5 Tips for PTE Answer Short Questions

pte answer short questions speaking

pte answer short questions speaking

The PTE test contains 10–12 short answer questions, which you must answer in 1 or 2 words only.

You may see an image or a video as part of a question. For example, there might be a diagram and you will be asked something like:

On which floor is the post office located?.

This task assesses your listening and speaking skills and you have 10 seconds to answer each question.

You can’t replay a question and you can only record your answer once.

However, compared to other parts of the test, this part is relatively easy as you only need to give 1 or 2 word answers, rather than long answers or summaries.

So, you should be able to score well in this section.

The questions in this section of the PTE come from a range of general knowledge topics. You are not required to have specialized knowledge of any of the topics in order to answer the questions.

1. Listen carefully

It is vital to listen very carefully to each question to ensure you understand it because you only have 10 seconds to answer it.

Plenty of practice before your testis the only way to improve your listening skill if you struggle in this area. There are many online materials available to help you!

2. Don’t overthink a question

Each question typically requires a simple, straightforward answer. Don’t try to show how smart you are by giving a less common answer.

For instance, to the question:

What piece of furniture would you typically find in a bedroom?

Some might say a chest of drawers or a bedside table, but the most obvious and simplest answer is a bed.

3. Focus and concentration needed

Even though there are only 10–12 questions and they only require 1 or 2 word answers, there is no break in between questions, so you must stay focused and concentrate fully until the last question has been answered.

4. Vocabulary

Understanding a question and being able to answer it, of course, depends on your understanding of the words in the question.

Obviously, then, you need a large enough vocabulary to ensure you know all (or most of) the words in the questions.

You can find online PTE academic word lists to see how many words you actually know.

5. First answer, right answer

Often, the first answer that pops into your mind is the right answer.

If you over-think a question or go back and forth in your mind you will likely make a mistake and run out of time. Try to avoid this!

To practice with the REAL questions from the exam, visit:


Last updated on 18/03/2021

I am a firm believer that the best teachers educate with their hearts not just their minds.

Moni | PTE MAGIC International Founder

Explore PTE
Tips & Tricks

Moni PTE Magic -

PTE Speaking & Writing: Suitable Pitch and Word Count?

Pitch in PTE Speaking and word count in PTE Writing are two often overlooked aspects...

Read more →
Moni PTE Magic -

Why Computers Fail to Record Your Voice in the PTE Test?

The absence of voice recording during the PTE speaking test is a common issue for...

Read more →
Moni PTE Magic -

PTE Repeat Sentence: Can You Repeat Your Answers?

When answering the PTE Repeat Sentence questions, it’s understandable that we’re usually dissatisfied with our...

Read more →