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한국어 능력 모의 시험

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April 6, 2014 | 08:04pm
Mood: not good

I took the TOPIK 모의 시험 (mock exam) this morning. Here are my thoughts.

It was the worst exam of my life.

The end.

Okay, let me backtrack a little.

It started with 50 multiple choice listening questions which lasted from 9:30am-10:40am. The listening section was MUCH worse than the last exam I took. Much, much worse. I've been working a lot on my listening skills recently and I'm happy to announce that I was able to follow along with some of the questions. An improvement! Unfortunately, the choices given for answers had nothing to do with the dialogues. I remember staring blankly at the booklet before writing, "worst. exam. EVER." in my question booklet.

Then we had 40 minutes for the writing section. This was not even remotely enough time. First were the short writing questions - basically, they gave a paragraph with two lines missing and you had to insert a grammatically correct sentence that fit into that section. Then there was a short essay of about 200-300 characters. They gave you two graphs and told you to write about them. Just a lot of comparison words. Not too bad; I wrote about 325 characters.

Then came the big essay. My sense of timing was way off and I only had about 15 minutes to write a 600-700 character essay. Seriously. The question was about 생활에서 인간관계 - human interactions in our lives. I'm actually really proud of what I wrote, because my tutor has been prepping me for similar essay topics. Hell, just this week I learned a lot of description words such as 수줍음을 타다, 무뚝뚝하다, 털털하다, and the kicker - on Thursday I studied a passage about 인간관계. That's right: I studied this same topic three days ago. I only managed 350 characters before time was called. However - and here's the kicker - based on what other people in the room said/what I saw, that was MORE than what most people were able to do. Seriously. A lot of people only managed 150-200 characters with the time given. I talked with a guy from France and another guy from Vietnam during the 20 minute break (which was actually 8 minutes, because our proctor was slow) and they didn't even know what 인간관계 meant.

After the break we had the reading section. 50 questions in 1시20분. Reading has always been my strong point, but this... this was miserable. I did well for the first 15 questions, then for about 15 questions it came in waves: I understood a few passages well, then I didn't understand anything, then I understood a few more, and then nothing. The last 20 questions or so went over my head. Way over my head. I guessed on a few questions. As in, I had no idea, so I thought, "I haven't answer 4 in a while!" and colored that in on the answer sheet.

I will say this: the writing section was good. I just wish they'd given us more time. 40 minutes was NOT enough time for that section. Alternatively, give the option of writing different numbers of characters without being heavily penalized. The rest of the sections were not good.

Overall the exam was awful and I feel like I failed. Fortunately, every other person in that room felt the same way. Based on what I've read the test will be graded on a curve. Here's hoping that more people failed than I did!

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Comments {2}


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from: annaserene
date: April 6, 2014 01:26pm (UTC)

it sounds like the test wasn't structured well, and that you were at least able to do better than the others did. don't be too disappointed, especially if everyone considered this a disaster.

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from: aodh
date: April 7, 2014 10:53am (UTC)

Yeah, particularly because the test will be graded on a curve. Maybe I did well enough to get a 3 (or even a 4?? haha I doubt it....) :)

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