This section is all about speech. If you have a heavy accent then concentrating on making your speech more understandable will help you greatly. Don’t feel like you must talk quickly, in fact the amount of time allocated to you to answer is more than enough to get your point across. Speaking slower and defining your words will get you a higher score than rushing and not speaking in a confident manner.
What you will be learning in this section is how to pronounce and articulate information in a clear and professional way. How clearly you speak is something that is highly important in your real PTE Academic exam as it will showcase your ability to communicate. Oral fluency, or how easily you can express your thoughts and ideas, is another key skill looked for in the Describe Image questions.
Tips on Describing Image You See on Your Screen
In the Describe Image question type in PTE Academic, you will see an image on your computer screen. Your task is to describe the main information contained in this image as accurately as possible. You will have about 20 seconds to prepare the response and then another 30~40 seconds to record your response. Your score will depend upon how accurately you capture the main points in your response.
You must have finished saying everything that you wanted to by the end of the 40 seconds.
The aim is to understand the difference between methods of data collection or to explain a particular process. Your goal is to paint an accurate verbal picture of what the data is showing.
Top tip, in each image, establish:
What type of data collection you are looking at.
What is being compared?
What do the results say?
Most Describe Image questions will require you to compare data or describe a process so use the above points to help you every time you practice to get yourself used to how to structure an answer such as this.
These questions look a lot like real exam questions, no matter what you choose to study. Verbal communication skills are not only important for work and education but in your day to day life, so all-around great skills for you to get practicing.
The bar graph illustrates how the leverage ratios for some of the major investment banks have changed from the year 2003 to 2021. In all these years Bear Stearns had the highest leverage ratio which was more than 25 in 2003 and reached almost 35 in 2021. Goldman Sachs, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley also showed an increase. Merrill Lynch more consistent except for a huge increase in 2021. Overall, we can say Bear Stearns and Morgan Stanley have the highest ratios.
The diagram illustrates the manufacturing process starting from materials to disposal. At the first step, materials are extracted and moved to a production facility. Once the products are manufactured they are transported to places for use and reuse. Probably the use and reuse cycle continues for some time after which the products are either disposed or recycled. As a result of recycling they can again be used as raw materials for production.
Average monthly temperatures for three African cities
The graph compares the average monthly temperatures in three cities in Africa. In January, Cairo has the lowest temperature at 55, Cape Town is at 70 degrees and Mombassa is at 80 degrees. Cairo’s temperature increases steadily till July, while Cape Town’s keeps falling and going lower than Cairo’s in March. Mombassa shows only slight temperature during the year staying around 80 degrees throughout.
Median and Average sales prices of new homes sold in the US
The graph compares the median and average prices of homes sold in the U.S from 1963 to 2021. From 1963 to 1973, median and average prices remained the same around $25,000 dollars. After that the average became higher than the median price, both of which kept steadily increasing till 2021 when the average crossed 300,000 dollars and median touched 250,000. After that there was a fall, signaling an economic downturn.
The diagram illustrates the variation in the temperatures of ocean currents. The sea currents are cold at deeper levels. Warming of oceans by sun, cause the temperature of currents near the surface to have a higher temperature. This heat is transferred from the sea to air as water flows and leads to lower temperatures in deeper currents.
diagram, rehab centre, healthcare, centre, process
This diagram illustrates how treatment and caring is provided at the rehab centre. When a patient sees a doctor, the doctor can refer the patient to a rehab centre. At the rehab centre the patient is given supervised rehabilitation exercises under the HEART program. The program also extends to caring for the patient at home. Patient visits the rehab centre regularly and follows up with the doctor who manages the HEART program for the patient. The program aims a long term management and consists of bands and feedback.
The graph highlights the consumption of fruits and vegetables in the US in pounds per person per year terms. In 1970 over 225 pounds of fruits were consumed, while over 325 pounds of vegetables were consumed by one person in a year. This increased more or less steadily till 2000 after which both of them have decreased slightly. Overall, much more vegetables are consumed in US compared to fruits.
image, world population, developing countries, industrialized/developed countries
The image illustrates how the world population has grown in developing and industrialized countries from 1750 onwards, projected till 2050. In 1750, around 1 billion people lived in developing countries, while one tenth of that lived in industrialized countries. This figure remained more or less constant till 1950 after which the number of people in developing countries had a sharp increase projected to touch 10 billion by 2050. Industrialized countries have had a much more modest increase and will cross just over a billion in 2050.
The diagram illustrates the process of paper manufacturing and recycling. Paper production starts with radiata pine thinnings which are fed into a de-braking drum which then goes into a chipper followed by a thermomechanical refiner. The output of the refiner goes into a paper making machine which finally produces the newsprint to be used in newspapers. Newspapers are collected from the kerb and after collection are de-inked, cleaned and through a mixing process again produce pulp which is used for paper making again.
