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TOEFL Exercises for Speaking and Writing

If you want to do well on the TOEFL, then you’ll need to practice a lot — but, you already know that. Here are 25 TOEFL exercises to help you study.

 

Let’s start with speaking.

The second speaking task on the TOEFL is very similar to task one; both ask you to speak for 45 seconds about your experience or opinions. But the second task is more clearly about an opinion, because it asks you to choose a side and support it. Basically, you need to decide which of two options is better.

The two most common formats are these:

  • Some people think A, but others think B. Which do you agree with?
  • Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Statement A.

But regardless of what your second speaking question looks like, the idea is the same. Choose A or B, and then give reasons for your choice.

Below is a list of 15 examples. If you want to use these for practice, I highly recommend recording yourself! This page doesn’t simulate a TOEFL like Magoosh’s premium TOEFL material. And keep in mind that you will only have 45 seconds on the real TOEFL, with 15 seconds to prepare before starting to speak. It’s key that you can give a complete answer in that time. Timing yourself while doing these exercises will help. 

 

Sample TOEFL Speaking Exercises for Task Two

 

1. Some people prefer to eat a large lunch, and then eat less food in the evening. Others prefer to eat more at dinner. Which do you prefer, and why?

 

2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Explain why.

Studying vocabulary by memorizing definitions is not helpful for improving spoken communication.

 

3. Some people prefer to live in places where the weather changes throughout the year, while other prefer to live in areas with stable temperatures. Which do you prefer, and why?

 

4. It has recently become more common to watch videos and listen to songs over the internet, without owning them. Do you prefer to own videos and music or only access them through the internet, and why?

 

5. Do you prefer to wake up earlier than needed in the mornings, or to sleep as late as possible? Explain your answer with reasons and examples.

 

6. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Explain your opinion with reasons and examples.

Owning books is important for studying effectively, so that you can mark the pages with notes or highlights.

 

7. Some students take many breaks while they study, but spend more time in the day on their studies. Others study for longer without breaks, but finish earlier. Which do you prefer, and why?

 

8. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Explain your opinions with reasons and examples

Students in their final year at a university or college should be allowed to take any classes they choose, because they will not have the same opportunity after graduation.

 

9. In some countries, students choose their majors before being accepted into higher education programs (colleges or universities). In other school systems, students choose their majors after they have started their studies. Which do you think is preferable, and why?

 

10. It is now possible to do all reading for classes on computers or screens on other technological devices, such as smartphones or e-readers. Do you prefer to study on using these electronic devices or with printed paper? Explain your answer with details and examples.

 

11. At some universities, students are able to arrange their classes such that they have free days with no classes to attend. In other universities, students go to classes each day from Monday to Friday. Which do you think is preferable, and why?

 

12. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement? Explain your answer with details and examples.

Students learn more from smaller classes in which they can be more personally involved.

 

13. Some universities encourage students to take classes from various areas, including science, literature, and arts. Do you think this is preferable to taking only classes that are directly related to students’ majors? Why or why not?

 

14. Today, many university lectures can be viewed through videos on the internet, although students still go to live classes to hear the professor speak. Which do you think is a better choice? Explain why.

 

15. When in a new city, some people prefer to pay for faster transportation, such as buses or taxis, but others prefer to walk wherever possible. Which do you prefer, and why?

 

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Next up, writing!

Perhaps you’ve already looked carefully at Magoosh’s TOEFL writing template. But how will you learn to really use that structure unless you practice?

The more TOEFL independent essays you write before test day, the better. You’ll want to know exactly how much time to spend planning your essay, what types of examples in your life you can draw from, how long to spend writing each paragraph, and how to transition from one supporting reason to the next.

Below are fifteen practice questions to improve your independent essay. That’s the second essay on the TOEFL, with a 30-minute time limit. So give yourself a full 30 minutes to write a response to each of the below, and don’t forget to return to those essays later to edit! Reviewing and editing a week later is a good idea. But for now, pick one and start planning how to respond!

Sample TOEFL Writing Exercises for the Independent Essay

 

1. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

It is better to make mistakes when learning a new skill, so you can learn from the errors.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

2. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Good friends should have varied interests and personalities, instead of having similar tastes.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

3. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Team sports do more harm than good by creating unnecessary fighting between teams and their fans.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

4. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Important decisions should only be made with measurable data clearly supporting the decision.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

5. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Frequent communication is the most important part of working well with peers on a shared task.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

6. Some companies talk to their customers very formally, while others use a more informal or conversational style. Which type of communication do you think is better? Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

7. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Colleges and universities have the responsibility to give their students options for clubs and activities outside of classes.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

8. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Colleges and universities should make all lectures open to the public for free, including people who are not planning to graduate with a degree.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

9. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

As the internet becomes increasingly more important in daily life, writing skills become more important to teach in schools.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

10. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

It is important for children to do puzzles and play games in order to learn new ways of thinking.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

11. Some parents give their children a small amount of money regularly to be spent as the children choose. Other parents hold the money, and only allow the children make purchases with parental approval. Which do you think is better, and why? Explain your reasoning with specific examples.

 

12. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Changing schools is emotionally difficult for children, and so it should be avoided if possible.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

13. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Because technology changes so quickly, it is better to only spend money on new technology rarely, in order to avoid spending money on new technology that will soon be outdated.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

14. Do you agree or disagree with the following statement?

Art museums should not be funded by governments, because they are not helpful for or desired by the large part of the population who take no interest in visual arts.

Use specific reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

15. When in a new location, some people prefer to fill their days with sightseeing activities, while others prefer to explore with less planning. Which do you prefer? Use reasons and examples to support your answer.

 

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6 Responses to TOEFL Exercises for Speaking and Writing

  1. Jon November 17, 2015 at 7:24 am #

    Hello Lucas!!!

    Thank you so much for sharing and I really appreciate so much your input.

    Best regards,

  2. claudia December 4, 2016 at 5:27 am #

    I would like to have examples of how you answer the writing . You just have a few examples but that is no helpful for me.Could you please send me some examples.
    I would appreciate it .

    Thank you very much,

    Claudia

  3. Beheshta January 17, 2017 at 7:43 am #

    Thank you dearest Lucas for your kind advice.

  4. maya Nath April 23, 2017 at 1:11 am #

    Sir thank you for your kind support

    • David Recine
      David Recine April 23, 2017 at 2:50 am #

      You’re welcome. On behalf of Lucas and the rest of us at Magoosh, thank YOU for your kind words. 🙂


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