The TOEFL iBT (Test of English as a Foreign Language internet-based test) is a standardised test that measures the English language proficiency of non-native speakers. Universities and institutions around the world commonly use it as a means of assessing applicants' readiness to study in English-speaking environments.
In response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the resulting lockdowns and restrictions on public gatherings, the Educational Testing Service (ETS), the organisation that administers the TOEFL, introduced a new version of the test called the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition.
The TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is a version of the TOEFL that can be taken from the safety and convenience of the test taker's home. It is similar in content, format, and scoring to the traditional TOEFL iBT test, but some key differences set it apart.
One of the main differences between the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition and the traditional test is the delivery method. The traditional test is taken in a testing centre, where the test taker is supervised by a proctor and must use a computer provided by the testing centre. In contrast, the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is taken remotely, meaning the test taker uses their own computer and internet connection to take the test.
Another difference between the two test versions is the level of security. Since the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is taken remotely, there is a risk of cheating or other forms of academic dishonesty. To prevent this, ETS has implemented several security measures, such as using proctors who monitor the test taker via webcam and microphone throughout the test.
Despite these differences, universities and institutions worldwide widely accept the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test. It is a convenient and safe option for those who need to take the test during the pandemic. In the following sections, we will explore some of the benefits of taking the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test during the pandemic and give tips on preparing for the test.
Benefits of the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test during -19
The TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test offers several benefits to test takers during the COVID-19 pandemic. Here are some of the key advantages:
Ability to take the test from the safety and convenience of home
The most significant advantage of the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is that it allows test takers to take the test from the safety and comfort of their own homes. By taking the test from home, test takers can minimise their risk of exposure to COVID-19 and avoid the hassle and expense of travelling to a testing centre. This is especially important during a pandemic when social distancing measures are in place, and many public spaces are closed or restricted.
Reduced risk of exposure to COVID-19
Since the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is taken remotely, there is no need for test takers to visit a testing centre, where they would be in contact with other people and potentially exposed to the virus. This is particularly beneficial for people at high risk for severe illness from COVID-19, such as the elderly or those with underlying medical conditions.
Flexibility in scheduling the test
The TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test offers greater flexibility in scheduling. With the traditional test, test takers must schedule their test date and time and travel to a testing centre at the designated time. The Special Home Edition Test allows test takers to choose a time and date within 24 hours of testing. This can be especially helpful for those with busy schedules.
Availability of testing slots due to increased capacity
Since the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test can be taken remotely, it has greater capacity than the traditional test, which is limited by the number of testing centres and available computers. This means there are often more testing slots available for the Special Home Edition Test, making it easier for test takers to schedule their test and find an available slot.
Technical requirements and setup
Taking the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test requires meeting specific technical requirements and setting up the test-taking environment to ensure a smooth and successful testing experience. Here are some things to keep in mind when preparing for the test:
To take the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test, test takers must have a computer that meets the following technical requirements:
- Windows or Mac operating system
- A stable internet connection
- A webcam and microphone
- A browser that supports the ETS Test Browser (Chrome, Firefox, or Safari)
- Access to administrative privileges on the computer
In addition, test takers must download and install the ETS Test Browser, a special browser that allows the test to be proctored remotely and ensures that the test is taken securely.
To ensure a successful testing experience, test takers should take the following steps to prepare for the technical setup:
- Test the computer and internet connection: Test takers should ensure that their computer and internet connection meet the technical requirements and are working properly. They should run a speed test to ensure their internet connection is stable and fast enough to support the test.
- Set up the testing environment: Test takers should choose a quiet, well-lit room where they will not be disturbed during the test. They should ensure the room is free from distractions and have a comfortable chair and desk during the test.
- Familiarise themselves with the ETS Test Browser: Test takers should download and install the ETS Test Browser well before the test and ensure they are familiar with how to use it. They should also test their webcam and microphone to ensure they work properly.
- Check for updates: Test takers should check for updates to the ETS Test Browser and ensure they have the latest version installed before taking the test.
Test takers can help ensure a smooth and successful testing experience by taking these steps to prepare for the technical setup. In the next section, we will provide tips for preparing for the content of the test.
Preparing for the test
Preparing for the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is crucial for achieving a high score and maximising your chances of success. Here are some tips and resources for preparing for the test:
There are several resources available to help test takers prepare for the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test, including:
- Official TOEFL resources: The official TOEFL website offers a range of study materials, including sample questions, practice tests, and study guides. These resources can help test takers become familiar with the test format and content.
- Test preparation books: Many books offer comprehensive review and practice materials for the TOEFL iBT test.
- Online courses and tutoring: Several online courses and tutoring services offer personalised instruction and support for test takers.
Here are some tips for preparing for the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test:
- Familiarise yourself with the test format: It is important to become familiar with the format of the test, including the types of questions and the time limits for each section. This will help you feel more comfortable and confident during the test.
- Practice your English skills: The TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test measures English proficiency, so it is important to practice your English skills as much as possible. This includes reading, writing, speaking, and listening.
- Take practice tests: Practice tests are an excellent way to familiarise yourself with the test format and identify areas where you need to improve. You can find practice tests online or in test preparation books.
- Manage your time effectively: Time management is crucial during the test, so practising pacing yourself and sticking to the time limits for each section is important. This will help you maximise your score and save time on all sections.
- Stay calm and focused: The TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test can be stressful, but staying calm and focused during the test is important. Take deep breaths, stay positive, and trust in your preparation.
By following these tips and utilising the available resources, test takers can prepare effectively for the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test and maximise their chances of success.
In conclusion, the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test offers many benefits for test takers during the -19 pandemic. The ability to take the test from the safety and convenience of the home reduces the risk of exposure to COVID-19 and provides flexibility in scheduling the test. Additionally, increased testing slots due to increased capacity make it easier for test takers to find a convenient testing time.
To take the test, test takers must meet specific technical requirements and prepare for the content of the test by utilising the available resources and following the tips provided. By doing so, they can maximise their chances of success and achieve a high score on the test.
Overall, the TOEFL iBT Special Home Edition Test is an excellent option for test takers who want to take the test during the -19 pandemic. It offers a safe, convenient, and flexible way to demonstrate English language proficiency and achieve their academic and professional goals.
We recommend that prospective test takers carefully review the technical requirements and prepare for the test by utilising the available resources and following the tips provided. By doing so, they can feel confident and well-prepared on test day and maximise their chances of success. Good luck to all prospective test takers!