PTE SPEAKING & WRITING

The personal introduction is an opportunity for you to give your selected institutions some information about yourself. You will have 25 seconds to read the prompt and prepare your response, and then 30 seconds to record your response. This item is not scored, but will be sent together with your score report to the institutions selected by you. You are only able to record your answer once.

  • Task – A text appears on screen. Read the text aloud.
  • Skills assessed – Reading and speaking
  • Prompt length – Text up to 60 words
  • Time to answer – Varies by item, depending on the length of text.
For this item type you need to read a written text aloud.
  • The recording status box displays a countdown until the microphone opens.
  • You have 30-40 seconds to prepare, depending on the length of the passage.
  • You hear a short tone. After the tone, start speaking immediately.
  • Do not start speaking before the microphone opens because your voice will not be recorded.
  • You should speak clearly. There is no need to rush.
  • Finish speaking before the progress bar reaches the end. The word “Recording” changes to “Completed”.
  • You are only able to record your response once.
  • TIP: If you remain silent for longer than 3 seconds, the recording will stop.
  • Task- After listening to a recording of a sentence, repeat the sentence.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and speaking
  • Prompt length – 3-9 seconds
  • Time to answer – 15 seconds
For this item type you need to repeat the sentence you hear.

The audio begins to plays automatically. When the audio finishes, the microphone opens and the recording status box shows “Recording”. Speak into the microphone immediately (there is no short tone) and repeat exactly what you heard.

  • You should speak clearly. There is no need to rush.
  • Finish speaking before the progress bar reaches the end. The word “Recording” changes to “Completed”.
  • You are not able to replay the audio. You are only able to record your response once.
  • Task – An image appears on screen.
  • Describe the image in detail.
  • Skills assessed – Speaking
  • Prompt length – N/A
  • Time to answer – 40 seconds
For this item type you need to describe an image.

The recording status box displays a countdown until the microphone opens. You have 25 seconds to study the image and prepare your response. You hear a short tone. After the tone, start speaking immediately. Do not start speaking before the microphone opens because your voice will not be recorded.

  • You should speak clearly. There is no need to rush.
  • Finish speaking before the progress bar reaches the end. The word “Recording” changes to “Completed’’.
  • You are only able to record your response once.
 
  • Task – After listening to or watching a lecture, re-tell the lecture in your own words.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and speaking
  • Prompt length – Up to 90 seconds
  • Time to answer – 40 seconds
For this item type you need to re-tell what you heard.

The audio begins to play automatically. You may also see an image related to the audio. After the audio finishes, you have 10 seconds to prepare.

  • The recording status box displays a countdown until the microphone opens. You hear a short tone. After the tone, start speaking immediately. Do not start speaking before the microphone opens because your voice will not be recorded.
  • You should speak clearly. There is no need to rush.
  • Finish speaking before the progress bar reaches the end. The word “Recording” changes to “Completed’’.
  • You are only able to record your response once.
  • Note: While the audio is playing, you can take notes on the erasable noteboard provided.
  • Task – After listening to a question, answer with a single word or a few words.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and speaking
  • Prompt length – 3-9 seconds
  • Time to answer – 10 seconds
For this item type you need to reply to the question in one or a few words.
  • The audio begins to play automatically. You may also see an image.
  • When the audio finishes, the microphone opens and the recording status box shows “Recording”. Speak into the microphone immediately (there is no short tone) and answer the question with one or a few words.
  • You should speak clearly. There is no need to rush.
  • Finish speaking before the progress bar reaches the end. The word “Recording” changes to “Completed”.
  • You are not able to replay the audio. You are only able to record your response once.
  • Task – After reading a text, write a one-sentence summary of the passage.
  • Skills assessed – Reading and writing
  • Prompt length – Text up to 300 words
  • Time to answer – 10 minutes
For this item type you need to write a summary of the text in one sentence.

You have 10 minutes to write your summary. Make sure to include the main points of the reading passage in a full, single sentence of no more than 75 words. The Word Count at the bottom of the screen counts the number of words you write. There are also cut, copy and paste buttons which you may use while constructing your summary.

  • Cut: Select text from your answer that you wish to remove and left-click “Cut”.
  • Copy: Select text from your answer that you wish to copy and left-click “Copy”.
  • Paste: Place the cursor where you wish to paste the cut/copied text and left-click “Paste”.

