ACCURACY vs SPEED IN TOEFL PREP. HOW TO HAVE IT BOTH WAYS.
TOEFL assesses the ability of students to speak and understand English by testing their reading, listening, writing and speaking techniques. Speed and accuracy are essential traits recommended for a great score in the test.
Let’s discuss some approaches that will help speed up your rate of comprehension while maintaining the pace to get test tasks done on time in all four areas:
Continue reading “TOEFL: Accuracy vs Speed”
IN THE 2 INDEPENDENT QUESTIONS, YOU NEED TO THINK QUICKLY AND RESPOND CLEARLY.
You only have 15s to prepare.
Then, you have 45s to answer.
Chunk it out
Think of this task like this: you have 4 x 15s chunks of time – 15s to plan & 45s to deliver.
Continue reading “15-second Speaking chunks”
“DELIVERY” IS A KEY PART OF YOUR TOEFL SPEAKING SCORE
Totally panicked about TOEFL Speaking prep? It’s a common feeling! Let’s zoom in on 3 things you can do on one of the most stress-inducing sections (come on, isn’t it the MOST stress inducing section?)
Continue reading “3 Free Ways to Improve your TOEFL Speaking Delivery”
THERE ARE THREE WAYS TO APPROACH YOUR TOEFL PREP
1. Do nothing. Walk into the exam room and just “roll with it”. If your English is pretty good, you might actually be surprised at the result, especially if you have some prior experience with standardized exams.
Downside: potential waste of time (4 hours) and money ($200). Strategy: take no TOEFL prep course.
2. Do everything. This might sound good on the surface: “I’m doing everything I can to get a high TOEFL score!” That type of motivation should be commended. This approach involves trying to consume as much information as possible about the test, and practicing hard.
Downside: if you are buying multiple resources, this could get expensive, but most importantly, it could be overwhelming.
3. Do one thing. One thing – like taking a highly structured course – suits some learners who appreciate optimizing their time and resources.
Downside: by limiting yourself to one program, you rely on one point of view and one set of advice.
Continue reading “How do you Approach TOEFL Prep?”
In TOEFL writing, it’s a great idea to use a counterargument. A counterargument is when you a) acknowledge the other side of an argument and b) refute it.
Let’s say I’m taking a position on an issue – public transportation vs car ownership.
Continue reading “TOEFL Writing – How to Use a Counterargument”
WHY IS THE US VISA PROCESS SO UNPREDICTABLE?
My Chinese student, who goes by Alex, WeChatted me the bad news from his home in Beijing. Alan had just applied for – and failed – his first American Student Visa interview. For Alan, student life at UMass Boston would have to wait. Is TOEFL training the best way to get a US Visa? Or should you bypass the test and try to apply directly to your target school? Continue reading “No TOEFL Score, No US Visa, No Thanks”
THIS POST IS FOR SERIOUS NERDS ONLY
In helping students prepare for the TOEFL, I’ve been playing around with a great vocabulary game at www.freerice.com, which has a very lofty and worthwhile goal. Welcome to TOEFL Training blog. TOEFL vocabulary lists abound – I have used a great one in Clear Strategies & Tactics that has over 2000 words taken from old TOEFL exams. But this tool is not only a great way to practice your vocabulary and build your English skills. It helps to make the world a better place and raises a very nerdy linguistics issue. Proceed with caution!
Continue reading “How to Build TOEFL Vocab Skills…and Feed the World?”
FOCUS YOUR MIND
Attendance in TOEFL training classes is a requirement in many EFL education programs. I know. I’ve taught hundreds of them. Teachers take roll calls to determine who is ‘present’, and thus, who is ‘absent’. “Juliet?” a teacher will call out. “Here!” Juliet will reply, and a tick is placed next to her name. She is ‘here’, in class, behind her desk, but is she really ‘present’? As Juliet knows, studying dry material is something that all university students need to get used to, right?
Continue reading “Are You ‘Here’ or ‘Present’?”
MEMORIZE THE TEMPLATE NOT THE ANSWER
I’ve conducted thousands of TOEFL Speaking classes with non-native English speakers over the years. A percentage have a belief that memorizing answers will give them an edge in the TOEFL Speaking Section. It won’t. Here’s how to improve TOEFL speaking.
(Oh, btw, test your TOEFL IQ now!).
Continue reading “Don’t Memorize! Instead Do this 1 THING to Improve TOEFL Speaking”