What Happens if I Get a Low Score in the TOEFL or IELTS?

What is the Minimum Score Required?

Most American Universities regard a score of 80 (out of 120) in TOEFL, as an acceptable minimum score for admission. However, students applying to high-ranking colleges generally need a minimum score of 100 on TOEFL or, a score of band 7 (out of 9) on the IELTS. What happens if you get a lower score than you require? Does that mean that admission is not possible?

What if I have Less than the Minimum Score Required?

Low Scores in TOEFL/IELTS

For students, a low score does not necessarily mean an application reject. University admissions committees assess English proficiency based on other application criteria, apart from test scores. In case your score is less than the minimum required you may need to take an English Language course in the University, followed by a test. This course will have to be taken along with the regular curriculum and you will be required to pay an additional fee for it. The best thing to do is to retake the TOEFL and improve your score before joining the University. That way you can get an exemption from the remedial English course.

Good News for Indian Students

However, there is good news for Indian students. In 2011, the country average for India was 92 in TOEFL, much higher than the global average (which was about 68) and also the minimum requirement of 80 for American colleges. Institutions requiring an IELTS assessment, generally accept a minimum score of 6, which is also the present global average. Again, students from India fared marginally better than this figure with a mean score of 6.1. Hence, if you’re the “average Indian student”, you will probably do well on whichever English assessment test you take.

How Can I Improve My IELTS/TOEFL Score?

But, what if you have already done the test and have a low score? How do you prepare? (Find out about coaching for TOEFL and IELTS.)

Preparing for TOEFL

After you have done this preliminary work, take a diagnostic test to find out where you stand. If you still feel uncertain about whether you can get the required score, join our 3-week intensive online/classroom course that will equip you with all the strategies and tips required to achieve your target score. Further, the detailed feedback on your essays and one-on-one appointments with the faculty will help you overcome your weaker areas. Click to find out more about TOEFL coaching.

Preparing for IELTS

Read the following recommended books

  • Intermediate English Grammar by Raymond Murphy (Cambridge University Press)
  • Advanced English Grammar by Martin Hewings (Cambridge University Press)

After you have done this preliminary work, take a diagnostic test to find out where you stand. If you still feel uncertain about whether you can get the required score, join our one-month intensive online/classroom course that will equip you with all the strategies and tips required to achieve your target score. Further, the detailed feedback on your essays and one-on-one appointments with the faculty will help you overcome your weaker areas. Click to find out more about IELTS coaching.

At Dilip Oak’s Academy, we understand the significance of this journey. Thus, we offer comprehensive GRE coaching in Pune, both online and classroom, to support you in this crucial aspect of your academic journey. Further, our admission counseling services can guide you through the entire process from Shortlisting Universities to Visa Counseling. With our expertise, we have successfully sent 32,000 students to various prestigious American universities like MIT, Stanford, Cornell, and Carnegie Mellon. To enroll in our comprehensive services, book a free consultation or call us at 91-020-67444222.

We offer GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS coaching, GRE Self Prep and guide students with university selection, application essays, and visa counseling under our Admission Counseling Services for USA, Germany and Canada.  

Coronavirus Lockdown: Tips for easy IELTS and TOEFL Prep at Home

As you are aware, most classes have been temporarily suspended and tests like GRE, TOEFL, and IELTS have been postponed due to Coronavirus outbreak and subsequent lockdown. Also, there is no clarity on when the classes will resume and situations will normalize.

To help you make optimum use of this lockdown time, we discussed in our last blog, a few tips that can help you to prepare for the GRE while at home. When it comes to TOEFL and IELTS, most of you are used to classroom practice and find it difficult to manage it at home. In this blog, we shall discuss a few easy strategies that will help you to overcome this hurdle and boost your prep even when at home:

