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September 2, 2005

What is TOEIC?

pencilsvsmall.jpgIf you are a non-native speaker of English and living in Japan or South Korea, it is likely that you have at least heard of the TOEIC test. The Test of English in International Communication (TOEIC) is a measure of everyday English ability created by the Educational Testing Serice (ETS) of Princeton, New Jersey.

The test is usually taken by non-native speakers who wish to have some official measure of their English skill. Some one and a half million people take the tests each year, two thirds of whom are said to be Japanese.

There are a number of reasons people choose to do the test. Often, it is because they wish to join a foreign company, or because they are seeking promotion within an organisation which places a high value on English ability. Other students hope to study overseas or use the test as a way of checking on how their English is improving.

The test consists of two major sections, a listening section and a reading section, each of which consists of 100 questions. These sections are further broken into seperate parts:

  • Section 1: Listening
  • Part I: Photographs
  • Part II: Question-Response
  • Part III: Short Conversations
  • Section 2: Reading
  • Part IV: Short Talks
  • Part V: Incomlpete Sentences
  • Part VI: Error Recognition
  • Part VII: Reading Comprehension

The Listening section lasts about 45 minutes and involves students responding to questions while listening to a recording. The Reading section lasts exactly 75 minutes and requires students to answer multiple-choice questions with four possible answer choces.

That's all for this week. Next week we are going to look at ways to improve your vocabularly prior to the test. And don't forget that if you have any thoughts or ideas that you would like to share, you are welcome to leave comments!

Posted by Marcus at September 2, 2005 4:59 PM

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