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TIPS FOR APTIS SPEAKING TEST

The Aptis speaking test is divided into four parts, each containing 3 questions. The total length of the speaking
test is 12 minutes. Remember that all your answers will be recorded so be careful.
Now let’s look at each exam part in detail.
PART I
Three personal questions about you. You will have 30 seconds for each response. In this section you need to
be concise and precise. That is you must not deviate from the main focus of the question. Answer what you are
asked to; otherwise, you will lose marks.
You may be asked about:
- Your favourite music/band/singer/etc.
- Your favourite movie/actor/star/etc.
- Your favourite place/city/country/etc.
- Your family/relatives/friends/etc.
- The room you sleep in/the weather today
- Your school/university/work/etc.
1. Be careful. Remember that you only have 30 seconds per answer, which means that you should say 3 or 4
clearly spoken sentences on each topic you are asked about. This section matches A1 and A2 levels of the
Common European Framework (CEF).
2. Pay attention to the question. Some key words in the question may help you with your answer.
3. Make a good choice of grammar and vocabulary appropriate for the task and the level. You are not expected
to use very advanced grammar or vocabulary in this task, but at least make sure the language you use make
yourself understood by the examiners.
4. Don’t worry about your preferences in the answers. You can tell lies if you want to, but it’s better not to. It
can be difficult to invent lies on the spot.
5. Speak clearly. Speak at a normal pace (not too slowly and not too quickly).
6. Just relax. You should gain confidence in this task. It will make things easier for the upcoming tasks.
PART II
You will have to answer 3 questions. This time the time for each response is 45 seconds.
Here are some tips you can make use of.
Question 1: In the first question you will be asked to describe a picture which can be based on something you
have already talked about in any English lesson, common picture topics may include:
- Giving and receiving gifts.
- The media.
- Food and cooking.
- Transport.
- Family games and celebrations.
In order to describe a picture you ought to:
- start from the general and then go to more specific details.
- speculate or make guesses. Don’t assume that you are sure about the situation you are describing.
- use modal verbs in your answer. Remember that you are making deductions (should, must, may, might,
can, could)
- also use the present continuous in you description. Keep in mind that the situation you are describing
can be temporary, or that you are talking about something happening ‘now’; it can also help you
describe clothes people are wearing.
- use the present simple to describe people’s appearance or permanent situations.
- use a good deal of prepositions of place (on the top, on the bottom, on the right/left, in the background /
foreground, next to, behind, in the middle, etc)
- use there is or there are to say all that you can see.
Question 2: In the second question you will have to answer a question on a topic related to the picture you
previously described.
Question 3: This question will require you to compare and contrast two ideas related to the subject of the
picture.
For comparing you need to:
- use basic comparatives and superlatives (bigger, more dangerous, better, etc).
- use other phrases for comparing such as: as + adj/adv +as.
For contrasting you can use phrases like:
- on one hand…on the other hand.
- compared to or in comparison to
- whereas / while
- although/though
- but
- unlike

PART III
Part 3 is all about comparing and contrasting. This part will also have 3 questions. You will be shown 2 pictures
and then you will have to answer 3 questions related to the pictures. In this part, the time you have for each
answer is 45 seconds. In the first question, you have to describe both pictures
Here are some helpful tips:
- You need to be able to describe both pictures in 45 seconds. Don’t spend too long describing only one
of the pictures as you will probably get half of the points.
- Use the phrases and expressions for describing, comparing, and contrasting already mentioned in parts
I and II.
- Find advantages and disadvantages of the things you have to compare and contrast.
Complete the following description model:
‘______________________________ people at work. ___________________ computers
___________________. However, _______________________. In _________________ the woman
looks quite relaxed. I think she’s probably a receptionist or a secretary, whereas
_____________________, the man looks very excited. He probably works in banking or in the stock
market. He might be celebrating a deal or a successful decision. __________________, the picture of
the secretary looks like a nice and peaceful office, ________________________ looks like a crowded,
stressful place to work.’

PART IV
In the fourth part of the Aptis speaking test you will have to speak for 2 minutes. Remember that this task is
aimed at level B2 of the CEF. You will be shown a picture on the screen and then you will be required to
answer 3 questions, although the picture is not essential to answer the questions. You will have 1 minute to
prepare your answer.
Be careful: You won’t have 2 minutes for each question. You have 2 minutes to answer all 3 questions. Please,
be careful with the directions.
Remember:
- Answer all three questions. Answering only 1 or 2 of them will make you lower your score.
- Stay on the topic. Any sentences not related to the topic will make you lose marks.
- Use the 1-minute preparation time to write down ideas (not full sentences). Write words which will act
as a prompt.
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