We’re back with a FANTASTIC breakdown of the speaking question 2. Some of you are still confused about how to take reading notes. I’ve heard a Thai student, who you will hear next month, state conflicting information. In this episode, I break down the reading, and we go really deep in detail about the others. Let’s dive into it!
So, I decided to chop up a coaching session with my student who had recently gotten a 28 on the speaking section of TOEFL. My editing isn’t the best, but in this video, you’re going to hear a tremendous amount of feedback, as well as her answers to everything and those “moments of clarity.” She invested in 8 hours of coaching and got the mark of 28, and this is coaching session #3 so hear how I break everything down!
We’re back with an amazing TOEFL iBT Membership Sneak Peek. In today’s episode, I have a wonderful Venezuelan dentist who submitted her Integrated task, and I’m here to help her in putting the structure together. So, because she had received a 17 in her writing, being the lowest of all bands, I was a bit nervous to see her writing. However, after seeing it, I know exactly why she received a low score, and it’s because she didn’t use the 40/60 rule. Tune in!
Let this be a dose of self-awareness for a lot of you out there who are probably making the same mistake in regards to your speaking sections. My wonderful student, who I’m coaching, sent me one of her speaking evaluations. Now, because it wasn’t up to par, I walk her through the entire process, break it down, show what she said, and gave her a huge amount of suggestions. If you guys are interested in speaking evaluations, let me know!
Let’s get back into another reading! This one is a bit more difficult than the previous one, so you better brace yourself. Again, if anyone is interested in the Structure Course that I’ve launched already, click the link here to gain access to the page!
Although only a small percentage of electromagnetic radiation that is emitted by the Sun is ultraviolet (UV) radiation, the amount that is emitted would be enough to cause severe damage to most forms of life on Earth were it all to reach the surface of the Earth. Fortunately, all of the Sun’s ultraviolet radiation does not reach the Earth because of a layer of oxygen, called the ozone layer, encircling the Earth in the stratosphere at an altitude of about 15 miles above the Earth. The ozone layer absorbs much of the Sun’s ultraviolet radiation and prevents it from reaching the Earth.
Ozone is a form of oxygen in which each molecule consists of three atoms (O3) instead of the two atoms (O2) usually found in an oxygen molecule. Ozone forms in the stratosphere in a process that is initiated by ultraviolet radiation from the Sun. UV radiation from the Sun splits oxygen molecules with two atoms into free oxygen atoms, and each of these unattached oxygen atoms then joins up with an oxygen molecule to form ozone. UV radiation is also capable of splitting up ozone molecules; thus, ozone is constantly forming, splitting, and reforming, it is unable to reach Earth and cause damage there.
Recently, however, the ozone layer over parts of the Earth has been diminishing. Chief among the culprits in the case of the disappearing ozone, those that are really responsible, are the chloroflurocarbons (CFCs). CFCs meander up from Earth into the stratosphere, where they break down and release chlorine. The released chlorine reacts with ozone in the stratosphere to form chlorine monoxide (ClO) and Oxygen (O2). The chlorine then becomes free to go through the cycle over and over again. One chlorine atom can, in fact, destroy hundreds of thousands of ozone molecules in this repetitious cycle, and the effects of this destructive process are now becoming evident.Longman
- According to the passage, ultraviolet radiation from the Sun
- Is causing severe damage to the Earth’s ozone layer
- Is only a fraction of the Sun’s electromagnetic radiation
- Creates electromagnetic radiation
- Always reaches the Earth
- The word “encircling” in Line 5 is closest in meaning to
- It is stated in the passage that the ozone layer
- Enables ultraviolet radiation to reach the Earth
- Reflects ultraviolet radiation
- Shields the earth from a lot of ultraviolet radiation
- Reaches down to the Earth
- According to the passage, an ozone molecule
- Consists of three oxygen molecules
- Contains more oxygen atoms than the usual oxygen molecule does
- Consists of two oxygen atoms
- Contains the same number of atoms as the usual oxygen molecule
- The word “free” in line 10 could best be replaced by
- Ultraviolet radiation causes oxygen molecules to
- Rise to the stratosphere
- Burn up ozone molecules
- Split up and form as ozone
- Reduce the number of chloroflurocarbons
- The pronoun “it” in line 13 refers to
- The word “culprits” in line 16 closest in meaning to which of the following?
