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The Difference Between TOEFL and GRE

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                                              The Difference Between TOEFL and GRE
                                                             By Amy Nutt

   Those looking to take classes in the U.S. who are from another country will have extra hurdles to
cross in order to get accepted into the school of their choice. Extra testing is one of these. If you are
looking to enroll in an education program in the United States, yet English is not your first language,
you need to be aware of the basic exams you will be asked to take. These may include the Test of
English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) and the Graduate Record Examination (GRE).

What the TOEFL Tests

 The TOEFL test is designed to determine whether or not you can speak adequate English to enroll in
the program. You will be asked to read, listen to, comprehend, and write in English in order to pass the
test. This is the test that over 6,000 institutions in over 130 countries choose when determining
whether or not an applicant can speak fluent English.

 The first section of the test contains 50 listening comprehension questions. You will be asked to listen
to a variety of spoken passages, such as a class lecture or a passage being read. It will be read as
spoken by a North American English speaker. You will then answer questions on what you heard. The
second part of the test is a 40 question structure and written expression section. This tests whether or
not you can recognize the proper structure of written English. The reading comprehension section
involves 50 questions based on non-technical, college-level reading material. Finally, you will be asked
to write a passage on a given topic to judge your ability to write in English. Each of these sections is
timed, so you will need to be fairly adept at reading and comprehending English.

Who Needs to Take This Test

 The TOEFL is designed to test whether or not you can understand and use English as spoken in
American on the college level. While you may be a great English speaker, attending classes requires a
higher level of understanding and speaking ability than conversational English. Any non-native
speakers who wish to attend an English-speaking college can take this test, and it may be required for
entry. It is a good idea for those pursuing both undergraduate and graduate degrees, but some
graduate schools will accept students who graduated from English-speaking programs for their
undergrad degrees without the test results. The test results are valid for two years after the exam is
first scored.

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 What the GRE Tests

 According to the Educational Testing Service, which administers both the TOEFL and the GRE tests,
the GRE is designed to test “verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, critical thinking, and analytical
writing skills.” This can be subject specific or general, depending on the test chosen. The test is
designed for students who are applying for graduate school programs. It is designed for native English

 The test is unique in the fact that it is a computerized adaptive test. This means that the computer
adjusts the questions given to the test taker based on whether or not the previous question is
answered correctly. This allows the test to give a score with fewer questions asked.

 Who Needs to Take This Test

 The GRE is required by many English-speaking colleges and universities that have graduate
programs. It is used to help “level the playing field” for graduate school applicants, as it is designed to
give an accurate, unbiased measure of an applicant's ability level.

 You may need to take this test and submit your scores if you plan to attend grad school, regardless of
your English speaking ability. A minimum score may be required for your field of choice. Some
programs only look at a certain portion of the test, such as the quantitative reasoning section for a
math program, but you will need to take the entire test if your school requires these scores for entry
into the graduate program.

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                                                     How to Pass the TOEFL Exam
                                                                   By Jason Kay

Passing the TOEFL exam is a critical step in getting into college, obtaining professional certifications
needed for work and even getting a job in certain cases. For anyone whose native language is not
English, the TOEFL exam is often something they face if they plan to live or study in an English
environment. TOEFL or Test of English as a Foreign Language is a standardized test of academic
English that is administered worldwide. It is available in an Internet-based form and a paper test.

 The TOEFL exam is not an easy test. It is comprised of 4 parts: reading, listening, speaking and
writing and takes 4 hours to complete. The test taker must have a very good understanding of the
English language including grammar, idioms, listening skills and vocabulary. It is very important to
prepare for the TOEFL exam in order to pass it. Below are some tips on how to pass the TOEFL.

 1. Know what to expect. Read all you can about the topics tested in the TOEFL and how they are
tested. Get sample questions and even full sample tests. This way the format and type of questions
you will encounter will not be a surprise to you.

2. Review all your grammar rules and idiomatic expressions that you have learned to date in English.

 3. Invest in a TOEFL preparatory book. It is a structured, easy to follow method of reviewing all the
information necessary to pass the TOEFL test. Such books typically come with sample tests to help
you prepare.

 4. Practice for the exam by taking a practice test. Time each section as it would be during the real
exam. Use the correction key to correct it afterwards and to identify any mistakes you made. Review
the rules for those mistakes and be sure you understand why you made the errors you did.

 5. Work with an English tutor or teacher who can help you understand the areas you are having
difficulty with. A good teacher will be able to provide explanations that you can understand, as well as
memory tricks to help you retain the information.

 6. Take additional TOEFL practice exams until you achieve a high passing grade on several. Now you
are ready to take the test.

 7. Get plenty of sleep the night before the test, so that you arrive in good shape for one of the most
important tests a non-native English speaker will ever take.

 8. Pace yourself as you take the test. Don’t go so fast that you neglect to read instructions and don’t
dedicate too much time to any one question.

 They say that practice makes perfect. Nowhere is that more true than with a test like TOEFL. The test
does a very comprehensive job of analyzing a person’s ability to learn and work in their second
language. Therefore, it is essential to review, study and learn all the skills needed in order to pass the
TOEFL exam. Acing this test will open numerous doors for you.

Take a sample Toefl test to help you prepare for the Toefl exam at

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