words and phrases for expressing a a compare and contrast relationship. It is worthwhile for you to familiarize yourself with these words and how they are used effectively in writing and speaking.

Intermediate

8. Learn cause and effect transition words and phrases

In this lesson, we will focus on learning transitional words and phrases for expressing cause and effect relationships. ETS raters measure your ability to use transitional words and phrases to express cause and effect relationships in your speaking and writing responses. It is worthwhile for you to familiarize yourself with these words and how they are used effectively in writing.

8 lessons0 / 8 completed

Lesson Type Selected: TOEFL reading
Intermediate

1. Vocabulary question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle vocabulary questions on the TOEFL reading section. Vocabulary questions are often very straight forward. One or two words are underlined in the passage. The multiple choice question will ask you to choose an option that is closest in meaning to the underlined word. There are a few tips to help with a vocabulary question. However, it is important to keep in mind that there is no exact way to get around this question besides having as many vocabulary memorized as possible.

Intermediate

2. Reference question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle reference questions on the TOEFL reading section. Reference question is the type of reading question that will take you less than twenty seconds to read both the question and all the options. However, it will also be the type of question that tricks you into confusion. You will understand clearly the question and all the choices (which do not always happen with all other question types), and you still do not know what to choose. We will show you how to effectively solve this question so you can save your precious time for other questions that require more reading.

Intermediate

3. Essential Information question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle essential information(paraphrase) questions on the TOEFL reading section. The paraphrase question gives you a sentence in the prompt and asks you to choose the answer choice that summarizes that sentence best. This type of question can be tricky since the answer choices are similar to each other. The trick to solving this question is to understand the keywords and dynamic in the prompt sentence. Let’s look at an example.

Advanced

4. Inference question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle inference questions on the TOEFL reading section. Inference question requires you to make logical assumptions and connections based on the information in the passage to come up with a new conclusion. In other words, inference question asks you to pick up on information that is indirectly suggested, and not directly stated in the passage. Questions of this type often contain words like ‘imply’, ‘suggest’, or ‘infer’ in the question prompt.

Advanced

5. Sentence insertion question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle sentence insertion questions on the TOEFL reading section. Sentence insertion question asks you to place a sentence in a paragraph in the text. You never can be too careful with the choices for this question. Even when you think you know the correct answer, it is a good idea to try the sentence in all the locations before settling down. The trick for this type of question is to look for as many linking devices, terms, pronouns, and connections between the sentence and the paragraph as possible.

Advanced

6. Purpose question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle purpose questions on the TOEFL reading section. Purpose question asks why a detail or argument is used in the paragraph. In other words, it asks for the purpose of an idea or detail in the passage. Purpose question requires careful reading of the whole passage, not just a few details or sentences. To answer this question, you need to understand the overall purpose of the passage then figure out how the asked detail fits into the big purpose of the passage.

Intermediate

7. Detail question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle detail questions on the TOEFL reading section. Detail question asks you to identify specific details within the asked paragraph, not a general idea or theme from the whole reading. It is important to focus only on the paragraph and make no assumption from connections from the rest of the reading.

Intermediate

8. Negative Factual Information question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle negative factual questions on the TOEFL reading section. The negative factual question is the only type of question that asks you to choose the incorrect answer. The key to this answer is the word ‘except’ that is in all CAPS at the end of every question. This question will have four answer choices like all other multiple choice questions in the TOEFL. However, there will be three correct answers and one incorrect answer, and you need to choose the incorrect one. This question may not be difficult, yet it can be very confusing. Let’s look at an example to understand this question further.

17 lessons0 / 17 completed

Lesson Type Selected: TOEFL writing
Beginner

1. 5 Types of TOEFL independent writing prompts

In this lesson you will learn about the five different types of writing prompt on TOEFL independent writing. The five types are Agree or Disagree Questions, Preference Questions, If / Imaginary Questions, Description or Explanation Questions, and Compare and Contrast Questions. You will also find tips for each type of prompt.

Beginner

2. Prewriting the independent response

In this lesson, you will learn about the prewriting stage of the independent writing task. Prewriting is what you do before you write the essay. This involves reading the prompt carefully, brainstorming ideas, and creating an outline.

Intermediate

3. Giving opinions in the independent response

In this lesson, you will learn and practice many useful expressions for giving opinions. This includes stating an opinion, stating a preference, showing agreement and disagreement, giving reasons, giving examples, giving personal experience, and generalizing. Expressing opinions is very important for many different types of TOEFL essay.

Intermediate

4. Connecting ideas in the independent response

In this lesson, you will learn and practice many different ways to connect ideas. Basic connections includes listing, addition, result, contrast, similarity, and summary. Advanced connections include generalizing, highlighting, reformulation, changing topics, giving alternatives, and concession. You will have a chance to practice these connections in paragraph form.

Intermediate

5. Writing the introduction of independent writing task

In this lesson, you will learn how to write an introduction to the independent essay. You will learn what is often included in an introduction, read some examples, arrange sentences in correct order, and practice writing your own introductory paragraphs.

Intermediate

6. Writing the body paragraph of independent writing task

In this lesson, you will learn about writing body paragraphs for the independent writing task. First you will learn what is usually included in a body paragraph. Then you will read some good examples before trying to write body paragraphs yourself.

