By Alina MyGou

TOEFL Writing: Integrated and Independent

TOEFL iBT writing section consists of two parts: Integrated Writing Task, Independent Writing Task. At first, you have 20 minutes for the integrated writing. After finished, it's followed by 30 minutes of independent writing time. You will see details of two writing types and score rules here.

It's worth noting that your writings are taken as first draft, and so don't have to be perfect. Some articles contain a few of errors, but still get high scores.

1. Integrated Writing Recommendations
You have 3 minutes to read academic content as start, then hear listening material on the same topic. You need to summarize the contents of listening material, and explain the relationship with reading material.

It tests your ability of reading academic material and combining with listening material.

To finish your writing in 20 minutes, you need apply familiar method and skill to organize essay. Your article should be in one of following ways:
  • Summarize the main points of lecture, and explain these points are how to challenge or support the specific points in the reading material.
  • Summarize the main points of lecture, and explain how they are questioned or support specific arguments in the reading material.
  • Summarize the main points of lecture, and explain how to answer the questions raised in the reading material.
Recommendations for reading:
1. Take notes.
2. Looking for essay points, arguments, or key examples.
3. Carefully consider how the points to be developed and enhanced.
Usually there are two ways: arguments and explanations to support the main points, for example, why some policies or measures are considered beneficial, or presents why some policies and measures are unfavorable, and provide arguments and explanations.

4. Don't need to memory or copy reading material.
5. Commonly there are 3 main points to support or oppose its conclusion.
Recommendations for Listening
1. take notes
You should note details of information, examples and explanations. For example, they will illustrate the main points of the reading material, either wrong, no convincing, or even untrue.

Recommendations for Writing
1. After listening, you can remove of the headphones.
2. Before you start writing, you can browse reading material, compare with notes; then outline own structure.
3. You don't need to put forward own view, just explain relationship or compare views between reading and hearing materials.
4. Use complete English sentences to write, occasional minor errors in expression, as long as don't affect the meaning of article, shouldn't affect the final score.
5. Remember to include important information, your paper needs to meet with following points:
  • Views, explanations and arguments in listening material;
  • Clear, correct expression to accurately reflect the relationship between listening and reading materials;
  • Notice the correspondences among main points of reading and listening materials;
  • Recommend your article is in 150 to 225 words.
2. Independent Writing Recommendations
TOEFL iBT writing's second task is an academic essay. As test taker you have 30 minutes to plan, write, and revise the independent writing. An effective response contains a minimum of 300 words. If less than 300 words, it's still possibly marked a high score. However, short article usually cannot express your view clearly and strongly. So, 300 words length is an important factor for good score.

In this task, what you write is a typical small academic essay in response to a question that asks to express and support your ideal on a specified topic. The essay would be scored on the quality in three aspects:
  • Development of your ideas
  • Essay organization
  • Quality and accuracy of the language
Development of your ideas
Don't use large introduction section or summary paragraph to increase the number of words. Provide enough views, examples, explanations, and reasoning or discussion, your article should reach 300, or even 400.

Essay organization
The main points in article must be linked to the central theme by logic. The article must form a whole to support your idea or conclusion. In order to get good score, you need to avoid redundancy, digression, and unclear connections in sentences or paragraphs.

Quality and accuracy of the language
If you only use simple or basic words and sentence structures, you cannot get a good score. You should show flexible sentence structure and accurate vocabulary as possible as you can. A few spelling or grammatical errors don't affect the score, but if the error number goes large, you will lose score very much.

TOEFL Essay Questions