Does the ETS send the latest or the highest TOEFL score, or both?


Can anyone please tell whether the ETS reports the highest or the newest score? My predicament is this: on August 22 I took the TOEFL and scored 105 (Reading - 30/ Listening 27/ Speaking 23/ Writing 25). This exceeds the minimum TOEFL requirements of the universities that I’m going to apply to by a large margin, but I’m still unsure because of the Speaking test. Besides, frankly, I expected to do better, so I’m somewhat disappointed.

The thing is, I took the test virtually unprepared, i.e. I did download a few books a week before the test, but, unfortunately, only had time to read what the test was actually about, as well as a few basic tips. I am therefore pretty much confident that I can do better on the Listening and especially Writing sections (that was a particularly stupid one - I simply forgot about the 30-minute time limit and left the last essay unfinished. However, I can, of course, lose 1-2 points of those 30 points I scored on the Reading test (one can never be sure), and, what’s more important, those 23 points on the Speaking test really scare me off because I don’t see any room for improvement, at least not in some 10-15 days, and I’m even afraid that I might do worse, which would be scandalous indeed.

So, if they report only the highest score, then, I think, I can take another chance, since it could never hurt. But if they report only the latest one, I believe I must consider this very carefully. Could you please give me any advice?

P.S. By the way, one lesson I learned from the TOEFL is that unless you have some very good note-taking skills, you shouldn’t even bother to take notes. It’s much better to rely on your memory. I’m perfectly sure that I lost at least 2 of those 3 points to the first conversation - by the time I finished scribbling on my sheet of paper something hardly intelligible but supposedly related to the first 15 seconds of the conversation, about 40 seconds had been gone and I don’t have the slightest idea about what they were talking about during that time. So I vowed never to take any notes again.

TOEFL listening lectures: What is the main danger of obesity?

congratulation that’s a great score. Is English is your native language? Give me some suggestion. How you did it? I mean even you took the test virtually unprepared.

As far as I know ETS will send the latest score for TOEFL Exam. Please try to check with ETS.

Thank you, but I don’t really think it’s a great result, and no, my first language is not English. It’s Russian, although I’m Azerbaijani.

Thanks for the information about the score reporting rules. Right now I’m checking their website; however, I cannot find anything relevant or definitive.

As for suggestions, I fear I’m not in a position to offer them. What I mean is, the way I learned English would hardly be useful to anyone preparing for the TOEFL. Basically, I’ve never taken any English course or been to any English-speaking country, and most of my knowledge comes from reading literature, listening to audiobooks and sometimes watching films. The last time I actually spoke English was on the day of the test, and before that, I believe, I hadn’t spoken any English in ages, aside from one short conversation in Skype. The point is, you might probably want to choose a good book or multimedia course and follow the instructions. My recommendation concerning the Listening section stands, though - I’m absolutely confident that you should take notes only if you’re used to it; otherwise, skip that part, unless you memory is abnormally weak. They may not talk as fast as in some films and they certainly speak more clearly, but it’s still rather fast, so you might end up wasting your time. That’s the only advice I can give.

OK, now I’m talking (and, of course, listening and writing, too). :slight_smile:

Whereas, my score on the Test of English as a Foreign language (hereinafter referred to as the TOEFL) examination that I took on August 22, 2009 was, in my opinion, not entirely satisfactory;

Whereas, after a number of inquiries I learned that a person who takes the TOEFL test more than once may report the score of whichever test he or she wishes, provided that the test in question was taken within the past two years;

Whereas, after further careful deliberation I finally decided to retake the TOEFL test, which I did on September 20, 2009;

Whereas, on October 1, 2009 I received my score for the said test, and the score was 118 (Reading - 30; Listening - 30; Speaking - 28; Writing - 30) out of 120;

Now, therefore, be it ordained that my TOELF quest is hereby deemed officially complete and that I may concentrate on other activities pertaining to my education.

Hello Topaze,

Congratulations on your phenomenal TOEFL score! That is indeed impressive!

I am especially impressed with your speaking and writing scores. In my opinion, those two are the hardest to score well on. Few people manage to score as high as a 28 on the speaking part of the test. You have to be very good to get such a score.

I also think your advice about note-taking was good. If you take any notes at all, I’d say that they should consist of only a few key words – words that will simply remind you of what you heard or read. Trying to write down a lot or trying to write down entire sentences when taking notes will frequently be counter-productive.

Again, congrats!

[size=75]“Make sure you have finished speaking before your audience has finished listening.” ~ Dorothy Sarnoff[/size]

Congrats man… I find it very hard to believe that you scored 118!!! impressive indeed… I’ve never seen such a good score… your grasp of English is excellent; it would be good if you told us what multimedia books you have used so far :wink:

good luck… :wink:


One quick question.I gave my toefl test from Kaplan CD. For some reason, I found the reading passage is kaplan test is harder than the other books. Even sample test on ETS site is quite easy.

Please let me know if you have any idea regarding the TOEFL reading passage.

