Some tricks for the TOEFL iBT speaking section

Advice 1 : 

There will be massive aural interference from other test takers. Try and practice in a noisy ambiance. A co-test taker, who was fairly fluent in our pre-test conversations, cupped big time in the test, purportedly on account of the disturbance caused by the other test takers. 

To make things worse the center instructor had advised every one to 'speak loud' because some of the mikes had a few 'signal attenuation issues'. This had a catastrophic effect on the bustards who did not bother to analyze and conclude that at the end of the day , it is the Signal to Noise+interference ratio (SINR) that matters and by croaking hard, you will only end up prompting your neighbor to croak harder,which coupled with the ensuing snow-balling effect will result in only help bring down your own SINR. The noise-insulation provide by the headphones, will not , I repeat, WILL NOT help you that much. So be mentally prepared to counter this. 

I guess it does not take a genius to figure out a suitable strategy to counter this. [ For those initiated in to Game theory, or at-least the movie 'A beautiful mind', think 'Nash equilibrium', or, that, "The best result will come from everyone in the group doing what's best for himself and the group."]

 Advice 2:
To the best of my knowledge, all the test takers in a center will get the same question set (At least for the speaking section). I can personally vouch for this fact at least with regard to the instance and center in which I took the test.

Hey wait a sec.Does this mean, that if I don't take a break and check out after the Listening section, I can just sit there and listen to the other test takers grapple over topics that you , yourself will be getting in a few minutes from now ?? Apparently YES.

So my advice is:
You are paying $170, and you are entitled to adopt any strategy that is within the realm of the laid out rules.
 So, sit tight in your place (after the listening section) and concentrate on what the other test takers are speaking about and infer the topics. This is pretty easy as most of them state the topic somewhere in their 'speech'. If possible, prolong attainment of the Speaking section. This can be done by not choosing to voluntarily continue to the next section/set of questions until the complete time for that section/set runs out and the software automatically takes you to the next section/set :-).
Feel strongly discouraged to pursue the race to be the first guy/gal to complete the test in your center. You ain't getting no brownies for that ..

Daniel Ressler said... said:

April 9, 2014 at 4:03 AM  

The access level for TOEFL iBT should be particular General Advanced English Level or highe.

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rahyal said... said:

April 13, 2014 at 9:46 PM  

This is really helpful! Thanks for boosting my confidence!
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