Arsenio’s Business English Podcast | Season 7: Episode 4 | Work-life Balance

It’s so hard to discuss what work-life balance is, but with the dangerous culture of “hustle and close your eyes for ten years while working extremely hard,” it needs to be discussed.  The burnout culture is real….so if you want to dive deeper into that, make sure you check out my personal development podcast. Nonetheless, I think freedom of choice is absolutely the most important thing towards building happiness. With choice, you can turn down things, say when you’re not going in, deny projects, and learn to just say NO. In today’s podcast, we’ll be diving into EVERYTHING.

TOEFL iBT | Listening | Lecture | Astrology

As requested by one of my Patreon students, I decided to make this available to the public by doing a video/podcast response to this specific lecture. I realized that this was one of the longest lecturers I had ever heard and my student had difficulty with comparing notes to the questions that were asked. Now, I love this particular segment because it was very difficult compared to other lecturers, and after hearing some of the listening excerpts on YouTube, I’m afraid that the majority of you will have difficulty if you come across a lengthy lecture on the test. Without further ado, let’s dive into this!


Astrology is…..

anthropology course

influenced by astrology

Roots from manifestations

asia, south america, modern day

what is astrology — celestial objects, stars, planets, moons, movement and position influence human events

broadest = search for meaning in sky

encompasses astronomy

without it, won’t have modern astronomy

no technological benefits of the skies

development = earliest records 25k years

prehistoric men made diagrams on cave walls

men examine, question, and understand process of natural world

bodies have no effect = not true

moon influences tides and rivers

awareness of this helped men and prepared for annual weather like floods

Predictive tool

ancient babylon

recording planetary movements 2k BC

they kept records for 21 years

2300 BC dated back

observations // not predictions

babylonian astrology was concerned with physical events = politics, earthquakes

position of stars can’t determine fate

gods associated with specific planets, displayed some erratic behavior, meant god was angry

Astronomy other cultures too

Alexnader the great = fundamental of the spread in Asia

Bablyloanian beliefs = greek culture

greek overtook international language

1st century BCE, two astrology, PAST, present, future and other soul and stars

greek culture spread to ancient rome

rome, astrology popular amongst lower orders of society

Cato, farmers danger

2nd century, juvenil, roman women hung on every word

high born astrological bug, tiberius started employing astrologers

intellectual romans said other planets are much further, they can only have a tiny influence compared to moons

ignores affect, parenting, health, medicine, have on other people’s characters and fate

Carnitus, belief in fate denied free will

Same time identical can live in tribes and cultures


1 What is the lecture mainly about?

  • how ancient astrology has influenced modern astronomy
  • the evolution of astrological beliefs and practices
  • a comparison of Babylonian and Greco-Roman astrology
  • ancient arguments against the power of astrology

2 What is implied about astrologers in ancient Rome?

  • They were more respected if they had Greek origins
  • They had significant influence, particularly over lower class people
  • They still utilized the ancient Babylonian script
  • They made significant contributions to the study of natural science

3 Which of the following practices took place in ancient Babylon? Choose 2 answers.

  • The positions of celestial bodies were extensively recorded
  • Kings communicated directly with the gods in the stars
  • People consulted astrologers to determine their futures
  • Precautions were taken when celestial omens were observed

4 What can be concluded about Cicero and Carneades?

  • Both of them saw good and bad aspects to astrology
  • Cicero had a negative view of astrology, while Carneades had a positive one
  • Both of them disagreed with the arguments put forward by astrologists
  • Cicero saw both good and bad sides to astrology, while Carneades had only a negative opinion

5 According to the professor, when did Astronomy begin to be used as predictive tool?

  • When Alexander conquered asla
  • Ancient Roman times
  • Around 25,000 years when prehistoric man made diagrams depicting lunar cycles on cave walls
  • Ancient Babylonian times

6 Which of the following is true about the development of Astrology?

  • By the 1st century BCE, there was only one strand of astrology concerned with reading about the past, present, and future
  • The earliest records of astronomical cycles dated back to ancient Babylonian times
  • Alexander contributed greatly to the spread of Astrology
  • Babylonian astrology was concerned with how the position of stars could determine a single person’s fate

TOEIC | Incomplete Sentences | Improving Your Knowledge of Prefixes & Suffixes: Tactic Practice

Welcome to another grammar edition of TOEIC! In today’s podcast/video, we’re going to do the full rundown of noun and verb suffixes, a tactic that is needed to get a fine score in Part 5. Also, some exercises and additional task (on my blog) before getting into a 6-question Tactic Practice. With that being said, let’s get into it!

