TOEFL® Essentials Scores and Admissions

Accepting Scores

You don't have to choose between the TOEFL iBT® test and the TOEFL® Essentials test — you can accept both! And doing so will give you the broadest range of qualified international applicants of any test provider.

If your institution already has a 4-digit score-user code for TOEFL® tests, you and your applicants will use that same code for TOEFL Essentials scores. If you don't have a TOEFL score-user code, apply for one.

If your institution uses a data management system for test scores, it will need to be configured to accept TOEFL Essentials scores, as with any new test. We will provide additional guidance after the TOEFL Essentials score scale is announced.

Communicating Your Acceptance

Once you've made the decision to accept TOEFL Essentials scores, we recommend communicating your acceptance on your website right away and adding additional information about your specific score requirements later, after the score requirements guidance and score concordance tools are released in early June.

We also recommend communicating your decision on TOEFL Essentials with us so that we may update our list of accepting institutions that will be made available to test takers worldwide. Let us know by email at toeflnews@ets.org.

Score Scale

The TOEFL Essentials test will have a total score and section scores for each of the 4 sections (Listening, Reading, Writing, Speaking).

The test will feature a new score scale reported as bands from 1 to 12 for both total and section scores.

The score scale will be described in an assessment framework document that is being finalized and is expected to be released in May 2021. The framework will present evidence for the validity, reliability and accuracy of TOEFL Essentials scores.

Setting Score Requirements

ETS will provide clear guidance on setting score requirements for the TOEFL Essentials test, including a concordance table for institutions to be able to compare TOEFL Essentials scores with TOEFL iBT scores and CEFR levels. By extension, institutions will be able to align TOEFL Essentials scores with IELTS® scores using the TOEFL iBT and IELTS score comparison tool. This information is expected to be available in June 2021.

Score Reporting

Institutions can start receiving TOEFL Essentials score reports as soon as 6–8 days after the first test (depending how they receive scores), with test takers receiving scores about 6 days after the test.

Institutions will have access to the same scoring services that they do for the TOEFL iBT test:

  • ETS® Data Manager. Registered users have easy, on-demand, secure access to test-taker information, including the TOEFL® Showcase feature, which will display TOEFL Essentials scores, additional dimensions of English proficiency, the 5-minute personal video statement, and sample Speaking and Writing responses.
  • Online Score Verification System. Registered users have easy, on-demand, secure access to TOEFL Essentials scores.
  • Paper Reports by Mail. For institutions still receiving them, paper score reports for the TOEFL Essentials test have security features to help prevent forgeries.

TOEFL Essentials scores are valid for 2 years from the test date, and will be included in the test-taker data in the TOEFL® Search Service.