Six tips to ace the PTE Listening
Posted on June 24, 2020
The PTE Academic Test assesses your skills in four different English skills.
The listening section has the highest variety of questions compared to any other sections, but it can be an easy section for you and you can score well provided you prepare in the right way. Here are some tips to help you.
- Know the different sections of the PTE
The listening section consists of eight tasks:
- Summarize spoken text: In this section you will have to listen to an audio recording and create a 50-70-word summary within 10 minutes.
- Multiple choice, multiple answer: After listening to an audio recording you will have to answer a set of multiple-choice questions.
- Multiple Choice, single answer: In this question, you will have to choose one correct answer for a multiple-choice question after listening to the audio recording.
- Fill in the blanks: In this task, you will have to fill the gaps or blanks in a transcript by listening to the audio clip.
- Highlight correct summary: In this task, you will have to listen to the audio recording and select an option that best summarizes the recording from several possible choices.
- Select missing word: This task involves selecting the most appropriate response to complete the missing words in an audio recording.
- Highlight incorrect words: For this task, you will have to point out the errors in a transcript after listening and comparing it with its original audio.
- Write from dictation: In this task, you will have to type a short sentence correctly after listening to its audio.
To do well in all these exercises, you must practice each one of them, as each one is different. The catch in the listening section is that you can listen to the audio recording only once before you answer the different questions.
- Try to understand the meaning of the conversation
Learn to the audio clip actively and try to anticipate what is coming next in the clipping. This will be especially useful when you are attempting the select the missing word question.
When you are listening to the audio clipping, write down the keywords, repeated words and any other words that seem relevant to the topic.
You can practice listening by listening to podcasts, talk shows and programs on the radio.
- Get familiar with different accents in English
English is spoken in different accents across the world so you should not limit yourself to comprehending just British and American accents. You should be familiar with Australian and Irish accents.
You can do this by listening to TED talks and documentaries on the BBC, these programs will have speakers from different parts of the world who will speak English in their own unique accent.
- Practice in a noisy environment
The PTE listening test will take place in a room full of other test-takers. There is a possibility that you will be distracted when you are listening to the audio clip. To avoid this, practice listening to audio recordings in a crowded environment like when you are travelling or you can turn on the TV or radio when practicing for the listening section.
- Be aware of negative marking
You will have negative marking if your answer is wrong in the multiple-choice question. Suppose you score 2 points for choosing the correct option, you will lose 2 points for choosing the wrong option which will lead to a zero score. Avoid this by listening carefully to the keywords and avoid selecting a response if you are not sure about it.
- Learn to manage your time
The listening section comes at the last of the PTE exam, test takers are usually exhausted by the time they reach this section of the PTE and may not be able to give their best. Since you can listen to the audio recording you will have to be attentive and know how to use your time wisely for the different sections of the listening test. And you must listen actively to the audio recording while summarizing it mentally and noting down the keywords.