Above is an audio recording lecture of History of Epigenetic. The lecture length is 74 seconds, you can retell it up to 40 seconds. What this means is that as the test taker, you are expected to:
- Capture the key information
- Construct your response
- Retell your response
Easy and simple enough right? Let’s take a closer look for each step.
Capture the key information
Key information are the important points from the lecture recording, this will form the content of your response. It attributes the content score for up to 5 points, which will be contributed to Listening. In order to obtain full content score, you retell all points of the presentation and describes key aspects, and conclusions.
Art of note taking
You probably think the more information you jot down while listening to the lecture, the better your notes are. The answer is not that simple.
An average word per minute in speaking is 125 words compare to 15 in writing. In other words, writing speed will always be slower than speaking. Even if you somehow have the superhuman ability to capture entire lecture word by word into a transcript, you probably would still struggle to arrange your findings and giving a response within a mere 10 seconds preparation time.
So, to make your notes meaningful, a mixture of short hands, symbols and abbreviation should be adopted for note taking. Most importantly, we need to be selective with note taking. The ideal note you want to have should be short enough that you can revise it within 10 seconds.
During this 74 seconds of audio, for each sentence played, you have to decide whether it is relevant to the main ideas. The goal is to extract all key points in the most succinct format.
Below are the sample key points for our example audio – History of Epigenetic
The main key points captured are:
- History of epigenetics, a linear graph of publication vs time (What is it about)
- 1990 – 2005 nothing happened (What happened, when did it take place?)
- After 2005, exponential growth of double amount of publication every 2 years (What happened, when did it take place )
- 15k-20k papers published in last year which = 1990 to 2005 combined (What happened, when did it take place)
Construct your response
Once the audio recording is finished, you have 10 seconds to formulate your response.
Retell lecture provides test takers with open response opportunities as everyone has their own unique retelling style, the goal is to find your own choice of words that you are most comfortable with and use them to connect those main key points you captured from the audio.
Now we have our very easy to retell 4 dot points note ready, we can simply read it with connecting words. And finally give a CONCLUSION – “Epigenetics has seen exponential growth in the recent year which is strongly supported by data and facts.”
- This lecture described the history of epigenetics using a linear graph of publications vs time
- At the beginning it mentioned that from 1990 to 2005 nothing really happened in epigenetics
- However, after 2005, the graph showed exponential growth of double amount of publications every 2 years
- And this resulted 15k-20k papers published in last year which is equivalent to the total between 1990 to 2005.
- In conclusion, epigenetics has seen exponential growth in the recent year which is strongly supported by data and facts.
Re-tell your response
Below is a sample response recorded by our tutor using above strategy.
For students who are interested in take our online classes, we offer robust and proven score 90 speaking template, additional tips on how to identify each main point. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more details.