You have just received the results of an international English test such as TOEFL or IELTS and discover that you did not obtain the minimum score necessary. Don’t be mortified, practice more and keep trying…. Well yeah… release your hatred for a few days. After you feel better, it is time to review each section of the exam and see what your score was on each of them.
Here, we understand how important this international English exam is, so we recommend that you follow these steps after receiving your results:
Request that your exam be reviewed again
One thing you should know is that the “writing” and “speaking” sections are subjective tests. That is, the score depends largely on the examiner. The written part is usually the most difficult for some and it is also difficult to predict the final score. It is not uncommon for you to score a few fewer points in this section compared to the others. However, if the difference between the marks is very large, we recommend that you request your exam to be reviewed again by another examiner. Although this review is not free, its price is much more affordable than taking the test again.
“Dive” deeper into the language to improve your speaking skills
The oral test is another section of the exam where candidates often do not perform well. Having to strike up a conversation with your examiner or a computer on an unfamiliar subject can be very intimidating. During the oral test, most candidates, due to their nerves, end up not being as fluent as ever. If this sounds familiar to you, then the tests may give you a state of anxiety. Take your precautions! You have to be prepared for that and practice your body language a lot.
Well, now that you have taken an international exam, you know how these tests are carried out. There is a good chance that you will not take the oral test with the same examiner (if you intend to retake the test). However, the structure of the interview will not change, as all exams are strictly structured. The examiner will read the same instructions; the only thing that will change is the subject.
It is very likely that you have failed this test for:
- Talk very little time despite the time given.
- You did not complete the task given by the examiner. Some students talk a lot but fail to answer the questions directly. Failure to respond with the exact or expected content may result in several points being dropped.
- The key points and details you gave were not insufficient. Perhaps you only gave part of the reason for your answer but did not fully justify it. An incomplete thought means that the answer is the wrong one.
- Pronunciation difficulty. Having the accent of a native person is not necessary, but the words you say must have correct pronunciation and intonation.
- You have not structured your ideas well and your answers have not been very well elaborated.
- You have not made eye contact with your examiner (if present). You are in an interview; eye contact is essential when talking to someone. This shows your level of confidence when responding and showing your skills in the language.
Now that you are better prepared and informed, you will surely do a better job.
If you think you will get nervous again during the speaking section, a good idea is to practice speaking English with native speakers, preferably someone you are not close to. The purpose of this practice is to improve your confidence when speaking English with people you do not know. Being able to speak fluently and naturally is one of the most important criteria in an oral test.
In this way, you can alleviate anxiety and over time you can improve your overall performance.
Get ready to take the international exam again
On the other hand, if your scores in the oral and written section are much lower than in the other two sections, we do not suggest that you ask them to review your exam again.
We recommend that you take more classes so that you can perfect your command of English. Most likely, you were not ready for the exam.
Learning a new language takes time and requires patience. Despite not having obtained the required score, that does not mean that you are not good enough. Remember: Don’t give up!
There are many strategies that will help you take an international English exam, time management, knowing the types of questions, recognizing key words, among others are some of the things that you will learn only with experts and they will help you improve your score.
Make good use of the experience and knowledge gained from the previous exam to learn from your mistakes and improve them. With a lot of effort and determination, you will achieve the goal you want on the exam.