The Speaking test has four parts and is conducted face-to-face, with one or two other candidates and two examiners. Candidates are expected to be able to participate in discussions, express opinions, exchange ideas and reach decisions through negotiation.
Part 1 is a short conversation with the examiner. The examiner will ask the candidate some questions about their lives, focusing on areas such as work, leisure activities and future plans. Candidates are expected to respond to the examiner’s questions, give basic personal information about themselves and use general social and interactional language.
Part 2 (1 minute ‘long turn’ for each candidate, plus 30-second response from the second candidate) involves speaking for 1 minute without interruption. Each candidate is asked to compare two colour photographs and comment about the photographs in response to a task read out by the examiner and a prompt question written above the photographs. The listening candidate is also asked to comment briefly after their partner’s long-turn.
Part 3 (3 minutes) is a two-way conversation between the candidates. The candidates are given spoken instructions and visual stimuli, which are used in a decision-making task. There is no right or wrong answer to the task. The candidates are expected to express and justify opinions, evaluating and speculating, in order to work towards a negotiated decision.
Part 4 (4 minutes) is a discussion between the candidates and the examiner on topics related to the collaborative task in Part 3. The examiner directs the interaction by asking questions which encourage the candidates to broaden and discuss further the topics introduced in Part 3. The questions ask primarily for evaluation rather than for information and give candidates an opportunity to show they can discuss issues in more depth than in earlier parts of the test