Poor or Unfair TOEFL Score for Speaking or Writing?

Do you feel like you have received an unfair TOEFL score for the speaking and writing sections?
Did ETS make a grading mistake?
Are you just one or two points away from the TOEFL score you need? Should you take the entire TOEFL again?
There is a possible solution for you: a “score review” from ETS.
How a score review works: In exchange for a fee, ETS will rescore your TOEFL Speaking and/ or Writing section and give you completely new grades for each task, as long as you request to have this done up to 30 days after you took the test. Unlike Reading and Listening, Speaking and Writing tasks are graded by humans (and for Writing, it is human + computerized grading). Humans make mistakes – there is always the possibility that they provide you with a wrong and unfair TOEFL score for either or both of those sections, and you have the full right to request a review of such scores.
How much a score review costs: The cost is $80 USD per section. This means that if you want new grades for both Speaking and Writing, the cost is a total of $160 USD.
When should you request a score review?
  1. You are only one or two points away from the score you need.
    Most of our students with unfair TOEFL scores who requested a score review received a higher score. It might be because ETS graders pay better attention while rechecking, but rescoring – in our experience – has led to either no change or an increase in the student’s score. However, do not expect any miracles. Only a few points improvement can be expected, if any. (Yes, it is possible your score can also decrease, but that has not been our experience.)
  2. You have no time, and need an adequate TOEFL score as soon as possible.
    You can expect your new score to arrive around three weeks after you make your request (it is posted online). Three weeks is almost definitely faster than scheduling to take the TOEFL again and then waiting for the score. If you do not have time to take the TOEFL again, you can request a rescoring and hope for the best.
When should you review an unfair TOEFL score
Summary of cases where you should request a review of an unfair TOEFL score
When should you not request a score review?
  1. Any other situation than the two above.
    In a situation other than those described above, it might be better worth your time and money to take the entire TOEFL again, rather than rectify an unfair TOEFL score.
  2. It has been more than 30 days since you took the TOEFL.
    There is a 30-day deadline for requesting a score review. This means that beyond 30 days after you took the test, you are no longer allowed to request for a score review from ETS.
  3. You already sent official scores to a school.
    If you requested that ETS send the scores to a school or agency, you are no longer permitted to request a score review.
  4. You requested one section to be rescored already.
    If you want both Speaking and Writing rescored, it has to be done at the same time. If you sent in a request to rescore one section only, you will not be able to request a review of the score of the other section. Also, rescoring can be done only once.
Summary of cases where you should not request a review of an unfair TOEFL score
OK, so how do you request a score review for an unfair TOEFL score?
The request form can be found on ETS’s website.
Have any more general questions about the TOEFL? Check out our help articles by clicking here.

Why is my TOEFL Speaking score so low?

Why is my TOEFL Writing score so low?

    • You might be making some basic mistakes that completely ruin your score. It is easy to misunderstand the point of some questions.
    • Even people with excellent English skills often receive low scores due to basic errors.

Find out exactly what you are doing wrong by taking a ScoreNexus TOEFL practice test.

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