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Write from Dictation: Overview and Tips | Listening Section for PTE PDF Download

Understand the question type

When the instruction states "compose from dictation," it implies that the test-taker will listen to a brief spoken passage in English and is required to transcribe (typing on a computer, naturally) what they have heard. While it may seem straightforward, this task can prove challenging, even for individuals whose first language is English. The objective is to assess the extent to which you accurately perceived a sentence. In contrast to prior listening exercises that focused on grasping main concepts, crucial details, and specific words, this exercise provides an opportunity to demonstrate comprehensive comprehension of the spoken content.

Type what you hear

The most straightforward and efficient approach to handling this inquiry is evident: simply transcribe the heard words in the correct sequence. If there's uncertainty about what was heard, making an educated guess is acceptable. Each accurately transcribed word, presented in the correct order, earns a point. This task requires proficient typing skills as you must swiftly and accurately record the words. If you happen to be a slow typist or frequently make spelling errors, it is advisable to address these challenges comprehensively before attempting the examination.

Use your prior knowledge of English

Before attempting the PTE listening write-from-dictation questions, it's crucial to recognize that applying some fundamental knowledge of English grammar can significantly simplify the task.

Consider the given words spoken:

  • The second bridge [?] going to [?] built/build in two years.

With two missing words and one uncertain word, enhancing your chances of success involves employing basic grammar insights.

For the initial blank space, the filling must be an auxiliary verb since a modal verb wouldn't fit. In this context, "is" becomes the appropriate choice. Similar reasoning applies to the second blank, where "be" fits, indicating the use of the passive voice. Finally, considering the need for the past participle form, we can confidently deduce that "build" or "built" is the correct choice. Therefore, the accurate sentence is:

  • The second bridge is going to be built in two years.

Consider the scoring system

Frequently, candidates find themselves perplexed by English exams due to the lack of clarity regarding the scoring system. However, in this instance, the criteria are relatively straightforward. Attaining the maximum score is contingent upon correctly transcribing all the words, including accurate spelling. Conversely, making errors doesn't result in a complete score of zero. Instead, a partial score is assigned, determined by the correctness of the transcribed words.

Hence, I highly suggest dedicating time to spelling practice. Admittedly, practicing spelling can be challenging since the specific words may be unpredictable. Nevertheless, investing significant efforts in enhancing your vocabulary and spelling proficiency will undoubtedly enhance your performance in PTE listening write-from-dictation tasks.

Practice often and intelligently

The most effective way to prepare for this test segment is by engaging in PTE listening write-from-dictation practice with answers. However, alternative methods can also be beneficial. For instance, you may choose to practice traditional dictation. Online resources offer such exercises, or you can create your own by listening to audio from the internet and then verifying the accuracy of your transcriptions against provided transcripts.

The document Write from Dictation: Overview and Tips | Listening Section for PTE is a part of the PTE Course Listening Section for PTE.
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