New TOEFL Test Format in July 2023

In April 11, 2023, ETS announced a new TOEFL Test format to improve the test-taking experience. These changes started on July 26, 2023. 

New TOEFL Test Format


New TOEFL Test Format: Shorter Test

Shorter Test: The TOEFL iBT test will be shorter, taking less than two hours instead of three. This is because they’ve made the test more efficient in a few ways:

    • Instructions and navigation during the test will be simpler.
    • The writing part will be about an academic discussion, not a personal experience.
    • The reading part will be shorter.
    • Extra questions that don’t count toward your score will be removed.

Easier Registration

Easier Registration: Starting July 2023, signing up for the test will be easier and quicker. You can also choose more ways to pay for the test in some places.

Faster Score Reports

Faster Score Information: From July 26, 2023, after finishing the test, you will know when you’ll get your score. You’ll also get real-time updates about any changes to your score status.

Reason for Changes

Amit Sevak, the CEO of ETS, mentioned that these changes were made based on feedback from people who take the test. ETS believes these enhancements will make the TOEFL iBT test even better.

If you’ve already registered for the test, you have the option to change your test date for free to experience these changes. This can be done until April 30, 2023, through your TOEFL account. You can also find updated practice tests on the TOEFL website.

What Stays the Same?

The scoring scale of the TOEFL iBT test stays the same, which means the requirements for your scores won’t change either. The TOEFL test is still the most reliable and secure choice for people around the world who need test scores. With these improvements, the test experience should be more enjoyable and less stressful, saving you time on test day.

How Do I Learn More?

To learn more about these changes, visit If you want to make an account, sign up for the test, find study resources, and more, go to

Strategies for Preparing for the New TOEFL iBT Test Format:

  1. Understand the Changes: Make sure you know what’s different in the new TOEFL iBT test. The test will be shorter, around two hours. The reading part will be shorter too. Instead of writing about your personal experience, you’ll now write about a topic for an academic discussion.
  2. Practice Time Management: Since the writing task for the academic discussion is shorter now (10 minutes), practice writing within this time limit. Set a timer during your practice sessions to get used to expressing your thoughts quickly and clearly.
  3. Expand Vocabulary: A good range of vocabulary will help you write better. Practice using different words to explain your ideas. Read English articles, books, or watch movies to expose yourself to new words.
  4. Organize Your Thoughts: With limited time, it’s crucial to plan before you start writing. Spend a minute or two jotting down the main points you want to include in your response. This will help you stay organized during the writing task.
  5. Practice Online Discussions: Since you’re now writing for an academic discussion, practice participating in online discussions or debates. This will help you get used to expressing your ideas clearly in this format.
  6. Review Grammar and Structure: Good grammar and sentence structure are important for clear communication. Review grammar rules and practice constructing different types of sentences.
  7. Read Widely: Since the reading section is still part of the test, continue reading English articles, essays, and other texts. This will help improve your comprehension skills and make the shorter reading section feel more manageable.
  8. Take Practice Tests: Use updated TOEFL iBT practice tests that reflect the new format. This will help you get a feel for the changes and improve your overall test-taking strategy.
  9. Manage Test Anxiety: With the test being shorter, you might feel less stressed. However, it’s still important to manage any anxiety. Practice relaxation techniques and positive self-talk to stay calm on test day.
  10. Use Available Resources: ETS provides free practice materials and resources on their website. Make use of these resources to get familiar with the new format and practice effectively.

Remember, practice and familiarity are key to success. Adapt your study routine to accommodate the changes in the test format, and don’t hesitate to seek guidance from teachers or tutors if needed.

Feedback from my Student Who Just Took the New TOEFL Test Format

  • One of my students recently took the new format of the TOEFL Test, and her overall experience was quite positive. She mentioned that she didn’t feel very tired after finishing the test, which is a good thing. However, she did share that the time constraint for the writing task was a bit challenging.
  • In this new format, she had only 10 minutes to read the question, read the posts, and compose a 150-word response for the academic discussion. She explained that this was quite a short period to manage all these tasks. In her case, she had only about 6 minutes left to actually write her response, leaving her no time for editing or refining her writing.
  • Despite the time pressure, she achieved an impressive score of 26 out of 30 on the writing section. This success can be attributed to her preparation and practice. She had already practiced writing academic discussions and received feedback from me. This practice helped her become familiar with the format and structure of the task, allowing her to efficiently organize her thoughts within the tight time frame.
  • This demonstrates the importance of practice and familiarity with the new format. While the time limit might seem challenging, practicing similar tasks beforehand and receiving constructive feedback can significantly enhance your performance. It’s great to see that my student’s hard work paid off, and her positive outcome underscores the value of preparation in the face of new challenges.


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