This section will help you familiarize yourself with some of the most common suffix and prefix forms.

Test tactic: Noun & Verb Suffixes

The words below feature some of the most common suffixes use with nouns and verbs. Decide whether they’re a noun or a verb.

  • cooperation
  • criticize
  • partnership
  • department
  • simplify
  • quickness
  • activate
  • celebration
  • security
  • widen
  • assistance
  • realize

Now look at the list of suffixes and mark whether each is a noun or verb suffix.

  • tion/sion
  • en
  • ness
  • (i)fy
  • ship
  • ise/ize
  • ity
  • ate
  • ment
  • ance/ence

Now, for each sentence below, decide if it requires a noun or verb, then choose the best word of the correct type to fill in the blank.

investigation  identify   elevate  repetitiveness  criticize  document  internship   renovate  dependence  soften
  1. The stockholders have called for a(n) ______ to find out where the money went.
  2. Newspapers are starting to ______ the prime minister’s actions.
  3. Doing a (n) _______ is a good way for students to get work experience.
  4. Miller Manufacturing’s _____ on one supplier caused serious problems when that company went bankrupt.
  5. A consultant was hired to ______ the company’s main weaknesses and suggest solutions.
  6. Bill realized he had forgotten to bring a key ______ to the meeting.
  7. The company spent millions to ______ its main office in order to impress its customers.
  8. The sculptor intended to ______ the statue by placing it on a pedestal so that people could see it more easily.
  9. Many people dislike the ______ of working on a factory assembly line.
  10. Cyclists often use special pads to ______ the seat for long-distance rides.

Answers on Next Page

TOEFL iTP | Reading | Answering a Variety of Overview Questions

Welcome back to another TOEFL iTP Reading! In today’s podcast/video, we’re going to be looking over a variety of different overview questions to test you. There are 16 in total with 8 on here and the other 8 will be on my TOEFL iTP Badge, priced at $50 a month with two coaching hours. Make sure you contact me for more information!

TOEFL iTP Pre-Sale course is available, too, for 50% off (priced at $27 for the Structure which will debut June 1st). You can buy it today and wait for the launch at the beginning of next month! 15 full lessons and 3-4 micro lessons for each one! Course is Here


American folk music originated with ordinary people at a time when the rural population was isolated and music was not yet spread by radio, audios, compact disks, or music DVDs. It was transmitted by oral tradition and is noted for its energy, humor, and emotion impact. The major source of early American folk songs was music from the British Isles, but songs from Africa as well as songs of the American Indians have a significant part in its heritage. Later settlers from other countries also contributed songs. In the the nineteenth century, composer Stephen Foster wrote some of the most enduringly popular of all American songs, which soon became part of the folks tradition. Beginning in the 1930’s, Woody Guthrie gained great popularity by adapting traditional melodies and lyrics supplying new ones as well. In the 1950’s and 1960’s, singer-composers such as Pete Seeger, Bob Dylan, and Joan Bae continued this tradition by creating “urban” folk music. Many of these songs dealt with important social issues, such as racial integration and the war in Vietnam.

  1. The primary purpose of this passage is to..
  • trace the development of American folk music
  • explain the oral tradition
  • contrast the styles of folk musicians
  • point out the influence of social issues on “urban” folk music

The answer would be A, trace the development of American folk music. The first sentence outlined its origination. Then it talked about how it was used. It went into the source of American folk songs, talking about Africa and American Indians. Then, settlers began their contribution and went into specifics in regards to Stephen Foster — his songs ultimately becoming park of folk tradition. Woody Guthrie became popular with his contribution to folk shortly after. Other big names continued the tradition by creating urban folk music.

