Joined: 15 Aug 2010
Location: Moscow, Russia
Schools: top schools
WE 1: Foreign Ministry - 6 years
WE 2: Law Firm - 3 years
 , given: 2
My TOEFL Debrief (107) [#permalink]
26 Nov 2010, 09:10
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I gave my test on November 14, and today, i.e. November 26, got the results -- total 107 (R29, L27, S23, W28).
To prepare for the test, I followed the recommendations given on this forum and purchased the TOEFL Official Giude.
Just had a quick look into the book and did not dwell into it at all. But its CD was useful as it helped to get used to the interface, which is almost the same as in the real TOEFL, develop an understanding what is tested, and check the level of questions difficulty.
During the mock tests,
(1) I found RC questions very straightforward and easy, especially as compared to the GMAT RC questions. After some practice, I decided to go ahead with the following strategy: in order not to run out of time, I elected to skip reading a topic and go to questions right away;
(2) I came to know that Listening questions were also rather easy, because the speakers' pronunciation was clear and understandable;
(3) for Speaking questions, I used the voice recorder on my mobile. This way I learned that my speech suffered from interjections and interruptions. Just did all the assignments on the disk and I did not spend on this section any additional time - for which I now feel sorry.
(4) for Writing tasks, I used Chineseburned's essay templates, so had no problems with this section at all.
Actual test day.
The test was scheduled for 9 am in Moscow. I arrived 30 minutes earlier, filled out the confidentiality statement, and waited for the call. The room was quite well organized and the machines, headphones, and keyboards were up to the mark. Did not count the exact number of seats, but I think - at least 20 students came that day.
For the Reading section I got five texts. The topics were of the same caliber as those on the CD. No surprise. Please note that in order to go to questions without reading the passage, you need to scroll the page a bit, and the program will let you proceed with questions.
BUT! As I was finishing the last topic and started doing the Listening tasks, almost everyone in the room was shouting to their microphones. So, I was a bit distracted by the noise and thought I did bad on the Listening section.
On the Speaking section I was completely devastated, because I failed to cover the questions completely. I simply could not finish my speech before the beep. So, I would strongly advise all test takers to learn speaking templates by heart. And practice talking with friends or on mocriphone as much as possible. Sitting in a room that is full of noise may have a detrimental effect.
Writing section went quite well. Again, write as much as possible properly structuring your essay. Use connecting words throughout your text.
That's it. I do not think I will retake this test. My score should be enough for the target schools.