There is no Pronunciation Section of the TOEFL, but:
- Speaking raters do evaluation pronunciation as part of the holistic score you receive
There are many parts of pronunciation to think about
Why is pronunciation important
- An answer with perfect content and perfect grammar will not receive a perfect score of 30 if the Rater cannot comprehend your pronunciation
- Good pronunciation proves that you are prepared to be a professional speaker in your job or at university, which is what you're trying to prove with your TOEFL score.
How to Improve
- Learn the common pronunciation mistakes that your native language produces when speaking English
- Avoid words on test day that have letters you know you can't say well. EX: If you confuse your Ps and Bs, then instead of saying you "prefer", you should say you "like". Or the opposite: if you have trouble saying your Ls, then you should say you "prefer" instead of you "like".
- SLOW DOWN. REALLY REALLY REALLY S L O W D O W N: this is the only way to begin to hear yourself and amek the necessary changes to your speaking. You'll speed up again quickly once you go slow enough to hear yourself talking.
- Don't just slow your speaking down; slow your THINKING down, too. Your mind should move at the speed of your mouth. Bring the two into synch with each other.
- record yourself speaking and listen to it. If you're rushing, or saying "UM UM UM" a lot, then slow down more
- Work with a trained speech therapist or a professional accent reduction coach
- You WILL improve if you consistantly practice
- You will NOT improve over night; it could take weeks or months to modify your accent