sitting TOEFL Ibt exam - my experience

millyns RSS / 20.09.2008. u 17:52


The purpose of writing this blog is to help other people to understand what they can expect when they register for TOEFL Ibt. 

Recently I've been informed that I've been admitted to an Australian university. However, I am still conditioned to pass TOEFL test in order to reach the unconditional status of the offer. Therefore, applying for the test seems like the only way to go.

Today was the day. I woke up at 6am, sat in a car at 7am and drove 1h in order to reach Subotica. At that point, I was already tired because I had to concentrate on the road which was wet and slippery. By the way, the "highway" fee is 330 dinars! I call that "ripping off!"

Finding the specific building where the test was held was more than easy (Subotica is not that big and complicated like Belgrade. Plus, people are very friendly and smiled. The guy who works at the parking service wished me luck!). I parked in front of the main entrance of the building without even realizing it. Again, the other guy who works as a doorkeeper explained me politely where is the classroom I needed. So, I was really enthusiastic about the TOEFL since I was already accumulated with a positive energy because of these nice people I got in touch on my way to the classroom. There, I met other people who also came to sit the test. I was the only girl! Two guys came all the way from Herceg Novi; future student of master studies in Canada.

Anyway, after some formalities, signing some piece of paper, the test began. The test consists of 4 parts: reading, listening, speaking and writing. The first part, writing, is not difficult. You only have to concentrate and answer questions. I got three texts to read. The worst one I got was about astronomy! Something I dislike in a great extent, and my knowledge of this topic is equal to disaster. Therefore,I had to concentrate more than for other two texts. To be honest, I could have done it better having in mind my knowledge of English. Be aware of limited time for answering. There is no much time to think about a text.

Listening is a piece of cake. Trust me! I didn't take notes because I simply paid attention only to the voice I was hearing. Afterwards, you have to answer questions.

Speaking consists of 6 sections. You have to think fast what to reply and to be as accurate and fluent as it is possible. Have in mind that other participants speak in the same time as you do, so concentrate hard on your task! Some people speak louder than others - ignore that! Most of people have problems with this part as far as I know but don't be discouraged. It's really easy. I expect max points from this part. 

Finally, the writing part! You'll write two essays. One will be about the text you read and lecture you heard (your response should be at least 150 words). The second essay is about some familiar topic, it's usually "agree or disagree" type of essay (here, your response have to be at least 300 words). Don't worry, you don't have to count your words. They are counted for you automatically. Again, this part is very easy and you have enough time to complete it and check for grammatical mistakes and misspellings. I expect 30 points.

Each part has max 30 points! You are allowed to take notes during the test.

My recommendation is to be well-prepared and in a good physical and mental condition. The test lasts 4 hours and you are only allowed once to take a ten-minute break. No matter how easy the test sounds, don't underestimate it! At least, that's my attitude! 

I hope I was helpful for the future TOEFL candidates.

Good luck!





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