When I decided to pursue an MBA I knew little about the pre-MBA duties required to apply to a top Business School. So as an international student I started registering for an English course, since I wanted to improve my reading and writing skills before taking the TOEFL. (At least I knew the TOEFL was a requirement).
After my TOEFL Experience, I believe that the most difficult part of it is that you are sitting next to people that might start speaking very, very, very loud to answer the speak section. This requires an extra effort from you to focus and keep your concentration on you and on your test. My recommendation is to tape your answers and listen to yourself, make someone else listen to you or to your recordings, in that way you will know what to improve among all the areas tested in the speaking section (e.g. pronunciation, fluency, correct tense and logical stories coherence among others).
For the others section of the test, I realized that listen to music in English help me to improve my listening skills, and read great novels, help me in the written area, to gather new vocabulary, while enjoying a great reading time!
For the GMAT I will recommend to study with two different prep materials. In my case I studied with the Kaplan and Manhattan GMAT course materials. I studied at the Kaplan Center in NYC that allowed me to have real life free simulation tests at Pearson Centers before taking the actual test, which ultimately helped me to reduce the anxiety of taking the test. Take as many practice tests as possible to strength your confidence and timing and you will do more than great! I know you will!
by Ana Castro – 2nd year MBA Student of the Robert H. Smith School of Business.