• EMPOWERgmat Slider
    1 Hour Free
    BEAT THE GMAT EXCLUSIVE

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    EMPOWERgmat Slider
  • Kaplan Test Prep
    Free Practice Test & Review
    How would you score if you took the GMAT

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Kaplan Test Prep
  • PrepScholar GMAT
    5 Day FREE Trial
    Study Smarter, Not Harder

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    PrepScholar GMAT
  • e-gmat Exclusive Offer
    Get 300+ Practice Questions
    25 Video lessons and 6 Webinars for FREE

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    e-gmat Exclusive Offer
  • Economist Test Prep
    Free Trial & Practice Exam
    BEAT THE GMAT EXCLUSIVE

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Economist Test Prep
  • Veritas Prep
    Free Veritas GMAT Class
    Experience Lesson 1 Live Free

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Veritas Prep
  • Magoosh
    Magoosh
    Study with Magoosh GMAT prep

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Magoosh
  • Target Test Prep
    5-Day Free Trial
    5-day free, full-access trial TTP Quant

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Target Test Prep
  • Varsity Tutors
    Award-winning private GMAT tutoring
    Register now and save up to $200

    Available with Beat the GMAT members only code

    MORE DETAILS
    Varsity Tutors

3 day TOEFL prep?! (115+/120)

This topic has 8 member replies
thomasl Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
18 Mar 2009
Posted:
5 messages
Test Date:
April 10, 2009
Target GMAT Score:
>

3 day TOEFL prep?! (115+/120)

Post Thu Oct 28, 2010 9:30 am
Hey everyone,

Unfortunately, my target schools make me take the TOEFL.

My background: I received my undergraduate degree from a non-English-speaking institution in Germany, even though classes were mostly held in English. I also spend several years abroad (3 in total, mostly in the US). I have a US high school degree and also did exchange semesters during undergrad in the UK and the US, which is also where I currently work (I moved to the US in March). Most people do not even notice my slight German accent. Sure I make some grammar mistakes (especially tense, e.g. overusing the present progressing) once in while, but I still consider my English language skills pretty solid. I also already prepared for the verbal part on the GMAT.

Anyway, I have to take the test - and I don’t have a lot of time to prepare! Regardless of my existing English skills, I’m sure I still have to prepare somehow for test (just like someone who has solid math skills won’t be able to get a high score on the GMAT without being familiar with the format).

It would be great to get your insights on how to approach this. I’m sure there are quite a lot of people here in this forum that can resort to great English skills and vast vocab, but still had to take the test. My research was not too fruitful so far, most websites are more targeting people who start on a different level and plan to prepare for weeks - which is simply not an option.

Did any of you guys identify efficient ways to familiarize with test? As of now, all I know is that there are 4 sections and the general question type (i.e. regarding comprehension, listening comprehension + speaking, essay writing, etc.)

Is there a lot of blah I can skip?

Is it reasonable to get just spend three days on preparation? My target score is a 115 or higher on the IBT.

It would be terrific to get your thoughts and advice, rather sooner than later. Wink

Thanks much,
Thomas

Need free GMAT or MBA advice from an expert? Register for Beat The GMAT now and post your question in these forums!
DanaJ Site Admin
Joined
01 Jan 2009
Posted:
2567 messages
Followed by:
550 members
Thanked:
712 times
GMAT Score:
770
Post Thu Oct 28, 2010 9:44 am
Any chance you can get your hands on the Official Guide for the TOEFL? It should really help. I went though the book with lightning speed and it worked for me. You don't have to do all the practice, just a few will probably suffice. Also, skip the writing part of the book - I think it's really not worth it. Instead, try these templates: http://www.beatthegmat.com/writing-tips-templates-t51509.html

papgust Community Manager
Joined
10 Aug 2009
Posted:
1537 messages
Followed by:
240 members
Thanked:
653 times
Post Thu Oct 28, 2010 5:57 pm
Any reason why you want to target only 115+? 98% of the schools ask only for a minimum of 100. Some top schools like Harvard ask for 109 or 110 I believe.

_________________
Download GMAT Math and CR questions with Solutions from Instructors and High-scorers:
http://www.beatthegmat.com/download-gmat-questions-with-expert-solutions-t59366.html

-----------

GO GREEN..! GO VEG..!

Daily Quote:
“Stop feeling sorry for the Butcher if you had to go Veg. The butcher can find another job but the poor animal cannot get back its life”

thomasl Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
18 Mar 2009
Posted:
5 messages
Test Date:
April 10, 2009
Target GMAT Score:
>
Post Fri Oct 29, 2010 9:54 am
Thanks for your reply, Dana. I read through the first 50 pages of the Official Guide last night. I also read your other post, which answered most of my questions. It seems like you were in a quite similar situation.

