I stumbled across a copy of the fifth edition of Rawdon Wyatt’s “Check Your English Vocabulary for the TOEFL” today.  This isn’t a particularly popular book, but it does come up now and then when I talk to students.

It must be said that this is barely a TOEFL book.  The TOEFL is referenced in the title and mentioned in the introduction to the book, but otherwise this is just a general vocabulary workbook.  It contains 50 chapters of fill-in-the-blank activities, crossword puzzles and other skill building things.  The vocabulary presented in the book is certainly useful, but it isn’t particularly focused on the TOEFL in any way.  Nor will you find any activities or questions that resemble what you’ll find on the TOEFL (like you will find in the TOEFL vocabulary book published by Barron’s).  It isn’t even focused on the sort of peculiar academic vocabulary one finds on the TOEFL.  Keep that in mind if you plan to use this as a self-study resource or a teaching tool.  This is fine as a vocabulary book, but it is about as useful as any old vocabulary book when it comes to TOEFL prep.  It isn’t any better than, say, “English Vocabulary in Use” or any other good vocabulary resource from a reputable publisher.

Note for teachers: this book is perfect if you are looking for photocopiables and your boss wants you to draw from something with “TOEFL” in the title.

You can get a copy from Amazon.

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