10 NAATI CCL Last-Minute Exam Tips You Must Know – 2021 (updated)

You may have practised enough dialogues and vocabulary, but in order to by fully prepared for the NAATI CCL test, you must read these 10 esential NAATI CCL tips right before the exam.

10 naati ccl tips for last minute exam preparation

1. Don’t Forget to Keep ID With You

It is required by NAATI that you provide a valid ID (the photo ID you provided with your online application), such as your driver’s license or a passport. You may not be allowed to sit for the test if you don’t have an ID with you. You’ll have to hold the passport in front of the wecam for online NAATI CCL test.

NAATI CCL Candidate Instructions

For detailed instructions, click here

2. Take Some Food And Water

Nowadays you can take the online test from home, so you don’t have to worry about this.

While booking your NAATI CCL test, you might have applied for the 8:30 am or the 12:30 pm time slot. This does not necessarily mean that your test will start at that time. All NAATI CCL test candidates are required to wait in a room until it’s their turn to take the test. So, even if you arrive at 8:30 am, you may have to wait until 11:00 am for your turn. Obviously, you’ll get thirsty if not hungry. And it’s not a good idea to take a test as intense as the NAATI CCL test (it’s only 20 minutes) on an empty stomach.

3. Interact With Other NAATI Test Candidates in Nepali Only

Nowadays you can take the online test from home, so you don’t have to worry about this. Instead try interacting with your friends

We all have this bad habit of using English words while speaking in LOTE (Language Other than English). So, while practising the dialogues at home you’re aware of this and will try your best to avoid this. However, in the actual CCL test while you’re waiting, if you start repeating the same bad habit, then it’s no good. You don’t want to do this right before the test.

In fact, interacting with other Nepali test candidates can act as a warm-up interpretation exercise. And don’t feel awkward to do this. All of you are on the same boat, so you’ll understand each other.

Alternatively, you can also speak with the testing officer casually to help feel relaxed and ease the tension before the dialogue starts.

4. Understand The scenario, Visualize And Anticipate

Many students make the mistake of not paying full attention until the dialogue starts. Scenario, which is the dialogue topic and played before the first segment, holds important information. Generally, it explains who the dialogue is taking place between i.e. the name of the speakers and the context. Once you get this information, you can quickly visualize yourself in that very situation and pretend that you are the doctor/lawyer/centrelink officer asking questions and also you are the non-English speaking patient or client.

In the NAATI test, you’ll get real-life situations relevant to Australian society, and if you’ve been here long enough, you know what happens in such situations. With this knowledge, you can now anticipate what the speaker might say in the next segment even before it starts. Even professional interpreters use the method of anticipating.

5. The ‘2E/2N’ NAATI CCL Tips

We’ve also mentioned this in our previous article. Since taking notes in English is easier, we advise NAATI CCL students to take notes in English for both English and Nepali segments. It’s an effective note-taking strategy but can cause a blunder of Nepali to Nepali interpretation. Therefore, you should write either 2E (if the segment is in Nepali) or 2N (if it is in English) before taking notes for each segment.

If you want to learn about note-taking strategy but don’t have more time for preparation, then you should enroll in our Crash Course. It’s a 30-days NAATI CCL online course/class designed for students who don’t have enough time for studying.

6. Preface Error Correction

It’s normal to make minor errors in the NAATI CCL examination due to tongue-slip or some other reasons. You can and must correct such errors once you realise you’ve made one. But don’t just correct it straight away. You need to preface your correction by saying phrases such as ‘correction’, ‘I’d like to rephrase this sentence’ or ‘sorry, I’ll just say that part again’.

7. Avoid Distortion Of Meaning

If a part of segment is unclear, which could be due to lack of comprehension, pronunciation, or speed, then either repeat the segment or leave the part you don’t understand. If you make an assumption for the unclear part, you risk having distortion in your interpretation. Distortions can affect accuracy and reduce your score significantly.

An accurate summary with few omissions is better than a detailed word-by-word interpretation with distortion.

If you don’t know the interpretation of a word (be it in English or Nepali), but you do understand the meaning, use a word with the closest meaning or simply explain it using multiple words.

If the segment is too long to note down, then either ask for a repetition or eliminate unnecessary details and interpret the gist only.


8. Don’t hesitate to take additional repetition

It’s OK to take more than 1 repetition despite negative marking. If you know that you can interpret 100% provided that the segment is replayed, then you should take a repeat. With a second repeat you’ll get negative marking and only lose 1 point, but without it you could have distorted the meaning and ended up losing more than 1 point.

I recommend limiting your repetition to less than 3 per dialogue.

9. Mistakes Are Inevitable In The NAATI CCL Test

Especially for long segments, it can be difficult to maintain a high accuracy without omitting or adding anything. If this happens to you in the test, don’t feel discouraged or nervous, and more importantly, don’t let that affect your overall performance by creating a chain effect.

Not all segments are lengthy. Short (< 15 words) and medium segments (15-25 words) is where you can shine. With longer segments (25-35 words) interpret the overall gist with proper fluency and register.

10. It’s All About The Confidence

Be confident! There’s nothing to worry about. Simply think, “all I’m going to do is help two people understand each other. I know both languages and I’ll try my best. If the segment is lengthy or difficult, I’ll either repeat the segment, or just simply mention the gist”.

And that’s it!

Now go smash the test and make your Australian dream a reality by getting 5 bonus points for PR.


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