I kind of stopped learning vocabulary when I went to college.
I see. Could you tell me a little bit about how you studied vocab for the Eiken?
When I was in middle school, I used to have vocabulary wordbooks and basically just forced myself to memorize every single word.
Sounds like a very common method, but I guess it worked for you.
How much of that vocabulary were you able to retain?
Well, I forgot most of them since I haven’t used much English….
That’s the problem with rote memorization! There isn’t a focus on the points you need to improve.
Think of it like exercising; you wouldn’t work on the same areas of your body, doing the same exercises every day, would you?
You’ve got a point. I wouldn’t be focusing on the parts that are important.
The same applies to your brain. This is why methods such as spaced repetition learning are more effective. If you’ve never heard of it before, spaced repetition learning is a method that helps you study in intervals, allowing your brain to gain a deeper understanding of the material, and at the same time, focuses only on the areas you need to work on.
I know it sounds really technical, but there are a lot of ways to practice this method.
All you need are some paper flashcards or any of the many flashcard apps online, and you can study vocab more efficiently wherever you go!
Now I know what you’re talking about!
I always see people on the train using flashcards and some of my friends use flashcard apps as well.
You can practice only what you need to, whenever and wherever.
Well, I do every once in awhile read interesting articles about science or history online. That’s much more fun than reading through a textbook. I mean, if it’s not fun, I don’t think I can keep going.
The same applies to listening practice. I promise you, there is something for everyone!
I say I can’t wait to get started!
See? Now before we start, we gotta stick to a schedule.
By keeping a schedule, you’ll be able to manage your time wisely as well as get a general idea of your progress.
I know this sounds like a lot, but trust me, even the company that makes the TOEFL recommends these approaches.
So, what do you think?
Well, I’m going to start studying from this April and am going to take my first TOEFL iBT after 6 months.
This will give us plenty of time to prepare! We’ll first learn about basic, everyday strategies that’ll quickly improve your skills.
Then, we’ll move onto methods that’ll help you understand more intermediate level material. After that, you’ll be ready to start taking the TOEFL practice course on Best Teacher, which will give you a general feel of how the real test will be. Whaddya say?