The FCE Speaking Test Part 2, known as the Long Turn, involves two examinees taking turns delivering long speeches. Each participant receives two colour photographs that they can use as a topic for their talk for one minute.

Then, the interlocutor asks the second examinee a few questions about the photographs of the first person. This participant needs to share his thoughts for 30 seconds. Afterwards, he needs to deliver a speech about his two images, and then the examiner asks the first speaker about the photographs, for which he has 30 seconds to answer.

The Interaction Design of B2 First (FCE) Speaking Test Part 2

Examinees don’t talk with each other while the test is ongoing. Also, no one interrupts while a person is speaking. Each of the participants receives different photographs. However, the process stays the same. The examiner asks every examinee to compare the images.

For instance, you compare two images of different types of vehicles. Then, you say why you prefer to travel using a specific means of transportation in the picture.

Compare the Pictures, Not Describe Them

Many examinees describe the images they received, but it is not the examiner’s intention. The objective of the FCE Speaking Exam Part 2 is to compare the photographs. For instance, if you receive a picture of a man riding a motorbike and another image of a person riding a bike, you need to compare them. You don’t need to worry if you commit mistakes or forget a particular word. Just keep talking. Don’t waste your time describing what you see in the images.

Practice Makes Perfect

Passing Part 2 of the FCE speaking test is a breeze if you take time to practice. You can search for images online that have the same theme. However, you must ensure that both photographs have people in them. Then, compare the pictures. For instance, you have two images of people spending their vacation. You can explain the pros and cons of spending the holidays in each photograph. Then, you can surmise why the people chose to spend their vacation that way.

Aside from practising to compare the photographs you receive, you must also prepare for the examiner’s questions about the images of the other examinee. For instance, the other participant received pictures of people vacationing in another country. The examiner may ask you which of the vacations you prefer. You can explain which holiday you want in 30 seconds, which consists of about three to four sentences long.

In FCE Speaking Part 2, you need many photographs to compare when you practice so that you don’t get nervous during the test correctly. Often, you aren’t full of confidence during the exam, even though you know the English language. You can develop a list of phrases and structures that you can use during the speaking test. If you hear the other examinee use a specific phrase, you mustn’t use it. Thus, it is significant that you have different expressions in your knowledge bank that you can use.

Even during your practice sessions, you must be strict about the time. You may ramble on about the photos, not be mindful of the time. The examiner will curtly cut you off when your one-minute speech is over. Also, you must strive to use less common words because you’re trying to pass an advanced English certification, so it’s just right that you skip overused vocabulary.

Useful Phrases to Use for Part 2 of B2 First (FCE) Speaking Test

Vocabulary to Use When Indicating the Photo You’re Referring to

  • In the first photo, in the second picture, in both images
  • The photo above/below
  • The picture on the right/left

Words to Use in Comparing the Photos

  • And, so, but
  • On the other hand
  • Whereas
  • In contrast
  • The other photo is different because
  • While

Phrases to Use While Speculating

  • Probably, possibly
  • Maybe, might be, could be
  • It may be probable that it’s likely that
  • I suppose, I imagine, I guess
  • Perhaps, maybe
  • Looks like seems

Expressions for the Follow-up Question

  • The way I see it
  • If I have to select one from the two photos, I’ll go for
  • As far as I’m concerned
  • In my case
  • In my experience
  • I prefer
  • I believe that

More Helpful Tips in Taking Part 2 of the FCE Speaking Exam

Tip 1: Don’t spend time describing the images separately. You must compare the two pictures.

Tip 2: Don’t overuse the connector “and.” You only use it to add ideas and not to express contrast. Other words are applicable for use during the comparison test.

Tip 3: Focus on explaining the significant concepts about the two pictures. Don’t dwell on an image only.

Tip 4: Give time to reply to the question. Some examinees focus on talking about the photos that don’t answer the examiner’s query.

Tip 5: Concentrate on what you want to say and address your interlocutor in your comments.

Tip 6: Don’t stop in the middle of your thought because you regret saying it. Finish your sentences and articulate your thoughts in full.

Tip 7: Compare both pictures and don’t relate them to your experiences. Focus on the images and the query of the interlocutor.

Tip 8: If you don’t understand the question, ask the examiner politely to repeat it.

Tip 9: Use related words. You’re taking an exam to prove that your vocabulary fits the B2 level, so you must use advanced terminologies to impress the interlocutor.

Tip 10: Don’t forget to smile and have a cheerful, positive attitude.


You can pass the FCE Speaking Test Part 2 if you prepare well. Take your time to practice comparing two photographs before you take the exam. Widen your vocabulary by continuously reading English materials with advanced words. If you don’t understand a word, look it up in the dictionary and use it repeatedly. Spend time practicing before the exam.


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About the Author: Hyun Lee

Hi! I am Hyun, and I am the founder at Global Scholarships. I've received a full-tuition scholarship at Birmingham-Southern College and a $1,000 Burger King Scholarship for my undergraduate degree and was offered a fully funded scholarship consisting of tuition, living stipend, and health insurance for computer science Ph.D. program at North Carolina State University. You can read more about my scholarship journey here. If you are interested, you can follow me on Linkedin where I regularly write about scholarship opportunities.

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