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ETS’s Official TOEFL Course Online: Week 6

This is my final post about ETS’s official TOEFL course online, a 6 week course offered by my makers of the exam. Today, we’ll look at the sixth and last unit in the course. My reviews of the earlier parts of this online TOEFL prep class can be found here:

The title of this final unit is “About Test Day and Beyond.” Here, the instructors of the course pull together everything that’s been taught in the previous five weeks. They also give test-takers a preview of their test day experience.

There are 10 modules in Week 6. Module 1 reviews the key points from the course and gives advice on how to use all of this TOEFL knowledge on the exam.

Module 2 has a very interesting format: It’s a livestream video and Q&A given by ETS. This live question and answer session was hosted both on Facebook and on Webo.com for Chinese students. (Facebook is not available in most of China.)

The 15 minute live video was hosted by two of the course instructors. In the video, the TOEFL teachers addressed common questions they had received during the lecture. They gave some especially good advice on building vocabulary, pacing for each of the TOEFL sections, and note-taking. Impressively, TOEFL instructors also answered every single question posted in the comments field of the livestream video.

The live Week 6 Q&A session has been archived. You can view the Facebook version of the livestream here. To access the Weibo version, log in to Weibo and go to TOEFL’s official Weibo page.

Modules 6.3 through 6.6 looked at the logistics of the TOEFL exam — the technical and physical things you need to do in order to register for the test, take it, and send scores. This section of the unit includes a very nice 7-minute video tour of a TOEFL testing center. This video shows a student arriving at the center, checking in, sitting for the exam, and checking out. This gives a very clear picture of what to expect once you actually go in to take the test.

The final four modules gave a linked list of all official TOEFL Prep materials (other than the course itself), a short goodbye video, and a post-course survey

The takeaway

This course is relatively new, and it makes a nice addition to the other official TOEFL prep materials that are already out there. The course isn’t perfect. Because this class is free and there is no limit placed on enrollment, your chances of getting individual attention from instructors are pretty low.

Still, you can benefit from the responses that instructors do give to select students. And best of all, once you finish this course, it remains archived on your EdX account indefinitely. So you can always go back and reference the prep materials and other information from the class.

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