TOEFL Writing Samples: Practice Essays & Writing Topics 2022

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Summary

  • This blog provides an overview of the TOEFL writing samples.
  • Further throws light on the sample essays and questions asked in different tasks of the writing section.

The TOEFL writing section will ask candidates to demonstrate the ability to evaluate essays on academic topics and their ability to structure ideas coherently. The Integrated Writing Questions focus on an entire passage with multiple questions, and the Independent Writing Questions focus on either a single paragraph or a set of paragraphs. This article will provide TOEFL writing samples based on the two categories and various question types. These TOEFL samples will help candidates prepare well and master the TOEFL writing section.

toefl writing samples

Types of TOEFL Writing Test

There are two main categories of tasks in the writing section of TOEFL. They are –

  • TOEFL Writing Task 1 – Integrated Writing Task
  • TOEFL Writing Task 2 – Independent Writing Task

TOEFL Online Exam 2022 Made Easy

TOEFL Writing Samples for Writing Section

Here is an elaborate breakdown of questions asked in each category of the writing section of TOEFL. Practising these TOEFL writing samples can easily help an individual master the art of writing. Further helping them achieve high scores to crack into top foreign colleges for study or get placed in top companies for jobs

1. TOEFL Integrated Writing Task

Task one gives candidates a reading passage followed by a short listening passage. They have three minutes to read the passage and take notes before it disappears, and the listening passage plays for two or three minutes. Then the candidates have 20 minutes to write their essay answers. The table below provides a breakdown of these tasks –

Question Structure Details
Question 1 Individuals can skip the introduction of this writing section.
Question 2 Candidates will be given an academic passage to read. The passage will contain between 250 - 300 words and might disappear after three minutes, but will be back when they are ready to write.
Question 3 A lecture covering the content of the assigned reading will play. The lecture lasts two to three minutes.
Question 4 After the passage finishes, candidates will be asked a question to summarise points made in the lecture and explain how they relate to specific ideas made in the reading.
Question 5 The clock starts. Candidates have 20 minutes to write an essay of at least 250 words. They answer the question, provide information from both the reading and listening passages, and discuss how the two are similar or different.

TOEFL Writing Sample Text for Integrated Writing Task

Here are some TOEFL writing test topics and sample essays one can follow –

  • Sample Text 1

The material used to build Stonehenge, one of England’s most famous historical sites, has been traced back to two different places, over 200 miles apart. Archaeologists have speculated how the rocks could have been transported from so far away. One theory suggests that they were dragged across land using sledges or other rudimentary tools.

The question of how the stones known as bluestones made their way from one location to another has long been debated by scholars. The prevailing theory is that a group of people carried them over long distances and placed them in position at Stonehenge, but this explanation is unlikely for several reasons. First, it is unlikely that such heavy stones could have been transported from one location to another using the technology of the time. Secondly, there are other types of rock found near Stonehenge that could have been used instead of these specially shaped bluestones.

The theory of erratic glacial holds that rocks in an area were transported there by glaciers during a previous ice age rather than being carried there by men.

Erratic, large rocks displaced from their original place of origin by the movement of glaciers are found scattered around the northern latitudes. Although it may appear that the Earth’s climate has always been as it is now, with no sign of past glacial activity. There have been several hundred thousand years when half of the planet was covered in glaciers. These tend to be slow but violent in nature, calmly and methodically carving their way through rock and earth.

Over many thousands of years, glacial erratics may have carried the materials used in Stonehenge from the Welsh mountains. This could explain how the stones were transported to Salisbury Plain and why some Stonehenge stones appear unfinished. Perhaps there were no more bluestones to use.

Question: Summarise the points made in the lecture and explain how those points cast doubt on specific points made in the reading passage.

  • Sample Text 2

In an effort to combat global obesity, an international health body has suggested a tax on junk food. The proposal would require producers of unhealthy foods, typically high in fat and sugar with low nutritional value, to pay more for the privilege of selling their products in supermarkets or serving them in restaurants. However, opponents argue that the plan would not succeed because it does not address the root causes of obesity.

First of all, people should be allowed to eat whatever they like without being punished for their decisions. Additional taxes should be placed on unhealthy foods to make sure that people are eating healthy food and are aware of unhealthy eating consequences. Moreover, this would also help people make healthier choices.

