For Test Takers

TOEFL® Tip: Listening to Lectures

  • Create three headings on a sheet of paper: "Main Idea, Major Points and Important Details" and under each heading list key words or phrases from the lecture that go with the headings.
  • Listen carefully and write key points down while listening.
  • Continue listening until all important points and details are written down and then review them.
  • Listen to a portion of a lecture or talk and create an outline of important points.
  • Use the outline to write a brief summary.
  • Gradually increase the amount of the presentation you use to write the summary.

For more practice developing your listening skills, try Idioms in English, an interactive program in our English Skills Series from ETS and AmEnglish® that features 100 current English idioms and expressions.