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PTE Academic – Answer Short Question Practice

Want to know more about the Answer Short Question task on PTE Academic? Need to improve your Listening and Speaking score? Or your Vocabulary score? Make sure you read this blog to find out more.

About the Task

Answer Short Question is a short answer Speaking and Listening item on the Speaking Section of the PTE Academic Exam. You are scored on Speaking and Listening. The main component is vocabulary.

Top Tips

  1. Don’t start speaking too soon – watch the audio box to make sure the microphone has opened (it will say “recording”).

  2. Only give your answer once – don’t repeat!

  3. Be brief – say only 1-3 words (it’s answer short question after all).

  4. Including small words such as the and a/an are acceptable, but not necessary e.g. chair, a chair, it’s a chair are all correct version of an answer.

  5. Speak within 3 seconds of the microphone opening – if the microphone detects 3 seconds of silence, it will close automatically.

  6. Pronounce clearly – it is important to have clear pronunciation, otherwise the computer won’t understand your answer.

  7. Once you have finished, remain silent. The microphone will switch off, and you can move onto the next task by clicking “Next”.


For practice, try out these questions. There are 10 – 12 tasks on the PTE Academic exam. We have included 12 here for you to try. You can read and say the answer aloud, or get a friend to read the questions out to you. For answers, scroll down to the end of this blog.

  1. Is a pear a fruit or a vegetable?

  2. How many people are in a quartet?

  3. Sandy is 10, Adam is 9 and Judy is 15. Who is the youngest?

  4. What is the first meal of the day?

  5. What do you call a person who can speak two languages?

  6. What is the day before Monday?

  7. How many legs does a quadruped have?

  8. What is the study of plant life: zoology or botany?

  9. What is the name for someone who cannot hear?

  10. What is the opposite of a pessimist?

  11. What is not a mammal: a dog, a raven, or an elephant?

  12. Where would you go to buy a book: a library, a bakery or a bookstore?

Further Practice

To ace this task, it’s important to practice key skills – such as vocabulary and listening comprehension. The best way to do this is with a PTE preparation course at English Key. Our PTE Academic coaching courses provide specific classes to improve your skills specifically for PTE Academic. To find out more about our courses, get in touch with us, or drop by one of our centres in Sydney or Melbourne and chat to one of our lovely staff. Our PTE Academic Preparation courses also provide you with a tonne of practice material so you can get all the practice you want!


*Remember: including small words is OK. So in answering 1. Is a a pear a fruit or a vegetable? If you said “it’s a fruit”, “a fruit” or “fruit” – all options are correct so long as the keyword “fruit” is included in your answer.

  1. A fruit. 2. Four. 3. Adam. 4. Breakfast. 5. Bilingual. 6. Sunday. 7. Four. 8. Botany. 9. Deaf. 10. An optimist. 11. Raven. 12. A bookstore.

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