Intermediate

7. Writing the conclusion of independent writing task

In this lesson, you will learn how to write a conclusion to the independent essay. First you will learn what is often included in a conclusion. Then you will read some good examples before writing your own conclusion paragraphs.

Beginner

8. Scoring for the independent writing

In this lesson, you will learn how the independent essay is scored. You will see the criteria that TOEFL raters use to evaluate your essay and descriptions of essays at different scores. You will also learn what some of the skills are that you need to score well on the essay.

Beginner

9. Taking notes for the integrated response

In this lesson, you will learn about one of the most important skills for the integrated writing task: taking notes. First you will learn some of the basic principles of good note-taking. Then you will see some good examples of taking notes on reading passages and lectures. And finally, you will have a chance to practice taking good notes and applying what you learned.

Beginner

10. Writing the outline of an integrated writing task

In this lesson, you will learn how to create an outline for an integrated writing response. To begin, you’ll look at the basic framework for a good outline. Then you’ll see examples of outlines created from notes on reading and listening material. Finally, you’ll have a chance to use notes to create your own essay outlines.

Advanced

11. Paraphrasing for the the integrated response

In this lesson, you will learn how to paraphrase, or put ideas that you read or hear into your own words. This involves several different techniques, such as using synonyms, changing sentence structure, combining information, and omitting information. You will practice these skills separately, and then put them all together as you summarize paragraphs.

Advanced

12. Citing for the integrated response

In this lesson, you will learn and practice citing authors and speakers in the integrated writing response. This includes basic citing techniques as well as special expressions for citing agreement and disagreement and verbs used for reporting. You will practice these skills separately before putting them together and citing information from a reading passage and lecture.

Advanced

13. Synthesizing for the integrated response

In this lesson, you will learn about how to synthesize information, which means to combine and compare information in two different sources of information. You will learn and practice expressions for showing contrast, concession, and addition. Then you will practice combining and comparing information from a reading passage and a lecture.

Intermediate

14. Writing the introduction of integrated writing task

In this lesson, you will learn about how to write a basic introduction for an integrated writing response. First, you will see several introduction examples based on given outlines. Then you will read and listen and write introductory paragraphs based on what you see.

Intermediate

15. Writing the body paragraph of integrated writing task

In this lesson, you will learn how to write a body paragraph for the integrated writing response. You will see an example essay outline, followed by three example body paragraphs. Then you will use a given outline to write three body paragraphs of your own.

Intermediate

16. Writing the conclusion of integrated writing task

In this lesson, you will learn how to write a conclusion for the integrated writing response. First you will read several examples of good conclusions. The you will be given simple outlines for conclusions and try writing your own paragraphs.

Beginner

17. Scoring for the integrated writing

In this lesson, you will learn how the integrated essay is scored. You will see the criteria that TOEFL raters use to evaluate your essay and descriptions of essays at different scores. You will also learn what some of the skills are that you need to score well on the essay.

7 lessons0 / 7 completed

Lesson Type Selected: TOEFL listening
Intermediate

1. Attitude question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle attitude questions on the TOEFL listening section. The attitude question asks about the intention and attitude of the speaker when he/she talks about that detail. In other words, this question is about why the speaker mentions a specific detail. This question shows you details in the prompt but does not actually asks about it. It can be tricky sometimes. The most important trick to getting this question right is to look further than the surface.

Intermediate

2. Detail question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle details questions on the TOEFL listening section. The detail question is often asked in an academic talk. The question asks why a minor detail is mentioned in the talk. This detail is often an example provided in the lecture. This question is not easy because sometimes the details can be too minor and you didn't pay attention to it when listening to the lecture.

Intermediate

3. Function question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle function questions on the TOEFL listening section. This question does not ask you the "what" question but the "why". The function question won't ask you what does the listening mean like other questions, but it asks you why the speaker says what he says. Many times, the speaker uses slangs or idioms or says things that are not directly relevant to what the question asks. Your job is to figure out what those seem-to-be-irrelevant information do in the whole dialogue or talk.

Intermediate

4. Gist-Content question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle gist-content questions on the TOEFL listening section. Gist-content questions ask you to identify the main topic or idea of the listening conversation or lecture. You can recognize gist-content questions because they use phrases like "mainly about", "mainly discussing".

Advanced

5. Inference question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle inference questions on the TOEFL listening section. Inference questions requires you to understand something when it is not directly stated in the lecture or conversation. This type of question requires you to look further than the surface and literal meaning of the speech, ideas or sentences to find the correct answer. You can recognize inference questions because they use phrases like "What does the professor imply…?" or "What can be inferred…?".

Intermediate

6. Gist-Purpose question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle gist-purpose questions on the TOEFL listening section. The gist of something is the main point or key idea. Gist-purpose questions ask you to identify what the main purpose of the conversation or lecture is. The purpose question often looks for the overall purpose of the dialogue, or why the dialogue happens in the first place, not any specific detail. You should only focus on the big picture of the dialogue for this question.

Advanced

7. Connecting-Content question

In this lesson, you will learn about how to tackle inference questions on the TOEFL listening section. Connecting content questions ask you to show understanding of the relationships among ideas in a lecture and may require you to fill in a chart or table. This is one of the very few multiple choices listening questions. If there are three columns, the question is worth two points instead of one. The question can ask you to categorize answer options into categories or put the options in a specific order.