So, in saying that, all of the above details pertained to the development of folk music. Oral tradition was a small detail in the second sentence. Contrasting styles wasn’t mentioned and Bob Dylan’s “urban folk” was a very small part of the concluding sentence at the very end. None of them were the PRIMARY PURPOSE.

Every scientific discipline tends to develop its own special language because it finds ordinary words inadequate, and psychology is no different. The purpose of this special jargon is not to mystify non-psychologists; rather, it allows psychologists to accurately describe the phenomena they are discussing and to communicate with each other effectively. Of course, psychological terminology consists in part of everyday words such as emotion, intelligence, and the motivation, but psychologists use these words somewhat differently. For example, laymen use the term anxiety to mean nervousness or fear, but most psychologists reserve the term to describe a condition produced when one fears events over which one has no control.

2. The main topic of this passage is….

  • effective communication
  • the special language of psychology
  • two definitions of the word anxiety
  • the jargon of science

Gifford Pinchot was the first professionally trained forester in the United States. After he graduated from Yale in 1889, he studied forestry in Europe. In the 1890’s he managed the forest on the Biltmore estate in North Caroline (now Pisgah National Forest) and became the first to practice scientific forestry. Perhaps his most important contribution to conservation was persuading President Theodore Roosevelt to set aside millions of acres in the West as forest reserves. These lands now make up much of the national parks and national forests of the United States. Pinchot became the Chief Forester of the U.S. Forest Service in 1905. Although he held that post for only five years, he established guidelines that set forest policy for decades to come.

3. The passage primarily deals with….

  • Gifford Pinchot’s work on the Biltmore Estate
  • the practice and theory of scientific forestry
  • the origin of national parks and national forests in the United States
  • the contributions Gifford Pinchot made to American forestry

Off-broadway theater developed in New York City in about 1950 as a result of dissatisfaction with conditions on Broadway. Its founders believed that Broadway was overly concerned with producing safe, commercially successful hit plays rather than drama with artistic quality. Off-Broadway producers tried to assist playwrights, directors, and performers who could not find work on Broadway. Off-Broadway theaters were poorly equipped, had limited seating, and provided few conveniences for audiences. But the originality of the scripts, the creativity of the performers, and the low cost of tickets made up for these disadvantages, and off-Broadway theater prospered. However, by the 1960’s, costs began to rise and by the 1970’s, off-Broadway theater was encountering many of the difficulties of Broadway and had lost much of its vitality. With its decline, an experimental movement called off-off-Broadway theater developed.

4. What is the main idea of this passage?

  • After initial success, off-Broadway theater began to decline.
  • Off-Broadway theaters produced many hit commercial plays
  • Theaters on Broadway were not well equipped
  • Off-Broadway plays were highly creative

5. The paragraph that follows this passage most likely deals with

  • the help off-Broadway producers provided directors, playwrights, and performers
  • methods off-Broadway theaters used to cope with rising prices
  • the development of off-off-Broadway theater
  • the decline of Broadway theater

At the time of the first European contact, there were 500 to 700 languages spoken by North American Indians. These were divided into some 60 language families, with no demonstrable genetic relationship among them. Some of these families spread across several of the seven cultural area. The Algonquin family, for instance, contained dozens of languages and occupied a vast territory. Speakers of Algonquin languages included the Algonquins of the Eastern Woodland, the Blackfoots of the Plains, and the Wiyots and Yuroks of California. Other language families, like Zuni family of the Southwest, occupied only a few square miles of area and containued only a single tribal language.

6. What is the main idea of this passage?

  • Each of the cultural areas was dominated by one of the language families
  • The Zuni language is closely related to the Alongquin language
  • There is considerable diversity in the size and the number of languages in language families of the North American Indians.
  • Contact with Europeans had an extraordinary effect on the languages of the Indian tribes of North America.

