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Javad's TOEFL Story

I’m a pharmacist from Iran and I emigrated to the US in 2014 and I need TOEFL in order to get my license in pharmacy. I needed 26 in speaking.

So I took TOEFL for the first time and I got 24 for speaking. So, after that, I studied a lot. I went to different classes – general TOEFL classes.

And I even took the test to be a substitute teacher. I got credentials for being a substitute teacher but none of them helped. I was stuck on 24.

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.

When I went into my community I spoke with everybody. Everybody at my workplace says, “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.  

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 those 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.

This is my TOEFL story.

What Was The Problem?

What Made The Difference?

When you told me that I should use a special structure for question 3 and 5, it was really helpful because at that moment I realised that if I use this structure I can handle every kind of question.

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How Did You Study?

Javad's Advice for Other Students

When I look back to my 3 years of studying, I’d say to myself, I’d say “Why I didn’t go to these specialists sooner?” I wasted my time for 3 years working by myself and going to general TOEFL classes and following general advice.

So my advice is - everybody get help from specialists, from people who 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 for everything that 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 will be able in the future to pass this test.

But finally I did it and it was because of your help. That’s why.

Thank you so much for this journey.

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