A new test, the same purpose

Japan’s university entrance exam will undergo some change in the future, according to recent news. People concerned, especially those who will take the test in 5 years and their parents must be feeling anxious. Looking back, when I was a senior at high school, there also was to be a change in the system. Our generation used to be made scared with the threat that the whole system would change and we were to learn things from scratch in the following year if we didn’t pass this year.

As it turned out, there was only a slight change that didn’t affect the overall preparation.

The same is said about the TOEFL test.

When the Internet based test (iBT) was to be introduced (as far back as a decade ago), people were making  a fuss about the new generation TOEFL, mainly because the speaking section would be added.

However, still the most difficult section (by the world standards) is the reading section.

Test takers throughout the world always hesitate or give up this test mainly because the reading section is a bit too hard to complete.

However, if you think of what you are supposed to do at university (STUDY!), it is a logical extension to put the most emphasis on the reading section. You go to university, but you can’t read???

Whatever change will be made in the future will be based on this assumption.

– You attend classes and listen attentively to the lecture while taking notes.

– You go to the prof”s office to ask questions.

– You read assigned books and write a paper.

– You go out for a drink with your friends.

– You go to the counselor to discuss your personal problems.

These are some of the things ordinary college students do.

ETS tries to measure the possibility that you will be able to do the above. No matter what change, this fundamental idea will remain the same. This is what the TOEFL is about / for.

No worries about the change in formality.


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