On the other hand, a tax on sugary foods would not likely affect purchasing behaviour, according to some economists. The tax could increase the price of certain types of food, but it’s unlikely that consumers would even notice. Ultimately, it would simply mean they’d have less money to spend on a more varied diet.

A final point to consider is that it is not entirely clear that taxing junk food would cause people to eat healthier. In this view, the problem is not the low price of less healthy food but rather the high price of healthier options. As a result, this policy does nothing to promote healthier food or cultivate more healthy eating habits among the population.

Question: Summarise the points made in the lecture, explaining how they cast doubt on specific points made in the reading passage.

2. TOEFL Independent Writing Task

The independent writing task on the TOEFL takes 30 minutes to complete. Unlike the integrated essay, this answer must come completely from the candidates’ opinions. The following types of questions can be expected in the independent writing section task two:

Question Type Asking Frequency Details
Choose a Side Usually Do you agree or disagree with the following statement: "Parents should read their children's text messages"?
Open Sometimes What advice would you give a friend travelling to another country to go to school?
Three Choice Rarely For your senior year of college, you must volunteer at the school library. 
- Would you rather stack books, read to children, or, 
- Help with Internet searches?
Advantages & Disadvantages Hardly Ever Many students are asked to evaluate their professors at the end of the semester.
- What are the advantages, and
- Disadvantages of this approach?

TOEFL Writing Sample Text for Independent Writing Task

Here are some sample texts based on the various types of questions asked on the TOEFL writing task 2. They are as follows:

  • Agree or Disagree Writing Sample

    Particulars Writing Sample
    Sample Text 1 Do you agree or disagree with the following statement

    - “It is more important for students to study art and literature than it is to study math and science.” 

    Provide reasons and examples to support your opinion.
    Sample Text 2 Do you agree or disagree with the following statement

    -“Video games offer benefits to children.” 

    Provide reason and examples to support your stance.
  • Open Writing Sample

    Particulars Writing Sample
    Sample Text 1 What are the characteristics of a good coach?
    Sample Text 2 Describe an annual day in your country when you give people special gifts.

    TOEFL Updated Exam Syllabus 2022
  • Three Choice Writing Sample

    Particulars Writing Sample
    Writing Sample Text 1 You must prepare a final project. Which style would you prefer: 

    1. Giving a class presentation 
    2. Design a poster 
    3. Write an essay
    Writing Sample Text 2 You are going to start a new business. Which of the following do you feel is most important to be successful: 

    1. Lots of money 
    2. Lots of friends 
    3. Lots of products

  • Advantages and Disadvantages Type Writing Sample

    Particulars TOEFL Writing Sample
    Sample Text 1 - Some people feel that high school students benefit from participating in organized sports, while others feel that sports are a waste of time.
    - Instead, students should focus on studying. 

    Which point of view do you agree with, and explain why.
    Sample Text 2 - Your friend has decided to switch careers but is not sure which to choose. 
    - What advice would you give them? 

    Provide reasons and examples to support your response.

toefl writing samples

The TOEFL iBT writing test requires a lot of practice and can be improved by taking sample tests. The more writing one does, the more confident he or she will feel during the exam. Further, the grade can be increased by practising with the TOEFL writing samples, as it helps students learn and retain skills. Writing skills cannot be acquired overnight, and by doing this, one can also become familiar with the essay question types, which will make them seem less daunting when taking the TOEFL iBT test.

Frequently Asked Questions 

How is TOEFL writing structured?

The three parts of a TOEFL writing assignment are the introduction, the body, and the conclusion. A four-paragraph essay has one introductory paragraph and three body paragraphs. A five-paragraph essay has one introductory paragraph and four body paragraphs.

How many paragraphs should a TOEFL essay be?

Four or five paragraphs are generally the norm for an effective essay, and one of those paragraphs should clearly state your main idea. The recommended length for the Independent Writing section of the TOEFL is 250 - 300 words. Still, experts suggest writing this much for the Integrated Writing section, where only 20 minutes is allotted to write.

What is a writing sample test?

Work sample tests require applicants to perform tasks similar to those on the job. These assessments are commonly used when writing ability is identified as one of the most critical competencies for the position. Further, the TOEFL writing samples help students to understand the exam structure and prepare them for any challenge thrown at them.

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Experienced IELTS prep trainer and education management industry veteran. Specializes in public speaking, international education, market research, mentoring, and management.