Minimum Score to Pass TOEFL Test: What You Need to Know

Are you planning to take the TOEFL test? If so, you may be wondering what the minimum score is that you need to pass. The TOEFL is an important test that measures your ability to use and understand English at the university level. It is commonly used by universities and other institutions to determine whether you have the language skills necessary to succeed in an English-speaking academic environment.

The minimum score required to pass the TOEFL exam varies depending on the institution you are applying to. Some universities may require a higher score than others, so it is important to check the requirements of each institution you are interested in. In general, a score of 60-78 is considered passing, but this may not be sufficient for some institutions. In addition, some institutions may require a minimum score in each section of the exam, such as reading, writing, speaking, and listening.

Understanding TOEFL Exam

The TOEFL exam is a standardized test that measures your ability to use and understand English language at the university level. It is widely accepted by universities and colleges around the world for admissions and placement purposes. Here are some key points to help you understand the TOEFL exam:

  • Test Format: The TOEFL exam consists of four sections: Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing. The Reading and Listening sections are multiple-choice questions, while the Speaking and Writing sections require you to speak and write responses to given prompts.
  • Test Duration: The total test duration is approximately 4 hours. The Reading section lasts for 60-80 minutes, the Listening section lasts for 60-90 minutes, the Speaking section lasts for 20 minutes, and the Writing section lasts for 50 minutes.
  • Scoring System: The TOEFL exam is scored on a scale of 0-120. Each section is scored separately, and the scores are added together to get the total score. The minimum passing score for most universities is 80, but some universities may require a higher score.
  • Test Preparation: You can prepare for the TOEFL exam by taking practice tests, studying vocabulary, and improving your English language skills. There are many resources available online and in print to help you prepare for the exam.
  • Test Administration: The TOEFL exam is administered by the Educational Testing Service (ETS) and is available at various test centers around the world. You can register for the exam online or by phone.
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Overall, the TOEFL exam is an important tool for measuring your English language proficiency and is widely accepted by universities and colleges around the world. By understanding the test format, scoring system, and test preparation strategies, you can improve your chances of success on the exam.

Minimum Score Requirement

To pass the TOEFL exam, you must achieve a minimum score requirement set by the institution or organization that requires the test. The minimum score requirement varies depending on the institution, program, or country you are applying to.

The TOEFL exam is scored on a scale of 0 to 120, with each section (Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing) scored from 0 to 30. Institutions usually require a minimum total score of 80 to 100, but some may require higher scores.

The table below shows the TOEFL minimum score for US universities:

University TOEFL score requirements
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) 90
Stanford University Varies between 90-100
Harvard University 100 but 105-109 for most of the doctoral courses
California Institute of Technology (Caltech) Depends on the academic record
University of Chicago 104 and 26 in each section
Princeton University 100
University of Pennsylvania 100
Cornell University 100
Yale University 100
Columbia University 100
University of Michigan-Ann Arbor At least 100
Johns Hopkins University 100
Northwestern University 104 minimum for the graduate courses
University of California, Berkeley (UCB) 90-100
80 for the undergraduate courses
New York University (NYU) 100
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) 88-100
Duke University 105 or up
minimum TOEFL speaking score is 22
Writing: 20;
Listening: 20;
Reading: 21
Carnegie Mellon University 102
University of California, San Diego (UCSD) 85-100
Brown University 100 minimum
University of Wisconsin-Madison 100
University of Texas at Austin Minimum 79
(Reading: 20
Listening: 16
Speaking: 21
Writing: 22)
University of Washington Around 90
Georgia Institute of Technology Minimum 90
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign 79-102
(Reading: 19
Speaking: 20
Listening: 17
Writing: 21)
Rice University 100 minimum
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill 100 or higher
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Here are the list of universities that accepts minimum TOEFL score for MS in US:

