Information for Texas Teachers

Important TOEFL iBT Information for Teachers in Texas

Jane Announcements, TOEFL: Advice for Studying 0 Comments

If you are wondering how to get the TOEFL iBT score that allows you to teach in Texas, then this information is important for you. We teach a lot of students who have needed TOEFL iBT Speaking scores of 26+ in order to teach in Texas schools.

This is the information we have as of June 2017.

The Texas Education Agency (TEA) is reviewing its TOEFL iBT requirements for certified teachers. At the moment, it requires a speaking score of 26 with no other minimum scores.

The TEA is spending the next few months consulting with stakeholders in an attempt to introduce minimum TOEFL iBT requirements that are reflective of the language skills that teachers need. There will be dedicated meetings in June and September, 2017 to discuss this.

What is changing? When will it change?

We don’t know what the new requirements are going to be and we don’t know when they will be implemented.

It’s possible that

  • Minimum scores in the other skills (reading, listening and writing) may be required as well as speaking.
  • The minimum score for speaking may be lowered from S26 to S24.

This is obviously a stressful situation to be in if you are a teacher who is studying for TOEFL iBT right now.

What should you do?

Here are some things to think about:

Are your scores from the real exam or from practice tests in the low 20s?
Although the TOEFL iBT requirements are likely to change, TOEFL iBT scores as an indicator of language proficiency are not going to go away. There is a lot you can do to help yourself while you are waiting to know.

  • Keep studying.
  • Aim to get your reading, listening and writing scores to around 24-25. Work on getting your speaking score to S24.
  • Work on topic development and accurate language use (grammar and vocabulary) for speaking and writing.

This is the kind of language proficiency level you need to comfortably operate as a teacher and to understand what is going on at work on a daily basis.

Have you already got a speaking score of 24?
Congratulations, you’ve reached a good standard of proficiency. Only you can decide whether you want to aim for S26 and whether it is worth you doing so.

You should remember though that the TEA hasn’t given an implementation date for these new changes. It could take months by the time everyone has given their opinion. If you are motivated and want to get on with your career, then it’s really worth aiming for a S26 score right now. Finish TOEFL and start doing the things you really want to do!

Are you motivated and organized? Do you want to aim for S26?
There is a big gap between S24 and S26. Speakers who score S26 sound more natural, more fluent, more American and more authoritative. In short, they sound like teachers who are in control and who quickly gain the respect of students, parents and co-workers.

S26 is not impossible for motivated students who have good grammar, vocabulary and comprehension skills.

People who score S26 are more marketable and may find it easier to get hired initially as well as promoted later on.

S26 is a minimum requirement for many competitive graduate studies programs. If you think you may pursue further academic studies, then it could be worth aiming for S26.

Do you want to start today?

  • To learn more about what characteristics your English needs to have to score S26, please watch our free class below.

  • To book a lesson with an experienced teacher who can give you immediate feedback and advice about how to improve your TOEFL iBT score, please click the button below.

About the Author

Jane Birkenhead has been teaching ESL since 2008. She’s a Level 3 ESL Exam Prep Coach and has trained with Jaime Miller since 2015. To learn more about the students who she has helped, click her photo.