1. Toeic Listening Part 1 Overview


1.1. Description of the task

In Toeic Listening Part 1, there will be 6 photographs. You need to hear 4 sentences per paragraph and choose the one that best describes that photograph. No description will be written. Only option A, B, C and D will be indicated.

Toeic listening part 1
Toeic listening part 1


1.2. How to allocate time in TOEIC Listening Part 1

You will have 1 minute and 25 seconds to listen to the instructions in Part 1. So, take advantage of this time to take a quick look at pictures to imagine possible descriptions. 

For each question, you can follow the steps below:

Step 1: Listen to four options A, B, C, and D (There will be 5s intervals between two answers)

Step 2: Use the first 3 seconds to fill the answer in the answer sheet 

Step 3: Use the rest of the time (2 seconds) to look at the next picture.


1.3 Types of photographs in TOEIC Listening Part 1?

In Part 1, there are two types of pictures:

– Picture of people (one or many people)

– Picture of object and landscape


2. Tips to get high scores in TOEIC listening part 1


2.1. Picture of people


a. Descriptive structures:

Structure  Example 
S + is/ are + Ving + O She is riding a bike 
S + is/ are + Ving + prepositional phrase of place People are going into an amusement park 
S + is/ are + prepositional phrase of place The children are at the park 
S + is/ are + being + VpII A woman is being photographed 
S + is/ are + VpII + Adv They are seated side by side 

NOTE: Verbs are often in Ving 


Example 1 toeic listening part 1

  1. One of the men is taking off his backpack.
  2. One of the men is reading a brochure. 
  3. Some people are assembling a table. 
  4. Some people are rearranging chairs. 


b. Tips 

– Analysing pictures before listening:

This step is crucial in both practicing at home and taking the test in the test room. Spend time to look carefully at the pictures and pay attention to:

+ Appearance of character(s): Looking at character(s) in the picture to guess their gender, clothes, and occupation. 

+ Action of body parts: Eye (what character(s) is/ are looking at), hand (hold, etc), leg (run, stand, etc). Besides, think of verbs that may appear in the recording such as hold, stare, look at, etc. 

+ Setting and items: Based on the context of the picture to guess the place such as a conference room, kitchen, or park


– Think of different expressions for one action

For examples: 

+ They are shaking hands/ they are greeting each other

+ taking notes/ writing something down/ writing on the paper

+ making a call/ hanging up the phone/ talking on the phone

+ Have a meeting/ sitting opposite each other/ sitting across from each other


2.2. Picture of object and landscape


a. Descriptive structures:

Structure  Example 
S + is/are + VpII + prepositional phrase of place  The fruit is displayed on the stand.
S + have/ has + VpII + prepositional phrase of place  The vehicle has stopped by the road.
There is/ are + N + prepositional phrase of place  There are trees on each side of the road.



Example 2 toeic listening part 1


A. Cyclists are riding by a fountain.

B. There’s a park bench beside a path.

C. A man is hanging a map on a sign.

D. Workers are raking leaves into piles.


b. Tips

– Analysing pictures before listening: Pay attention to:

+ the name of the object(s)

+ where the object(s) is/ are: on the table, on each side, in the middle of behind, next to, etc

+ the status of the object: closed, open, full, empty, etc

+ location: in the room, on the street, in the park, etc


3. Tricks in Toeic Listening Part 1


3.1. Similar-sounding words

Words that sound similar, but do not sound exactly the same often appear in the TOEIC Listening Part 1 and all over the TOEIC Listening test to make you confused. One or more statements include a word or phrase that may sound like something in the photograph. 

For instance: Instead of hearing the statement “The woman is sitting” (which is correct), you may hear the incorrect statement “The woman is knitting“. In this case, the two words “knit” and “sit” sound similar. However, the word “knit” is simply used to distract you.


3.2. Words in a different context

Things that you can see or words you might expect to hear are often included in four statements, but they incorrectly describe the context. 

Look at the following example:


Example 3 toeic listening part 1


A. He is having his hair cut.

B. He is talking on the telephone.

C. He is typing on the keyboard.

D. He is washing the desk

The statement “He is typing on the keyboard” is incorrect because though we can see “a man” and “a keyboard” in the photograph, the man is not using the keyboard.


3.3. Prepositions

In the TOEIC Listening Part 1, it is essential to pay attention to the place of people and objects in the picture as a preposition or prepositional phrase may be used wrongly. 

For example: 

The statement “There are many cars on the bridge” is false. In the photo, we can see cars and a bridge but cars are not on the bridge, they are under the bridge. 

To practice with a rich source of materials and get more tips, practice now with our TOEIC practice test !!!