ALA resources

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Test Preparation Courses

ALA offers a TOEFL preparation course which gives you the chance to strengthen your English reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills. Besides English language review and instruction, the course provides pre-tests and post-tests so you’ll know precisely what your strong and weak skills are and be able to focus your studying better. The course also helps you improve your ability to combine listening, speaking, writing and/or reading skills to accomplish academic tasks, a major focus of the TOEFL test.

There are practice tests that you take under real test conditions so you’ll know exactly what to expect on the day of the examination itself. Additional online course material presented in a fun and game-like format helps you review and practice at home. Finally, you receive coaching in critical test-taking strategies for each question-type and section to help you perform at a higher level on the exam.

TOFEL Overview

Method of Instruction: On Campus or Online

Prerequisites: must have one of the following:

  • Completion of Level 3 of the IEP or EAP program
  • Score of 3.2 on the iTEP Placement Test

Category: Test Preparation

Est. Completion Date: 4-9 weeks from the start of the program

Duration per course TOEFL-Regular: 9 weeks per section/4 hours per week

Duration per course TOEFL-Accelerated: 4 weeks per section/9 hours per week

Total number of units: 1 levels (units)

Enrollment: Open enrollment throughout the session

Course Schedule: Morning or Evening hours available

Reading Skills

Review of the three passage types (expository, argumentation, and narrative) and their typical text structure; practice and strategy development for answering: multiple-choice questions that ask you to find factual information and negative factual information, make inferences, identify the author’s rhetorical purpose, identify the noun to which a pronoun refers, choose the best paraphrase of a sentence or section of a passage, and choose the best synonym or definition for a vocabulary term; questions that ask you to insert a sentence into the most logical place in a passage; and questions that ask you to complete a table or chart by inserting items into the proper categories.

Listening Skills

Review of the three passage types (conversation between students on campus, lectures by professors on an academic topic, interaction between students and professor during a class) and their typical structure; practice and strategy development for answering: questions that focus on choosing main idea, supporting detail, factual information and content, making inferences, understanding organization, recognizing the speaker’s purpose, tone, or attitude, and note-taking by filling in graphs and tables.

Speaking Skills

Explanation of the two categories of speaking tasks (independent, which draws on students’ own experience and knowledge, and integrated, which asks students to react to something they read or hear); practice and strategy development for answering questions that ask students to: describe experiences, give their opinion and explain their reasons; after reading a passage and listening to a short conversation, restating the opinion of the speaker and the examples used; after reading a short passage and listening to a short lecture, explaining how the example from the lecture supports the reading passage; after listening to a short conversation, restating suggestions from the conversation and telling which is better; after listening to a short lecture, summarizing what was heard.

Writing Skills

Review of the two writing tasks (an integrated task, based both on a reading and a lecture, where students summarize the lecture they hear and contrast its information to the information presented in the reading passage, and an independent task, where students present a personal opinion or describe an experience, including details and examples); practice and strategy development for the subskills of brainstorming, creating main idea and key points, outlining, summarizing, paraphrasing, making connections between texts, organizing the introduction, body paragraphs, and conclusion, using signal words and pronoun reference to provide cohesion, creating thesis statements and topic sentences, and  what to include in the introduction and conclusion.