Exams Know-how

TOEFL: Experience

Vineel Chandra

After thinking a lot between TOEFL and IELTS, I preferred TOEFL. Then read somewhere that Official Guide is a must have for TOEFL test takers. So I ordered it over Flipkart, but the book remained fresh till the day before exam. Lol!
35 hours before the exam, I started my official preparation. For me, Reading, Listening and Writing were so easy. I practiced one of 
the two mock tests in the CD provided by TOEFL OG. Scored full on both reading and listening. All went well.

I was somewhat weak in speaking. I took a mock test from the CD. It went horrible. But I realized I improved gradually. Practice makes our speaking perfect, is what I believed.

On the Test Day:-
With a disturbed sleep, I woke up by 6:30. Reached my test centre by 9:30. Done with the verification and proceeded to the location.
I started my reading section. With tons of nervousness, and wanting to perform well, focused heavily on the passage. Finally, done with three reading passages followed by nine listening sections. Oops! Almost drained out. Guys, the listening section was a little bit different when compared to official mock tests. I managed it anyway.Then the much anticipated break! Needed some water, but there was no water in the patience testing test center. Rest room shortage too. There was a guy who forced his way into the women’s restroom. Anyways, I sat on chair-like-desk for a while and got back to my place.

Next was the scary speaking session. I was the first to end the break so I started off. There was some peace till my first two questions. I spoke in a natural, calm, cool and composed manner. As soon as I started the 3rd question, the rest of them started their versions, they were shouting, literally. It seemed to me that I sounded too low. Speaking went OK finally.

The writing section went good. I followed the standard templates. The word count was about 500 for both the essays. Felt confident. The next page asked me whether to continue or cancel my scores. Without giving a thought, I positively clicked on the former. Done with the test and forced my way out. In the feedback form, I rated the test center facilities very poor. My feedback will not make a difference anyway, I thought.
You will be keen to know my score, I know. It was more than what I expected- 104 out of 120!

Hope my experience helps you. All the best!


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