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TOEFL Master Class with Andrea

Get your dream score on the TOEFL!
Andrea Giordano
82 students enrolled
English [Auto]
Score highly on the Reading portion of the TOEFL Exam
Score highly on the Listening portion of the TOEFL Exam
Score highly on the Writing portion of the TOEFL Exam
Score highly on the Speaking portion of the TOEFL Exam

Hi, I am Andrea Giordano and I absolutely love teaching English! I am an avid traveler, teacher, and speaker in addition to the founder of ESL Basics and Study with Andrea. For the past 15 years, I have worked with universities and international corporations to implement effective programs and curriculum. I’ve also administered major English proficiency exams like the TOEFL, so I understand EXACTLY what is needed for success on these tests!


This is an exhaustive preparation course designed to help you enter into the TOEFL exam with confidence! Alongside your guide, Andrea Giordano, we’ll work together to prepare your vocabulary, pronunciation, writing, and listening skills so you can feel peace entering your exam. When you sit down to take the test, there will be no surprises because each section of this course is complete with practice tests/examples so you can practice at home before the big day of the exam.

In summary, this is literally, everything you need to know about the TOEFL exam with lessons from one of the best English teachers on the internet. The course breaks down each section of the course: Reading, Listening, Speaking, and Writing to provide overviews and instructions for each section, tips for success in each section, and practice examples for each section.


I know you’re working hard to get your dream score on the TOEFL and I’m here to help!


TOEFL Overview

Introduction with Andrea
What is the TOEFL + Getting Your Dream Score
What Universities Accept the TOEFL?
Taking the TOEFL

TOEFL Reading

All About the Reading Section
Vocabulary on the TOEFL
Reading Practice #1

The following is a TOEFL Reading practice test to help you prepare for the Reading section of the TOEFL test.

Instructions: Read the sample passage below and then answer the questions that follow.

William James - Reading Practice Passage

William James (January 11, 1842 – August 26, 1910) was an American psychologist, and the first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States. James is considered to be a leading thinker of the late nineteenth century, one of the most influential philosophers of the United States, and the "Father of American psychology".

James' theory of the self divided a person's mental picture of self into two categories: the "Me" and the "I". The "Me" can be thought of as a separate object or individual a person refers to when describing their personal experiences; while the "I" is the self that knows who they are and what they have done in their life. Both concepts are depicted in the statement; "I know it was me who ate the cookie." He called the "Me" part of self the "empirical me" and the "I" part "the pure Ego”. For James, the "I" part of self was the thinking self, which could not be further divided. He linked this part of the self to the soul of a person, or what is now thought of as the mind. Educational theorists have been inspired in various ways by James's theory of self, and have developed various applications to curricular and pedagogical theory and practice.

James further divided the "Me" part of self into: a material, a social, and a spiritual self, and ego.

Material self

The material self consists of things that belong to a person or entities that a person belongs to. (#1) Thus, things like the body, family, clothes, money, and such make up the material self. For James, the core of the material self was the body. (#2) Second to the body, James felt a person's clothes were important to the material self. He believed a person's clothes were one way they expressed who they felt they were; or clothes were a way to show status, thus contributing to forming and maintaining one's self-image. Money and family are critical parts of the material self. (#3) Money figured in one's material self in a similar way. If a person had significant money then lost it, who they were as a person changed as well. (#4)

Social self

Our social selves are who we are in a given social situation. For James, people change how they act depending on the social situation that they are in. James believed that people had as many social selves as they did social situations they participated in. For example, a person may act in a different way at work when compared to how that same person may act when they are out with a group of friends. James also believed that in a given social group, an individual's social self may be divided even further. An example of this would be, in the social context of an individual's work environment, the difference in behavior when that individual is interacting with their boss versus their behavior when interacting with a co-worker.

