PTE or Pearson Test of English

Pearson tests are recognised by universities, colleges, governments, and professional bodies across the globe, and Pearson is one among the leading providers of English language proficiency tests. They offer different proficiency tests based on where you want to go and for what purpose.

Purpose of PTE?

PTE Academic is a computer-based English assessment test that evaluates candidates’ abilities to read, speak, listen, and write in an academic environment. The duration of the test is about 2 hours, and it is taken at a test centre. PTE Academic is accepted by over 3500 universities and colleges globally.

Types of PTE tests

PTE Academic

PTE Academic

This test is to be taken by candidates who want to pursue their studies abroad or submit visa applications to Australia and New Zealand, or for professional registration.

PTE Core

PTE Core

This test can be taken by candidates who want to migrate or apply for citizenship in Canada.

Visa Test

UK Visa Test

If candidates want to work, join their family, or settle in the UK, they can take the PTE Home test or PTE Academic UKVI.

PTE Test format

Section Duration
Part 1 – Speaking & Writing 54-67 minutes
Part 2 – Reading 30 minutes
Part 3 – Listening 30 minutes
Part 1: Speaking & Writing

Personal Introduction: This section is solely for you to familiarise yourself with the test and does not contribute to your overall score. You will be given 25 seconds to read and prepare before you respond and then get 30 seconds to record your response.

Read Aloud: A text will appear on the screen, and you are expected to read and speak. The duration will depend on the length of the text and will vary. The text will contain about 60 words.

Repeat Sentence: You will listen to a recording of a sentence and then repeat the sentence. The length of the listening recording will be about 3 to 9 seconds, and you will be given 15 seconds to respond.

Describe an Image: An image will appear on the screen, and you will have to describe the image for about 40 seconds.

Re-tell a Lecture: You will listen to or watch a lecture for about 90 seconds, and then you will have to re-tell the lecture in your own words for about 40 seconds.

Answer Short Questions: You will listen to a question and then answer with a single word or few words. The listening prompt will be about 3 to 9 seconds, and you will get 10 seconds to respond.

Summarise a Written Text: You will read a text of up to 300 words and then write a one-sentence summary of the text. The time given will be about 10 minutes.

Essay Writing: You are expected to write an essay of about 200 to 300 words in 20 minutes. The essay prompt will be 2 to 3 sentences.

Part 2: Reading

There are 5 different question types in this section. This section also evaluates writing skills as PTE Academic is an integrated skills test.

The different question types in this section are:

Reading & Writing: Fill in the Blanks: You will see a text with blanks to be filled in. Words will be given in a drop-down menu, and you will have to choose the right word to fill in the given blanks. The total length of the prompt would be about 300 words.

Multiple Choice, Multiple Answer: You will read a text and then answer a set of multiple-choice questions based on the tone or content of the text. The multiple-choice questions will have more than one response. The total length of the prompt would be about 300 words.

Re-order Paragraphs: You will see several paragraphs arranged or listed in a random order. You will have to arrange the paragraphs in the right order. The length of the prompt would be about 150 words.

Fill in the Blanks: Text will appear on the screen with blanks. Words will be given in the boxes. The correct words need to be dragged and dropped into the right blank positions.

Multiple Choice, Single Answer: You will read a text with about 300 words and answer a multiple-choice question by selecting only one correct answer.

PTE Scoring Pattern

The score report displays scores in two ways:

  1. Overall score – ranging from 10 to 90 points. This is based on the overall performance on the test and is not an average of the communicative skills score.
  2. Communicative skills scores – ranging from 10 to 90 points. This score assesses the sections which test more than one skill at a time. For example, reading & speaking, listening & speaking, reading & writing

This is a general English test taken for immigration, citizenship, or work in Canada.

This test has 3 parts.

Part 1: Speaking & Writing

Personal Introduction: This section is only for you to familiarize yourself with the test and does not contribute to your overall score. You will be given 25 seconds to read and prepare before you respond, and then you will have 30 seconds to record your response.

Read Aloud: A text will appear on the screen, and you are expected to read and speak. The duration will depend on the length of the text and will vary. The text will contain about 60 words.

Repeat Sentence: You will listen to a recording of a sentence and then repeat the sentence. The length of the listening recording will be about 3 to 9 seconds, and you will be given 15 seconds to respond.

Describe an Image: An image will appear on the screen, and you will have to describe the image for about 40 seconds.

Respond to a Situation: You will listen to an audio and read a description of a situation. Then, you will have to answer a question related to the situation and provide an extended response. The total length of the text would be about 60 words, and the time to speak would be about 40 seconds.

Answer Short Questions: You will listen to a question and respond to the question with a single word or a few words. The duration of the audio would be about 3 to 9 seconds, and you will have to respond within 10 seconds.

