TOEFL Preparation Book: Review of “The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test iBT Edition”

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test iBT Edition offers a step-by-step program and guide that teaches critical test-taking strategies and generally aids in polishing language skills needed for the exam. It was written specifically to help people prepare for the TOEFL and give them the chance to achieve the best possible results they could.

Here is a detailed and unbiased review of The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Book.


Everything You Need To Know About The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Book 

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Book or Guide

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL is based on several classroom experiences and many years’ worth of TOEFL-related research. This book is designed and written clearly, making it especially suitable for intermediate and advanced level students who use English as their native or second language. 

This book is undoubtedly an efficient way to help you prepare for the TOEFL. It helps you concentrate on points typically included in the TOEFL, preventing you from wasting time and effort.  

To ensure that the book is a worthy purchase, you will need to learn everything you need to know about it first! Here is the necessary content about the book you should know about.

Authors

Bruce Rogers wrote and authored the book. It was specifically made and designed to hone the necessary skills needed to prepare for the TOEFL. It aids students to achieve the best possible score they could and prepares them to take on the academic environment.

Book Contents

Here is the content of the Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Book iBT edition:

Reading

  • Factual and Negative Factual Questions
  • Vocabulary Questions
  • Inference Questions
  • Purpose, Method, and Opinion Questions
  • Sentence Restatement Questions
  • Reference Questions
  • Sentence Addition Questions
  • Completing Summaries and Charts
  • Reading Review Test
  • Vocabulary Building
  • Communicative Activities for Reading

Listening

  • Main Topic and Main Purpose Questions
  • Factual, Negative Factual, and Inference Questions
  • Purpose, Method, and Opinion Questions
  • Replay Questions
  • Ordering and Matching Questions
  • Completing Charts
  • Listening Review test
  • Note Taking
  • Communicative Activities for Listening

Speaking

  • Independent Speaking Tasks
  • Personal Preference Task
  • Paired Choice Task
  • Integrated Speaking Tasks
  • Announcement/Discussion task
  • General/Specific Task
  • Problem/Solution Task
  • Summary Task
  • Speaking Review test
  • Building Pronunciation Skills
  • Communicative Activities for Speaking

Writing

  • Integrated Writing Tasks
  • Taking Notes and Planning Integrated Response
  • Summarizing, Paraphrasing, Citing, and Synthesizing for Integrated Writing Response
  • Writing and Integrated Response
  • Checking and Editing Integrated Response
  • Independent Writing task
  • Pre-Writing Independent Response
  • Giving Opinions and Connecting Ideas in Integrated Response
  • Writing Independent response
  • Checking and Editing Independent Response
  • Writing Review Test
  • Grammar
  • Communicative Activities for Writing 

Latest Edition Available

The latest available edition of the book is the PBT edition, released in 2010. 

Price

The book includes practice tests, exercises, and strategies. For the iBT edition, you will need to buy the answer sheet and CD separately. 

On Amazon, you can buy new ones at USD 80. Used ones cost around USD 30. There are also cheaper ones over at eBay and Thriftbooks.

The CD is also bought separately. The starting price is around USD 17


Book Review: The Complete Guide to the TOEFL

After seeing the book’s content, here is a brief review of The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Book

General Overview

This section provides a detailed and more profound look at the draws and drawbacks of the book. Read to know what makes this book different from other TOEFL preparation books.

Pros

The book’s main draw is its test-taking strategies and extensive practice exercises that would benefit you during the TOEFL test. The book contains several full-length reading passages, covers specific question types, and features a few practice tests as well.

The instruction and practice material in the book also closely resembles and mirrors the actual TOEFL, giving students and readers a better chance of mastering the skills needed to achieve their best possible TOEFL test score.

The book also offers precise direction and helpful advice that students can use during the exam. They are written clearly and straightforwardly, unlike most TOEFL books that write using complicated English to give instruction.