- Guilty parties
- Group members
- According to the passage, what happens after a chlorine molecule reacts with an ozone molecule?
- The ozone breaks down into three oxygen atoms.
- Two different molecules are created
- The two molecules combine into one molecule.
- Three distinct molecules result
- Where in the passage does the author explain how much damage chlorine can do?
- Lines 1-3
- Lines 12-14
- Lines 18-19
- Lines 20-22
- The paragraph following the passage most likely discusses
- The negative results of the cycle of ozone destructions
- Where chloroflurocarbons (CFCs) come from
- The causes of the destruction of ozone molecules
- How electromagnetic radiation is created
Answers on Next page!
We’re back with another! I told everyone that I would be taking care of them! Ha! I’m the go-to blog for all your TOEFL iTP needs (podcasts and YouTube, too). So, in saying that, here’s a great read for you!
TOEFL iTP Structure Course (priced at $57). Or, you can buy the Written Expression (now $27) and get the Structure Course for just $30! Inquire today!
Perhaps better known than the Cullinan Diamond is the Hope Diamond, a valuable and rare blue gem with a background of more than 300 years as a world traveler. The 112-carat blue stone that later became the Hope Diamond was mined in India sometime before the middle of the seventeenth century and was first known to be owned by Shah Jahan, who built the Taj Mahal in memory of his beloved wife. From India, the celebrated blue stone has changed hands often, moving from location to location in distant corners of the world.
In the middle of the seventeenth century, a trader from France named Jean Baptiste Tavernier acquired the large blue diamond, which was rumored to have been illegally removed from a temple. Tavernier returned to France with the blue gem, where the stone was purchased by the Sun King, Louis XIV. Louis XIV had it cut down from 112 to 67 carats to make its shape symmetrical and to maximize its sparkle. The newly cut diamond, still huge by any standards, was passed down through the royal family of France until it arrived in the hands of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette. During the French Revolution, Louis XVI and his wife met their fate on the guillotine in 1793, and the big blue diamond disappeared from public sight.
The diamond somehow managed to get from France to England, where banker Henry Hope purchased it from a gem dealer early in the nineteenth century. The huge bluestone was cut into a 45.5-carat oval, and at his point, it took on the name by which it is known today. The diamond stayed in the Hope family for around a century, when deep indebtedness brought on by a serious gambling habit on the part of one of Henry Hope’s heirs forced the sale of the diamond.
From England, the Hope Diamond may have made its way into the hands of the Sultan of Turkey; whatever route it took to get there, it eventually went on to the United States when American Evelyn Walsh McLean purchased it in 1911. Mrs. McLean certainly enjoyed showing the diamond off; guests in her home were sometimes astounded to notice the huge stone embellishing the neck of Mrs. McLean’s Great Dane as the huge pet trotted around the grounds of her Washington, D.C. home. The Hope Diamond later became the property of jeweler Harry Winston, who presented the stunning 45.5-carat piece to the Smithsonian in 1958. The Hope Diamond is now taking a well-earned rest following its rigorous travel itinerary and is on display at the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., where it had been since 1958.LONGMAN
- The paragraph preceding the passage most likely discussed
- Why gems are considered valuable
- How the Hope Diamond was mined
- A diamond other than the Hope Diamond
- Methods for mining diamonds
- The main idea of this passage is that the Hope Diamond
- Came from India
- Has moved around a lot
- Has been cut several times
- Now resides in the Smithsonian
- The pronoun “it” in line 8 refers to
- Its shape
- The newly cut diamond
- The royal family
- The French revolution
- It can be inferred from the passage that the author is not certain
- Who bought the Hope Diamond in England
- Who sold the Hope Diamond in England
- How the Hope Diamond went from France to England
- How big the Hope Diamond was in the nineteenth century
- A “dealer” in line 12 is most likely a
- Card player
- It can be determined from the passage that Henry Hope most likely had how many carats cut off the Hope Diamond?
- According to the passage, Mrs. McLean
- Donated the Hope Diamond to the Smithsonian
- Let her dog wear the Hope Diamond
- Purchased the Hope Diamond from the French
- Had the Hope Diamond cut to its present size of 45.5 carats
- Which country is NOT mentioned in the passage as a place where the Hope Diamond spent some time?
- Where in the Passage does the author describe what happened to the royal French owners of the diamond?
