NoteFull's Student of the Month for December 2016 back to top
[John is pictured above]
When it came to tackling the TOEFL, John M. approached it with the same scientific approach that he uses to confront any problem he comes across in his daily work.
"Think of the TOEFL exam as a series of problems, each with its own formula. That's what is so great about NoteFull. They give you a formula you can use, and it works! As long as you follow it, you can get your goal score, just like I did."
Back in 2010, John obtained his Pharmacy degree in Egypt. In early 2014, he moved to the United States and shortly afterwards passed his FPGEE pharmacy licensing exam. Next, he set his attention on the TOEFL:
"For the first 12 months I was afraid of taking the TOEFL. I studied a few free websites but I didn't feel ready. Then I heard some of my friends from church talking about NoteFull and how it had really helped them, so I decided to check it out."
John began to study the free NoteFull videos that Joseph had put together, and felt they were intuitive, easy to understand. In early 2015, he took his very first test and scored 84. Although he didn't achieve his goal score in any of the 4 sections, he did score a 24 with Speaking, so he knew he was on the right track, getting close.
"At this point I decided to register for Complete TOEFL Mastery, because I needed help in all the sections. I studied it very carefully for about 4 months, and then I took the TOEFL exam again. This time my score went up 10 points, up to 94! Especially with the Reading and Listening sections, I had done really well"
Next, John decided to try a tutoring session. A friend of his, Miriam, had taken tutoring with Mathew, and strongly encouraged him to schedule a session with him. Following 8 sessions over a 3-month period, John once again took the test and achieved his goal scores in all 4 areas!
"Many people think there is a huge difference in Speaking skills to go from a 24 to a 26. It's not true! There are just some very specific techniques that you need to understand and master. These techniques are all there in the program, but having Mathew focus on them and explain them in more detail, that is what pushed me over the top."
"I mean, with Speaking Questions 1 and 2, I was not being detailed enough with my examples. I was talking too generally. For Question 3, I wasn't connecting the change from the Reading, and the student's opinion. For Question 5, I wasn't connecting how the solution was going to fix the student's problem.
And so, on John's 12th attempt, and his 2nd one after he began tutoring with Mathew, he finally struck down the TOEFL dragon. In hindsight, he also realizes now that it wasn't just the technical expertise that Mathew brought, but also the emotional support when he needed it most.
"I remember that as we began to work together, I was really wondering if I was showing improvement. Sometimes it's hard to see whether you're making progress because you don't have an outside perspective. Then Mathew told me that for Speaking, I was closer to a 30 than a 20. That meant so much to me, to hear someone else give me that feedback. I felt like I had received a shot of confidence after that!
Moving forwards, John is planning on acquiring his intern Pharmacist license, and accruing the 1500 hours needed. So, next time you stop off at a pharmacy to get your prescription filled, take a good look at the people working there. You just might see John :)
Reading: 22, Listening: 26, Speaking: 26, Writing: 28
Do you have the courage and determination to conquer the TOEFL? I bet you do. If you're missing the right tools for the job, let us know and we can work together to create a personal study plan so that you too can earn your dream score and be done with the TOEFL! You can always contact us at StudentHelp@notefull.com if you have any questions or need help figuring out your next step forward.
If John's story or any of our previous success stories have inspired you, why not share your story and let it inspire others? If you have something to celebrate, let us know!
How to Become the Next Student of the Month back to top
If you think that you have what it takes to become NoteFull's next Student of the Month, please send us an email with your story of success to SuccessStories@NoteFull.com.
We look forward to receiving your success story. Whether you're working with an ESL or TOEFL system or through our Free TOEFL Course, we have seen your commitment to greatness and look forward to rewarding you for your hard work next month!
As Student of the Month, you will be interviewed by NoteFull and profiled on this page.
This is a great opportunity for you to inspire others with your story or just brag about your success. And just as you're reading this now, know that your story will continue to inspire others towards success for years to come.
Also, every Student of the Month receives a coveted NoteFull t-shirt! Wear it with pride when you get it because you deserve it.