Summarize Written Text: You will read a short text of about 200 words and write a summary of what you have read in about 25 to 50 words. The time given to complete your response is about 10 minutes.

Write an Email: You will read a text of about 100 words, and then you have to write an email in response in about 9 minutes.

Part 2: Reading

The duration of this section is about 30 minutes and contains 5 different question types. This section also assesses reading and writing skills through an integrated task of Fill in the Blanks.

The different question types in this section are:

Reading & Writing: Fill in the Blanks: You will see a text with blanks to be filled in. Words will be given in a drop-down menu, and you will have to choose the right word to fill in the given blanks. The total length of the prompt would be about 200 words.

Multiple Choice, Multiple Answer: You will read a text and then answer a set of multiple-choice questions based on the tone or content of the text. The multiple-choice questions will have more than one response. The total length of the prompt would be about 275 words.

Re-order Paragraphs: You will see several paragraphs arranged or listed in a random order. You will have to arrange the paragraphs in the right order. The length of the prompt would be about 110 words.

Fill in the Blanks: Text would appear on the screen with blanks. You will have words given in the boxes. The right words need to be dragged and dropped into the right blank position.

Multiple Choice, Single Answer: You will read a text with about 110 words and answer a multiple-choice question by selecting only one right answer.

Part 3: Listening

This section of the test is about 30 minutes long and has different question types. Audio and video clips will be played, and you can listen or watch them only once. It is important to make notes while listening to audio or watching video clips to arrive at the right answer.

The different question types in this section are:

Summarize Spoken Text: You will listen to a recording for about 45 to 75 seconds and then summarize what you heard. The total length of the summary should be about 20-30 words in length.

Multiple Choice, Multiple Answer: You will listen to a recording for about 50-90 seconds and then answer multiple-choice questions based on the content of the recording. Each question will have more than one response.

Fill in the Blanks: A transcript of a recording will appear on the screen with blanks to be filled in. You will then listen to the recording and type the missing word in the given blank. The length of the recording would be about 30 to 60 seconds.

Multiple Choice, Single Answer: You will listen to a recording for about 30-60 seconds and then answer multiple-choice questions based on the content of the recording. Each question will have only one response.

Select Missing Word: After listening to a recording, you will have to select the missing word from the list of options given. The length of the recording would be about 20-70 seconds.

Highlight Incorrect Words: The transcript of a recording appears on the screen for about 15-50 seconds. You will then listen to a recording and identify the words that were different from what was spoken in the recording and highlight them.

Write from Dictation: You will listen to a recording and then type the sentence in about 3 to 5 seconds.

Category 1: Applying for a spouse visa or parent of a dependent visa.

There are different exams to be taken depending on the category for which you are applying for a visa to the UK.

Under this category, you must take the PTE Home A1 test, which is a beginner-level English test. This test measures basic English speaking and listening skills for people who plan to work and live in the UK.

The different question types are:

Repeat Sentence: You will hear a short sentence and have to repeat the sentence exactly as you have heard it. There will be 22 such repeat sentence questions.

Describe Image: You will see an image and have to describe the image. There will be 5 questions to be answered.

Conversation: Listen and Answer: You will hear a short conversation and then listen to questions about the conversation. There will be 5 questions to which you have to provide responses.

Category 2: Applying for an extension of A1 visa.

Under this category, if you are already living in the UK and need an extension of the visa, you must take the PTE Home A2 test. This test measures your English speaking and listening skills for residing or staying in the UK.

The different question types are:

Repeat Sentence: You will hear a short sentence and have to repeat the sentence exactly as you have heard it. There will be 22 such repeat sentence questions.

Describe Image: You will see an image and have to describe the image. There will be 5 questions to be answered.

Retell Story: You will listen to a story and then have to repeat the story in your own words.

Category 3: UK settlement and citizenship

Under this category, if you are planning to settle indefinitely or remain in the UK or planning to apply for British citizenship, you have to take the PTE Home B1 test. This test measures your English speaking and listening skills for residing or staying in the UK.

The different question types are:

Repeat Sentence: You will hear a short sentence and have to repeat the sentence exactly as you have heard it. There will be 17 such repeat sentence questions.

Describe Image: You will see an image and have to describe the image. There will be 5 questions to be answered.

Retell Story: You will listen to a story and then have to repeat the story in your own words.

Story: Listen and Answer: You will listen to a story and be asked 3 questions. You will be asked 4 to 5 stories, listen, and answer questions.

Frequently Asked Questions

The minimum age to appear for PTE Core is 16 or above.

Yes, PTE Academic is the test applicable for students who plan to study in Canada.

No, PTE Core can only be taken at a test center.

Test accommodations will be made for eligible candidates. Evidence of a medical condition has to be submitted after registering for the test, at least 6 weeks prior to the scheduled test date.

No, the content for both tests are different, and the same material cannot be used for preparation.