- Lines 7-8
- Lines 10-11
- Lines 12-14
- Lines 15-16
Answers on next page!
We’re here with a sneak peek! I was going back and forth with a student who had followed me on IG and he/she was having difficulties with prepositions and verbs in general. From the past participle, passive verbs, verbs to be, relative pronouns, etc. All of it was very confusing, so I decided to share/do a video for the public (and this video will be one of the 23 lessons on my TOEFL iTP course) so you guys can not only see what’s in the course but also improve in the #1 area. Here we go! Also, the answers, if you would like to try to answer them, are on my IG Stories.
The answer choices for this type of problem are all or almost all different forms of the same verb. From the context of the sentence stem, you’ll have to decide which form works best in the sentence. Distractors are generally incorrect for one of these reasons:
- The “verb” is not really a verb.
Used alone, an infinitive, a gerund, or participle cannot be a main verb.
- The verb is active but should be passive, or it is passive but should be active.
If the subject of the sentence performs the action, the verb must be in the active voice. If the subject of the sentence performs the action, the verb must be in the active voice. If the subject of the sentence receives the action, the verb must be in the passive.
The architect designed the building.
The building was designed by the architect.
- The verb does not agree with its subject.
Singular subjects require singular verbs; plural subjects require plural verbs.
- The verb is not in the right tense.
According to the time words or ideas in the sentence, the appropriate tense must be used.
- An unnecessary element comes before the verb.
Personal pronouns (he, she, it), relative pronouns (who, which, that, and so on), or conjunctions (and, but, and so on) may be used unnecessarily before verbs in some sentences.
Before the late eighteenth century, most textiles _______ at home.
- Was produced
- Were produced
Choice D is the best answer. A can be considered either an active verb in the past tense or a past participle; both are incorrect. An active verb is incorrect because a passive verb is needed; a past participle is incorrect because a past participle cannot serve as a main verb. B is incorrect because the plural subject textiles requires a plural verb, were. C is incorrect because, by itself, an –ing form can never be a main verb.
- R.M. Bartlett of Philadelphia __________ the first private business college in the United States in 1843.
- Was founded
- In 1989 the space probe Voyager 2 _________ by the planet Neptune.
- Having flown
- A cup full of stagnant water may _____ millions of microorganisms.
- To contain
- Computers and new methods of communication ______ revolutionized the modern office.
- To have
- That have
- Sarah Knight ________ a fascinating account of a journey she made from Boston to New York in 1704.
- All animals ______ on other animals or plants.
- Chromium ________ in the manufacture of stainless steel.
- Is used
- Is using
- The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad ________ the first air conditioning system for trains in 1931.
- Has installed
- To have installed
- Porous rocks such as chalk and sandstone allow water _______ through them.
- Is soaked
- To soak
- Can soak
- By 1790, rice ______ an important crop in the South.
- Has been
- Was being
- Wavers are social birds that _______ complex nests housing hundreds of families.
- Are built
- Are building
- The American dancer Maria Tallchief first ______ prominent in Europe.
- To become
- Has become
Welcome to an ultimate sneak peek! Now, keep in mind that if you sign up with my TOEFL membership, which is $50 a month (link down below), you get four of these types of evaluations FOR FREE! For any additional add-ons, it’s just 4$ per…but you’re going to see how great this is and how beneficial it could be for you.
In saying that, enjoy this speaking question 4 featuring one of my favorite Filipina students!
Man, after this specific coaching session with two of my Brazilian nurses, I asked them if I could use some of this audio to share with you guys because I honestly believe with the amount of advice given and received in this podcast, it could be life-changing for a lot of you who have difficulty in the speaking question 1. We did 2-3 speaking question 1s per student, along with some sound advice towards the end. One of the nurses had excellent points of encouragement for her friend — and she was also able to identify the areas of need very quickly and fix them within just 20 minutes. Just a PHENOMENAL job. With that being said, let’s get into this jam session!
Boom! We’re back with a tough reading, and I’ll be covering it for you guys! In today’s full reading segment, we have the infamous Earth’s Age write up which is a total kick-ass. Here we go!
