How to prepare for the TOEFL®
For every person who undertakes to sit the TOEFL® it is important that they pass because they usually have plenty at stake. The result is a lot of pressure which can easily get to someone if they are not well prepared for the test. This guide may not go too deep into details but it gives a good idea of what one needs to do to be sufficiently ready when the time comes to sit the actual paper.
The most basic thing is to know what format of TOEFL® you will be tested by. In most countries the option of internet based TOEFL® (iBT) is available while in some few others there is only the paper-based test (PBT) format on offer. Before you commence your studies it is imperative that you find out what centers are available in your country and in what format the TOEFL® is tested. It is not possible to sit the iBT TOEFL® for instance in a country offering PBT TOEFL®. People often get exam stress when they do not know what to expect in an exam but once you know what format you will take your paper in, the ETS offers a standardized test on which there are very clear guidelines.
For any non-native English student wishing to pursue post-secondary education in the United States and most other English-speaking jurisdiction, the TOEFL® is mandatory. Most people take the test pursuing slots in specific institutions. Before you settle down and concentrate on reading, seek to find out what the requirements for your target institution are. Some schools tend to judge the scores from different sections; most require higher writing section scores than speaking section. With such knowledge you know where to attach more weight.
TOEFL® measures one’s ability to succeed in an American (or other English-speaking country’s) university or college. The focus for TOEFL® is not business, but rather language that would be heard and seen on campus and in lecture halls. As such, you should study textbooks, encyclopedias, academic journals and research articles rather than advertisements and resumes. You may not need the background knowledge on all the subjects you study but it will help you familiarize with the academic language at that level. Modern television and movies are also helpful while attending an actual lecture in English if you have a friend pursuing one is even better.
Above all, the most efficient way to get ready for the TOEFL® is to practice doing the tests. If you are enrolled in a course, the teacher/institution avails a lot of resources for you to use. If you are studying by yourself, you will need to purchase some material and seek other free ones. Acquire a textbook or CD with exercises and guidelines to taking the test. There are also organizations online that offer tests for evaluation and that includes us at BestMyTest. You can simulate a test once you feel confident enough to want to measure your progress. Feel free to register with us today for free membership.
It is always helpful to have someone who has been down one road to guide you and the TOEFL® is no exception. A mentor in the form of a native teacher, tutor or someone who has passed the test is one of the best resources one can have. There are some questions no book can answer and lack of guidance may cause one to despair. If none of the above are possible then consider studying in groups where you can brainstorm and encourage each other.
Finally, you need to build your stamina to be ready for the test. An average student has a concentration span of about two hours but the PDT takes two and a half hours. The iBT takes even longer at four hours. If you are not ready then you may perform poorly towards the end of the test as concentration lapses. Start off with short spanning studies then progress to longer ones until your body and mind is ready to work as long as the test may require. Before the test, it is paramount that you catch a good night’s sleep and wake up fresh and relaxed.