TOEFL Exam Syllabus 2023: Check and Download Syllabus and Exam Pattern

TOEFL Exam Dates 2023
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Particulars Details
Exam Full Name
Test of English as a Foreign Language
Exam Mode
Exam Fees
Application Mode
Conducting Body
ETS (Educational Testing Service)

Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) is a well known English proficiency exam. Each year thousands of applicants apply for admission to universities, colleges and organizations all around the world using TOEFL. Knowing the TOEFL exam syllabus is very important to excel in the exam. In this article we will discuss about the TOEFL exam syllabus in detail.

You can view everything about the TOEL exam including the TOEFL test centres in India, registration process, document requirements, TOEFL eligibility, accommodation for test takers with impairments, test dates, preparation tips, TOEFL results, cut off, scholarship, sample papers by clicking on the respected links. 

The exam is divided into four sections: Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing, each of which tests a specific language skill.

The Reading section measures your ability to read and understand academic texts in English, including passages from textbooks, articles, and essays. The questions in this section are multiple-choice and assess your comprehension of the texts. You can download questions for TOEFL reading practice in pdf to have a good understanding of this section of the exam.

The Listening section measures your ability to understand spoken English as it is used in academic settings, such as in lectures and classroom discussions. You will hear a range of accents and academic topics in this section, and the questions are also multiple-choice.

The Speaking section measures your ability to speak English fluently and coherently. It includes six tasks that assess your ability to express your opinions, provide information, and explain ideas. The tasks range from speaking based on personal experience to summarizing a reading passage and a listening passage. You can download the TOEFL speaking topics with answers in pdf file to get a good understanding of this section.

The Writing section measures your ability to write effectively in English. It includes two tasks: an integrated writing task and an independent writing task. The integrated writing task requires you to read a passage and listen to a lecture before summarizing the main points in a written response. The independent writing task requires you to write an essay based on a prompt.

The TOEFL exam syllabus is designed to test a range of language skills that are essential for academic success in English-speaking countries. It is important to understand the specific requirements of each section of the exam and to prepare accordingly to achieve a high score. To get a good idea about the syllabus and the pattern, you can go through the TOEFL practice test papers. Before giving the exam, one must know the eligibility criteria of the same.

TOEFL Exam Syllabus 2023 summary infographic

TOEFL Exam Pattern to Get Shorter Starting July 26

We have provided a comparison between the current TOEFL exam pattern and the TOEFL exam pattern that would come into effect starting July 26, 2023. You can find the TOEFL exam pattern pdf online.


TOEFL Exam Pattern (current)

TOEFL Exam Pattern (new)

[w.e.f July 26]

TOEFL Reading Section

Duration: 54 – 72 minutes

Questions 30-40

Duration: 35 minutes

Questions 20

TOEFL Listening Section

Duration: 41-57 minutes

Questions: 28 – 39

Duration: 36 minutes

Questions 28

TOEFL Speaking Section

Duration: 17 minutes

Questions: 4 tasks

Duration: 16 minutes

Questions: 4 tasks

TOEFL Writing Section

Duration: 50 minutes

Questions: 2 tasks

Duration: 29 minutes

Questions: 2 tasks


Total Duration: 162 – 196 minutes 

Total Duration: 116 minutes

TOEFL Exam Syllabus 2023 (current)

Here is the latest TOEFL exam syllabus for the benefit of our TOEFL test-takers. You can also download the TOEFL syllabus pdf online.


Number of Questions / Duration



3–4 passages – 10 questions each

For the TOEFL Reading section, candidates would be required to read multiple passages and answer 30 – 40 questions.

Duration: 54-72 minutes


3-4 Lectures and 2-3 Conversations – 10 questions each

For the TOEFL Listening section, candidates would be required to answer questions about brief lectures or classroom discussions.

Duration: 41-57 minutes


4 tasks

For the TOEFL Speaking Section, candidates would be required to talk about a familiar topic and discuss material they have read and listened to.

Duration: 17 minutes


2 tasks

For the TOEFL Writing Section, candidates would be required to read a passage, listen to a recording and type their response.

Duration: 50 minutes

TOEFL Exam Syllabus: Reading Comprehension Section

In this section, the candidate will be required to read 3-5 passages and answer 12-14 questions on each passage. The section is scored based on the number of correct reading comprehension responses. Go through the TOEFL reading practice tests to have a good practice of this section.

