What is the first thing you ask yourself when you start studying for an exam?
How much effort do I need to put in? How many hours do I need to study every day?
The question makes sense! Usually, people who are taking PTE are doing it to meet their visa requirements. So more often than not they want to finish it ASAP! The earlier they can get the desired score, the earlier they can move ahead in life.
Here are some recommendations on how to best understand how much time you might need!
It’s obvious that the key factor here is the target score. If you want a 79 plus you are probably willing to put in the extra effort and already accept that you will have to put in a lot of time.
But someone who is well proficient in English language getting a 79 plus in PTE might be as simple as reading the official PTE documentation and booking a test. Someone who has lived and worked or studied in an English speaking environment will find this test much easier. They just need to make sure that they understand the basics of the exam and do not lose marks due to silly mistakes.
Most of us unfortunately are not in this position! We need to put in more time.
This is what we recommend:
On an average try to put in a couple of hours every day for your PTE exam preparation. This time can be increased on weekends or whenever you have more flexibility. Do not try to do a lot of different things or cover many topics in one day. Study one topic but study in depth!
Once you have spent about a week learning the basics and becoming familiar with the types of questions in PTE, you can then take a scored mock test. Do not waste time on free materials or on YouTube videos. They will never give you a clear understanding of your current preparation level. Only a good quality scored mock test can do so!
If the mock test shows you are close to your target score, then you just need a week or two more. But if your score is much lower than your target, you need to provision more time.
Either way you need to have clarity on where to focus. Is it your speaking that needs more effort? Is it writing? Or do you need to improve your grammar?
Once you know that prioritize it in your preparation plan. For e.g., if you are struggling with English, take out at least 30 minutes during the day to practice English speaking.
Spend another week on preparation and take another mock test! Hopefully the results will show an improvement.
Continue this cycle till you are close to your target score.
Keep it in mind: ~2 hours a day is sufficient! On days when you have more time you can take a mock test or study multiple topics. But whatever you do pick preparation resources that are prepared by actual teachers and not YouTubers! Otherwise even 10 hours a day won’t be sufficient.