Listening TOEFL

What Types of Questions does TOEFL Listening Section Contain?

The TOEFL test is one of the most popular English-language tests available globally. The test is available in two formats: the Paper based test (PBT) and the Internet based test (iBT). This article describes the Listening section in the TOEFL iBT test. The TOEFL iBT test is conducted through the Internet for about four and a half hours. The different sections of the TOEFL iBT exam are the Listening, Reading, Speaking and Writing sections. This article will help you know about the Listening TOEFL test and the types of questions asked in the test.

TOEFL Listening Test

The Listening TOEFL is one of the four sections of the TOEFL iBT test. The time limit of the Listening test is 60 to 90 minutes. The Listening TOEFL test evaluates your English listening skills. It assesses how well you can understand academic lectures, discussions and conversations in English.

TOEFL Listening Test Questions

You will be asked questions based on the academic lectures and classroom discussions or long conversations that you hear in the Listening TOEFL test. The total number of questions might vary from 34 to 51. You have to answer the questions of the Listening test using the information from the academic lectures and classroom discussions or conversations that you listen during the test. You are allowed to take notes when you listen to the recorded lectures and conversations.

  • Questions Based on Academic Lectures

    The Listening test incudes six questions per lecture. You will have to listen to four to six academic lectures. Each lecture is about three minutes long. Hence, the Listening test comprises a total of approximately 24 to 36 questions based on academic lectures.

  • Questions Based on Classroom Discussions or Conversations

    The Listening test incudes five questions per classroom discussion or conversation. You will have to listen to two to three classroom discussions or conversations, each of which is three minutes long. Hence, the Listening test comprises a total of approximately 10 to 15 questions based on classroom discussions or conversations.

Recorded Lectures and Conversations in the TOEFL Listening Test

Each recorded academic lecture that you will listen to in the Listening TOEFL test will be a monologue speech given by a professor. Each recorded classroom discussion or conversation that you will listen in the Listening test will be an interactive conversation between a student and a professor/ academic staff/ department staff.

Types of Questions in the TOEFL Listening Test

The questions appearing in the Listening TOEFL test can be of different types, such as multiple-choice questions, chart questions, matching type questions, events/steps ordering questions, main idea questions, paraphrase questions, reference questions, key facts questions main idea questions, and inference questions.

Tips to Answer the Questions in the TOEFL Listening Test

In order to answer the questions in the Listening test easily and correctly, you can use the following tips:

  • Listen to the recorded lectures and conversations carefully with full concentration.
  • Understand the main idea or purpose of each lecture and conversation.
  • Take notes as you listen to the recordings.
  • Note down important facts and points you hear in the lectures and conversations.
  • Try to interpret the speaker's attitude, opinion and feelings about the topic being spoken in the lectures and conversations using the speech content and speaker's voice.
  • Read the questions carefully before answering them. Use your notes to answer the questions thereafter.

It is important that you understand the format and question types of the Listening TOEFL test before preparing for the test. A complete TOEFL preparation guide will provide you a general idea of the question types that can be asked in the Listening test. The Official Guide to the TOEFL® Test, Third Edition and the TOEFL® Practice Online are the comprehensive study materials that can help you in preparing for the Listening test. Both the study materials are available at the official website of the Educational Testing Service (ETS) You can also refer to and practice the sample Listening questions and take TOEFL practice Listening tests available at this site.

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