PTE is a standardized test evaluating the English proficiency of candidates who want to study abroad or acquire a job in an English spoken country. Pearson Inc. administers this computer-based test worldwide.
To complete a PTE Academic test, you should attend a secure test center of the Pearson. You will use a computer and a pair of a headset to listen, read, and respond to exam questions. This article offers you all information you need about the PTE test and its details.
- What is PTE Test?
- What’s the Difference between PTE Test and IELTS?
- What are the Different Parts of the PTE Test?
- How do They Score PTE Test?
- What are the Resources for the PTE Test?
What is PTE Test?
Pearson Inc. is a British multinational publishing and education company, which launched the Pearson Test of English Academic (PTE Academic) in 2009, and since then, administers it worldwide.
To complete a PTE test and get a score, you will need to attend Pearson’s test center. In these centers, you will use a computer and headset to listen, read, and respond to questions.
There are three main parts during the three-hour PTE test session: speaking and writing together, listening, and reading. It also has an optional 10-minute break between the reading and listening sections.
You will see twenty different question formats during the test, ranging from multiple choice to essay writing and interpreting information.
PTE Academic exam assesses academic English in a real-life situation, so you will hear excerpts from lectures and view charts and graphs.
You will hear different accents in the exam, from American, British, and even non-native speakers, meaning they expose you to many different accents you will encounter in everyday life.
What’s the Difference between PTE Test and IELTS?
Both PTE and IELTS offer an Academic test, but some wonder what differences there are between the PTE and IELTS.
Their main difference is that IELTS offers a choice between a paper-based test or a computer-delivered exam, but the PTE test is all computer-based and marked by a machine.
The speaking part in IELTS is a face-to-face talk with an examiner, but you speak to the computer in the PTE exam.
The exam length is about the same; the PTE test takes about 3 hours and 11 minutes, while the IELTS exam takes 2 hours and 50 minutes. The exam time in IELTS is a little bit shorter.
When you sit the PTE Academic test, there are many integrated questions such as speaking and listening in the speaking section of the test or reading and writing problems in the reading section, or reading and speaking ones in the speaking area.
In IELTS, your four language skills are assessed separately. So, for example, the reading section only looks at your reading ability and not speaking simultaneously.
Another critical difference is the marking of the test. PTA test is an automatic machine scored. The reading and listening tests are auto-marked with IELTS, but the speaking and writing test are looked at by human correctors.
Finally, IELTS always released results 13 days after the test. This has changed with computer-delivered IELTS. If you did IELTS on a computer, you get your products in 2 to 5 calendar days. With PTA Academic exam, you get the results in 5 business days.
What are the Different Parts of the PTE Test?
PTE Academic has a similar exam pattern to other English language tests. It focusses on the three different sections of language proficiency:
- Reading Section,
- Listening Section,
- Speaking and Writing Section.
The PTE test is made of these components:
- Question: The time duration of each prompt you get varies depending upon the text’s length. The length is measurable in sentences or words. You need to be as active as possible in this part.
- Prepare for Answer: In this part, you do not have to answer the question immediately. You get about 10 to 15 seconds to prepare for each part. It would help if you thought for a while about how to answer correctly.
- Answer: This is the total time duration where you have to perform. The responses are recorded when you speak, saved as text when you write, and selected in options multiple-choice questions.
Speaking and Writing Section
This section comprises six small sections and takes between 77 to 93 minutes. It tests the candidates based on their two practical communication skills, which are spoken and written skills.
The time allotted to each part is as follows:
- Personal Introduction Segment: It takes 55 seconds: 25 seconds for prompt, 30 seconds to record;
- Read Aloud Segment: 30 to 40 seconds to prepare for reading out the text of 60 words;
- Repeat Sentence Segment: It takes 15 seconds: 3 to 9 seconds for prompt, 15 seconds to record;
- Describe Image Segment: 25 seconds are granted to study the image as well as prepare your response on the same;
- Re-Tell Lecture Segment: It takes 90 seconds for prompt length, 10 seconds to prepare, and 40 seconds to answer;
- Answer Short Question Segment: About 20 seconds: 3 to 9 seconds for prompt, 10 seconds to answer;
- Summarize Written Text: It takes 10 minutes to respond to a text prompt of 300 words;
- Essay Segment: 20 minutes to respond to the text prompt of 2 to 3 sentences.
This part takes about 32 to 41 minutes. It tests the candidates based on their ability to understand the written instructions in the language.
The segment pattern for time distribution of this section is as follows:
- Multiple Choice, Choose Single Answer: Read 300-words text;
- Multiple Choice, Choose Multiple Answers: Read 300-words text;
- Re-Order Paragraphs: Read 150-words text;
- Reading: Fill in the Blanks: Read 80-words text;
- Reading and Writing: Fill in the Blanks: Read the 300-words text.
Time duration in different segments of this section varies on the length of the text prompt.
This section takes 45 to 57 minutes in total. This one is designed to determine the ability to understand spoken English by the candidate.
Here, the student should ascertain that they carefully hear the audio file played and retain what they heard. This section is divided into eight segments and the time give to each part is as follows:
- Summarize Spoken Text: The first segment takes 60 to 90 seconds to retain about 50 to 70 words, 10 minutes to write;
- Multiple Choice, Multiple Answer: It takes 40 to 90 seconds for prompt;
- Fill in the Blanks: About 30 to 60 seconds;
- Highlight Correct Summary: This segment takes 30 to 90 seconds;
- Multiple Choice, Single Answer: 30 to 60 seconds;
- Select Missing Word: 20 to 70 seconds;
- Highlight Incorrect Words: It takes 15 to 50 seconds;
- Write From Dictation: About 3 to 5 seconds.
The standardized English language tests follow almost the same pattern to verify the applicant’s English language skills. So preparing for any one of these, you automatically are ready for taking up any of the remaining two.
How do They Score PTE Test?
The method of scoring the PTE test is against the Global Scale of English. It’s a scale that gives you an accurate overview of your English language skills. The Global Scale of English aligns with different exams around the world.
The PTE Academic Score Report includes your total score, communicative skills scores, and enabling skills scores. The total score reflects your English language ability. This score is based on your overall performance on all items in the exam. The range for the overall score is 10 to 90 points.
Scores for communicative skills are based on all test items that assess these language skills, either as just a single skill or together with other skills. The range for each skill score is 10 to 90 points.
Scores for enabling skills like oral fluency, pronunciation, spelling, vocabulary, grammar, and written discourse are based on test items assessing one or even more skills. The range for each skill score is 10 to 90 scores.
The display of the scores in a chart allows you to see your strengths and weaknesses and how they relate to your overall language and communication performance.
What are the Resources for the PTE Test?
These resources are among the most reputable PTE test resources, and candidates can use these or any other available resources according to their tastes:
- The Official Guide to PTE Academic,
- PTE Practice Tests Plus,
- PTE Academic Testbuilder,
- PTE Advantage for Academic Module.
As we said, these are just some PTE test resources. You can search on the Internet to get more resources published by reputable publishing companies.
PTE test made it easy for many candidates worldwide to achieve their dreams of migration or studying abroad. The format of the exam, though challenging, is very achievable if one does a lot of practice.
This exam allows 3 hours for candidates to finish the test. The PTE test score is generally declared within five business days and is accepted by several universities, colleges, and governments worldwide.
PTE test focusses on the three significant sections of language proficiency, including the reading section, listening area, and speaking and writing section, which we explained in detail.