Check GMAT Club Decision Tracker for the Latest School Decision Releases

It is currently 25 May 2017, 06:27


GMAT Club Daily Prep

Thank you for using the timer - this advanced tool can estimate your performance and suggest more practice questions. We have subscribed you to Daily Prep Questions via email.

for You

we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Your Progress

every week, we’ll send you an estimated GMAT score based on your performance


we will pick new questions that match your level based on your Timer History

Not interested in getting valuable practice questions and articles delivered to your email? No problem, unsubscribe here.


Request Expert Reply

Confirm Cancel

Events & Promotions

Events & Promotions in June
Open Detailed Calendar

Toefl Debrief - 114 - Information, Tips, Templates

  new topic post reply Question banks Downloads My Bookmarks Reviews Important topics  
Author Message
4 KUDOS received
User avatar
Joined: 01 Sep 2012
Posts: 128
Followers: 1

Kudos [?]: 121 [4] , given: 19

Toefl Debrief - 114 - Information, Tips, Templates [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 10 Sep 2013, 13:31
This post received
This post was
Hi all,
Just wanted to share my score and offer my help for anyone who needs it.

Score distribution:

Reading - 29
Listening - 28
Speaking - 28
Writing - 29

About me:

I am your average joe.
Im not a native speaker but have a good command on the English language. I work in a start-up company and therefore I have to travel a lot.
I aim to finish my application for round 1 or round 2.
I was abroad when I looked up dates for the Toefl and realized that there are only 3 available dates in September so I immediately enrolled for September 1st.
I had a total of 8 days to study for the Toefl. I took a week off from work and started my preparations.

Materials Used:

The Official Toefl Guide - ETS
Barron's Toefl Guide
GMAT Club Forum

Here's what worked for me:

I read the whole Official Guide by ETS first and practiced everything there to recognize my weaknesses.
After I finished all 4 sections, I realized that reading and listening are my stronger areas and that I need some sort of structure or template for speaking.
So I started to search for quality materials here in GMATCLUB and found notefull's 6 videos. I must say that these videos are great. I practiced the structure and memorized it and it did wonders for me.
When I first practiced the speaking section I always got confused and ruined the question. Notefull's templates helped me to gain confidence and cleared things up for me. I highly recommend for anyone to use them.
For the writing section, the first essay is pretty straightforward. Just take good notes when you listen to the lecture.
For the second essay, I just followed a simple template I made up by myself which consists of 4 paragraphs:

1) A short opening to convey my opinion and main idea:
In my eyes, I think that.... (giving the answer for the question I was asked) For a few reasons...
Although not all people will agree, on one hand... On the other hand... and that's why my opinion regarding this matter is...

2) Example 1:
First, I believe that...
For example...

3) Example 2:
Second, in my view, ....
For instance...

4) Conclusion:
In conclusion,...

After I was done with improving my weaknesses I practiced the 3 exams that came with the official guide.
They were OK and they are the closest to the real test.

I still had 8 exams from the Barron's book so I decided I should work only on my speaking and improve there. I wanted to speak fluently without grammar mistakes or gaps.
I devoted a whole day for that.
On the last day, I took a full barrons exam.

Test Day:

I arrived at the center 40 minutes before my exam. The center's conditions were really really really bad. 20 people in each classroom with NO A/C!!!
I sat with another girl right next to me without any space between us. It was super hot that day as well and all I had was a small bottle of water.

The reading and listening parts were actually harder than at home. I had 3 reading comprehensions and 9 (!) listening conversations/lectures.
At the break I just had a banana and some water and came back ready to go. I knew that the Speaking section will determine my score.

The speaking section was much easier than at home.

Questions 1+2 asked about normal, day to day topics.
Question 3 asked about a change in the university, but an easy one.
Question 4 asked to define a subject from the world of animals and speak about it.
Question 5 asked about a female's problem, 2 solutions and what would I do.
Question 6 was the only hard one, you must take good notes there.

In the writing section, both essays were relatively easy in my eyes. The subjects for both of them were easy to understand and write about.


- First and foremost, believe in yourself. All I wanted was to get above 100 and ended up with 114.
- Start from the ETS guide and not other books. I feel that barrons is a good book but it is way too long and sometimes makes things much more complicated.
- Find your weaknesses and improve them.
- For reading and listening there's not much to do besides practicing over and over again. SO PRACTICE. A LOT.
- Speaking - Devote a whole day to just memorize the templates and speak over and over again. I practiced the ETS speaking sections 3 times each + all barrons speaking sections. You can also find ANYTHING you need here -> toefl-instructional-videos-speaking-writing-very-useful-100611.html
- Writing, just follow my simple template or create your own. Structure is as important as grammar and explaining your opinion.
- Stay calm during your exam day and do know that practicing at home and solving the exam at the center is not the same. The conditions are terrible.
- During your exam, use ear-plugs and put the headphones on them. You'll thank me later.

That's it.

If you have any questions im here for you, all you need to do is ask.

Thank you for your time,

If my answer helped, dont forget KUDOS! :)


Joined: 01 Jan 2016
Posts: 16
Location: Brazil
GMAT 1: 690 Q47 V38
WE: Marketing (Education)
Followers: 0

Kudos [?]: 6 [0], given: 31

GMAT ToolKit User Premium Member
Re: Toefl Debrief - 114 - Information, Tips, Templates [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 04 Aug 2016, 11:00
I am watching Notefull's videos. They are fantastic. Simple and will be a tremendous help. I scored 105 without studying and my worst section was Speaking. I believe I could be over with TOEFL already if I had known this material by then.
Thanks for sharing!
Senior Manager
Senior Manager
User avatar
Joined: 23 Feb 2015
Posts: 480
Followers: 6

Kudos [?]: 140 [0], given: 161

GMAT ToolKit User
Re: Toefl Debrief - 114 - Information, Tips, Templates [#permalink]

Show Tags

New post 17 Aug 2016, 03:35

Sent from my iPhone using GMAT Club Forum mobile app

“The heights by great men reached and kept were not attained in sudden flight but, they while their companions slept, they were toiling upwards in the night.”
― Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Re: Toefl Debrief - 114 - Information, Tips, Templates   [#permalink] 17 Aug 2016, 03:35
    Similar topics Author Replies Last post
TOEFL - 114 - Debrief sumeetgem 0 27 Nov 2013, 08:05
8 TOEFL Debrief (118/120) + Speaking tips GPT55 10 18 Aug 2012, 02:04
2 GMAT Verbal - 29 TOEFL - 114 kobe988 0 27 Mar 2012, 06:56
TOEFL debrief - 114 clinlin 3 08 Sep 2011, 02:20
2 TOEFL 114 desaid 6 30 May 2011, 06:10
Display posts from previous: Sort by

Toefl Debrief - 114 - Information, Tips, Templates

  new topic post reply Question banks Downloads My Bookmarks Reviews Important topics  

Moderator: carcass

GMAT Club MBA Forum Home| About| Terms and Conditions| GMAT Club Rules| Contact| Sitemap

Powered by phpBB © phpBB Group and phpBB SEO

Kindly note that the GMAT® test is a registered trademark of the Graduate Management Admission Council®, and this site has neither been reviewed nor endorsed by GMAC®.