The Pearson Test of English is divided into three parts. The first part is made up of ‘writing and speaking, the second is reading and the third is listening. We are going to focus on the speaking skills section. We will find out the best ways to prepare and what to look out for when it comes to your speaking skills when you take the PTE.
Related Article: How To Improve Your PTE Listening Skills
5 Ways to Prepare For the Speaking Section of the PTE
1. Master the Tongue Twisters
Everything these days is gamified, why should your English practice be any different? Make a game of learning English tongue twisters. You can time yourself, or you can just practice until you are comfortable and show your new trick off to your friends.
Aside from being impressive, this allows you to get a feel for the language and really get your mouth around it.
2. Practice Exams
Practice exams are fantastic and prepare you for the real deal. Practice, or mock, exams can be found online and are replicas of the PTE. Doing a practice exam will let you test yourself without consequence, while you get a feel for the style of questions that will come upon the PTE.
3. Learn English Songs
You may already know some English songs by heart, but do you really know them? Try and get to figure out and understand some English songs. Songs work because they allow you to become comfortable with phrases, intention, vocabulary, and grammar.
Any genre will do! All you want to do is focus on getting comfortable with the language and the story element of the song.
4. Know The Difference Between Colloquial and Formal Language
Colloquial language means the language that is spoken on the street, between friends. It can be slang, but it could also be something culturally specific. You could be forgiven for thinking that this would be a good thing to know on your test, that it might make you look like you are ready to fit right in.
The test is concerned with your grasp of the English language, not specifically the specific area you are hoping to be headed to. Therefore, make sure that the English that you become familiar with is formal English and do not cut any corners.
You will have all the time in the world for slang once you reach your destination!
5. Don’t Let Yourself Get Flustered
When it comes to the exam itself, do not let yourself get overwhelmed. This can be tricky advice that may seem to go in a circle. Once you are a little overwhelmed, things tend to snowball.
Practically speaking, this just means that if you make a mistake, cut your losses. Do not drive yourself crazy trying to go over your mistake. Simply move forward with your best foot first.
Don’t give up hope, you still have time to make up for it!
What They Look For
In the lead up to your Pearson Test of English, you will need to focus on your speaking skills in great detail. However, during the test itself, there are specific things you can do to make sure that your hard work pays off.
When your test is scored, the assessors look for specific things.
When it comes to pronunciation be sure to say your words clearly. Even if your answer is correct, that will not help you one bit if the assessor can not understand you. Be very careful not to swallow your words or mumble.
Oral fluency means the ease with which you can speak. This can be tricky because of course, this is not your native language. No one will have perfect fluency, but practice makes perfect so practice, practice, practice until you are confident and comfortable.
Grammar is a huge element when it comes to your spoken English. The only way to get comfortable with grammar is to practice with someone or read. Even though this is the spoken section, reading can help you to get a grasp of practical sentence structure. Try reading aloud with a friend.
Vocabulary heavily depends on the question. Generally in the PTE, you want to keep your vocabulary to-the-point. But going over your vocabulary is essential to be prepared.
Put up words around the house, create reminders on your phone. Make vocabulary a part of your life.
What Comes Next?
The PTE is famous for having one of the fastest score return times on the market. You will receive your score within 5 days. Some test takers have even reported receiving their score the very next day.
Can I Try Again?
You receive your results, and unfortunately, you didn’t achieve the score you were hoping for or even the score that you needed for your desired institution or country. Never fear! There are 6-8 PTEs held per month, and registering can be done as little as 24 hours in advance.
Take the time to go over your score break down. Identify what areas need strengthening. Once you have gone over them and are confident that you have improved, you can rebook another test. The test can be taken as many times as you need to achieve the results necessary.
Why It Matters
The speaking and writing section takes up one of the largest sections on the PTS. It is allocated the largest amount of time at 93 minutes. True, they are almost two sections in one but do not be fooled, both sections are equally important.
Out of all the sections of the PTE, the speaking section has the most obvious influence on your day to day life. When you are accepted to the institution or country to which you apply, speaking English will become a part of your day today.
Relocating can be a difficult process, but being armed with language, and a little confidence in your spoken English, can make your transition that little bit smoother.