10 Common PTE Mistakes and How to Avoid Them

The PTE exam is complex, and it is easy to make mistakes while studying. We all make mistakes, but try not to make the same one twice. Let us look at some of the most common mistakes made by PTE test takers. This will assist you in understanding how to prepare and perform effectively.

Many PTE Academic candidates are puzzled as to why they scored so low on the exam despite their best efforts. It has been observed that PTE Academic exam candidates repeatedly make the same mistakes. You can use your awareness to actively avoid making some of the most common PTE mistakes if you understand some of the most common PTE mistakes. There could be numerous reasons for this, including:

  1. Poor preparation. 
  2. Poor time management.
  3. Ignoring proper instructions.
  4. Wasting time trying to understand instructions.
  5. Making grammatical errors and spelling errors in written tasks.

Common mistakes made by PTE test-takers

Mistake 1: Studying Without a Plan

Some test takers are puzzled by the speed for fluency, and they go all in, trying to speak too quickly. This has a negative impact on scores. Fluency and clarity suffer when speaking too quickly. As a result, you should speak in a manner that is neither too fast nor too slow. Maintain an average speaking speed throughout the entire speaking section.

Mistake 2: Fast is not always fluent

Some test takers are confused by the speed requirement for fluency, and they go all in, trying to speak too quickly. This has a negative effect on fluency scores. Fluency and clarity suffer when you speak too quickly. So speak in a manner that is neither too fast nor too slow. Maintain a normal pace throughout the speaking section.

Mistake 3: Use of filler sounds

Candidates frequently make filler sounds like ‘aah,’ ‘Uhm,’ and so on while thinking about what to say. This has an impact on your score in the speaking section. You can avoid this by creating Speaking templates. The more you practice speaking without these filler words or sounds, the better you will become at it.

Mistake 4: Overuse of the preposition “About”

The majority of PTE test takers make this error. They use the word ‘about’ far too frequently after verbs. They lose marks in the exam because of this silly grammar error. Candidates frequently use the incorrect form of tense when describing things. For instance, using incorrect sentence tenses. This results in a point deduction.

Mistake 5: Don’t make false starts, repetitions, and hesitations

When you make false starts, it lowers your Speaking score. Additionally, repeating words and hesitating to say them should be avoided. This is a common error that almost every test taker makes. To avoid this, you must practice extensively before the actual test day.

Mistake 6: Do not pause for too long

You should be aware that if you remain silent for three seconds in the PTE Speaking Module, the microphone will automatically turn off. Even if you speak after that point, it will not be recorded. Remember this during the speaking portion of the PTE exam.

Mistake 7: Write only a single sentence in PTE Summarize Written Text task

In the PTE Summarize Written Text task, many candidates lose marks by writing multiple sentences. You should only write one sentence that begins with a capital letter and ends with a full stop. You can, however, use connecting words if necessary. Candidates can answer Summarize Spoken Text questions with multiple sentences to complete their summary.

Mistake 8: Writing without knowing the word limit

In the Writing section, tasks such as Essay writing and Summarize Written Text, do not exceed the word limit. When writing an essay, limit yourself to 200-300 words. Writing more or fewer words than the word limit will result in a lower PTE score.

Mistake 9: Avoid using informal language

The PTE Academic Test will not accept casual, informal language. Instead, because the test is designed for students who want to study in academic settings abroad, it expects you to use formal, academic language. Use advanced vocabulary and structure your answers.

Mistake 10: Don’t speak in breaks

Avoid speaking in stopping and starting’ manner. The PTE expects you to finish each sentence as you speak. So, before you respond, organize your thoughts and ideas.

Tips for each section of PTE to avoid making mistakes

PTE Speaking section

  • If you make a mistake, don’t stop reading and keep going. Going back to correct it will lower your grade.
  • Your accent is unimportant, but your oral fluency, intonations, and pronunciation are crucial.
  • Don’t be hurried. Maintain a natural pace and tone to ensure that your content is easily understood.
  • Do not speak until the microphone is turned on. 
  • All of the points, relationships, implications, and conclusions in the Describe the image and Retell lecture should not be overlooked. They should be well described.
  • Part answers and misspelled words should be avoided in Short Answer Questions.
  • Don’t pause for more than 3 seconds and if you do so, the microphone will be closed automatically.

PTE Writing section

  • Check spelling, punctuation, and grammar, as well as task response, coherence and cohesion, linguistic range, written discourse, and vocabulary.
  • When summarising written text tasks, write no more than one sentence and make sure it ends with a full stop.
  • No outside information.
  • Do not say the words again. Synonyms and paraphrases are acceptable.
  • Keep in mind the word limit and time constraints.

PTE Reading section

  • Do not be concerned about any unknown words. Try to deduce the meaning of the word from the sentence’s content.
  • Answer the multiple-choice questions carefully, as there is a negative marking. If you choose the incorrect option, you will be penalized.
  • Remove the option with ungrammatical or illogical words from the Fill in the blanks tasks.
  • In both Multiple Choice questions, do not read the passage first. Rather, read the question first and then use the Scan and Skim strategies.

PTE Listening section

  • The recording will only be played once. So pay attention while listening.
  • Stick to the word limit.
  • Keep an eye on the “Time remaining” indicator.
  • Check the content, structure, grammar, vocabulary, and spelling.
  • Do not try to read while listening. Highlight Correct Summary.
  • Make certain that any incomplete or incorrect information is removed.
  • While listening, focus on the main points.
  • Taking notes is essential, but don’t write them down word for word.

So, before you enter the testing center, make sure that you have completely understood the PTE format. Create a good strategy for each type of question that you can use on all practice tests and the PTE. Avoid making these mistakes if you want to get a perfect score on the PTE. Use PTE preparation apps or online sample questions to help you practice a lot. Feeling prepared for anything will boost your confidence on test day, allowing you to perform better.

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