 One of the first recorded observers to estimate Earth’s relative age was the Greek historian Herodotus, who lived from approximately 480 B.C. to 425 B.C. He realized that the Nile River Delta was in fact made up of a series of sediment deposits built up as a result of continuous floods. He noted that individual floods deposit only thin layers of sediment, and he was then able to conclude that the Nile Delta had taken thousands of years to build up. More important than Herodotus’s calculations of the Earth’s age, which are in fact trivial in comparison with the actual age of Earth, was the idea that one could estimate ages of geologic features by determining rates of the processes responsible for such features, and that it was possible to assume the rates to be roughly constant over time. Similar applications of this concept were used time and time again in later centuries to estimate the age of the formation of rocks, in particular, layers of sediment that had compressed and cemented to form sedimentary rocks.
 It wasn’t until the 17th century that any further attempts were made to understand clues to Earth’s history through the rock record. Nicolaus Steno (1638–1686) was the first to work out the principles of the progressive depositing of sediment in Tuscany. However, it was the founder of modern geology, James Hutton (1726–1797), who was the first to learn that geologic processes recur naturally, a key insight. Forces associated with subterranean heat cause land to be uplifted into plateaus and mountain ranges. The effects of wind and water then break down the masses of uplifted rock, producing sediment that is transported by water downhill to then form layers in oceans, lakes, or even seashores. With time, the layers then become sedimentary rock. These rocks are then uplifted in the future to form new mountain ranges, which exhibit sedimentary layers (and the remains of life within those layers) of the earlier episodes of erosion and deposition.
 Hutton’s idea thus represents an amazing insight because its discovery was able to unite many individual phenomena and observations into a conceptual picture of Earth’s history. With the further assumption that these geologic processes were generally no more or less vigorous than they are today, Hutton’s examination of sedimentary layers led him to the realization that Earth’s history must be colossal, that geologic time is an abyss and human history a speck by comparison.
 After Hutton, many geologists tried to determine rates of sedimentation so as to estimate the age of Earth from the total length of the sedimentary, or stratigraphic record. The numbers estimated for the age of Earth at the turn of the 20th century were 100 million to 400 million years. These numbers underestimated the actual age by factors of 10 to 50 because much of the sedimentary record is missing in various locations and because there is a long rock sequence that is older than half a billion years that is far less well defined in terms of fossils and less well preserved.
 A variety of other methods used to estimate the Earth’s age fell short, and could be seen as defective determinations of the Sun’s age. German philosopher Immanuel Kant (1724–1804) recognized that chemical reactions could not supply the tremendous amount of energy flowing from the Sun for more than about a millennium. The age of the Sun based on the Sun’s energy coming from gravitational contraction was discovered by two physicists in the 19th century. Due to the force of gravity, the compression resulting in an object’s collapse must release energy. Ages for Earth were derived that were in the tens of millions of years, much less than the geologic estimates of the time.
 It was the discovery of radioactivity at the end of the 19th century that resulted in finally determining both the Sun’s energy source and the age of Earth. From the discovery of radioactivity came a wave of discoveries leading to radioisotopic dating. This then led to the realization that Earth must be billions of years old, and finally to the discovery of nuclear fusion as an energy source capable of supporting the Sun’s luminosity for that amount of time. By the 1960s, both analyses of meteorites and refinements of solar evolution models came together to settle on an age for the solar system, and hence for Earth, of 4.5 billion years.
1 According to paragraph 2, James Hutton was the first person to
- work out standards of the dynamic saving of silt.
- understand that geologic processes occur in repeating cycles
- show the power of Earth’s warm inner core
- comprehend pieces of information to Earth’s history through the stone record.
2 Which of the following best expresses the essential information in the highlighted sentence? Incorrect answer choices change the meaning in important ways or leave out essential information.
With the further assumption that these geologic processes were generally no more or less vigorous than they are today, Hutton’s examination of sedimentary layers led him to the realization that Earth’s history must be colossal, that geologic time is an abyss and human history a speck by comparison.
- Hutton understood that if these geologic procedures have dependably happened at about the same rate as they do today, Earth’s history is tremendously long compared to mankind’s.
- Hutton’s idea revealed vast knowledge by bringing together numerous individual questions and ideas into a theoretical picture of Earth’s history
- Hutton’s examination of aggregate layers caused him to infer that geologic processes have been by and large the same as they are today throughout Earth’s long history.
- Hutton’s examination of clastic layers resulted in a breakthrough, and his decisions about geologic procedures are among the most noteworthy in mankind’s history
3 .As indicated by passage 4, what happened when geologists at the turn of the twentieth century attempted to gauge Earth’s age?
