ETS, the administrator of the TOEFL, has announced a new English language test called TOEFL Essentials that assures affordability, versatility, convenience and more accessibility to both students and institutions.
The test is expected to be made available across the world from August 2021. It will be a one and a half-hour test that will measure four core skills essential for communication including Listening, Writing, Reading and Speaking. The same has been designed for applicants in both academic and non-academic areas such as internships and interviews.
It will be distinctly different from the TOEFL iBT test, which will also feature a 5-minute personal statement in video format to let applicants demonstrate their personalities to universities.
ETS said that institutions, especially during times like these when students across the world have been hugely impacted by the Covid-19, want to be more accessible and affordable for students. They wish to remove as many obstacles as possible and also ensure high standards of quality education.
The TOEFL Essentials tests, unlike the TOEFL iBT test, will include 50% general English and 50% academic English. The TOEFL at-home test, rolled out in 2020, focuses 100% on academic English that is extracted directly from university-based academic sources.
The testing provider said that institutions will now be able to broaden their range of international applicants.
Executive Director of the TOEFL, Srikant Gopal, said that they now have two high-quality although distinct options under the TOEFL Family of Assessments suite that universities can use to make admission decisions.
While institutions will be able to assess applicants using any of the two tests, students will also have the advantage of choosing the test that is the most suitable for them and perform their best and showcase their abilities, Gopal added.
TOEFL Essentials, a distinctly different test will serve as a perfect complement to the TOEFL iBT test and attract new and more international students to an institution. The most significant factor for students when choosing an English language proficiency test of the preference of the test by universities along with their perceived ability to score well in the test, he noted.
Other testing providers including IELTS, Paragon Testing, iTEP and Cambridge also introduced an online version of their tests amid Covid-19. Notably, the number of institutions in the US accepting Duolingo’s English Tests also increased over last year.
He continued to say that institutions are interested in TOEFL Essentials and ETS expects that they will give their formal decisions on acceptance of the test soon.
Gopal pointed out that a recent survey revealed 90% of around 250 institutions in the US, UK and Canada wanted to accept TOEFL Essentials scores for the 2022-23 academic year. Around 95% of them believed the test would help attract quality students.
Although price is not a major factor in test choice for students, ETS strives to keep test fees as low as possible to provide opportunities to students across the world, Gopal added.
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