Thank you! I’m indeed most pleased with this score, though I think that judging a written or spoken response is inherently subjective and very high scores may have to do with luck, too, and not only preparation. In fact, from what I understand, any results between, say, 115 and 120 seem to be more or less the same, since they depend on extraneous factors (comfortable testing environment, fine mood, pure luck and so on) at least as much as on actual skills.


Well, aside from skimming through various books I took a few Reading and Listening tests contained in the Longman iBT CD, but I didn’t put too much emphasis on it since, as I said earlier in this topic, I was quite confident that scoring higher on the Listening and Writing sections was a matter of being a little more focused and careful rather than actually preparing for these sections. Speaking was a completely different issue, though, but the nature of this section is such that one does not really need to use any books, at least as far as the independent tasks are concerned: a list of more or less frequent topics and a simple recording device or software should suffice. I did use, however, a number of introductory videos posted online by one Jason Renshaw, and they were quite good, although on the actual test, I think, I managed to follow his more specific suggestions only to a limited extent, if at all. Ideally, one should also find someone to correct their mistakes and point at various problems with intonation etc., but I didn’t go to such great pains.


I’ve leafed through that book (so to speak, since it was a scanned copy), and I can compare it with the Barron’s TOEFL iBT 12th ed. and Longman iBT CD. In my opinion, Kaplan’s reading passages are not only harder than those found in the other two sources - they are also harder than the real test, which may or may not suit you, depending on whether you are comfortable with this approach. Overall, the Reading section of the test is probably the easiest one. There are, I believe, five types of questions: recognizing synonyms, which one should be able to do instantly in most cases, finding links between words, which is equally simple, inserting sentences, which is not complicated either, paraphrasing text, which may require some time but is not too difficult otherwise, and summarizing the passage, which is a little more challenging. The latter is also the only question that actually requires reading the entire passage - all the others are limited to either isolated words or, at most, individual paragraphs.
It took me, I believe, about 28 minutes to complete each of the two 40-minute long tasks, which gave me a lot of time to go over the answers.

I am sorry, I think I overlooked at least two more question types. In one of these two, the test taker is required to select the only true or false statement, and in the other they need to discern what the author(s) meant. The former can be easy or moderately difficult, and the latter is pretty much obvious.

Yes you are right. Just wanted to make sure and thats why I was asking regarding Kaplan toefl reading passage.
your advice is very good, informative specially.
Tell us about writing passage. I have never seen you essay post in this forum. How you did it?

Well, Captain Obvious says that’s simply because I haven’t posted any essay on this forum. :slight_smile:

In terms of preparation, the Writing section is completely different from the Speaking part. Unlike the latter, it depends largely on your ability to reason and on your overall knowledge of the English language, and not so much on how successfully you can use strategies, tips, tricks etc.

The reason is that its structure is essentially simple. In the independent task you state your opinion, provide two or three reasons with examples, and then write some sort of conclusion, and all that in some 350-400 words. It’s very easy to remember, and I even believe that you can get the perfect score if one of these parts is a bit weak, provided that the others are without any noticeable deficiencies. The integrated task is even simpler, since all the information is basically there - the reading passage is right before your eyes, and the rest you derive from the lecture. Provided that you can type reasonably fast and write without any serious mistakes, the only things that can affect your score are, I think, carelessness and, in the independent task, an uncomfortable topic. And that’s exactly what happened to me on my first test. I forgot about the time limit, and besides, the topic itself was rather unpleasant because, in all honesty, I should have written not some linear piece of work, but a lengthy and balanced essay stating at least the most evident pros and cons; the fact that there were obvious and equally solid counterarguments to everything I was asserting distracted me heavily. I also think that I forgot to mention a certain detail in the integrated task as well, trying primarily to eliminate any possible typos and mistakes, but I’m pretty much confident that it was the independent task that affected my final score the most. The second time, however, the topic was much more convenient because I had a rather clear opinion on the subject, and it took only a relatively small effort of self-control to filter out those few objections that I personally could consider valid. By that time I had also learned to stop worrying and love the bomb, so I didn’t feel as much anxiety as on the first test. :slight_smile:

So, with the exception of these two factors, I think that when you’re preparing for the Writing section you’re basically improving your general ability to write in English, and if it’s already good, the rest is not that difficult. That’s not the case with the Speaking section, where, no matter how well you speak, you must have a good understanding of and prepare for the section itself.

Helo Arguttbaitiof,

We all know that health is very important but the main objective of this forum is to exchange knowledge and materials
in preparation for international exams.


Hi All,



Materials used to prepare:

  1. (Best for Listening & Writing)
  2. Barrons TOEFL


I took test on 29 augest 2009. I havent received the score yet. Please, help me how to get my score in details. If your answer is see so how.

thanks in advance.

i got my score online in 6 days after exam but i am yet to receive a hard copy of my report
did you get online score report?


Excellent score! Congratulations!


Online score reports are usually published within 1-2 weeks, so you should definitely contact ETS. As for the hardcopy, it will probably take some time, depending on your location.

thanks Topaze