Preparing English Skills for the Classroom

Preparing English Skills for the Classroom

by Educational Testing Service

Boarding schools in the United States offer an outstanding education that can help prepare international students for enrollment at leading universities. Studying in the United States may seem intimidating, but it also can prove to be an invaluable experience that provides new perspectives, new friends and new opportunities.

While there are hundreds of U.S. boarding schools with different strengths and experiences, they all have one thing in common: the English language. Students must be prepared to communicate in English, both inside and outside of the classroom. In fact, there are English as a Second Language (ESL) programs specifically designed to provide international students with intensive English training to prepare for the academic year.

As English is a part of everyday life, it’s critical for teachers and parents to have an accurate understanding of students’ ability to communicate. To help set the foundation for English language learning and prepare students for future success, ETS created the TOEFL® Young Students Series — designed for students in global contexts — which includes the TOEFL Junior® and TOEFL® Primary™ tests.

The TOEFL Junior tests, intended for students ages 11+ and available in two testing modes, provide accurate insight into students’ English communication skills and help teachers make the best English-language program placement decisions. Delivered in a paper-based format, the TOEFL Junior Standard test measures reading comprehension, listening comprehension, and language form and meaning. The TOEFL Junior Comprehensive test is a computer-delivered test that measures all four skills — reading, listening, speaking and writing — to gain a complete understanding of a student’s abilities.

TOEFL Junior scores have multiple uses in English-language classrooms, including: 

  • Monitoring progress over time to gauge learning and proficiency level
  • Using “can-do” statements provided on the score report to help parents and teachers determine next steps of learning
  • Advising students on appropriate book selections based on MetaMetrics® Lexile® measures to help improve their reading proficiency
  • Mapping student achievement to the Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) for international benchmarking

The TOEFL Primary tests are intended for students ages 8+ and are designed to be the first step on a student’s path to reaching his or her full potential. The tests measure students’ English communication skills and progress in English classes along with providing meaningful feedback about their abilities to both teachers and parents. Depending on school curricula and other factors, young students acquire and develop their English skills at different times and in different ways. The TOEFL Primary program offers three tests to measure a range of skills and proficiencies. Each test provides reliable scores with detailed score reports and feedback. Scores are also mapped to CEFR levels along with MetaMetrics Lexile measures for the reading section.

TOEFL Primary score reports are meant to be positive and motivational for students and include:

  • Levels that indicate proficiency
  • Scale scores that show progress within levels
  • Proficiency descriptors with meaningful information for each section, including recommendations on next steps that students can take to improve their English-language abilities

The TOEFL Young Students Series tests are based on thorough research to ensure their validity and reliability, and reflect best practices in language testing. To build on a long history of supporting research on global assessments for English learners, ETS conducts foundational and ongoing research that promotes high-quality English-language assessments.

More information about the TOEFL Young Students Series is available at

This is an advertisement. Copyright © 2016 by Educational Testing Service. All rights reserved. ETS, the ETS logo, TOEFL and TOEFL JUNIOR are registered trademarks of Educational Testing Service (ETS) in the United States and other countries. TOEFL PRIMARY is a trademark of ETS. Lexile and MetaMetrics are registered trademarks of MetaMetrics, Inc. 33799

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