Over the last 9 years, I’ve spent a lot of time helping people to prepare for important language proficiency tests. Many of those people have taken the same test, again and again, hoping to achieve a different result. However, they keep finding that their score isn’t high enough, in at least one area. One reason for this can be because they have not had an expert help them out with their test preparation. Another common reason is that of anxiety.
One resource that I recommend for people who have really struggled is Glenn Harrold’s hypnosis MP3. You can purchase it and download it very quickly to begin working on reducing your stress.
For others, who are feeling that stress is reducing their score, I recommend taking the time to focus on breathing. Even in the middle of a high-stakes test, it’s relatively easy to take 3 slow, deep breaths before each speaking session. This will reduce anxiety, slow breathing and pulse, regulate the voice, and clear the mind. Don’t wait until test day to do this. Incorporate the practice into every practice session, so that it will come naturally on test day.
If you need an English proficiency exam in order to continue your studies or to qualify for your field in Canada, it’s important to explore both the TOEFL test and IELTS. For those who are already living and working in Canada, I feel that TOEFL is more suitable because the American English will be more familiar for listening, typing on a computer better simulates the workplace, and there are many integrated tasks, which help you to use all of your skills at the same time. Other students prefer the personal interview and handwritten writing assignments for IELTS. Either way, it’s important to choose your exam carefully because you’re investing a very large amount of time and money. Scroll farther down the page for IELTS study websites.
There are several webpages to help you prepare for TOEFL: