TOEIC speaking

The TOEIC speaking test is the first half of the TOEIC Speaking & Writing Test. The TOEIC speaking test is 20 minutes long and is composed of 11 speaking prompts. The speaking segment has a low score of 0 points and a high score of 200 points. The TOEIC speaking test cannot be taken without also taking the TOEIC writing test during the same test session. The TOEIC Listening & Reading test is separate and can be taken during the same test session or during a different test session.

You take the TOEIC speaking assessment on a computer, not with a person. You will read or hear the prompts, then you must record your answer. Your recordings are saved and transmitted for scoring by ETS. Your TOEIC speaking score will be based on how well you demonstrate English fluency and accuracy in response to the prompts.

Test structure

The TOEIC speaking test is made up of 6 question types in a fixed order. You are required to do the speaking test in order from 1 to 6 and you cannot stop the test or return to a question once you have finished it:

Part 1 of the TOEIC speaking test asks students to read two texts. You will see each text written and you must read it aloud. You have 45 seconds to prepare and then 45 seconds to read each text. You get a score between 0 and 3 on each text you read based on your pronunciation, intonation, and stress. This is questions 1 and 2.

Part 2 of the TOEIC speaking test shows you a picture which you must describe aloud. You have 30 seconds to prepare and then 45 seconds to describe the picture in detail. You will receive a score between 0 and 3 for this speaking task based on your pronunciation, intonation, and stress, but also your English grammar and vocabulary. This is question 3.

Part 3 of the TOEIC speaking test asks students to answer 3 questions of an everyday nature. For example “Is there somewhere you go regularly on holiday?” You will have 15 seconds for each of the first two questions and 30 seconds for the third question. You do not have any preparation time. Your score on each of your answers is again on a scale of 0 to 3. This is questions 4, 5, and 6.

Part 4 of the TOEIC speaking test is similar to part 3 except that in part 4 the student is given some background information and must answer 3 questions about it. For example, you might see a poster for an event and be asked when the event takes place or who will be speaking. The background information stays visible while you are answering the questions. You will have 30 seconds to read the background information, then 15 seconds each to answer the first two questions and 30 seconds to answer the final question. Your score on each question is on a scale of 0 to 3. This is questions 7, 8, and 9.

Part 5 of the TOEIC speaking test asks you to listen to a recorded message that explains a problem and then propose a solution to the problem. After the recording that tells you the problem ends, you have 30 seconds to prepare your answer and then 60 seconds to speak and explain your solution. It is important that you make it clear that you have fully understood the problem as you are proposing your solution. Your score on this speaking section is on a scale of 0 to 5. This is question 10.

Part 6 of the TOEIC speaking test asks you to listen to a short recording about a familiar topic and then express your opinion about that topic. You have 15 seconds to prepare your response and 60 seconds to speak. Your score on this speaking prompt is also on a scale of 0 to 5. This is question 11.

Strategy

If you do not answer one of the questions on the TOEIC speaking section or if you answer in your own language, it is counted as a zero, so it is always better to say something in English, even if you are not sure of the answer or your answer may be incomplete. You might still manage to get a point or two. Remember to speak as calmly and clearly as you can and to answer each question completely. The person who will grade your TOEIC speaking test is not in the room with you, so gestures and facial expressions can’t help to explain your meaning.