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Right. Lets talk about the TOEFL Writing Section. There are two types of TOEFL essay. The first is the integrated essay. This is an academic test. Again, meaning that it’s something you might study in school.
It could be about history, or art, or anything else you might study, science. But like all other integrated tasks on the TOEFL, you don’t need to know this information before the test. Any information you need is given to you. How do they give it to you? You get a lecture.
You will hear a lecture and you will summarize what you heard. But not just a lecture, this is integrated listening and reading. So you will listen, and you will read, and you will combine the two. You will connect the two, and write an essay that connects them. The second essay is the independent essay. This is about your personal experience.
It’s not always about your personal life exactly. It’s really just your personal opinion. It could be about something that you have no real experience with, or no real hm, concern about, you don’t care about it. But, it’s something that you don’t need to know anything. You don’t need to know any special information.
You’ll, you’ll give some examples from your own head. Some reasons from your own head, and you don’t need any support from other sources. How about time? How much time do you have to write these two essays? Well, the essays are different lengths. The integrated task, the first essay, is 20 minutes.
That’s not including the reading and the listening. The truth is, you’ll also read for three minutes and you’ll listen for another, let’s say, three to four minutes. It depends on the test. Some tests have longer listenings. Some tests have shorter listenings.
All together with the instructions, the reading, and the listening, and then the writing for 20 minutes, this takes closer to 30 minutes. And then with the independent task at 30 minutes, all together, it adds up to about 1 hour for the whole writing section, maybe a little bit less. So, time is very important here. But you don’t want to spend all of the time writing.
You need to plan your essays. That’s very, very important. Planning doesn’t take long, and it can be the difference between a good essay and a great essay. You should always plan. You actually only spend about 15 minutes or 25 minutes writing.
That’s 15 minutes for the integrated task, and 25 minutes for the independent task. Maybe a little bit more than that, maybe a little bit less than that. But the other time is spent planning and editing. That way, you have a better essay in the end. And often, it’s actually a longer essay even though you spent less time writing, because you already know what you will say.
And you spend less time thinking what next? What next? What next? What next? And you know how to continue your essay. You know where to move to in the next point, in the next paragraph.
So you’re faster and therefore often longer. That doesn’t give you enough time to be perfect. Remember that TOEFL readers don’t want you to be a famous writer. You just need to communicate well. Communication is absolutely key, it is the most important thing. Natural English is of course important, writing with idioms, writing with normal English phrases, that’s very, very important.
But underneath that, the basis for the entire essay is communication. If you can give an idea clearly with clear reasons, and have the reader understand everything you want to say, then you will score well on the essay, that is the most important part. Now, one important thing to know about the TOEFL essays is the keyboard. You’ll have a standard English keyboard, this is a QWERTY keyboard.
Now imagine, here is your computer, here is the computer screen, and you get a keyboard here. This is a click ugly keyboard, but that’s okay. The first four letters on that keyboard are Q, W, E, R, T, Y, on a American or British, any standard English keyboard.
Look at your keyboard right now on your computer. Is it QWERTY? If it’s not QWERTY, then this can cause time problems. If you are not familiar with, not comfortable with this keyboard, then it can make you a lot slower when you’re writing. You need to practice writing on this type of keyboard as much as possible before the test, if you don’t have one already.
You need to use this type of keyboard, so you are comfortable. Also, there are no shortcuts. So, if you use Ctrl+C to copy, it doesn’t do anything, not on the TOEFL. You hit Ctrl+C, and nothing happens. You hit Ctrl+V, and you want to paste what you copied with Ctrl+C?
Well, guess what. Nothing happens. You can’t do it. You need to copy and paste with the mouse. Let’s get that computer back here. There’s your computer .
So if you want to copy text, you can not use the keyboard, you have to use the mouse. And there is a little button on the screen for copy and paste the text which you have written. That’s all for this lesson. Thank you.
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