- They disregarded Hutton’s discoveries about rates of sedimentation and by doing so their calculations were off by a factor of 10 to 50.
- Utilizing the sedimentary record, they were able to figure Earth’s proper age within 100 million to 400 million years.
- They didn’t realize that a great part of the sedimentary record is missing and in this way, believed that Earth was substantially younger than it is in reality.
- They didn’t effectively ascertain the rates of sedimentation which caused them to incorrectly presume that the age of the Earth is considerably younger than it ought to be.
4 The word ‘defective’ in paragraph 5 is closest in meaning to:
5 For what reason is ‘gravitational contraction’ used in the entry?
- To demonstrate that inquiries concerning the Sun’s vitality source were as intriguing to early researchers as inquiries regarding Earth’s age
- To give prove that Hutton’s thoughts prompted an in material science and stargazing and also in geography
- To refer to a strategy for assessing the age of the Sun that was utilized to decide Earth’s age
- To clarify why there is such a lot of vitality spilling out of the Sun
6 As indicated by paragraph 5, Immanuel Kant perceived that the Sun’s vitality
- was not possible through chemical reactions alone over a long period of time.
- originated from powerful pressure resulting from gravity.
- was to a great extent the consequence of synthetic responses that occurred over a time of over a thousand years.
- was important to fuel the greater part of the concoction responses on Earth
7 As indicated by passage 6, which of the following isn’t valid about researchers latest estimate of Earth’s age?
- It depends on data taken from the examination of shooting stars.
- It is shockingly similar to estimates from the nineteenth century.
- It is affirmed by sun based development models.
- It puts the period of Earth at around 4 5 billion years.
8 Which of the following can be inferred from paragraph 6 about the formation of the solar system?
- The Sun was already billions of years old when the planets were formed.
- The planets closest to the Sun formed first.
- Meteorites entered the solar system sometime after the planets were formed.
- All parts of the solar system formed at approximately the same time.
9 Examine the four █ in the selection below and indicate at which block the following sentence could be inserted into the passage:
This thought came to be known as the rule of uniformitarianism, and Herodotus was just the first to apply it.
One of the first recorded observers to estimate Earth’s relative age was the Greek historian Herodotus, who lived from approximately 480 B.C. to 425 B.C. █ [A] He realized that the Nile River Delta was in fact made up of a series of sediment deposits built up as a result of continuous floods. █ [B] He noted that individual floods deposit only thin layers of sediment, and he was then able to conclude that the Nile Delta had taken thousands of years to build up. █ [C] More important than Herodotus’s calculations of the Earth’s age, which are in fact trivial in comparison with the actual age of Earth, was the idea that one could estimate ages of geologic features by determining rates of the processes responsible for such features, and that it was possible to assume the rates to be roughly constant over time. █ [D] Similar applications of this concept were to be used time and time again in later centuries to estimate the age of the formation of rocks, in particular, of layers of sediment that had compressed and cemented to form sedimentary rocks..
10 Directions: An introductory sentence for a brief summary of the passage is provided below. Complete the summary by selecting the THREE answer choices that express the most important ideas in the passage. Some sentences do not belong in the summary because they express ideas that are not presented in the passage or are minor ideas in the passage. This question is worth 2 points.
Deciding the period of Earth has been a troublesome issue ever of.
- A.Herodotus endeavored to compute Earth’s age by watching residue stores, however, modem standards for evaluating Earth’s age from geologic procedures emerged from crafted by Steno and Hutton.
- B.Gaps in the sedimentary record started to be perceived by Kant and were later clarified by physicists contemplating the amount of energy provided by the Sun.
- C.Radio isotopic dating, made possible by the discovery of radioactivity, as well as the revelation of atomic fusion, cleared up misconceptions regarding as to Earth’s age and the source of the sun’s energy.
- D. Hutton portrayed the impacts of wind and water on masses of inspired shake and was the first to propose that a significant part of the sedimentary record was missing because of disintegration.
- E. Estimates of Earth’s age from the past were amazingly low in light of what we know today about the rates of geologic procedures, and evaluations of the Sun’s age and vitality source.
- F. In the 1960s researchers moved from the investigation of shooting stars to refinements of sun-based advancement models and decided the age of the nearby planetary group to be no less than a billion years.