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TOEFL listening: A conversation between a university student and a professor in the professor''s office

Overview of TOEFL listening part
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TOEFL discussion 35 — Script Q&A
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50 TOEFL conversations
50 TOEFL conversations
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    50 TOEFL lectures   50 TOEFL conversations

    TOEFL Listening Comprehension Transcript

    Narrator
    Listen to a conversation between a university student and a professor in the professor''s office.

    P: Good morning, Ms. Rosencrantz. You''re here to discuss your essay? What''s the problem, is your grade too high? (chuckles)

    S: Uh (nervous laugh) yes sir. I mean no, my grade''s not too high. It''s, um, I was just, um, wondering...I got a B minus, and I was, I just wanted to ask why. I worked really hard on it, and I thought I''d get a, a higher grade.

    P: I understand. And I know you worked hard on it. I could tell when I read it that you put a lot of effort into it. Sloth is a problem for some students, but not for you. Unfortunately, hard work doesn''t always translate into a high mark. But, remember, a B is a pretty good grade, no?

    S: I know, it is. But I get mostly B-plusses and A''s. So, um...could you please tell me what''s wrong with it, and how I can [false start] how I can improve for next time.

    P: Absolutely. Do you have the essay with you? Let me see it (rustling paper). Well, first of all, it''s creative and well written; er, I mean grammatically, there aren''t many mistakes. Your thesis sentence is clearly stated, and it''s in the first paragraph. Good, good. I think your greatest weakness is structure. You need to make sure that your supporting paragraphs reinforce your thesis.

    S: Yes, I know. I tried to outline it before I wrote, and then, uh, you know, follow the outline as I wrote it. But it got kind of hard to stick to the outline.

    P: An outline is an excellent tool. Um, the trouble with outlines sometimes is that as you write, your ideas change. Something comes to you that you didn''t think of when you made your outline, or you get busy writing and find you''ve strayed from the outline structure. So you need to be careful not to follow your outline too rigidly. It''s only a guide.

    S: Yeah, I found that out in the third paragraph, ''cause I wanted to add some of the stuff we learned about the Renaissance. So then I went back and changed the outline, and uh, it, kind of uh...it was hard to figure out how to include all that.

    P: That confusion shows in your paper. Remember that each sentence -- I mean paragraph -- needs to have a topic sentence, then other sentences that support it. In your third and fourth paragraphs, this doesn''t seem to be the case. Here, take a look.

    S: Oh, I see. The topic sentence mentioned changes in art, and then I started writing about changes in religion and science.

    P: Yes, it would have been stronger to treat each of these topics with a separate paragraph. Because you strayed off track in the middle paragraphs, it took some of the punch away from your conclusion. You want to end with a bang, not a whimper. Um, another thing that lowered your mark was your bibliography section. It doesn''t follow the format on the handout I gave you. Your references should be in the order they are cited in the essay. Here you list a reference that appears on page three before you list one that you cited on page two.

    S: Oh yeah, shoot. Sorry about that.

    P: You don''t need to apologize. Just learn from your mistakes and do it correctly next time.

    S: Yes, sir. Thank you for your help.

    P: I''ll tell you what, Ms. Rosencrantz. I wish more students were like you. You''re the only one, in a class of 30, that cared enough to meet with me and challenge your grade. Congratulations! Just because you had the fortitude to do that, I''m going to change your mark from a B-minus to a B-plus.

    S: Really! Oh thank you professor Ammons. Really, you uh, wow! That''s great!


    Excerpt from the TOEFL test listening conversation

    P: Good morning, Ms. Rosencrantz. You''re here to discuss your essay? What''s the problem, is your grade too high? (chuckles)

    S: Uh (nervous laugh) yes sir. I mean no, my grade''s not too high. It''s, um, I was just, um, wondering...I got a B minus, and I was, I just wanted to ask why. I worked really hard on it, and I thought I''d get a, a higher grade.
    50 TOEFL conversations
    50 TOEFL conversations
    A great variety of English listening comprehension tests that will help you increase your TOEFL test score.
  • based on TOEFL academic discussions
  • written and recorded by experienced US authors and voice-over specialists
  • 50 TOEFL lectures   50 TOEFL conversations




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