 

  • Task – Write a 200–300 word essay on a given topic.
  • Skills assessed – Writing
  • Prompt length – 2-3 sentences
  • Time to answer – 20 minutes
For this item type you need to write a 200-300 word argumentative essay in response to a prompt.

You have 20 minutes to write your essay. The Word Count at the bottom of the screen counts the number of words you write. Make sure to write a minimum of 200 words, but no more than 300 words. There are also cut, copy and paste buttons which you may choose to use while constructing your response.

  • Cut: Select text from your answer that you wish to remove and left-click “Cut”.
  • Copy: Select text from your answer that you wish to copy and left-click “Copy”.
  • Paste: Place the cursor where you wish to paste the cut/copied text and left-click “Paste”.
 

Part 2: Reading (32 – 41 Minutes)

In Part 2 you will be tested on your reading skills. This single timed section contains 15-20 independent and integrated skills items, depending on the combination of items in a given test. Different response formats, including multiple-choice, re-order paragraphs, and fill in the blanks, are designed to test your ability to read, write and listen to information provided in English. Because PTE Academic is an integrated skill test, one item type in this part of the test also assesses writing skills.

  • Task – After reading a text, answer a multiple-choice question on the content or tone of the text by selecting one response.
  • Skills assessed – Reading
  • Prompt length – Text up to 300 words
For this item type you need to read the passage and answer the multiple-choice question.

There are several possible response options but only one is correct. To select an option click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the option again to deselect it, or left-click on a different option. The option you select is highlighted in yellow.

  • Task – After reading a text, answer a multiple-choice question on the content or tone of the text by selecting more than one response.
  • Skills assessed – Reading
  • Prompt length – Text up to 300 words
For this item type you need to read the passage and answer the multiple-choice question. There is more than one correct response.
  • You need to select all the response options that you think are correct from the list of possible options.
  • To select an option click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the option again to deselect it.
  • The options you select are highlighted in yellow.
 
  • Task – Several text boxes appear on screen in a random order.
  • Put the text boxes in the correct order.
  • Skills assessed – Reading
  • Prompt length – Text up to 150 words.
For this item type, you need to restore the original order of the text by selecting text boxes and dragging them across the screen.

There are two ways you can move the text:

  1. Left-click on a box to select it (it will be outlined in blue), hold the left mouse button down and drag it to the desired location.
  2. Left-click on a box to select it, and then left-click on the left and right arrow buttons to move it across. On the right panel, you can also use the up and down arrow buttons to re-order the boxes.

To deselect a box, left-click elsewhere on the screen.

  • Task – A text appears on screen with several gaps. Drag words from the box below to fill the gaps.
  • Skills assessed – Reading
  • Prompt length – Text up to 80 words
For this item type you need to drag and drop words across the screen to correctly fill in the gaps in the text.

There is a passage with some missing words. You have a list of words in the blue box that you can use to fill the gaps in the text. There are more words than gaps so you will not use all the words provided.

Left-click on a word to select it; keep the left mouse button held down and drag the word to the gap where you want to place it. You can also drag words between gaps. To remove a word from a gap, drag it back to the blue box.

 
  • Task – A text appears on screen with several gaps. Drag words from the box below to fill the gaps.
  • Skills assessed – Reading
  • Prompt length – Text up to 300 words
For this item type, you need to select the most appropriate words from a drop-down list to restore the text.

There is a passage with some missing words. Beside each gap, there is a button with a drop-down list. Left-click on this button to reveal the drop-down list of options for that gap. Select the option you think best fills the gap.

To change your mind, left-click on a different option.

 

Part 3: Listening (45 – 57 Minutes)

Part 3 consists of questions that are based on audio or video clips which begin to play automatically. You hear each audio or video clip only once so listen carefully. You are allowed to take notes.

For each question you have the opportunity to adjust the volume. While the audio clip is playing, move the control bar to the right to increase the volume or to the left to decrease the volume.

 
  • Task – After listening to a recording, write a 50-70 word summary.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and writing
  • Prompt length – 60-90 seconds
For this item type you hear an audio recording and need to write a 50-70 word summary on what you heard.

You have 10 minutes to write your summary.

The audio begins to play automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.

The Word Count at the bottom of the screen counts the number of words you write. Make sure to write a minimum of 50 words, but no more than 70 words.

There are also cut, copy and paste buttons which you may choose to use while constructing your summary.

