From September, students will have the opportunity to sit for their TOEFL iBT exams at the University of Groningen’s Language Center.
The institution becomes the first and so far only language center in the North where students will be allowed to take the English proficiency exams. The TOEFL (Test of English as a Foreign Language) exam tests the level of academic English and is accepted worldwide as an admission requirement for university students.
Gone are the days when students had to travel to Germany or Amsterdam to receive their English-language qualifications.
“Becoming an official TOEFL test center was one of my main goals. With the huge number of students in the Northern Netherlands, it is an indispensable service we can now offer them,” said Seyit Gök, the Section Head of the English department at the Language Centre, in a statement.
The TOEFL exam will be held every two weeks at the Harmonie Building starting from September onwards. The GRE (Graduate Record Examinations) test, an admission exam for graduate and professional schools, will also be offered for the first time and administered once a month.
A pricey requirement
The introduction of the TOEFL exam to the RUG’s Language Center relieves students from having to find a test center beyond the North of the Netherlands saving them considerable time and money.
The tests in themselves are already quite pricy and have received considerable criticism over the years.
Some students who are fluent in English and who have already completed English-taught programmes may still be asked to sit a TOEFL exam, the cost of which varies from country to country. Additional charges come with late registration, rescheduling, and extra score reports, adding more financial woes for international students.
TOEFL exams are also only eligible for two years, meaning students may be required to sit another English proficiency exam during their study period, once again having to put up many fees to complete their studies.
With tuition already increasing by 9.6% this year for non-EU and international students, the TOEFL is yet another financial hurdle for internationals to tackle if they wish to study in certain programmes abroad.