Question type: 3–4 passages, 10 questions each
Total no. of questions: About 40
Total time: 54-72 minutes

TOEFL Syllabus: Listening Section

In this section, you will hear short conversations as well as long conversations. After the short conversation, you will be asked one question and multiple choices of answers will be given. You have to choose one answer. In long conversations, you will be asked multiple questions based on the conversation. You can solve the TOEFL listening practice test to get familiarize with this section.

Question type: a) 3–4 lectures (3-5 minutes long, about 500-800 words), 6 questions each; About 30 questions in total
b) 2–3 conversations (about 3 minutes long, about 12-25 exchanges), 5 questions each; About 12 questions in total
Total no. of questions: 40+
Total time: 41–57 minutes

TOEFL Syllabus: Speaking Section

For you to earn the highest scores in the Speaking Section, your responses must fulfil the demands of the task given with only minor mistakes or lapses. You can practice answering the TOEFL speaking practice questions with answers to get used to this section of the exam  The test graders are looking for a highly intelligible and sustained conversation. There are three main factors that comprise scoring for the section.

Speaking Questions covered in TOEFL Syllabus:

  1. a) 1 independent task (prep time: 15 sec; response time: 45 sec)
  2. b) 3 integrated tasks – Read/Listen/Speak (prep time: 30 sec; response time: 60 sec)

Total no. of questions: 4

Total time: 17 minutes

TOEFL Syllabus: Writing Section

The essay should effectively address a topic. The response should be well-organized and well-developed using relevant explanations and detailed support. Furthermore, it should also display unity, progression, and coherence. If you want to achieve a high writing score, make sure that you demonstrate the syntactic variety and appropriate word choice with minor grammatical errors. For the TOEFL writing practice, you can give TOEFL exam practice tests and know various writing topics of TOEFL.
Writing Questions Covered in TOEFL Syllabus:

a) 1 integrated task – Read/Listen/Write (20 minutes) (reading time: 3 min; Listening
time: 2 min; writing: 15 min)
b) 1 independent task (30 minutes)
Total no. of questions: 2

Highlights of TOEFL Exam Pattern 2023

TOEFL pattern 2023: Given below is a detailed TOEFL Exam pattern 2023 for the benefit of our test takers. 



Number of Questions



3–4 passages – 10 questions each

54-72 minutes


3-4 Lectures and 2-3 Conversations – 10 questions each

41-57 minutes


4 questions

17 minutes


2 tasks

50 minutes

TOEFL Preparation Tips

Preparing for the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) requires a systematic approach and consistent practice. Here are some tips to help you in your TOEFL preparation:

  1. Familiarize yourself with the TOEFL exam syllabus and format: Understand the TOEFL exam pattern and syllabus, which include reading, listening, speaking, and writing. This will help you plan your study schedule and allocate time to practice each section. You can download the TOEFL exam syllabus 2023 pdf online. Understanding the TOEFL exam pattern and syllabus is very crucial to excel in the exam.
  1. Set clear goals: Determine your target score and set specific goals for each section of the TOEFL. Having clear objectives will keep you motivated and focused during your preparation.
  1. Develop your English language skills: The TOEFL assesses your English proficiency, so it’s crucial to work on improving your language skills. To do TOEFL reading practice, you can read English articles, books, and newspapers. For the TOEFL listening practice, listen to English podcasts, news, and movies to improve your listening skills. Engage in conversations with English speakers to enhance your speaking and writing abilities.
  1. Use official TOEFL resources: The Educational Testing Service (ETS), the organization that administers the TOEFL, provides official study materials, sample questions, and practice tests. Utilize these resources to get a better understanding of the test format and types of questions you may encounter. You can also download the ETS TOEFL practice test with answers pdf from their website.
  1. Take TOEFL practice tests: Regularly practice with full-length TOEFL practice tests to familiarize yourself with the timing and pressure of the actual exam. This will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and allow you to focus on areas that need improvement. There are many good tests available on the net, you can search for one and give the TOEFL Practice test online for free. 
  1. Time management: Develop effective time management skills to ensure you can complete each section within the allocated time. During practice sessions, simulate test-like conditions and adhere to the time limits for each section.
  1. Improve your vocabulary: Enhancing your vocabulary will benefit you in all sections of the TOEFL. Read English books, articles, and academic materials to expose yourself to a wide range of vocabulary. Make a habit of learning new words and their usage in context.
  1. Practice note-taking: Taking effective notes during the listening and reading sections can help you recall information accurately. Practice summarizing main ideas, important details, and supporting examples while listening or reading.
  1. Work on your speaking skills: Speaking practice for TOEFL is very important to excel in the exam. The speaking section of the TOEFL requires you to express your thoughts clearly and coherently. Practice speaking English regularly, either with a language partner or by recording and evaluating your own responses. Focus on speaking fluently, using appropriate grammar and vocabulary. You can also specifically give the TOEFL speaking practice test for evaluating your speaking skills.
  1. Seek feedback: Whenever possible, have someone evaluate your speaking and writing responses. Constructive feedback can help you identify areas for improvement and provide guidance on how to enhance your performance.
  1. Manage test anxiety: Test anxiety can impact your performance. Practice relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing and positive visualization, to manage stress and stay focused during the exam.

