So, you have taken an online PTE Mock Test or tried a practice question from the Speaking section while taking the PTE course. You have diligently recorded your response and now want to understand the quality of your response beyond just good or bad. Of course, if you are a Sure Way English student, your mock tests will automatically record your responses and send them for evaluation by expert tutors!
But if you have to do it yourself, how would you go about analysing your spoken responses?
Each speaking question in the Sure Way English course comes with an authentic student response that demonstrates the key characteristics of a good response for that question. Hopefully the materials you are using also contain good sample responses.
The first thing that you should do is obviously listen to the student response carefully. Note down the following things from the response:
Key points covered by the response – Content is important! If it’s a Describe Image or Re-tell Lecture note down what are the points mentioned in the student response. Are the same points or similar points included in your response? If you feel that you missed out on some of the key points please spend time understanding why that happened? Did you feel the speaker was too fast or was the image too complex or just because you couldn’t understand some words or the meaning? Knowing why we fail, helps us to improve.
Notice the fluency – Pay attention to what makes the response sound fluent. Make a note of where did the student in sample response paused, which words did she put emphasis on and when did she raise and lower her voice in the response. Compare this to your response in the mock test. If your response fell short on some points, please record again and try to do it better this time.
Notice the pronunciation – Did the speaker in the student response pronounce the words just as you did in your response? If not, please make a note of those words and spend time later on learning how to pronounce them properly.
Compare the pace – Was the speaker faster or slower compared to you? Some differences are expected and are alright as long as you sound natural. But if you find yourself speaking at a rate much slower or much faster than the speaker in the sample response, then you need to stop and think about it. Your speech must sound natural and should be at a normal pace.
Choice of language – What are the kind of words used in the sample response? Was one word or a few words repeated too often or did the sample response have a wide variety of words in it? How does it compare to the words that you have used? It is important that the spoken responses demonstrate a choice of language appropriate to the question in context.
So always make sure that when you listen to a sample spoken response you look out for all these things and then diligently compare your response with it on the same parameters.