PTE-A Academic

PTE Academic Speaking and Writing Section-Frequently Asked Doubts

November 07,2017

Although PTE Academic has four sections, the two sections that most test takers find troubles in are Speaking and Writing. Most of test takers experience different levels of difficulties in these sections. If you too are looking for various solutions to enhance your skills related to the PTE Speaking and Writing section, then you just landed at the right place. Here, we are discussing some very significant doubts that test takers have in these two sections and also provide solutions that you can apply for the difficulties you face.

Prior to that, let us quickly revisit the structure of the sections. In PTE, these two are regarded as one (Speaking and Writing).

Structure of PTE Speaking and Writing Section

The Speaking section comprises of five types of questions: "Re-tell lecture", "Answer short question", "Read aloud", "Repeat sentence", and "Describe image". The total time allotted to this section 30-35 minutes.

The writing section has two specific questions: "Summarize written text", and "Write essay". The number of times a type of question might be asked is not pre-decided. For one essay writing question you have total of 20 minutes and for one summarize written text you have 10 minutes.

Skills assessed in PTE Speaking and Writing Section

In PTE Speaking, your fluency and accuracy is being checked. Fluency means the steady pace and clarity with which you speak. Accuracy indicates your ability to speak without any grammatical errors, usage of appropriate intonations.

In PTE Writing, the overall skills of writing structure and cohesion is being evaluates. A good essay structure is depicted when you write in the proper PTE recommended format. Another factor that contributes to your score is grammar, spelling, and vocabulary. The simple example is 'The technological advancements have carried comfort to our daily life'. When you use the synonym of 'bring', it is actually incorrect in this context.  Cohesion is when you successfully present your ideas and arguments related to the given topic in a related manner. Your points must be related to the topic and be convincing with supporting examples.

Important skills tested on PTE Speaking & Writing Section

If you want to understand every aspect of writing an essay and achieving high score, then you can check out Essay Essentials by PTE Tutorials.

Let us learn about the common doubts related to these two sections.

PTE Related Doubts

Will I score more in the speaking task if I speak fast?

In fact, an absolute reverse of high score will happen if you speak fast. When you speak fast, you are not demonstrating your fluency. In such situation, your words will not be clear. Thus, you will lose marks. So maintain a steady speed and speak clearly.

Do I loose marks if I take more amount of time to speak?

You will lose on the time to answer the question and thus, your marks will be affected.

Does accent matter in speaking?

No. PTE can recognise many accents. So as long as you speak clearly, you will get marks.

In repeat sentence question, do I loose marks if I miss any word?

It is important you try to repeat the sentence exactly. However, it is ok if you miss any word but maintain the fluency.

Do I need to retell a lecture in the exact manner as the audio?

Well, understand that PTE is an English language test and not the test of your knowledge or intelligence. The content does matter but speaking word to word is not so crucial.

In Describe Image question, some images have a lot of information. Do I need to include all the information while speaking?

This question has different types of images that can be asked. Some of the images may be complex and might have lot of information. You have to only speak about the important points and trends. Know how you can describe different types of images and strategically practise to score more here.

What happens if I miss the recommended minimum or maximum word limit in the essay?

The PTE Essay Writing Task specifically mentions in the instructions about the minimum word limit as 200 words and maximum 300 words. You got to strictly follow that to ensure it does not cost you the valuable marks.

If I write wide range of vocabulary then will my score improve?

It really depends on the context of your sentence. Just like we gave an example previously, if you use a synonym of a word, it must be contextually correct. Also, unnecessary use of synonyms must be avoided. Write a simple word wherever possible. It is recommended you avoid repetition of words.

Does use of complex sentences help in getting high score?

In this case as well, it depends. Try to avoid making each and every sentence unnecessarily wordy. Showcase your skills by using complex sentences at appropriate places.

If I am writing any quote, do I need to write the exact words of the quote?

Yes, that is what a quote means. You are not saying anything or any word by yourself and simply repeating what was said by someone else. So, it is important that you mention the credits as well.

Is it ok if I miss the introduction or not conclude the essay?

PTE Essay has a format and structure. It is advised to organise the essay in specific form. If you miss certain elements, then you lose the marks.

We hope we have satisfactorily answered all your doubts and if you still have some more then you can feel free to ask us at or post it on our International Student Forum and our experts will provide you with genuine answers.

So, start utilising the helpful materials on PTE Tutorials portal and practice towards realising your dream score.