My TOEFL Experience - July 11, 2008

I want to tell you about my Experience. Maybe it could help other Test Takers

    I was the first that arrived to the Test Center (about 8AM, 1 hour before the Test) and I think it was beneficial because the Test Administrator registered myself in a computer located in a quietly corner. So, first tip try to arrived early to the Test Center.

    After confirming my personal information, the Test started. The Reading Part was a little bit difficult because at first I felt quite nervous. Then, I breath deeply and try to focus on the passage. Also, I was one of the "lucky candidates" that got 5 passages instead of 3. Anyway, I spent 45 seconds scanning each passage, reading the first line of each paragraph and the last line of the whole passage, and then started with Question 1 as quickly as I can. There were Questions that I can answer in 30 seconds, and also Questions on which I spent 2 minutes. But all the Questions refereed to a specific paragraph. So, second tip keep concentrated on the paragraph that is related to the Question and try to read it all.

    Then, the Listening Part has an average level. I understood all the conversations and lectures but I had doubts on answering at least one Question for the final lectures because I wrote a lot in my notes. So, third tip try to write necessary things when you are taking notes. Also, it could help you if you use abbreviations of words that you understand.

    Finally, I had a ten-minute break. I went to the restrooms and then ate a chocolate because I read that chocolate could help my brain. After that, I took the Speaking Part, which is the difficult one for me. I thought that I probably were felt uncomfortable talking to a computer, but I was not. I focus on each Question and tried to give the best answer that I could. I repeated part of each Question when I started to talk, either if the Question is for a familiar topic or if it is for a lecture. I have to admit that I felt nervous in two Questions because of the time and the organization of my speech. So, fourth tip stay calm and try to use efficiently the seconds of preparation time, specially when you have heard lectures previously.

    After the Speaking Part, immediately appears the Writing Part. The Integrated Question was about systems of recycling and how the lecture contradicts it. I could understand the lecture and took good notes because the audio was not so fast. The Independent Question was if you agree or disagree with the statement that parents do not understand their children today as well as they did years ago. In both essays, I organize a brain-storm on the computer instead of the scratch paper and I also reserved at least 5 minutes to review all my answer and correct any grammar mistakes. So, fifth tip try to organize your ideas on the computer as a part of your answer and do not forget to review your writing few minutes before the time ends.