1. For writing summary, use complex and compound sentences. Your response must be expressed in one sentence within 5 – 75 words. It must start with a capital letter and end with a full stop. You will lose score if you don’t follow this criterion, even if other aspects of your response is correct.
2. Do not write long and convoluted sentences. Using more commas will result in more grammatical and punctuation errors. An ideal response should be within 30 – 40 words that convey clear and logical ideas of the passage.
3. Avoid including examples or explanations from the passage in your summary. This will lengthen your response for no reason.
4. NEVER include your opinion or thoughts in your summary. Always go with the information given in the passage. For instance, if the passage says computer viruses are good, go with it. Don’t let your knowledge, that computer viruses are bad, override the given information.
5. Manage your time effectively for summary questions. Spend no more than 2 minutes to read and understand the main idea of the passage. Write your summary within 4 – 5 minutes. The remaining 3 – 4 minutes should be spent to check your work.
6. For essays, understand the importance of planning before writing. Comprehend the topic and spend around 2 minutes to generate ideas. This is important because you will lose score if your essay goes off-topic.
7. Most PTE essays are argumentative. So, generate ideas for both sides of the argument. However, taking a clear position towards any one side is very important. Don’t be neutral by supporting both sides.
8. Structure your essay properly. This will not only give you more scores towards the Written Discourse criterion but will also save you time. The following method is what I recommend:
• Paragraph 1: Introduction (take your stand here)
• Paragraph 2: Arguments FOR your stand
• Paragraph 3: Arguments AGAINST your stand
• Paragraph 4: Conclusion (restate paragraph 2)
9. Improve your vocabulary. You can do this by reading. Read whatever you can get your hands on. It can be newspaper articles, novels, biographies or anything. Even school students can write essays using simple words. There should be some differences between them and a PTE test taker.
10. Finally, be very careful with typos. Since PTE – A is a computer-based test, any typographic error will be taken as a spelling error by the computer. You can also practice typing beforehand so that your typing speed improves and you can complete the task on time with accuracy.