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Soal Listening TOEFL: “Menjadi Dosen Sejarah”

Bagian kedua dalam rangkaian tes TOEFL adalah soal listening. Dalam waktu 60 hingga 90 menit, kamu akan mendengarkan beberapa materi seputar kehidupan perkuliahan dan akademis. Contohnya adalah diskusi di kelas, tanya jawab dengan dosen, atau justru materi kuliah yang dibawakan oleh sang dosen.

Secara garis besar ada 4 hingga 6 materi yang akan menjadi bahan pertanyaan. Setelah selesai mendengarkan materi yang dibawakan oleh speakers, kamu harus menjawab 4 hingga 6 pertanyaan, atau 2 hingga 3 percakapan yang diikuti 5 percakapan.

Di artikel kali ini kamu bisa berlatih soal listening dengan baik. Jangan lupa untuk tetap fokus dan menjaga agar konsentrasi tidak terpecah. Berbeda dengan soal reading atau writing, tidak ada bahan bacaan yang bisa kamu ulang kembali saat lupa.

Semua hanya diperdengarkan satu kali lewat speaker. Mari kita mulai berlatih dengan contoh soal berikut ini, percakapan antara seorang profesor (Female Professor) dengan muridnya (Male Student):

Female Professor: Oh, Jason! Long time, no see. How’ve you been?

Male Student: I guess it has been a while…amazing how time flies. I’ve been well…you know, graduation is coming up pretty quickly, but I’ve been enjoying my senior year.

Female Professor: And how’s your older sister…uh…Amy?

Male Student: Amy? She’s good. She just got an internship at the Library of Congress…

Female Professor: (Approving sound)

Male Student: (Continued) …but I don’t see her much nowadays… Anyway, I’m kinda coming to you for some specific ADVICE, if you have a moment.

Female Professor: Well, my schedule’s wide open. What’s on your mind?

Male Student: Okay, so I’m helping out Professor Williams in his Intro to English History class, right?

Female Professor: Mm-hm. I heard that.

Male Student: He’s letting me take over the class one day—to teach it. And that’s exciting, but I’ve never designed a lesson before, and I’m…I’m kind of EMBARRASSED to go talk to Professor Williams about what I’m planning. He can be a little…intimidating.

Female Professor: Ahh… Don’t sweat it. I remember how nerve-wracking it can be when you first get up to teach. So what’s the lesson?

Male Student: Oh, uh, the lesson is gonna be on King HENRY VIII. Just like, an introduction, an overview of his life and influence, y’know?

Female Professor: Got it.

Male Student: So far, I outlined all of the ways he impacted England, both in the Renaissance and today. It’s just…well, it seems BORING. Here—you can take a look at my lesson plan, if you want.

Female Professor: That’d help. Hmmm. (Flipping pages). Well, I do think you’ve accounted for all of the major elements of his legacy, but, um…even glancing at the plan, I don’t see any real FOCUS. It looks more like a LIST.

Male Student: A list? I guess so…

Female Professor: How can I put this… Alright, let me just ask you this: What do you think the most important part of Henry VII’s legacy is? I mean, what do you think of his overall STATURE as a ruler?

Male Student: What do you mean?

Female Professor: I mean…well…um…consider his place in history outside of England for a moment. Would you agree that, along with the current Queen Elizabeth II and his own daughter, Elizabeth I, that he’s one of the most famous English rulers ever?

Male Student: Sure. We don’t learn nearly as much about, um…kings like William III or Stephen of Blois, or Richard II, even in really in-depth history courses.

Female Professor: Exactly. Why do you think that is?

Male Student: A number of reasons…he was married six times, he had two of his wives beheaded, he was famously fat by the end of his life, and he went from being a staunch Catholic to… well, defying the Pope and founding his own church. Henry VIII was…um…kind of LARGER THAN LIFE.

Female Professor: Exactly! You can paint a really engaging picture with that character. You can deliver the dry facts during the story, but you might want to keep the class’s ATTENTION with a bit of a flourish—with focus on those over-the-top details. Does that make sense?

Male Student: I think so, yeah. That’s a great point. Maybe I should try out the lecture with somebody willing before I have to actually give it…like, REHEARSE, so I can tell the story better.

Female Professor: I think that’s a great idea

Dari percakapan di atas bisa kita simpulkan bahwa murid bernama Jason sedang belajar untuk mulai mengajar kelas sejarah, sebagai asisten dosen. Namun konflik dimulai ketika Jason merasa bahwa caranya mengajar terlalu membosankan.

Profesor yang dimintai pendapat memintanya untuk menambahkan fakta-fakta menarik sepanjang perkuliahan agar muridnya semakin tertarik.

Dan berikut ini pertanyaan terkait materi listening di atas:

1. Question: Why does the student visit the professor?

(A) To discuss how to make a potentially dry topic more engaging

(B) To inform her about recent changes in his and his family’s lives

(C) To fill in a gap in the student’s knowledge of English history

(D) To complain about the difficulty of an assignment given by another professor

Analisis: Ingat, pertanyaan pertama selalu berkisar tentang tema utama percakapan. Bisa jadi topik utama tidak disebutkan di awal paragraf, tapi lewat kalimat sederhana seperti “Anyway, I’m kinda coming to you for some specific ADVICE, if you have a moment.” Sehingga jawaban yang tepat adalah (A).

2. Question: What can be inferred about William III, Stephen of Blois, and Richard II?

(A) They did not rule England for long enough periods of time to have notable impacts

(B) They make uninteresting topics for lectures because there is little recorded information on them

(C) They are generally disliked by historians and therefore rarely discussed

(D) Many students are less familiar with them than with Henry VIII.

Analisis: Pertanyaan ini cukup sulit karena hanya disebutkan sekilas dalam percakapan. Kamu harus mengingat 3 nama dalam soal dan pesan apa yang disampaikan oleh Jason. Dalam percakapan hanya terdengar “We don’t learn nearly as much about, um…kings like William III or Stephen of Blois, or Richard II, even in really in-depth history courses.” Artinya, jawaban (D) paling selaras dengan pertanyaan, meski pilihan jawaban lainnya juga hampir menjebak.

Pertanyaan semacam itu yang akan kamu temui dalam materi listening, dan biasanya diikuti dengan pertanyaan lebih detil dan kesimpulan dari percakapan. Biasakan untuk mencatat poin penting dalam percakapan sebagai panduan kamu dalam menjawab.

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