Step One: Before the test
- Work on building and widening your vocabulary. Use the sample conversations and lectures from different standard TOEFL books available to become familiar with the level of vocabulary on the TOEFL.
- Listen to a variety of academic talks, such as recordings of real college lectures, documentaries, and educational television programs. Most of the lectures on the TOEFL are based on topics in the natural sciences, the social sciences, the arts, and business. Listen to material in these subject areas to build comprehension.
- Work on developing efficient note—taking skills. Develop a system of using abbreviations and symbols for common words.
- Become familiar with the question formats and how to answer them.
- Become familiar with the TOEFL testing tools, such as Next and OK. Practice using the mouse to click on and drag text.
Step Two: During the test
- While you are listening to the conversations and lectures, concentrate on general meaning and purpose. Listen for key words(=content words) and concepts that are repeated throughout the piece.
- When you take notes, write down only essential terms and concepts. Do not allow your writing to detract from your listening.
- Work as quickly as possible. Although you can control the amount of time you spend answering each question, there is a time limit for answering the total number of questions in the Listening section.
- For multiple choice questions, use the process of elimination. This means that if you do not find the correct answer right away, omit the choices you know are incorrect. If you can eliminate one or two choices, you will improve your chance of selecting the correct answer.
- Click on OK only when you are certain you are ready to go on to the next question. After you click on OK, you cannot return to the previous question.