It is worth noting that with the launch of the TOEFL TestReady platform we appear to have lost access to the 28 free “writing for academic discussion” questions that everyone really loved. Also gone are the free “additional practice” questions formerly included in the TOEFL Go app.

We’ve also lost the free full-length practice test (separate from the old “TOEFL Go” app), though that has been replaced with a 40 minute “sampler” test.

The popular PDF practice sets I’ve recommended to students for more than a decade remain, but only if users know to look in the section of the ETS website for test-takers with disabilities. And those versions appear to be missing key audio downloads previously available on the website.

I love, love, love the new prep platform, but it is worth observing that with its advent TOEFL test-takers seem to have lost access to a significant number of free resources. This may be worrisome for those who value equity and fairness in testing.  To put it bluntly: test-takers have access to far less free prep material than they did in the past.  It is now harder for people without money to prepare for the test.  This comes at the same time that it is easier for people with money to prepare, thanks to the launch of the TestReady platform.

When I posted a variation of the above on LinkedIn, ETS reminded me that content from these items are part of the “free activity of the day” item pool. That’s fantastic, but getting piecemeal (and temporary) access to those items over many months of daily visits isn’t nearly as helpful as what test-takers formerly had access to.

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