PTE Academic Speaking – Retell Lecture Practice Sample 1

Retell Lecture – You will hear a lecture. After listening to the lecture, retell what you have just heard from the lecture in your own words. You will have 40 seconds to give your response. This item type that integrates listening and speaking skills.

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PTE Academic Speaking – Retell Lecture

1. Listen to the following audio and retell lecture in your own words


Note: Transcript is given for your practice purpose only. In actual PTE Academic test, you will not receive it


In today’s lecture I’m going to talk about changes in air pollution since the middle of the last century and what has created these changes. So, um – by the 1950s, air pollution was very visible with frequent thick black fogs known as ‘smogs’ in many large cities around the world. The main source of this pollution was from factories and it caused severe health problems. For example, a particularly severe smog in London in 1952 caused over four thousand deaths.
Obviously something had to be done and in 1956 a Clean Air Act was introduced in Britain. This addressed the pollution from factories and the smogs soon disappeared. However, as you know, these days air pollution is still a big issue. The main difference between now and the 1950s is that you can’t see it – it’s invisible. Also, the main source of pollution now is from cars and lorries, and although these don’t produce visible signs, this air pollution is still a significant risk to health. And one of the key factors in the rise of this type of pollution is that we have all become much more vehicle-dependent. There are far more cars and lorries, trains and planes than in the 1950s and this is now the main source of air pollution around the world.

Show Sample Response >>>

The lecture was about air pollution and the changes since the middle of the last century (main topic). Air pollution in the 1950s was very visible with thick black smogs causing severe health issues (point 1). This air pollution came from factories (point 2). A smog in London in 1952 caused a large number of deaths and resulted in a Clean Air Act being introduced (point 3). These days air pollution is invisible but is still a major health risk (point 4). It is now largely caused by cars and lorries and is due to the significant increase in vehicles since the 1950s (point 5).

Source: PTE Academic Practice Tests Plus with Key

2. Listen to the following interview and retell lecture in your own words

retell-lecture-2Note: Transcript is given for your practice purpose only. In actual PTE Academic test, you will not receive it


Interviewer: In an article that you wrote that I just read, you said you wished you could take everyone back to decades ago to look at the Florida Keys.

Interviewee: Fifty years ago. Think about how much change has taken place in that short period of time. We have managed to consume on the order of 90% of the big fish in the ocean: the tunas, the swordfish, the sharks. They’re mostly gone. Until recently people have had the belief that there isn’t much we puny human beings can do to change the nature of the ocean. But in fact, we have, not just because of what we’ve been taking out, and the destructive means often applied to take fish and other creatures from the sea, but also what we’re putting into the sea, either directly or what we put into the atmosphere that falls back into the sea.

Interviewer: So if you were going to give a grade on the health of the oceans today, what would it be?

Interviewee: Well, it depends on which aspect. Across the board. Huh. The oceans are in trouble. It’s hard for me to assign a specific grade. Maybe C

Source: PTE Academic Offline Practice Test

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