University Location
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Cambridge, Massachusetts
Stanford University Stanford, California
Harvard University Cambridge, Massachusetts
Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Princeton University Princeton, New Jersey
University of California Berkeley and Los Angeles, California
Cornell University Ithaca, New York
Yale University New Haven, Connecticut
University of Chicago Chicago, Illinois
Columbia University New York City, New York
Johns Hopkins University Baltimore, Maryland
California Institute of Technology Pasadena, California

 

It is important to note that meeting the minimum score requirement does not guarantee admission to the institution or program. Other factors such as GPA, work experience, and extracurricular activities may also be considered. Therefore, it is recommended to aim for a score higher than the minimum requirement to increase your chances of being accepted.

In conclusion, the minimum score requirement for the TOEFL exam varies depending on the institution, program, or country you are applying to. It is important to research the requirements of the institution you are interested in and aim for a score higher than the minimum requirement to increase your chances of being accepted.

TOEFL Exam Structure

The TOEFL exam is a computer-based test that takes about four hours to complete. Each section has a time limit, and the test-taker must complete each section within the allocated time. The following table provides an overview of the TOEFL exam structure:

Section Time Limit Number of Questions
Reading 60-80 minutes 36-56
Listening 60-90 minutes 34-51
Speaking 20 minutes 6 tasks
Writing 50 minutes 2 tasks

The Reading and Listening sections are scored on a scale of 0-30, while the Speaking and Writing sections are scored on a scale of 0-4. The scores for each section are then added together to give a total score, which is also on a scale of 0-120.

Overall, the TOEFL exam is designed to test the English language proficiency of non-native English speakers. By understanding the basics of the TOEFL exam and its structure, test-takers can better prepare themselves for the exam and improve their chances of achieving a high score.

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Minimum Score for Different Programs

In addition to universities, different programs may also have different minimum TOEFL scores required for admission. Here are some examples of minimum TOEFL scores required by popular programs:

  • Master of Business Administration (MBA): 100
  • Master of Science in Computer Science: 90
  • Bachelor of Science in Nursing: 80
  • English Language Program: 70

Again, it is important to note that these scores may vary by university and department within the program. It is recommended to check with the specific department for their minimum score requirements.

Conclusion

Overall, it is important to research the minimum TOEFL score requirements for each university and program before taking the exam. It is also recommended to aim for a score higher than the minimum requirement to increase the chances of admission.

FAQs

Q: What is the minimum score to pass the TOEFL exam?

A: There is no fixed minimum passing score for the TOEFL exam, as the requirements vary depending on the institution or organization you are applying to. However, most universities and programs typically require a TOEFL iBT score ranging from 70 to 100 out of 120 to demonstrate English language proficiency.

Q: Is there a universal passing score for all sections of the TOEFL exam?

A: No, the TOEFL iBT exam consists of four sections: Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing. Different institutions may have different score requirements for each section. For example, a university might require a minimum of 20 in each section with an overall score of 80, while another institution might have different sectional requirements.

Q: Can I retake the TOEFL exam if I don’t achieve the required score?

A: Yes, you can retake the TOEFL exam if you don’t achieve the desired score. There is no limit to the number of times you can take the test, but there are restrictions on how often you can retake it. You must wait at least 3 days before retaking the test, and you can take the test a maximum of once per calendar month.

Q: How long are TOEFL scores valid?

A: TOEFL scores are typically valid for two years from the test date. This means that you can use your scores for university applications or other purposes during that two-year period.

Q: Do different universities or programs have different minimum TOEFL score requirements?

A: Yes, universities and programs have the flexibility to set their own minimum TOEFL score requirements based on their admission criteria. Some might have higher requirements for competitive programs, while others might have slightly lower requirements.

Q: Can I send only my best TOEFL scores to universities?

A: Yes, many universities allow you to send your best TOEFL scores from multiple test attempts. This is known as Score Select. You can choose which test scores you want to send to universities, which can be especially beneficial if you’ve taken the TOEFL multiple times.

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