Summarize Written Text


For this item type you need to write a summary of the text in one sentence.

You have 10 minutes to write your summary. Make sure to include the main points of the reading passage in a full, single sentence of no more than 75 words.

The Word Count at the bottom of the screen counts the number of words you write. There are also cut, copy and paste buttons which you may use while constructing your summary.

Cut: Select text from your answer that you wish to remove and left-click “Cut”.

Copy: Select text from your answer that you wish to copy and left-click “Copy”.

Paste: Place the cursor where you wish to paste the cut/copied text and left-click “Paste”.

PTE Academic Writing: Summarize Written Text – Practice sample 1

PTE Academic Writing: Summarize Written Text – Read the passage below and summarize it using one sentence (between 5 and 75 words). For this, he/she will get 10 minutes to finish the task and the candidate’s performance will be judged on the quality of his writing skills

Answers are given at the end, please don’t sneak the answers before you complete the test for your own benefits.



There are times when the night sky glows with bands of color. The bands may begin as cloud hapes and then spread into a great arc across the entire sky. They may fall in folds like a curtain drawn across the heavens. The lights usually grow brighter, then suddenly dim. During this time the sky glows with pale yellow, pink, green, violet, blue, and red. These lights are called the Aurora Borealis. Some people call them the Northern Lights. Scientists have been watching them for hundreds of years. They are not quite sure what causes them. In ancient times Long Beach City College WRSC people were afraid of the Lights. They imagined that they saw fiery dragons in the sky. Some even concluded that the heavens were on fire.


Electric trolley cars or trams were once the chief mode of public transportation in the United States. Though they required tracks and electric cables to run, these trolley cars were clean and comfortable. In 1922, auto manufacturer General Motors created a special unit to replace electric trolleys with cars, trucks, and buses. Over the next decade, this group successfully lobbied for laws and regulations that made operating trams more difficult and less profitable. In 1936 General Motors created several front companies for the purpose of purchasing and dismantling the trolley car system. They received substantial investments from Firestone Tire, Standard Oil of California, Phillips Petroleum, and other parties invested in the automotive industry. Some people suspect that these parties wanted to replace trolley cars with buses to make public transportation less desirable, which would then increase automobile sales. The decline of the tram system in North America could be attributed to many things—labor strikes, the Great Depression, regulations that were unfavorable to operators—but perhaps the primary cause was having a group of powerful men from rival sectors of the auto industry working together to ensure its destruction.


Ninjas used many different tools and weapons to get the job done: throwing stars, bows, acid-spurting tubes to name a few, but the favorite weapon of most ninjas was probably the katana. The katana is a long, curved sword with a single blade and a long grip to accommodate two hands. This sword was often carried in a sheath or scabbard on the ninja’s back. Though the sword was primarily used for fighting and killing, the scabbard served a number of purposes too. The ninja could remove the sword, angle the scabbard against a wall, and use it to climb to a higher place. Or, while stealthy negotiating their way through a dark place (such as an enemy’s residence at night), ninjas may have used the scabbard as a walking stick, feeling or probing their way around objects so as not to knock into anything and alert the enemy. Perhaps the ninja’s most sinister use of the scabbard was to put a mixture of red pepper, dirt, and iron shavings at the top of the scabbard, so that when the ninja drew his sword, his opponent would be blinded. I wonder what a ninja could have done with a Swiss Army knife.


As today’s bride and groom celebrate their wedding, they have every excuse for being nervous. They exchange promises of lifelong fidelity and mutual support. However, all around them, they can see that many people do not and cannot keep these promises. Their own marriage has a one in three chance of divorce, if present tendencies continue. Traditional marriage is facing a crisis, at least in Britain. Not only are there more and more divorces, but the number of marriages is falling. Living together is more popular than before. The family is now no longer one man, one woman and their children. Instead, there are more and more families which include parents, half sisters and brothers, or even only one parent on her / his own. Although Britain is still conservative in its attitudes to marriage compared with other countries such as the USA, Sweden and Denmark, the future will probably see many more people living together before marriage – and more divorce. Interestingly, it is women rather than men who apply for divorce. Seven out of ten divorces are given to the wife. Also, one of the main reasons for divorce, chosen by ten times more women than men, is unreasonable or cruel behavior. Perhaps this means that women will tolerate less than they used to.


  • Summary #1:  The Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, are bands of color in the night sky. Ancient people thought that these lights were dragon on fire, and even modern scientists are not sure what they are.
  • Summary #2:  This passage is about how many large companies that served the automotive market conspired to dismantle the electric trolley car system and replace them with less desirable buses.
  • Summary #3:  The katana was a powerful fighting sword, but the scabbard had additional uses as a climbing tool, a probing tool, and a blinding weapon.
  • Summary #4:  Although Britain is still conservative in its attitudes to marriage, the future will probably see many more people living together before marriage – and more divorce.

Exercise 2


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