Summarize spoken text

PTE Listening Summarize Spoken Text - 5 Tips For Best Score

June 07,2018

Listening is an essential skill in the day to day life. Whether it is comprehending some instructions or passing messages to some people. It is important to understand that listening is one of the central skills to function properly. When you go to a native English speaking country, you will hear people talk in English. To get familiar with the place and get along with people, you will need good listening skills.

PTE Listening tests exactly the same. Particularly in this post, we are going to discuss about the Summarize Spoken Text task. If you carefully read the task name and also the instructions, you would come to notice that you have to listen to a spoken audio and write a summary of what you heard. Meaning it tests your abilities to listen as well as to express what you listened to in written. In case you failed to figure out yet, then it tests both your listening and writing skills.

The instructions clearly mention that you have 10 minutes to write the summary an in about 50-70 words. Audio can be of anywhere around 60-90 seconds. So, you basically, need to extract the main information from the audio and present it in words. Here are the tips and techniques you can deploy to ensure maximum output from this task.

Tips for PTE Listening Summarize Spoken Text

  1. Listen to the lecture with concentration
  2. Make use of erasable notepad
  3. Recall and note the main idea of the lecture
  4. Write a rough response
  5. Check the grammar, sentence structure, spellings and vocab

Here are the Do's and Don'ts when it comes to applying these tips. For best results it is always good to practice these tips and note your repetitive mistakes and learn to avoid them.

Listen to the lecture with concentration

This task is essentially a PTE listening task. So, you must listen to the spoken audio with utmost care. Remember, you are not trying to "HEAR", you are trying to "LISTEN". In listening, you have to pay attention to what is being spoken, comprehend it and if needed, be able to express what you listened to.

Therefore, do not rush into writing each and every word that you hear. Doing so is going to result in you not understanding anything that was spoken. Consequently, you will have trouble in writing the summary. As you know this is an integrated task, your writing skills score is also being affected by your response to this task. You will be judged on your content, grammar, spelling and vocab.

Thus, always listen to the lecture in a manner such that you would have to explain and give a short summary of information to someone regarding it. Memorising the lecture is out of question as you must present a brief on what you listened. As you listen, try to find some link to the things you can remember or experiences you have had. Try to make that scenario up in your mind so as to retain the memory of it for a longer period. This way you will not have trouble explaining what the lecture revolved around and also you can easily comprehend the lecture.

There is no need to strictly remember all numbers or data or examples that you hear as you might not have to write that in your summary. What you must know is the main topic or idea of the lecture that the speaker is trying to explain. Understanding the lecture is the key to success here.

Make Use of that Erasable Notepad

You have an erasable notepad with you to take down notes during the test. Make wise use of it. Do not pen down each and every word you hear. Jot down the keywords that you can catch and think are important. As you progress with listening to the audio, you will understand automatically what the subject is all about. So, noting down the right words should be your priority. While you go about writing, make sure you write in a legible handwriting. Sometimes you cannot read you own messed up handwriting. Also, make sure you later on recognise the abbreviations short hand you wrote. Start writing as soon as the lecture begins and you will not miss out anything.

Any supporting ideas can also be useful. Note down facts, definitions or words that are exclusively explained or spoken. Pay attention to nouns, verbs and concepts. You can also notice the intonations and stresses the user applies to make out if the information is vital.

Recall and note the main idea of the lecture

As mentioned in the previous points, it is important that you note the main idea of the lecture. Also, when you pay good attention to what is being spoken, you naturally remember the subject matter. After the lecture is over, when you are writing your rough draft, just try to recall the essential details of the lecture. This does not mean that you ignore the supporting idea. Nor does it mean that you have to pay attention to only specific information.

For instance, your friend was absent during a lecture and you have to convey to them what you learnt. It is similar to that. You must know what was the central information the speaker/ lecturer delivered.

Write a rough response

Once the audio finishes a reverse timer of 10 minutes will start. Quickly write down the rough response what you are going to write. You have already taken the notes and your memory is fresh, so write down the summary without worrying about the word limit at first. You can recall what you had heard and connect the dots. The keywords noted will help you create the clear picture of what you want to write. Make sure you paraphrase the ideas. The worst mistake you can commit is to write everything word to word. You must not write the exact same words that were spoken.

Spend about 2-3 minutes writing this rough draft. While writing your rough draft, include a topic sentence and explain the idea. Connect the ideas together.

Unlike the Summarize Written Text task, in this task you can write multiple sentences

Check the grammar, sentence structure, spellings and vocab

Now that you have poured down the summary, it is time to polish it. Check the sentence structure and grammar. Read the summary and find out if the flow is correct that is the ideas should not be abrupt. Your content score matters here. So, write multiple sentences. Check the tenses in which you write. Try and include good vocabulary. In an attempt to write a complex sentence do not compromise on grammar. You sentence must have a noun and verb. Making right use of punctuation is essential. Do not miss to check out the spellings. Even if you have a habit of typing, you can commit spelling errors. Thus, it is always good to double check.

Spend about 2-3 minutes refining your response and another 2 minutes checking it. Do not rush to submit your answer. Just check it once and submit it before the 10 minutes. Check each and every word you have written and try to write somewhere near to 70 words. It is good to touch the upper limit as content score is being judged here.

While these 5 major tips will definitely help you score better, you must ensure to practice. There are plenty of sample questions available on our portal and Mobile App for online PTE Listening practice and get better at each task.

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