Spiritual self

For James, the spiritual self was who we are at our core. It is more concrete or permanent than the other two selves. The spiritual self is our subjective and most intimate self. Aspects of a spiritual self include things like personality, core values, and conscience that do not typically change throughout an individual's lifetime. The spiritual self involves introspection, or looking inward to deeper spiritual, moral, or intellectual questions without the influence of objective thoughts. For James, achieving a high level of understanding of who we are at our core, or understanding our spiritual selves is more rewarding than satisfying the needs of the social and material selves.

Pure ego

What James refers to as the "I" self. For James, the pure ego is what provides the thread of continuity between our past, present, and future selves. The pure ego's perception of consistent individual identity arises from a continual stream of consciousness. James believed that the pure ego was similar to what we think of as the soul, or the mind. The pure ego was not a substance and therefore could not be examined by science.

Reading Practice #2

The following is a TOEFL Reading practice test to help you prepare for the Reading section of the TOEFL test.

Instructions: Read the sample passage below and then answer the questions that follow.

Gorillas - Reading Practice Passage

Gorillas are ground-dwelling, predominantly herbivorous apes that inhabit the forest of central Sub-Saharan Africa. The genus Gorilla is divided into two species: the eastern gorillas and the western gorillas (both critically endangered), and either four or five subspecies. They are the largest living primates. The DNA of gorillas is highly similar to that of humans, from 95 to 99% depending on what is included, and they are the next closest living relatives to humans after the chimpanzees and bonobos.

Gorillas’ natural habitats cover tropical or subtropical forest in Sub-Saharan Africa. Although their range covers a small percentage of Sub-Saharan Africa, gorillas cover a wide range of elevations. The mountain gorilla inhabits the Albertine Rift montane cloud forests of the Virunga Volcanoes, ranging in altitude from 2,200 to 4,300 metres (7,200 to 14,100 ft). Lowland gorillas live in dense forests and lowland swamps and marshes as low as sea level, with western lowland gorillas living in Central West African countries and eastern lowland gorillas living in the Democratic Republic of the Congo near its border with Rwanda.

(#1) Gorillas move around by knuckle-walking, although they sometimes walk upright for short distances, typically while carrying food or in defensive situations. (#2) A 2018 study investigating the hand posture of 77 mountain gorillas at Bwindi Impenetrable National Park (8% of the population) found that knuckle walking was done only 60% of the time, and they also supported their weight on their fists, the backs of their hands/feet, and on their palms/soles (with the digits flexed). (#3) Studies of gorilla handedness have yielded varying results, with some arguing for no preference for either hand, and others right-hand dominance for the general population.

(#4) The eastern gorilla is more darkly colored than the western gorilla, with the mountain gorilla being the darkest of all. The mountain gorilla also has the thickest hair. The western lowland gorilla can be brown or grayish with a reddish forehead. In addition, gorillas that live in lowland forest are more slender and agile than the more bulky mountain gorillas. The eastern gorilla also has a longer face and broader chest than the western gorilla. Like humans, gorillas have individual fingerprints. Their eye color is dark brown, framed by a black ring around the iris. Gorilla facial structure is described as mandibular prognathism, that is, the mandible protrudes farther out than the maxilla. Adult males also have a prominent sagittal crest.

A gorilla’s lifespan is normally between 35 and 40 years, although zoo gorillas may live for 50 years or more. Colo, a female western gorilla at the Columbus Zoo and Aquarium, was the oldest known gorilla at 60 years of age when she died on 17 January 2017.

TOEFL Listening

All About the Listening Section
Listening Activity #1
Listening Activity #2

TOEFL Speaking

All About the Speaking Section
10 Strategies for the Speaking Section
Speaking Practice Test #1
Speaking Practice Test #2
Speaking Practice Test #3
Speaking Practice Test #4
Speaking Practice Test #5

TOEFL Writing

All About the Writing Section
10 Strategies for the Writing Section
Punctuation Mistakes to Avoid
Writing Practice Test #1
Writing Practice Test #2
Writing Practice Test #3


Conclusion with Andrea
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