PTE-A Exam: 10 Common Mistakes to Avoid in the PTE Exam for a Good Score

Aug 04,2022

10 Common Mistakes to Avoid in the PTE-A Exam for a Good Score

The PTE Academic exam tests a candidate’s language ability for admission in recognized universities and professional designations. The test is divided into three parts: Speaking, writing, listening & reading. The total duration of the PTE Academic Exam is 3 hours.

Many PTE aspirants get upset after scoring low points in the PTE exam, even after spending months on PTE Exam Preparation. It has been found that many PTE Academic candidates repeat the same mistakes in the test and fail to secure good marks in the test. This article will discuss these mistakes and how to avoid them for an excellent PTE exam score.

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1. Using Informal Language

Casual and everyday language in the PTE Academic Exam may result in a poor score. It is suggested to use formal and academic language for all the sections of the PTE test.

2. Start Preparing Without a Plan

Some candidates do not feel the need to Plan a Proper Schedule for PTE Exam Preparation and waste a lot of time preparing only one section of the test. One should dedicate sufficient time to each test task for a result-oriented study.

3. Speaking too Fast

Being too fast will not increase your score. Instead, you may lose your fluency in speaking and make frequent errors. You must speak at an average pace and maintain your speed throughout your speech.

4. Fail to Adhere to Word Limit

Word limit plays a crucial role in the PTE Writing Section. Do not write beyond the word limit in the summarised written text and stick to 200-300 words in the essay part of the PTE writing. Writing more or less than the given limit may reduce your score.

5. Making Frequent and Long Pauses

If you tend to make long pauses in between your speech, it may decrease your confidence level. Moreover, the PTE recording software stops recording audio if you take a break longer than 3 seconds. Hence, you must avoid this common error in your speaking test.

6. Incorrect Use of Tense Forms

Sometimes, candidates use the wrong tense to describe the situation. For example, using a simple present tense instead of a past tense will change the sentence’s meaning. Hence, the best strategy is to re-read your answer and make corrections immediately.

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7. Not Completing the Task in a Given Time

Remember that time is crucial in the PTE Academic Exam. You must check the remaining time to complete other tasks. Do not spend more time in one section; otherwise, you will have less time to finish other tasks.

8. Frequent Use of Filler Sounds

When we deliver a speech, we often make filler sounds like “Ummm,” ” ahm,” ” aah,” etc. It can badly impact your fluency, resulting in a poor score. The best way to avoid fillers is to use templates for speaking. As you practice more of these words, you will be better at avoiding the fillers.

9. Not Understanding the Task

The multiple-choice and choosing multiple-answer question types to have negative markings. Hence, you must read the question twice before you select your answer. Many students often fail to understand the meaning of a question and get a low PTE Exam Score.

10.  Not Using Correct Spelling and Punctuation

Spelling and punctuation are as essential as grammar in writing. Spelling errors are often counted as small mistakes, but you have to be careful with your writing and pay close attention to spelling and punctuation.

The above errors are very common in the PTE Academic Exam. However, if you don’t pay attention to these little things, you will not score up to the mark in the PTE test. Hence, the best possible way to Score High in the PTE Test is to analyze your mistakes and work on them using mock practice tests.

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Helpful Tips to Avoid Errors in the PTE Exam


  1. Don’t be in a rush. Instead, use a normal pace and speak clearly so that one can understand the meaning of your context easily.
  2. Do not pause for more than 3 seconds; otherwise, the microphone will stop the recording.
  3. Your accent does not matter at all. So, avoid facking the accent, and improve oral fluency and pronunciation.
  4. If you make any mistake, continue without hesitation, or lose your focus in your speech.


  1. In Summarising Written Text Tasks, do not write more than one sentence and add a complete stop at the end.
  2. Do not repeat words in your essay. Instead, use paraphrases and synonyms.
  3. Keep track of time and check the word limit.
  4. Check spelling, grammar, punctuation, cohesion, and task response as they play essential writing roles.
  5. Do not write out of context; stick to a given task.
  6. Structure your essay correctly. An essay should have an opening introduction, body paragraphs, and a conclusion.


  1. If you find an unfamiliar word and don’t know the meaning, then try to understand the sentence’s meaning.
  2. To fill in the blanks task, eliminate the options with incorrect grammar.
  3. Read the questions first and then read the passage to find an answer.
  4. Answer multiple-choice answers carefully, as these questions have negative markings.


  1. Pay attention to the audio, and make notes for essential words.
  2. Keep in mind that the audio will be played only once.
  3. Eliminate incomplete and incorrect words.
  4. Keep an eye on the clock for the remaining time.
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Although these errors seem minor, they can badly impact your ideal PTE exam score. Hence, we recommend you to analyse your weak areas and work on them to eliminate mistakes before you appear for the PTE Academic test. Give enough time for PTE exam preparation and see how these small things will make a big difference in Improving Your PTE Academic Score.


Written By

Himani Dave

Himani Dave is an IELTS and PTE tutor with over three years of experience. She is a Cambridge and Pearson IT-certified tutor and has helped hundreds of students ace the exams and achieve their dream scores. With her friendly and approachable teaching style and a knack for making even the most difficult concepts easy to grasp, she is a rockstar among peers and students.


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