Highlight Incorrect Words Guide & Tips

Written By Peter's PTE
Written By Peter's PTE

The PTE Academic Listening section is a multifaceted evaluation of your ability to comprehend spoken English. Within this section, the “Highlight Incorrect Words” task presents a unique challenge. This task requires you to listen to a recording while simultaneously reading a transcript with errors. Your mission is to identify and select the words in the text that differ from what the speaker says. This task serves as a test of your listening and reading skills, demanding keen attention to detail. In this guide, we will explore the intricacies of the “Highlight Incorrect Words” task and provide expert tips to help you master it.

Highlight Incorrect Words Format

You will be presented with a transcript that contains some errors. As you listen to the audio recording, your objective is to identify and select the words in the transcript that differ from what the speaker says. You have only one opportunity to listen to the audio recording.

How Is It Scored?

To improve your performance in the Highlight Incorrect Words part of the PTE Listening test, Keep Mind These Scoring Factor –

Listening and Reading

  • 1 Score: Each Correct response
  • -1 Score: Each Incorrect response
  • 0 Score: Minimum Score

Always Remember

  • Avoid random clicking to prevent negative marking; select words you are confident are different from the audio.
  • You can also click on a highlighted word and remove it from the answers!
  • There is no time limit on a per question basis. Therefore, you need to develop your own time management strategy.

Highlight Incorrect Words Practice Tips

Pre-Listening Preparation

  • Use the 10-second preparation time to scan the transcription and identify keywords and the general topic.

Active Listening and Visual Tracking

  • Listen attentively to the audio while following the text with your cursor, clicking on words that differ from the spoken audio.
  • Manage your time effectively to ensure you don’t spend too long on this task and have ample time for other questions.


  • After the audio ends, review your selections and ensure they accurately represent words that deviated from the audio; submit your response once you’re confident.


The “Highlight Incorrect Words” task in the PTE Academic Listening section is a unique assessment of your listening and reading skills. By following expert tips and developing a strategic approach, you can confidently identify words that deviate from the spoken audio. Keep in mind that success in this task extends beyond the test; it equips you with a valuable skill for discerning discrepancies in real-world scenarios. Best of luck in your PTE Academic journey!

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