What things should you keep in mind
when taking short talks questions in the TOEFL test?
The short talks test is part of the listening test
which is the first section in the paper based test
and the second section in the internet based test.
The listening section comprises of both the long and
the short talks and conversations. The long lectures
also form part of the long conversation. In most
cases the short talks and conversations and long
lectures are based on university settings.
Therefore, the language includes the style and
vocabulary of the everyday spoken English especially
among the youth. When doing the short talk questions
you need to keep a number of factors in mind
especially the vocabulary. Apart from which here is
a list of factors that can help you concentrate on
what you listen to and since note taking is allowed
you can jot down as you go along listening to the
short talks or the long lectures.
* Try to concentrate on what you are listening to
rather than where you are listening. You can forget
your surroundings by closing your eyes, bowing your
head down and focusing on your work.
* When you work on your practice listening tests try
to listen to as many different accents as possible
to be able to understand the tone and words of
different accents. You can do this by listening to
several TV channels especially the movie channels
and the news channels of different countries. Though
accent is not important what is significant is that
you must be able to comprehend the talk or lecture
which may have different accents. Once you become
familiar with the language, style and tone you can
then focus on the grammar, context and vocabulary.
* When taking the short talks test an important
factor to keep in mind is to frame WH-questions and
note down the answers for them as you listen to the
talk. This will give you a fair idea of what the
talk is about and why the talk is taking place. This
way you will be able to assimilate all the
information provided in the text that you have
* Other factors that you need to identify from the
short talks or long lectures that you listen to are
1. Who are the people involved in the talk?
2. The relationship between the characters involved
in the talk
3. The time and place – if it is evident in the talk
4. What is being talked that is the context?
5. What is the reason for the conversation to take
Once you have noted down al these points you are
sure to score high in the listening test especially
in that of the short talks.