Linguaskill Listening

Linguaskill Listening

Are you scared of listening tests in English? Maybe not as scared as speaking or writing? Either way, by the end of this page, you won't need to be scared any more. In fact, you can be SUPER confident of passing the Linguaskill Listening test.


Well, simple, you actually cannot fail the Linguaskill Listening test.

Why not?

It is not a pass or fail test. Linguaskill grades you no matter how high or low your level of English is. Find out more about how your Linguaskill test is marked and weighted >>

Despite this, it is possible that you won't achieve the grade you or the institution you are applying to require. The tips and techniques below for the two different Linguaskill Listening question types will MASSIVELY help you to attain this grade.

Listening Question Type 1: 'Listen and Select'

Listen and Select Format:

The number of questions you face varies in this part of the exam.

There is always a recording to listen to with multiple-choice questions to answer beneath it.

The audio will be short and sometimes you might face pictures, but not necessarily.

Here is an example where you choose an answer from 3 pictures:

listen and select question

Here is an example without pictures:

Linguaskill listen and select question

Whether you are faced with pictures or not, I always advise using the following technique for 'listen and select' questions.

Listen and Select Technique:

  1. In this exercise, you will be able to read the question before you start listening. 
  2. Use this time to read the question, but DO NOT look at the options.
  3. After you have done that, click the 'play' button play Icon 22164 so you can listen to the short recording.
  4. While it’s playing, try to find the answer to the question (still not looking at the options).
  5. After you have listened to it once, LOOK at the options and see if you can identify the correct one.
  6. Play the recording a second (final) time and confirm your answer.

This exercise is the same type of exercise you will encounter in other Cambridge exams, for example in the FCE Listening part 1 and CAE listening part 1. If you think you are a B1/B2 level, check out the FCE page, or if you think you are a B2/C1 level, check out the CAE page.






Listening Question Type 2: 'Extended Listening'

Extended Listening Format:

'Extended Listening' is the same as the 'Listen and Select' exercise above, however, it is a longer passage. This means you cannot listen to the recording and answer the question then listen to the next recording and answer the next question. You have to try and answer all the questions from the one long recording. The order of the questions will follow the order of the text.

extended listening

Extended Listening Technique:

  1. Before you start, you have time to read through the questions. My suggestion is that you read through the questions only and don’t spend too much time reading the options. After you have read the questions you know already the information you need to watch out for.
  2. Play the recording. Keep in mind that the order of the questions follows the order of the recording, so just go with the flow.
  3. While listening, pay attention to when the answer might be approaching. For example, the first question in the picture above is ‘Why did James decide he wanted to be a photojournalist?’ When you hear him talking about photojournalism, or even his background before photojournalism, pay extra attention and (without looking at the options) think what is the answer to the question.
  4. When you think you know the answer, check the options. From here you should be able to identify the correct option.
  5. After you hear the recording one time, you should (hopefully) have already identified most of the answers. Play the recording again for the second and final time. In those cases where you didn't know the answer after the first listening, see if you know it now. If not, select any answer. You should confirm all your answers during the second listening.

If you think you are a B1/B2 level student, you should check out my FCE listening part 4 page which has the same type of exercise with more examples and useful tips to use.

If you think you are a B2/C1 level student, check out my CAE listening part 3 page for similar exercises, tips etc.

Linguaskill Listening Conclusion

We have learnt that there are 2 main types of listening question in the Linguaskill exam. We have also learnt a technique for both.

You should practise these techniques over and over until you get to the exam.

The resources I mentioned above will be useful, but you can also practise on the Cambridge website, here >>

If you have more general questions or you want some more information about the Linguaskill exam, I recommend, checking out this page >> or write a comment below, or you can even check out my new book 🙂

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