So, I will now focus on the speaking part of the test. Does that make sense? If I understood correctly, there is no part that tests grammar separately / in particular (aside from the writing and speaking section)?

Seems doable in 1- 2 days full-time.

@papgust: Yes, Harvard is one of the schools I'm applying to. Also some schools do not even have a minimum requirement, most have an average at around a 110 (e.g. Berkeley).

Best,
Thomas

DanaJ Site Admin
Joined
01 Jan 2009
Posted:
2567 messages
Followed by:
550 members
Thanked:
712 times
GMAT Score:
770
Post Fri Oct 29, 2010 10:38 am
Yes, certainly does pay to practice for Speaking Smile

No, nothing really tests grammar (apart from Writing and Speaking).

thomasl Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
18 Mar 2009
Posted:
5 messages
Test Date:
April 10, 2009
Target GMAT Score:
>
Post Wed Nov 10, 2010 8:38 am
Hey everyone, a short update and some more question:

So far, everything turned out as expected (or as described in Dana's post). I rushed through the OG at the speed of light and didn’t make a lot of mistakes in either the reading (1 per text on average) or the listening section (no mistakes). Also, the writing section seems quite doable.

What really scares me is the speaking section. Adjusting to this format appears to be really hard for me. I have looked for further help online and found a few sample answers on you tube.

http://www.youtube.com/user/ouliogroove#p/c/1B1347A8AAC4DB99/4/rtZKksGJAJo

I found the sample questions and answers in this channel quite useful, however, I’m scared by the complexity of the answer. Most people told me so far, that they just picked up a few word from the lectures presented and kept their answer rather basic. The sample answers provided however appear to be much more complex. I then looked in the OG where they explain the scoring ' not much of help. It would be great if you guys could outline what you have experienced throughout the speaking section and how you feel about the scoring. Is the grading on the speaking section approached rather moderate and forgiving? What are the most important things to focus on (e.g. fluency and timing over grammar and structure, etc.)?

Thanks for your thoughts and help. I have two nights (a 4 hours) to go. Aiming for 27+, hope that’s realistic.

Any last time tips much appreciated. Thanks.

papgust Community Manager
Joined
10 Aug 2009
Posted:
1537 messages
Followed by:
240 members
Thanked:
653 times
Post Wed Nov 10, 2010 6:04 pm
When I prepared, I went through tips and techniques from this link.
http://www.youtube.com/user/Englishraven#p/u

Believe me it really changed my overall perception and gave me a clear focus on what needs to be done in the speaking section. Just go through videos of all 6 types of speaking questions there and you'll feel really comfortable.

To get a good score in speaking, just outline the content properly when you're given time for preparation and elaborate the contents while you speak. Order your speech like Intro-Body-Examples-Conclusion. Englishraven's note taking tips is just too awesome. Just speak simple English (Don't try to use hi-fi words) and speak slowly and clearly. Also, make sure that you talk a little louder.

_________________
Download GMAT Math and CR questions with Solutions from Instructors and High-scorers:
http://www.beatthegmat.com/download-gmat-questions-with-expert-solutions-t59366.html

-----------

GO GREEN..! GO VEG..!

Daily Quote:
“Stop feeling sorry for the Butcher if you had to go Veg. The butcher can find another job but the poor animal cannot get back its life”

DanaJ Site Admin
Joined
01 Jan 2009
Posted:
2567 messages
Followed by:
550 members
Thanked:
712 times
GMAT Score:
770
Post Thu Nov 11, 2010 4:32 am
Sorry, missed this one... Hope you're doing OK. I did not feel like I had to construct super complex sentences or use God knows what words. It turned out OK, I guess. And the only difference that I felt between me and my friend who got 29 was that he spoke with a lot more confidence, so do that!

thomasl Newbie | Next Rank: 10 Posts Default Avatar
Joined
18 Mar 2009
Posted:
5 messages
Test Date:
April 10, 2009
Target GMAT Score:
>
Post Fri Nov 12, 2010 6:49 am
Great, thanks!

Best Conversation Starters

1 lheiannie07 111 topics
2 ardz24 64 topics
3 LUANDATO 62 topics
4 swerve 60 topics
5 AAPL 57 topics
See More Top Beat The GMAT Members...

Most Active Experts

1 image description Brent@GMATPrepNow

GMAT Prep Now Teacher

160 posts
2 image description EconomistGMATTutor

The Economist GMAT Tutor

130 posts
3 image description Rich.C@EMPOWERgma...

EMPOWERgmat

122 posts
4 image description GMATGuruNY

The Princeton Review Teacher

122 posts
5 image description Scott@TargetTestPrep

Target Test Prep

118 posts
See More Top Beat The GMAT Experts