Chinese Test-Takers Soar in TOEFL Scores, Reflecting Globalized Future

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Chinese Test-Takers See Improved TOEFL Scores

Chinese test-takers are demonstrating improved performance on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), with the average score reaching 90 in 2022. This surpasses the global average of 88 for the same year, according to the Educational Testing Service (ETS).

Omar Chihane, General Manager of TOEFL, attributes this improvement to China's increasing engagement in global economic exchanges and international collaboration, where proficiency in English is becoming increasingly essential. He also highlights the continued demand for TOEFL in China and the resumption of test volumes following the COVID-19 pandemic.

High Scores Open Doors for Students

Test-taker Sui Aiyuan, who scored 111 out of 120 on the exam last year, received offers from prestigious universities like New York University (NYU) in the United States and the University of Amsterdam in the Netherlands. "My TOEFL score was the foundation and it built up my confidence," Sui said.

She ultimately chose the Media, Culture, and Communication program at NYU's Steinhardt School, securing a scholarship of $56,600 per year for the next four years.

TOEFL Enhancements for the Future

In 2023, TOEFL announced enhancements, including shortening the test duration from three hours to less than two hours and introducing a new "writing for an academic discussion" task. Sui believes this new task, while challenging due to its time constraints, will help her prepare for her overseas studies by reflecting a writing style more relevant to daily life.

TOEFL Beyond Education

Rohit Sharma, Senior Vice-President of ETS's Global Higher Education and Work Skills, emphasizes the company's rebranding to enable lifelong learners to be future-ready. This repositioning aims to help individuals constantly "reskill" and "upskill" themselves to meet the demands of a rapidly changing world driven by factors like AI technology.

Sharma envisions high-quality assessments provided by ETS extending beyond the education sector, encompassing employment and the workplace. He notes that many students, after receiving an international education and working experience, return to their home countries to contribute to their local economies.

Bridging the Talent Gap

Sharma acknowledges the global challenge of a demand gap between talent and employers' needs. He emphasizes the need for employers to identify talent with the necessary skills and for students to effectively articulate their strengths acquired both inside and outside the classroom.

"We believe we can play a role in helping bridge that gap through our innovative products and high-quality assessments," Sharma concludes.

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May 21, 2023 | 05:09