Studying for the TOEFL Test

By Anzu Ito

In my first TOEFL ITP challenge, my score was over 480 points. I felt like I would be able to get at least 500 points in the next test. However, my second score was far inferior to passing a score of 500. Some of my friends also scored less than 500, so we encouraged each other. Because I thought that I needed to study more, I bought two books, “はじめてのTOEFL ITP模試4回分”, which was helpful to understand and get used to the test, and “TOEFL ITP 文法基礎講座”, which is a small book, but it gave me a comprehensible strategy.

I did fill-in-the-blank questions and the reading sections after school or on holidays. I also did the exercises of listening and grammar section on my way to the university day after day. Despite my efforts, results did not go the way I expected. I almost lose my confidence and my hope, but I could keep my ambition because my friends and we motivated each other by reporting the amount of time we spent studying every week. After I got done with those two books, I got some relief from stress.

In my second year, I started studying for getting a qualification. My study time of TOEFL ITP was getting shorter (almost zero). Obviously, I could not get high score. I was almost ready to give up, but I did not forget to keep quickening my pace and using strategy. I made it at long last in the seventh trial.

The grammar section of TOEFL is Japanese students’ strong area, so we can get high score easier than other sections. This section is logical and like a puzzle! If you master a way to solve it faster, you can save some time for the reading section!

Common Room Activities is the best way to improve your listening skills. I joined about 40 activities in two years and improved my listening skill while I was having fun!

The TOEFL reading section has five longer paragraphs, so you may lose your motivation. However, you can see what the paragraph is discussing if you read the first sentence which is the topic sentence. The last sentence is the concluding sentence. This useful strategy can help you solve those five questions.

アルク『はじめてのTOEFL ITP模試4回分』ロバートヒルキ、藤井哲郎、ポールワルデン著

アルク『TOEFL ITP文法基礎講座』ロバーロヒルキ、高橋基冶、ポールワルデン著

Anzu Ito is a third-year student in the Dept. of British and American Cultural Studies. She is currently studying in Finland on the ISEP program.