It’s frustrating to see most of my already overworked students here in Seoul writing the TOEFL over and over — many of them taking the test 4 times or more — in the hopes of getting the highest mark possible.
What makes it even more frustrating is that some students are writing the test without being fully prepared for it. They think that experiencing the real test multiple times is the way to a high score. It is not. It is simply a waste of time and money, an unnecessary stress, and a very ineffective way to go about getting a high score.
Students, here is some valuable advice: do not write the test unless you fully understand all the question types and are prepared for each one.
Don’t understand the 10 reading questions? Don’t take the test. It’s not worth it just for the experience. You can learn far more by simply studying for a while longer at a test prep academy or with a qualified tutor. We know the test, and how to beat it. Listen to us, and we can guarantee you a higher mark.
Of course, even students who do have a deep understanding of the test sometimes do not achieve the mark that they were reaching for. So it is understandable that sometimes students will write the test more than once. But these students should do so only after developing a thorough knowledge of the test.