TOEF iBT Experience – Shared by Mani.
My TOEFL score was 114. Break up:
- Reading: 30
- Listening: 28
- Speaking: 29
- Writing: 27
How I prepared for TOEFL
I did not prepare much for TOEFL test as I had prepared a lot for GRE and I had got my expectations too high and that made me nervous on the day of exam which shattered my dreams of a perfect 1600 score (Old pattern) and I scored just 1400. So I thought I will not take much tension.
For reading I mainly focused on my speed reading and did a lot of RCs.
Listening, I was pretty confident in this as I have been watching the ENGLISH SITCOMS like How I met your mother, FRINGE, CASTLE etc for 3 years now regularly and as a result I got very well acquainted with the US slang lingo and their accent.
Writing also I was confident as I maintain a blog since my school days, but somehow I scored the lowest here. In the feedback they said I had grammatical errors in my constructions of sentences.
I think written English is something we Indians learn through other Indians only (e.g you never ‘give exam’ you always ‘take exam’) and hence are more likely to make the mistakes which everyone makes.
Another point was that they said I did not elaborate my essay much thought it had around 440 words… i will suggest you try to make atleast 500 words.
Listening section was my phobia as I was speaking too slow in my practice sessions. One mistake I did was that I followed a strict pattern for speaking due to which I fumbled a lot with words when there were just 10 seconds remaining.
ON TOEFL TEST DAY
The test center was like a nightmare come true! They opened the gates very late (appointment was for 9.30 but they opened at 10.15 am).
They admitted all the 12 to 15 students at once and their studio was very small and all the test takers were sitting very closely.
They made all the students start the test together which was a disaster as the speaking section of everyone arrived almost at the same time.
My Reading went well and Listening was also nice (I make notes a lot in classes so I am used to writing shorthand that I understand) But most of my notes did not help me as much as my memory did.
During the speaking section I got very nervous after 2 tasks as the guy right behind me was insensitive to anyone else’s presence and was almost shouting into the mic!
He started speaking as soon as my 3rd task recording started due to which I fumbled a lot. (I was sure that his voice got recorded into my task before mine!)
But I was mostly crystal clear with what I spoke even though the sentence was hardly making any sense. A score of 29 was a pleasant surprise! I think they regard clarity as a very important factor.
One mark was deducted as they did not like my pronunciation of a few words 😛
All in all I was really glad to score 114 and I think you can too score well if you attempt the paper confidently 🙂
Best of luck!