TOEFL

  • Read news articles, story archives or any other interesting article for about 30 minutes every day and reflect on your understanding of it. While doing this, underline new words, write them down in a book, memorize them and try to use them while speaking. Some of the recommended reading sources are New Yorker, NY Times, Huffington Post, and TOI.
  • Listen more to native English speakers for getting a grip on pronunciations and speed. You can listen to FluentU videos, TED Talks, YouTube videos and podcasts, BBC Radio and NPR. Pause the audio clip after every few seconds and try to see if you are able to understand well and where you are falling short. For good lectures and conversations, go to Gothica on Youtube and practice.
  • For the writing section, pick the topics of your choice and practice timed writing for the essays. For Dilip Oak’s students, you can practice topics on Page 38 of the TOEFL book thoroughly.
  • For the speaking section, speak on any topic of your choice (timed for 45 seconds as per TOEFL requirement) and record it on your phone. For Oak’s Academy students, practice topics from Page 123 of the book, others can browse any topics online. Go back to the recording and check for fluency, grammar, pronunciations, clarity etc. Ask your friends or family to listen to your recording and get feedback. This will help you to improve more.
  • You can take a free practice test on the ETS official website.

 

IELTS

  • Read news articles, story archives or any other interesting article for about 30 minutes every day and reflect on your understanding of it. Read the National Geographic more since many IELTS passages are Science passages. For Oak’s Academy students, you can practice from IELTS Book 2.
  • For listening practice, go for TED Talks, FluentU videos etc. You can also access a lot of listening practice material on https://allieltsmaterial.blogspot.com/
  • For speaking practice, record a timed response (11-14 minutes) on your phone on any topic of your choice, go back and listen to it to know your mistakes and assess your performance. For Oak’s students, you can practice topics from Book 1.
  • or writing essays, Academy students can refer to Book 1 which has a pool of topics for task 1 and task 2. You can also write on any other relevant topic. For the initial one or two attempts, you may write an untimed essay. Once you get a hang of writing strategies, go for timed practice only.

GRE Prep – Preliminary Reading

One of the most important aspects of preparing for reading comprehension in the GRE is preliminary reading – that is, reading to be done before you start tackling GRE RC passages in order to prepare you for the challenges that those passages will throw up.

One challenge that you will face on Reading Comprehension passages is that they tend to be about unfamiliar topics and concepts; and talk about unfamiliar terms and fields. They use difficult phrasing and vocabulary, and complicated sentence structure. The only way to get used to the level of complexity you will find in GRE passages is to read widely.

Another challenge is the fact that reading passages on screen means that you may not be able to see the whole passage at a time, and may have to scroll up and down to read the rest of the passage. This is very different from reading on paper, where you can usually see the whole passage on screen at a glance. The fact that, when reading longer passages onscreen, you will not be able to see the whole of the passage at once makes comprehending the passage much more difficult.

Reading widely both on paper and onscreen will help you build up the skills that you need to meet the challenges presented by reading comprehension passages in the GRE. The reading material suggested here is arranged, and should be read, in the following order:

Continue reading

TOEFL Prep – Nice Resources at toeflgoanywhere.com

For takers of the TOEFL examination, the www.toeflgoanywhere.org website offers a host of preparation materials and tips for cracking the exam. One easy-to-use resource is the Online Study Group that presents a creative and interactive way for students to pick up helpful hints.

The Study Group covers all the four sections – Reading, Listening, Speaking and Writing – in four separate videos, each showing a conversation among four friends. The casual style of the videos makes it much easier for students to grasp the strategies than reading study material about the exam.

The videos mainly focus on important support skills such as paraphrasing and summarizing, which come in handy for the Writing, Reading and Speaking sections. The suggestions for the Listening section include simple things that one can do as part of one’s daily routine – watching American sit-coms and listening to English songs to improve vocabulary, for example. Or, reading aloud articles from magazines to improve fluency in speech for students who find it difficult to come up with quick answers in the Speaking section.

The Study Group videos are an interesting and quick way to learn some basic strategies for the TOEFL exam, and are especially useful for students who are just starting out on their TOEFL preparation. So, if you haven’t yet begun on your TOEFL preparation, take fifteen minutes out of your study schedule to visit this link:

http://www.toeflgoanywhere.org/meet-study-group-tips-test-takers-you

Raj, Val, Min and Celia will share important tips with you based on their TOEFL experience!