PTE, Articles, PTE Speaking

What Do You Need to Know About PTE Describe Image?

This specific part of the exam wants to know how well you can look at an image and understand what it says. You need to know how to very quickly scan through whatever image is presented to you in order to decide what you’re going to say. Remember, you will be speaking in this question type of the exam so you need to verbalize the points that you find.

What Could it Be?

There are several different types of images that you could see. Most of these are going to be some type of chart, graph, diagram or map, however you may see a standard image or photograph.

  • Bar/line graph
  • Table
  • Map
  • Pie chart/flow chart
  • Venn diagram
  • Photo

There will be six different images on your exam and you may see any combination of these images there. You want to be comfortable looking at each of these types of images and finding the relevant information so you can feel confident walking into this section of the exam.

What to Mention

When you look at each image, you need to mention three important pieces to make sure the assessment software scoring your test understands that you are familiar with the material. These three things are:

  • Title
  • Key features/points
  • Conclusion

If you mention all of the above, you should automatically get a good score. Keep in mind that the quality of the content and the way that you speak will also count for some of the points you will receive. That means you need to keep in mind your sentence structure and intonation as well.

What to Keep in Mind

Keep in mind these important pieces to help you better prepare long before you book the PTE exam.

  • Avoid filler words like ‘um,’ ‘uh,’ ‘like,’ or ‘well.’ These cause your fluency to slide which results in a lower score. You want to sound confident and that means only using words that enhance the sentence. If you use these filler words you sound like you don’t know what to say.
  • Speak in complete sentences. Remember to use complete sentences that make grammatical sense when you are speaking. You also need to use proper punctuation and intonation in your speech. Remember, you are trying to sound like a native speaker.
  • Include all 3 of the most important sections. If you have all 3 of the components above, you’ll automatically do better than someone who misses a key point or doesn’t draw a conclusion about the image.
  • Don’t fill the entire block of time. You are not scored based on how much time you spend talking. You only need to speak long enough to say what needs to be said. Aim to speak for only 36 seconds or less. That way, if you go slightly over you will still be within the required time limit.
  • Focus on fluency and pronunciation, so don’t try to add in words that you aren’t familiar with. Use the words on the image and other words that you know how to pronounce and use properly. This is not a time to try and impress anyone with your vocabulary. The more comfortable you are with your words the more confident you will sound.
  • Break down your time based on each section you need. You should only need 10 seconds or less to introduce the image and give the title. That leaves you with approximately 20 seconds for the important information or key features. Then you’ll have 10 seconds to wrap up with a conclusion. Try to keep each of these sections slightly under their allotted time, so you don’t find yourself racing against the clock to finish speaking.

Wrap Up

You should make sure that you practice the PTE describe image section of your exam well before test day. Join our free PTE training platform to get an idea of what your test is looking for. You’ll also learn more about organizing your thoughts and saying everything you need to within the required time frame.

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