Javad is a pharmacist, originally from Iran, but now living in the United States.
He required TOEFL so that he could get his pharmacy licence. He needed 26 in speaking but he was stuck on S23 and S24 for many exam attempts over three years, before he made a breakthrough and got S27.
His final total scores were R27 L27 S27 W25.
This is Javad’s story, told in his own words.
When I took TOEFL for the first time, I got 24 for speaking. So, after that, I studied a lot. I went to different English classes and general TOEFL classes. I even took the test to be a substitute teacher. I got the credentials for being a substitute teacher but none of this helped. I was still stuck on S24.
One day I was looking online for materials for TOEFL and it was after 7 times taking the TOEFL, and every time I got either 24 or 23. I saw this advertisement on the internet that said “If you cannot pass TOEFL with a higher score, you have to go to professional people.”
I was capable of speaking like 26 or 27 but the reason I didn’t get 26 and I was stuck on 22, 23 and 24, was that I didn’t have a specialist teacher in TOEFL to tell me what to do and how to speak. That was my problem.
How lessons with Jane helped
When I went into my community I spoke with everybody.
Everybody at my workplace said, “You’re speaking good! Why can’t you get your score?” And I said, “I don’t know.”
Then, when I took lessons with you, I realised that the way that I spoke was not the way the graders were looking at it. They were looking for something else that I didn’t know. That’s why when I got that clue, I passed with S27.
"When you told me that I should use a special structure for the speaking questions, it was really helpful because at that moment I realised that if I used that structure, I could handle every kind of question."
Ready for lessons?
Every day I worked more than 2 hours for speaking.
And yes, I did whatever you told me and I practiced a lot.
I had flashcards of speaking questions and speaking prompts and even when I was driving, I had one of those prompts and I spoke with myself.
One time I was describing something to myself at work and my boss said, “What are you doing?” And I said, “I’m just describing things for myself for TOEFL!” And he said, “Okay, it’s okay, do it!”
And yeah I worked really hard every day.
When I look back to my 3 years of studying, I’d say to myself, “Why didn’t I go to a specialist TOEFL teacher sooner?”
I wasted my time for 3 years working by myself and going to general English classes and following general advice.
So my advice is - everybody, get help from TOEFL teachers, from people who really know how to tackle this problem. And it’s really important because for the 7 times taking the TOEFL and for 3 years I was really disappointed. I even lost my confidence.
When I was in the United States for the first time, I went to different stores. I talked to people. I was really confident. But after 7 times of taking the TOEFL and they told me you’re not capable of speaking, I was a little bit disappointed, shy even, talking to people.
So it was really important for me to pass this one. That’s why my advice for everybody is - without help you will feel disappointed or will feel that you cannot do anything and it’s very bad. It’s sad. I would even say that I was depressed. So that’s why I advise everybody to get help from specialists.
Right now I’m really happy and delighted. It’s a huge relief.
Thank you so much for your help and everything you've done for me because you helped me to pass this TOEFL.
It was a kind of barrier for me and I didn't think that I would, in the future, be able to pass this test. But I finally did it and it was because of your help. That's why.
Thank you so much for this journey.