Joined: 11 Sep 2013
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TOEFL debrief - 108 [#permalink]
11 Sep 2013, 06:48
My TOEFL debrief:
I had 3 days to prepare for the exam. Did not practice reading.
I used the following resources:
Speaking and Writing: Joseph Miranda's free videos on notefull dot com
ETS TOEFL Sample Writing responses pdf
Listening: english - learn dot net
On the test day:
The exam was at 10:00 AM. Reached the centre at 9:30 AM. Deliberately stood last in line. Also ensured that I was the last person to start the exam, by leisurely filling out the confidentiality form. This had a benefit in the speaking section, which I will explain later.
I was stumped by the difficulty of the first reading task. Tried focusing hard and read the first RC multiple times, but still make much any sense out of it. I still cant say whether the RC was tough or I wasnt focusing. The second and third RC's were relatively easier compared to the first. My observation is that the RC's are difficult compared to the practice questions on the ets site.
A Blunder I made: Reading section has 3 RC's/ Each RC is timed for 20 min, after which you will be taken to next RC. I didnt get to answer 2 questions in RC2 because of time and felt disappointed as the software moved to RC3. I didnt know that I had the chance to review answers of all RC's at the end of the reading section. Because of this ignorance, I missed out on 2 questions. So, its important to know that you get to review all answers at the end of the reading section.
Again, the listening section was tense. Most questions that focused on testing my understanding of the speakers intent were confusing as I had to make out the meaning from the tone. So, had to focus hard. In all, reading and listening require continued focus. Practice keeping that in mind.
10 min break.
Because I was the last person to begin the test, all others had finished their speaking section. Hence, I had least disturbance.
This section became easy because of the templates from notefull dot com . Still, I made some fumbles (pauses in speech and not using precise words), but my message's content was clear. Overall, it went well.
For the integrated task, I used chineseburned template available at this site. Wrote 350 words.
For the independent task, I followed the "sample writing responses" document from ets. Exactly mimicked the "5.0 score" sample response structure from it. Wrote 450 words.
1. Get the know the test structure in and out. I missed a few reading questions because of not knowing this.
2. Read TORFL debriefs from gmatclub dot com. These give you tips to follow during the exam. Like, the idea of starting the exam last was something I got from a debrief.
3. You may want to write down the speaking templates on the scratch paper provided during the test, even before the section begins. But be aware that if you ask for an extra scratch paper, the current scratch paper will be taken away and a new one will be provided. So, anything you write on it is gone.
It took 10 days for my score to arrive.