Tips for Celpip General Listening and Reading

Tips for Celpip General Listening and Reading

Learn from experienced test-takers the most essential practice tips for obtaining high scores in CELPIP, such as general listening and reading!

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Clearing a language proficiency test like CELPIP General (and CELPIP General LS) or IELTS is not a piece of cake for many, and things might get more complicated when the test-takers have a language other than English as their mother tongue. In this case, knowing the proper practice tips is essential to help you achieve your goal.

Or let us think otherwise! Let's say you are a regular English language user and have no difficulty using it in your daily life. Would this mean that you need not be aware of the exam pattern and practice it for some time before actually appearing in it? Not!

At least some practice is required by everyone, whether the person is a first-time test taker or has already appeared for it several times. The same is the case with CELPIP General.

Specifically designed for those who wish to migrate to Canada, CELPIP General is a computer-delivered test that evaluates your proficiency in four different modules: Listening, Reading, Writing, and Speaking. (Intend to know more about the test in detail? Read this.


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Suppose you have clicked on this article to get the tips for the Listening and Reading section of the Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program test. In that case, your preparation is already on the go. However, we know that no matter how much one practices, the preparation never ends. Keeping this idea in mind, a few of you must look at CELPIPSTORE, an application exclusively prepared to provide thousands of questions for your CELPIP exam preparation. Here, you have the liberty to practice:

  • Complete tests in one go.
  • Each module individually
  • Questions of every kind.

This means that if you feel the need to attempt only the Reading section, you can do that easily without skipping the questions you do not want to practice.

On the other hand, if the section 'Reading Correspondence' is complicated in the reading section of the CELPIP General, you can practice that without wasting your time on those you are confident about.

I know that you have decided to practice for CELPIP in the way mentioned above. (And why wouldn't you? When you have real exam preparation questions quickly at your fingertips, why wouldn't you?)


Even if you are aware of the question types, timings and all other things essential to be known for clearing the test, I would like to highlight a few key features of the Listening module of the CELPIP General just for more clarity:

Time: Around 50 minutes for six different question types

Sections in listening to appear in the examination:

  • Listening to problem
  • Listening to a daily life conversation
  • Listening for information
  • Listening to a news item
  • Listening to a discussion
  • Listening for a viewpoint
  • There would be specific audio for each section. After you complete each section, you will hear a question audio and view the options for each question. Based on the recording you hear, you will have to choose the correct option.

Note: One of these sections in the test is unscored and is just included for development purposes. However, you wouldn't know which section is unscored, so you must attempt the questions correctly.


Concentrate solely on the audio/conversation while the recording plays: As you will not hear the recording again, it must be your utmost priority to listen to it carefully. Even a slight distraction might lead to losing marks.

Be careful to listen to the complete audio with proper attention: In the test, you will not know what the question will be once the audio is completed, so pay heed to every bit of the audio.

Don't freak out if you skip some part: Though nobody would want this to happen in the actual test, it is not a good idea to worry about the part that you have missed or not heard carefully, as there is a chance that the question might not be from it. Moreover, by worrying, things would only get worse.

Take proper notes while the audio plays: Some students are good at remembering things, and answering specific questions based on the audio is not bad for them, whereas others might have difficulty remembering things for a long time. Whatever the case, carefully written notes must always help in the test.

Listen to the answer, not to investigate: It is pretty standard not to understand every word of the audio as it is. Your focus must only be to get a central idea of the topic and answer the questions you will come across further.

Finally, we all know that practice makes a man perfect. So practice as much as you can and follow these tips. We shall now move on to the next module.


Like the CELPIP Listening section, the reading module of this test also has different parts and questions. For your convenience, here is a small description of the parts you will encounter while taking the CELPIP Reading test.

Time: Nearly 50-60 minutes

Section types in the reading module:

    • Reading Correspondence
    • Reading to apply a diagram
    • Reading for information
    • Reading for viewpoints
    • Note: Like the test's listening section, the reading section also includes an unscored practice question. In this case, too, the test taker would not know which part is actually unscored, and hence, finding proper answers to all the questions is mandatory.



Read to get the central idea first: Many students feel that they ought to find the answer immediately when they come across a question. And even though the ultimate motive is this only, the test-taker must read to get the gist first. Believe me! This saves a lot of time and energy.

Understand the demand of the question before searching for the answer: Most students make a mistake here in this part. They feel that as they get marks only for choosing the correct answer, they must focus on that part only. However, it is essential to note that the correct answer can only be identified when the question statement is understood accurately.

Get to the appropriate location in the passage: Once you understand what the question is about and what you ought to find to answer, your next task is to spot the location precisely associated with that question. This is sometimes called 'scanning the keywords from the question in the passage.'Infer the meaning as per the context: Yes! Knowing the exact meaning of the word every time is not possible, and even if you are aware of all the words in the English language (Wow! Is that possible? If yes, tell us 'how' in the comments section), you better know that one word can have different meaning as per the context. So, get the knowledge of the context rather than a word.

Identify the motive for a particular statement written in a specific manner: This might sound somewhat similar to the previous point, but the meaning is a bit different. Regarding questions involving the opinions of different writers, critics, or whatever is in the passage, your motive must be to understand the writer's point. Get as much information as possible about the 'connotation of words and phrases in English for better clarity.'


The sincerity with which you are reading this article certainly owes you one bonus tip, which is none other than the most crucial task in any test: TIME MANAGEMENT. Of course, as the test is automatically timed, you must be careful about optimal utilization.

Overspending time on one question or section means less time for the other, and hence, it is more likely to result in careless reading, leading to marking potentially wrong answers. Thus, schedule a proper time for each section and stick to the schedule.

Every candidate also has a different understanding, meaning the problematic section must be easy for others and vice versa. So, what's essential in this case is that instead of asking others about the type they allocate to one type of question, you plan it.


I hope that by the time you reach here, you get a fair idea of the test. By following these strategies, you will undoubtedly notice an increase in the number of answers marked correctly. But remember! A better score is guaranteed only with more practice.

To score more on the test, it is not necessary to sit in front of a computer screen all day and find different questions to practice. The best part about the CELPIP test is its similarity to the English language use we encounter in our daily lives.

Due to the test's similarity to the real-life experience, practicing CELPIP is more of a fun activity than a stressful language preparation, including worrying about the grammatical aspects and other related things.

All you need to do here is involve yourself in the language daily. Listen to more English conversations and news broadcasted in the tongue. Make sure that, as this test is designed solely for Canadian immigration, more Canadian dialects are used.

To improve your reading for the test, you can begin by reading some English language journals and newspapers. While doing this, keep a dictionary next to you, but try to infer the meaning of the text before checking it in the dictionary.

Implying these tips in your practice routine will certainly improve your score. Individual differences always prevail, and owing to these differences, while some might be able to get the correct answers quite quickly, others will require a lot of effort and time to get on the right track.

But don't worry—some progress is still progress, and hence, reward yourself for every effort you put in. Set targets for each hour, day, or week. Some students focus on one section at a time, while others practice one specific module.

However, there is no fixed manner or routine for practicing. You are independent and can learn and grow in your way! Good luck!

Feel free to share your views and queries in the comment section below. If there is something else you would like us to tell you, either comment on it or contact us using the details mentioned at the end of this page.

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