Many candidates prepare for TOEFL while working full time. You can see the preparation strategy for TOEFL while working full time here. Remember, consistent practice, dedication, and a positive mindset are essential for successful TOEFL preparation. Good luck! 

How do I start preparing for TOEFL?

To start preparing for the TOEFL, here are some steps you can follow:

  1. Understand the test format: Familiarize yourself with TOEFL exam pattern and structure. Learn about the types of questions in each section and the time limits for each part. This will give you a clear picture of what to expect on the exam. You can download the TOEFL exam syllabus pdf and TOEFL exam pattern 2023 pdf from available online resources.
  2. Set a target score: Determine your target score based on the requirements of the educational institution or organization you’re applying to. Knowing your target score will help you stay focused and motivated throughout your preparation.
  3. Assess your current level: Take TOEFL practice tests or a diagnostic test to assess your current proficiency in the different sections of the TOEFL. This will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses and plan your study schedule accordingly.
  4. Gather study materials: Acquire official TOEFL study materials, such as the Official Guide to the TOEFL Test, which contains practice questions, and valuable tips. Additionally, you can explore other reputable TOEFL preparation books or online resources that offer practice exercises and sample questions.
  5. Create a study plan: Develop a study schedule that suits your needs and allows you to allocate sufficient time for each section of the TOEFL. Plan regular study sessions and set specific goals for each session. Be consistent and disciplined in following your study plan.
  6. Focus on building language skills: Enhance your English language skills by engaging in activities that improve your reading, listening, speaking, and writing abilities. Read English books, newspapers, and articles to improve your comprehension skills. Listen to English podcasts, news broadcasts, and movies to enhance your listening skills. Engage in conversations with English speakers to practice your speaking and writing skills.
  7. Practice with sample questions: Start practicing with sample questions from official TOEFL resources or reputable TOEFL preparation websites. This will help you become familiar with the types of questions and the format of the exam. As you progress, gradually increase the difficulty level of the practice questions. You can download TOEFL practice tests pdf to get familiar with the type of questions.
  8. Take full-length TOEFL practice tests: Regularly take full-length practice tests under timed conditions to simulate the actual TOEFL experience. This will help you become accustomed to the time constraints and develop effective time management strategies.
  9. Review and analyze your performance: After giving the TOEFL practice test or practice session, review your answers and identify areas where you made mistakes or struggled. Analyze your performance to understand your weaknesses and areas that require further improvement.
  10. Seek additional resources or guidance if needed: If you find certain sections or concepts challenging, consider seeking additional resources or assistance. You can join online courses for TOEFL, hire a tutor, or participate in online forums or study groups to gain insights and guidance from experienced instructors or fellow test-takers.
  11. Monitor your progress: Keep track of your progress throughout your preparation. Regularly assess your performance by taking practice tests or quizzes. This will help you gauge your improvement and make any necessary adjustments to your study plan.

You can also take online courses which are affordable and saves time to prepare for the exam. Remember that consistent practice, dedication, and perseverance are key to achieving your desired score in the TOEFL. Stay motivated, stay focused, and don’t hesitate to seek support when needed. Good luck with your TOEFL preparation!

Solve TOEFL Exam Sample Papers

Provided below are a mix of free TOEFL Practice Tests, TOEFL module mock tests and TOEFL Sample papers for the benefit of TOEFL test takers. They have been sourced from the official website and candidates can visit the official ETS TOEFL website for more similar content. 