The bar graph compares the internet population in various countries of the world. China has the largest internet population of over 180 million, followed by US at around 160 million. Japan has the next highest but is less than one third of that of the US. Countries such as Germany, UK, France, India, Russia have similar numbers less than 50 million, while other countries such as Italy, Spain, Netherlands have less than 10 million. It can be concluded that internet population varies vastly from country to country.
The bar graph compares the average rainfall in inches in four cities. New York has the highest rainfall at 47.25 inches, while Phoenix has the lowest at 7.66 inches. Dallas is at number with 33.70 inches and Honolulu is at number three with 22.02 inches, almost half of that of New York. It can be concluded that the rainfall varies greatly from city to city.
The bar graph illustrates the population make up of UK in terms of age groups in three years 1911, 2001 and 2021. In 1911, UK was a very young country with less than 10 percent of population over 65. More than 60 percent was between 15 and 64 years of age, while 30 percent was less than 14 years old. In 2001 the over 65 population had increased to almost 20 percent at the cost of under 14 population. The same is observed for the year 2021.
The table shows the sleep pattern for babies from 1 month to 3 years of age. As the child gets older he sleeps lesser. A 1 month old baby sleep 8 and half hours at night and 7 hours during the daytime for a total of 15 and half hours of sleep. During the daytime this includes 3 naps. From 3 months to 3 years the nighttime hours increase from 10 to 11 and then down to 10 and a half, while daytime sleeps decreases to just one and a half hour.
The table illustrates the percentage of life that a generation spent economically inactive starting from 1901 to the latest generation 2004-2025 or Generation Z. The 1901 generation spent 44.2 years working with a life expectancy of only 53.6, meaning they were inactive for only 17.6 percent of their life. The inactivity has increased with subsequent generations which Generation Y and Generation Z expected to spend almost 40 percent of their lives economically inactive.
The table lists the highest mountain peaks in the world. Everest is the highest peak and is located in the Himalayas on Nepal/Tibet border. Its height is 8,850 metres. It sic loosely followed by K2 and Kanchenjunga. Lhotse 1 and Kalau 1 are next two, both in Himalayas and at Nepal/Tibet border. It can be concluded that Himalayas and Nepal have the highest peaks in the world.
The pie chart illustrates the various weather related death causes in Texas for the period 1988 to 2005. Flooding seems to be biggest reason followed closely by extreme heat. Lightning and tornadoes were the next highest accounting for almost a similar share. Winter storms, high winds and tropical systems made the remaining three causes. It can be concluded that there are many types of weather hazards in Texas.
The pie chart illustrates the various browsers used by people on Wikimedia in the month of October 2021. I.E. was the clear winner at 34.2 percent, followed by Firefox at 23.6 percent. Chrome was only slightly behind with a 20.6 percent share and Safari the next at 11.2 percent. Opera, Android and a few other browsers claimed the remaining share. It can be concluded that a large variety of browsers were used on Wikimedia.
graph, comparison, meat consumption, per capita, countries
The graph compares the annual meat consumption in various countries from 1961 to 2021. It is obvious that the US is the biggest meat consumer in the world, with the consumption ranging from 80 kg per annum per capita in 1961 to 120 kg per annum per capita in 2021. Brazil is the next biggest consumer followed by China, both of which have shown steady increase. Liberia’s consumption has remained constant, while India is the smallest consumer of meat.
The diagram illustrates the rubbish patches in Pacific Ocean called the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. There is a western rubbish patch near US and Canada and an Eastern rubbish patch near Japan. Western rubbish patch is almost twice the size of the eastern rubbish patch. It seems due to the Gyre currents rubbish gets trapped in these two patches. It can be concluded that these rubbish patches need urgent cleanup.
The image is a pyramid showing the various human needs as per the Maslow’s hierarchy. The most basic needs are physiological such as the need for food, water, warmth and rest. After this are the needs for security and safety. The need for belongingness and love come after these. On top of these needs are the needs for esteem and self actualization. It can be concluded that the need to achieve one’s potential is the most important according to this.
As you can see now that you have had a go at this section it’s not about how complicated you can make the description sound, but about being clear, precise and accurate you come across to the listener.
Go back and listen to your recording and ask yourself if you were clear, if you articulated your ideas effectively, and if you pronounced the keywords well. Below the question, there is a sample answer. It’s always a good idea to go through and listen to the sample answers to get an idea of what the ‘perfect’ answer sounds like. Listen to your answer and then listen to the sample answer and make notes on what was lacking or unnecessary in your answer to help you make the best self-assessment.
All the information is there in front of you, you just need to make sense of it. Practice makes perfect and that’s what you are here to do. So don’t worry if you didn’t smash it the first time, you’ll soon get the hang of it.