3 common grammar mistakes in PTE Summarize Written Text

Hello students. PTE uses a machine-graded system to determine what score a student gets. It is easier in case of objective parts of the test, such as all Reading Item Types. In all of the five Reading Item types, as we can see, there is one unique answer that the system can identify and decide the score. Either one gets it right, or one gets it wrong. But when it comes to grading Item Types, where there are written answers that can vary, grading becomes harder for the students to understand.

One such Item Type is Summarize Written Text. Here the test taker is asked to summarize a text in one sentence that has no more than 75 words. The sentence should, ideally, cover all key points. When trying to do this, some students make grammatical mistakes. Three most common ones are:


  1. Subject-Verb Agreement:

I will explain with an example.

John and his sister always comes on time.


Here the singular verb “comes” does not agree with the plural compound subject “John and his sister”. The rule is to use a plural verb with plural subjects. SO the correct form of the verb is “come”, without an “s”.

John and his sister always come on time.


  1. Fragmentation:

It is very common to pick key points and add them in a sentence without properly connecting them. For example:

Satellites have been in space for a long time, Used for communication, Also military purposes.


A better way of writing this sentence will be

Satellites have been in space for a long time and used for communication as well as military purposes.


  1. Missing comma:

In compound sentences, a missing comma confuses the reader and should be avoided.

For example, in this compound sentence, “The Chief Justice ordered all pending cases resolved on priority and he focussed on austerity in courts.”, the test taker might lose points for grammar unless she introduces a comma before the word “and”.


The correct form of will be,

The Chief Justice ordered all pending cases resolved on priority, and he focussed on austerity in courts.

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