TOEFL Writing Section Sample Paper [Set I]

TOEFL Reading Section Sample Paper [Set I]

TOEFL Speaking Section Sample Paper [Set I]

TOEFL Listening Section Sample Paper [Set I]

TOEFL Sample Paper 2021 with Answers [Set 1]

TOEFL Exam Day Tips

On the day of your TOEFL exam, it’s important to be prepared and approach the test with confidence. Here are some tips to help you make the most of your TOEFL exam day:

  1. Get a good night’s sleep: Ensure you get enough rest the night before the exam. Being well-rested will help you stay focused and alert during the test.
  2. Have a balanced breakfast: Eat a nutritious breakfast on the morning of the exam. Choose foods that provide sustained energy and avoid heavy meals that may make you feel sluggish.
  3. Arrive early: Plan to arrive at the test center well before the scheduled start time. This will give you ample time to check in, go through security procedures, and settle down before the exam begins. Being rushed can increase stress levels, so arriving early will help you start the test in a calm state of mind. You can view your 2023 TOEFL exam dates and centers here.
  4. Bring required identification: Make sure to bring the documents required by the test center. Check the TOEFL website or contact the test center in advance to confirm the accepted forms of identification.
  5. Dress comfortably: Wear comfortable clothing on the exam day. Dressing in layers is recommended so that you can adjust to the temperature in the test center.
  6. Bring necessary items: Take with you the necessary items such as your TOEFL registration confirmation, identification documents, and any permitted writing materials (pens, pencils, erasers, etc.). Check the official TOEFL website or contact the test center to ensure you have all the required items.
  7. Stay positive and confident: Maintain a positive mindset and believe in your preparation. Confidence can help you perform better and manage test anxiety. Remind yourself that you have put in the effort and are well-prepared for the exam.
  8. Follow instructions: Pay close attention to the instructions provided by the test administrator. Understand the rules and regulations for the test and follow them carefully throughout the exam.
  9. Pace yourself: Time management is crucial in the TOEFL. Pace yourself during each section to ensure you complete all the questions within the allotted time. Keep an eye on the clock but avoid obsessing over it. Practice time management during your preparation to develop a sense of timing.
  10. Focus on one question at a time: Concentrate on the question at hand and avoid getting distracted by previous questions or thinking ahead to future ones. Give each question your full attention and do your best on every item.
  11. Stay calm and composed: If you encounter a difficult question or feel overwhelmed, take a deep breath and remain calm. Don’t let one question or section affect your performance on the rest of the exam. Move on to the next question and maintain your composure.
  12. Use your breaks wisely: The TOEFL includes scheduled breaks between sections. Use these breaks to relax, stretch, and refresh your mind. Avoid discussing the test with other test-takers during the break, as it may increase anxiety or distract you from focusing.

Remember, staying calm, focused, and confident on the exam day is crucial. Trust your preparation and give your best effort. Good luck with your TOEFL exam!


The TOEFL exam syllabus covers four main aspects of the language proficiency exam namely writing, reading, listening, and speaking. You can expect three to four reading passages for which you will have to answer related questions. You can also expect audio clips containing 4-6 short lectures and 2-3 lengthy conversations.

IELTS and TOEFL both test basic English proficiency tests. IELTS is considered to be easier than TOEFL by most of the test takers.

Not only students from India but American students too find the TOEFL exam hard. This is because the academic vocabulary and the subject matter of the exam are not the same as what Americans encounter in everyday situations.

The TOEFL fee in Indian Rupees is INR 14,197.44 (US $1 = INR 74.72). What are the acceptable TOEFL exam fee payment methods in India? As per ETS – the conducting body of the TOEFL exam, the following methods of payment are acceptable for TOEFL Exam Fee.

Yes TOEFL is accepted by many universities in Canada. You can find the top universities accepting TOEFL in Canada here.

There are four sections on the TOEFL exam, Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing. In this article, we have discussed about the TOEFL exam syllabus, its pattern, and a one-month study plan. If you have been dealing with English all through your academic life, one month is sufficient time to prepare for the exam.

Candidates can prepare for their TOEFL exam by practicing their skills with free practice tests and other free resources available on the Internet.

All TOEFL applicants need to have a valid passport. Their passports should be valid during registration and at the time of examination. In fact, it is advisable that candidates carry their original passport when they visit the examination centre for the exam

GRE test scores are valid for five years while TOEFL scores are valid for two years

Yes TOEFL is accepted by many universities in USA. You can find the top universities accepting TOEFL in USA  here.

You can find the TOEFL practice tests online

Articles Updates:

Content Update 22/06/2023


TOEFL Exam Dates 2023
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