Saturday, January 22

Rhetorical Strategies for the TOEFL iBT

A carpenter uses a hammer to build a house. A painter uses a brush to paint a portrait. Speakers and writers use rhetorical strategies to develop, support and analyze fact-based and opinion-based arguments. What is the TOEFL iBT? It's all arguments. Why all arguments? Because argument development and analysis is the foundation of the English-speaking educational system. That means to get a high TOEFL iBT score you must know basic argument development. Start to learn about argument development by learning these basic eight rhetorical strategies. You will use these eight rhetorical strategies for all four sections of the TOEFL iBT.

1. NARRATION: (Chronology)        

She got up at seven. After that she had breakfast, then caught the nine o’clock train downtown.

2. DESCRIPTION: (Person or Place)

His room was tiny, his faded green plant dying, his desk cluttered with empty cups and late assignments.
3. ILLUSTRATION: (Giving Examples)

Google is just one of many search engines.
4. COMPARE/CONTRAST: (Similarities/Differences)

Mary tried the apple pie and decided the cherry pie was sweeter.
5. CAUSE/EFFECT: (Action + Result)

Bill studied hard and passed the exam.

6. CLASSIFICATION: (Dividing into groups)
There are three kinds of wine: red, white, and rose.

7. DEFINITION: (Dictionary Style)
A good student does his homework.

8. PROCESS: (Putting Steps in Order)
Writing consists of three steps: prewriting, writing, and revising.

Remember: To get high TOEFL score, you must know these eight rhetorical strategies. Rhetorical strategies are tools speakers and writers use to support and develop fact-based and opinion-based arguments. What is the TOEFL iBT? All fact-based and opinion-based arguments.

The Pro


and effect...

© Bruce Stirling 2011