IELTS TOEFL TOEIC: Comparing Speaking Format

ScottsEnglishScottsEnglish Administrator Posts: 1,294 admin ✭✭✭✭✭✭✭
edited March 2016 in Speaking
The IELTS, TOEFL and TOEIC tests each have speaking components.  The following table compares the format of all three tests:


(around 20 minutes)


(around 20 minutes)


(12-15 minutes)

Questions 1-2

Read text aloud (x2)

- 45 seconds preparation time

- 45 seconds talk time


Respond to a question (x2). 

15 secs preparation and talk for 45 seconds.  Can read the question.

*Focus: academic context

Introduction (4-5 minutes)


General questions on general / familiar topics (e.g., home, family, work, studies, interests, etc.).


Question 3


Describe a picture

- 30 seconds preparation time

- 45 seconds talk time

Campus Situation Topic:

Read a short passage (75-100 words)

Listen to a talk on the same topic.

- 30 seconds preparation

- 60 seconds talk


Academic Topic:

Read passage (75-100 words)

Listen to a talk which gives more information on the topic read.


‘Long Turn’: 1-2 minutes to talk.


A topic is given on a card. Points are given which can be covered.


1 minute to prepare (pencil and paper given).

One or two short questions are asked at the end.


Questions 4-5: 15 seconds

Questions 6: 30 seconds

Respond to questions (x3) on general/familiar topics (e.g., news, entertainment, dining out, family and friends, etc)


No preparation time

Campus situation


Topic: problem/solution

Listen to two people talking about a problem (60-90 seconds)

2 solutions are given to the problem.

Speaker must show he/she understands the problem and express an opinion about it.


20 seconds preparation time

60 seconds talk time

Two-way discussion (4-5 minutes)


The examiner asks further questions which are connected to the Part 2 topic.


Speaker discusses more abstract issues and ideas.

Questions 7-9


Written information is given (e.g., a schedule / agenda / Itinerary) showing times and activities.

Questions are asked about the information.

- 30 secs. preparation time before Q7


Academic Talk


Summarise the talk, pointing out examples in relation to the main topic.

Listen to a talk 90-120 seconds which explains a term or concept with examples


20 seconds preparation time

60 seconds talk time


Question 10

Responding to a complaint

Listen to a business-related complaint/problem (talk) for about 1 minute (e.g., lost ATM card, Emergency car/dental problem)

Offer a solution to the problem.


30 seconds preparation

60 second speak



Question 11

Express an opinion

15 seconds preparation

60 seconds speak




Sign In or Register to comment.