Select Missing Word PTE Listening Pattern

In this article, we will discuss the pattern of Select Missing Word (PTE Listening Section) or maybe we should call it Select Missing Words because sometimes you have to select more than one word. So here is Select Missing Word PTE Listening Pattern.

Select Missing Word PTE Listening Pattern

What does it look like in the listening section of your text?

This is what you’re going to look at during this part of the exam. You will get a set of instructions at the top. Actually, these instructions are important for this particular task.

Then you will see an audio player. The most important thing is the timer.

Then you will see a set of answer options. The answer option either going to be a single word or a phrase. It will be one word or it’s going to be like an adjective-noun or preposition, phrase something like that.

What happens?

We will tell you when you have seen this screen.

1. You will get 7 seconds for preparation time. When it comes on the screen and you get seven seconds which is important.
2. Then we hear the audio. This audio is quite short from 20 to 70 seconds. What happens is the audio does the last word or the phrase will be missing and the word or phrase will be replaced by a beep sound.
3. What you have to do is select the missing word or words that are missing to complete the sentence accurately. Not necessarily grammatically, all the answer options are going to be grammatically possible. It’s all about meaning so it’s about completing what’s being said in terms of meaning.
4. After that, you just click next.

So that’s what happens. It’s pretty straightforward. It’s testing your ability to anticipate what will be said. Because this is how it works when I’m speaking English or I’m speaking any language. Students should be able to anticipate what I’m going to say. You won’t necessarily be able to tell what words I’m going to use to say it but if you’re following the meaning of what I’m saying and following the meaning then the next thing we say we should be able to follow that meaning. It’s not going to be completely arbitrary or random or unexpected.

In other words, if it’s going to be expected so you anticipate it and we do so this all the time. Or else we couldn’t have the conversation because there would be absurd because I would talk about something and then talk about something else that’s not what we do. We talk about something we added information to that thing and you sit down and say yes I get it. So you’re anticipating what’s going to be said. This is what it tests for.

Now if you don’t get it you can’t flip the correct one or it will be gift work because it just wants to be clear to you. So you will get two or three of these in the exam.

How you’re scored?

Correct = 1 point

Incorrect = 0 point

This is how you will be scored. If you get right you will get one point if you get wrong you get zero points. There’s no negative marking if you’re unsure just guess. Another thing, if you’re unsure don’t waste time and don’t sit there for 30 seconds looking at the possibilities. If you don’t get it or if you do get it you will get it immediately.

What is the right approach to this task?

For this particular task, we’ll have three parts. We’re gonna have “Before listening”, “While Listening” and then “After listening”. So here’s the approach

Before Listening

  • You’re going to have seven seconds of preparation time. So nothing will happen for seven seconds.
  • Utilize those seven seconds to read the first sentence of the instructions. The first sentence will show you the TOPIC of the talk.

Why is reading topic so important?

It is really important to prime your brain. To get your brain ready to let your brain know what the talk will be about. Because all of a sudden you know that you’re going to hear a lecture about the placebo effect. So you’re going to hear words like medication, treatment or something like that. Basically, you will get to know these all are medial based lectures. But some topics are specific. So if you want to anticipate what will be said you first want to know what it’s about.

While Listening

In this, you try to listen carefully so that you won’t miss any important word.

  • 95% you need to listen off course
  • Glance 5% at the answer options

When you are listening, you sort of just glancing at the answer options. Of course, you’re not choosing them because you will not know which one is correct until the end. But you just sort of glancing listening and then you should understand the content from beginning to end.

Pay attention to the timer so you can really focus on the final sentence. So you should keep a watch on ticking down the time from 20 seconds to 15 seconds. When it gets down to 5, 4, 3 you really should be paying a close attention.

After listening

  • You will know the answer or you won’t
  • The answer should be immediately clear
  • If you don’t get it immediately, you should make a guess and move on.


Sample Example

Question 1 

You will hear a someone talking about going to the dentist.


My wisdom teeth are really sore. Do you know I haven’t been to the dentist in over two years? Maybe I should __________

A) make an appointment

B) drive to the countryside

C) go surfing

D) visit the hospital

Click Here For Answer

A) make an appointment 


Sample Practice Question 2

You will hear a lecture about painkillers.


Our community needs a better understanding of the biology of pain and how it plays out in individuals to be able to combat the national epidemic of painkillers. Specifically, we need a shift in emphasis in drug development towards understanding how people differ in their response to pain medications to develop more precise, safer, and __________.

A) longer lasting opioids

B) faster-acting drugs

C) more affordable care

D) less addictive treatments

Click Here For Answer

D) less addictive treatments 


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