Pearson Tests of English PTE

What is the Pearson Test of English (PTE)?

Pearson Test of English (PTE) is a computer-based English exam that accesses your English capabilities. The entire exam format comprises four sections; the first being Speaking, second being Writing, third is Listening and fourth is Writing. There are three types of PTE test:

  1. General
  2. Academic
  3. Young Learners

The most important of all three is the Academic Test, and this is the test generally referred to PTE test.

PTE Exam Duration and Tasks

The entire exam takes about two and a half hours to complete. It may stretch to 3 hours as well. 

PTE Speaking

Let’s tale a look at the first section that is speaking. There are five different sorts of tasks in this section.

  • Read Aloud
  • Repeat Sentences
  • Describe an image
  • Re-tell. Lecture
  • Answer short questions

Usually, students are told to focus on describe an image and re-tell, lecture because it is the most challenging of the lot and students usually struggle a lot with these questions. Remember that you can only master these sections with a lot of practice a good technique.

PTE Writing

Now let’s see the writing section. This comprises of two task types

  • Summaries a written text
  • Write an essay

Students are usually given 2 to 3 summaries the text questions and are given 10 minutes to do it. For essay writing, you will have 20 minutes to complete two essays of 200 to 300 words.

PTE Reading

In the Reading section again, there are 5 task types:

  • Multiple Choice (choosing a single answer)
  • Multiple choice (choosing multiple answers)
  • Re-order Paragraphs
  • Reading: Fill in the blanks
  • Reading and Writing: Fill in the blanks

Usually, the focus is on Re-order paragraphs and Fill in the blanks because those contain the bulk of the marks, so we tell students to pay more attention to these two sections.

PTE Listening

The fourth section is the listening section. It comprises of many segments that are:

  • Summaries spoken text
  • Multiple choice (choose multiple answers)
  • Fill in the banks
  • Highlight correct summary
  • Multiple choice (choose single answer)
  • Select missing word
  • Highlight Incorrect Words
  • Dictation

The important sections here are summaries spoken text where you hear a recording which you have to summarise in 250 -270 words in 10 mins. Fill in the blanks is self-explanatory and dictation is where you hear 10 words which you have to type out immediately.

How to Prepare for the Test

What can you do if your English is not up to the mark? You need to prepare for general vocabulary, grammar, and pronunciation. There are a number of preparatory courses online and books you may study.

How are PTE scores calculated?

The PTE results are released really fast. You can have your results in three days. At times you can get it the day after your exam as well. So, you can make a quick decision on what your next steps would be, and if you want to give an improvement exam or not. The scores range from 10 to 90 points.

An acceptable score is that is 50, a good score is 65 and an even better score is above 75. To be able to score well you need to be able to prepare well. Now, how do you know where you stand even before the test. Well, this can be done by spending $49 dollars and take a mini mock PTE test known as E2. It a shortened PTE test. You will be given feedback along with the score on each task. So, you would get a clear picture. It is a great way to prepare and get your current level.

Eligibility Criteria

 There is no such eligibility condition to take a PTE exam. It can be taken by anyone who is interested to take it.

Score Validity

PTE has a very fair and consistent marking, especially in speaking and writing. Since it is a computer-based exam you would not have to interact with the examiner and feel shaky.  There is no expiration for PTE General Exam, it means that it is valid for lifetime. However, PTE academic test is only valid for 2 years. In Australia, it is valid for 3 years.

Where is it applicable?

PTE is recognized by many universities and colleges worldwide, like the UK, the US, New Zealand, Australia, and Canada. It is approved by the New Zealand and Australian Department of Immigration for Migration and Study Abroad Purposes. General exam scores are calculated based on 6 levels of assessment A1, A2, B1, B2, C1 and C2 that are based on CEFR that is the Common European Framework of Reference of the grading system. Individuals must acquire C1 or C2 level fluency to be able to reach a college or a university.


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