Other major changes in journalism occurred around this time. In 1846, Richard Hoe invented the steam cylinder rotary press, making it possible to print newspapers faster and cheaper. The development of the telegraph made possible much speedier collection and distribution of news. Also, in 1846, the first wire service was organized. A new type of newspaper appeared around this time, one that was more attuned to the spirit and needs of the new America. Although newspapers continued to cover politics, they came to report more human interest stories and to record the most recent news, which they could not have done before the telegraph. New York papers and those of other norther cities maintained corps of correspondents to go into all parts of the country to cover newsworthy events.

7. The main purpose of the passage is to……

  • present a brief history of American journalism
  • outline certain developments in mid-19th-century journalism
  • explain the importance of the steam cylinder rotary press
  • present some biographical information about Richard Hoe

8. What is the most probable topic of the paragraph preceding this one?

  • other types of rotary presses
  • alternatives to using wire services
  • newspapers that concentrated on politics
  • other developments in journalism

Answers on next page



Arsenio’s Business English Podcast | Season 6 | Sales | Customer Retention: Building Relationships

During trying times, such as what we’re going through right now in the world, do you believe it’s easier to find new customers or easier to retain customers you already have? Sometimes we look to expand our services to a broader group, but then we forget about our existing customers and relationships deteriorate. If it’s a customer who buys cakes from you every fortnight, or someone who comes to you for coaching services. Building those relationships –and not making it seem like it’s all about the money — is unbelievably important. Let’s get into it!

Arsenio’s ESL Podcast | Personal Development | How to Proact to Situations (Not React)

This is definitely going to be one of the top podcasts of the year. While I was doing my personal development podcast, I came across an AMAZING technique that will help you with reacting to situations.  In this podcast, I will inject some personal development into your lives that will help you understand your feelings, react to situations, and find a systematic way of breaking down a situation. This is very good not only for business but also for all relationships in general.

{Patreon Special} Arsenio’s Business English Podcast | Season 6: Episode 17 | Hotels

From the gorgeous hotels such as Bangkok Marquis Marriott in Bangkok, Sintesa Jimbaran in Bali, Sheraton (minus them double-charging me), in Kuala Lumpur, to terrible hotels in the USA, Thailand (same area as Bangkok Marquis), and Australia. Today is story-telling Thursday! There are plenty of vocabulary terms for you guys on my Business English Podcast Badge! I go over them briefly on here, but if I speak very quickly and you want to practice your writing, verbiage, phrasal verbs, etc….make sure you click my Patreon down below!


Arsenio’s ESL Coaching & Membership Services

Hello, all! Here’s the comprehensive overview of my membership and coaching services! I’ve had a lot of inquiries, so I wanted to make sure that everyone knew exactly, step-by-step, how much it would cost for the different packages involved.

January 2021 New Pricing

As of January 1st, there has been a 33% increase in hourly coaching packages, but it’s still similar to the 5-hours coaching packages.

1 hour = $40 an hour.

5 hours = $200 per package (one hour free) so a total of 6 hours.

Last Year

1 hour was $30 an hour.

5 hours was $150 an hour (no free hour). With the free hour now, last year’s package of 6 would technically be $180 — so there’s not much of a difference.

Group Learning

2-3 students = $30 per student/per hour (25% reduction).

4-5 students = $20 per student/per hour (50% reduction).

So, the more students there are, the cheaper is is for every individual student. The cap is at 5 students…and even so, understand that teaching IELTS Speaking and TOEFL Speaking with 4-5 students may be a bit difficult because the talking time for each student. Other areas, + TOEIC, would be far easier to teach with that amount of students.

Top-up packages will be coming soon!

Keep in mind, this is for all test preparation courses ONLY.

More questions? Book my calendar! Or email me

{Patreon Special} Pronunciation Course | Phase III | Word Stress in Compound Nouns

Boom! Excited to debut this one today, on the cusp of New Years’. In today’s special pronunciation course, we’re going to talk about word stress in compound nouns. Here’s a snippet of what will be discussed.

Listen for the primary stress in the following words:

Password forgot my password

Deadline met the deadline

Post office the nearest post office

· Note: if the second nouns are made out of the material in the first noun, stress both nouns, but put the primary stress on the second noun (wool coat, cream cheese, plastic bags, paper towels, and apple pie).

Available in all Patreon tiers!