  • Cut: Select text from your answer that you wish to remove and left-click “Cut”.
  • Copy: Select text from your answer that you wish to copy and left-click “Copy”.
  • Paste: Place the cursor where you wish to paste the cut/copied text and left-click “Paste”.
 
  • Task – After listening to a recording, answer a multiple-choice question on the content or tone of the recording by selecting more than one response.
  • Skills assessed – Listening
  • Prompt length – 40-90 seconds.
For this item type you need to listen to the recording and answer the multiple-choice question. There is more than one correct response.

The audio begins to play automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.

You need to select all the response options that you think are correct from the list of possible options.

To select an option click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the option again to deselect it.

The options you select are highlighted in yellow.

 

 

  • Task – A transcript of a recording appears on screen with several gaps. After listening to the recording, type the missing word in each gap.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and writing
  • Prompt length – 30-60 seconds
For this item type you are presented with a transcript of the audio recording, however, some words are missing. Restore the transcript by typing in the missing words.

The audio plays automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once. Left-click on each gap and type in the missing word. You can also use the Tab button on the keyboard to move between gaps.

  • Note: While the audio is playing, you can take notes on the erasable noteboard provided and then fill in the gaps.
  • Task – After listening to a recording, select the paragraph that best summarizes the recording.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and reading
  • Prompt length – 30-90 seconds
For this item type you need to select the summary that best matches the recording.

The audio begins to play automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.

There are several possible response options but only one is correct.

To select an option click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the option again to deselect it, or left-click on a different option.

The option you select is highlighted in yellow.

Note: It may be difficult to read and listen at the same time. It is recommended that you listen first, make notes on the erasable note-board and then read the summaries.

 
  • Task – After listening to a recording, answer a multiple-choice question on the content or tone of the recording by selecting one response.
  • Skills assessed – Listening
  • Prompt length – 30-60 seconds.
For this item type you need to listen to the recording and answer the multiple-choice question.

The audio begins to play automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.

There are several possible response options but only one is correct.

To select an option click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the option again to deselect it, or left-click on a different option.

The option you select is highlighted in yellow.

 
  • Task – After listening to a recording, select the missing word that completes the recording from a list of options.
  • Skills assessed – Listening
  • Prompt length – 20-70 seconds.
For this item type the last word or group of words in the recording has been replaced by a beep. Select the most appropriate option to complete the recording.

The audio begins to play automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.

There are several possible response options but only one is correct.

To select an option click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the option again to deselect it, or left-click on a different option.

The option you select is highlighted in yellow.

 
  • Task – The transcript of a recording appears on screen. While listening to the recording, identify the words in the transcript that differ from what is said.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and reading
  • Prompt length – 15-50 seconds
For this item type you are presented with a transcript of the audio recording, however, the transcript contains some errors. While listening and reading, you need to select the words in the text that differ from what the speaker says.
  • The audio begins to plays automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.
  • To select a word click on it using the left button on your mouse. If you change your mind, left-click on the word again to deselect it.
  • The words you select are highlighted in yellow.
 
  • Task – After listening to a recording of a sentence, type the sentence.
  • Skills assessed – Listening and writing
  • Prompt length – 3-5 seconds.
For this item type you hear a short sentence. Type the sentence into the response box at the bottom of the screen.
  • The audio begins to play automatically. You are only able to listen to the audio recording once.
  • Note: While the audio is playing, you can take notes on the erasable noteboard provided.
  • Remember to check your spelling.
 

Ascetism

Amalgamate

Binding

By force

Cinematographers

Consistency

Constituents

Debauchery

Deference

Despised

Distinctly

Doldrums

Enhance

Enormity

Equanimity

Exigency

Fervour

Foliate

Frail

Futility

Gruesome

Imperishable

Implication

Inadvertent

Innocuous

Intersect

Lionize

Masticate

Obsessive

Optimize

Ostentatious

Pandemonium

Prejudice

Portrayed

Prolonged

Progression

Propensity

Repealing

Repudiated

Retard

Revelry

Sporadically

Sovereignty

Sumptuous

Vapid

Vignettes

Vitriolic

Biju John is an educational writer, educator and the author of OM - The Otherwise Men. He gives live classes on Skype and Facebook. You can attend his 3 Day Classes (English & Business Studies) in Delhi, Bangalore, Qatar and Dubai. His Contact number is 91 9810740061.

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