Moreover, every aspect of the TOEFL test is covered in a satisfactory manner and with enough detail. There is a copious amount of skill-building in the book, mixed well with the TOEFL-related practice and exercise. 

Cons

The biggest possible drawback of the book is its lack of explanation and an answer sheet. Some editions, particularly the iBT edition, do not come with answers. You may have to buy another book that contains the answers, audio scripts, and some explanations.

Unfortunately, the answer sheet is not cheap. Similar to the main book and CD, it is also a bit pricey.

The vocabulary aspect of the book is also not the greatest. It contains several rare words that would unlikely appear in the test. The sentences in the book are also a bit simple and direct.

Another big con of the book is that it is hurried. For instance, some strategies are explained too quickly, and some reading passages are oddly structured. 

Ratings

Goodreads

In Goodreads, the book acquired a 4.31-star rating. The Complete Guide to the TOEFL contains several study materials, numerous practice exercises that support each lesson, including many mini-tests and a few practice tests. Readers pointed out the book is not only helpful for preparing for the TOEFL, but it could also help anyone who wants to improve their English proficiency in general.

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Goodreads 1
The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Goodreads 2

Amazon

The book has a 4.4 out of 5-star rating over at Amazon. It aids readers in passing the exam. The book explains the structures of the test, which helps students know what the test asks and how to deal with it.

Moreover, the book discusses a wide variety of topics relevant to the 4 sections of the TOEFL, giving readers a better understanding and grasp of what they can expect.

However, several readers are disappointed that the iBT edition has no answer key to the practice tests. Also, many readers claimed to have not received the CD that comes with the book.

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Amazon 1
The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test Amazon 2

Thriftbooks

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Book has a 4.5-star rating at Thriftbooks. Readers praised it for being a good choice as it provides helpful tips and strategies.

It was pointed out that the book contains several details about the TOEFL and numerous exercises and problems with a guide on each section. Furthermore, the book gives main directions on what to expect and how to prepare for the TOEFL.

Unfortunately, some editions of the book would require you to buy the answer separately.

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Test ThriftBoosk

eBay

The book has a 4.8 rating on eBay. The readers on this platform mostly brought up the cheaper price and how they received the book in good quality. They bought the book to help them prepare for their TOEFL exam.


How To Use The Book Effectively?

If you are searching for a TOEFL book that is straightforward, clearly organized, and simply written, then the Complete Guide to the TOEFL might be the right prep book for you. It is for intermediate and advanced level skill test-takers who aim to improve their proficiency better.  

If you decide on using The Complete Guide to the TOEFL, you can follow the following tips on effectively using it.

  • Use the exercises and practice tests in the book wisely; you can take the tests under realistic conditions. Imagine that you are taking the TOEFL. Answer it in one sitting, use the same time limit as the TOEFL, and take it in a space with minimal distractions. 
  • Familiarize yourself with the different TOEFL question types. The book goes over the central question types within each section of the exam. It could serve as helpful information because it provides you better understanding and a comprehensive overview of the questions types in TOEFL.
  • Make a study plan you can follow. Do not overwhelm yourself with the exercises and practice tests. 

To thoroughly make full use of the book, you will need to purchase the CD, audio script, and answer sheet as well. Listening to the audio file provides more study material and practice.

Meanwhile, having access to the answer sheet helps you check your answer. This way, you would be able to grade your practice tests and see your progress.

While at it, you can take note of your weaknesses and strengths. Check your answers and look for a pattern in your mistakes. 

Final Thoughts

The Complete Guide to the TOEFL Book is undeniably a good TOEFL preparation material to use. It offers an extensive amount of practice tests, exercises, and lessons that will undoubtedly help you pass the TOEFL and generally improve your English proficiency.

However, keep in mind its drawbacks. The book alone would not be enough to prepare for the TOEFL. You will need to purchase the other items (CD and Answer sheet) to use the book fully. Using other resources is also helpful as this book lacks in certain areas.

Regardless, this book is still one of the best TOEFL books in the market. It all falls to whether it is suitable study material for you or not. 


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