How do you Approach 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.

What’s best?

Well, it really depends on what type of person you are. If you can handle the overwhelm and like consuming multiple inputs, this one might work for you. This is what I call “input flooding” and if you are an advanced learner and highly proficient in English, seeking out multiple sources of paid and unpaid content could work really well for you, especially if you consider yourself to be a “good” learner.

What’s fluff?

If you are like many – you might need a clear approach to the TOEFL that is more structured. Fluff is all that content that has nothing to do with learning a skill. Long musical intros to videos, for example. Look for courseware that focuses on delivering a clear message without any distractions.

Find a fluff-free TOEFL prep course

In premium courses, well-organized TOEFL prep lectures have a series of interlinking ideas and themes that allow you to see the test clearly and to apply specific sets of strategies and tactics to accomplish your goals.

So, if you are the “do everything” type of prep person, or the “do one thing” type, there might be some tools and techniques on that are worthwhile adding to your prep arsenal.

Even bad press is good press!

Check out why Home Room Edu has just called John Healy “the new face of TOEFL training“.

Check out the press release for Turbo Tactics.

The TOEFL is hard. Don’t take it twice. Lear more about great TOEFL prep here.

See you soon!

One Reply to “How do you Approach TOEFL Prep?”

  1. If time is a big consideration, focus on the productive skills: writing and speaking. Those are the toughest ones to do. Speaking is tough. Writing is tough. Doing well in those skills impresses native English speakers and rewards are handed out for them. How many times have you heard a conversation that ends in “You speak English quite well,. . . .” TOEFL raters want to reward those who do the work involved in learning a language. We don’t relish the task of being “gatekeepers.” (at least, I don’t).
    One of the best feelings you can get is learning another language and navigating in a foreign country. I was able to find my way around the Paris Metro in 6 hours and it was one of the best feelings I got. That’s the kind of feeling you get when you get a great score on the TOEFL.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *