ESL Work Listening

It is important to be able to understand work vocabulary, and this ESL work listening page will help you understand it when it is being spoken and you need to listen to it. Use the tasks on this page to get used to listening to the spoken vocabulary.

These ESL work listening activities will help you learn how to listen and speak English better.

This page has a range of listening tasks for you to do. In each of them you will need to listen to a recording and then either answer some questions or write something. The recordings are of a native English speaker so you can learn to listen to a voice similar to that you would hear when in another country. If you need any help you can go to the ESL work vocabulary page where there is a recording of the vocabulary list also being spoken by a native English speaker.

The 4 exercises are as follows:

  • Identify the order of a group of spoken words.
  • Identify a word form a spoken definition.
  • Listening comprehension.
  • Dictation passage.

ESL Work Listening Exercises

Exercise 1 – Identification of Spoken Word Order

For this ESL work listening exercise you need to listen to the following recording that has 5 groups of words with each group made up of 5 words. You need to decide which option (A-D) in each question has the words in the same order as in the recording. When you have finished you can click the get score button to see how many you got right.



ESL Work Identification of Spoken Word Order


Listen to the recording of the five groups of five words each given above and decide which option (A-D) in the five questions in this test has the correct order.

1) Which is the correct order for group of words one?
        A) Fire fighter, Qualifications, Cook, Technician, Teacher
        B) Qualifications, Technician, Cook, Fire fighter, Teacher
        C) Fire fighter, Technician, Qualifications, Cook, Teacher
        D) Cook, Teacher, Qualifications, Fire fighter, Technician
2) Which is the correct order for group of words two?
        A) Baker, Vet, Chef, Full-time job, Fishmonger
        B) Vet, Full-time job, Chef, Baker, Fishmonger
        C) Baker, Full-time job, Vet, Chef, Fishmonger
        D) Chef, Fishmonger, Vet, Baker, Full-time job
3) Which is the correct order for group of words three?
        A) Employ, Full-time job, Jobless, Craftsperson, Career
        B) Full-time job, Craftsperson, Jobless, Employ, Career
        C) Employ, Craftsperson, Full-time job, Jobless, Career
        D) Jobless, Career, Full-time job, Employ, Craftsperson
4) Which is the correct order for group of words four?
        A) Judge, Clerk, Part-time job, Butcher, Vet
        B) Clerk, Butcher, Part-time job, Judge, Vet
        C) Judge, Butcher, Clerk, Part-time job, Vet
        D) Part-time job, Vet, Clerk, Judge, Butcher
5) Which is the correct order for group of words five?
        A) Jobless, Porter, Fishmonger, Salary, Hair dresser
        B) Porter, Salary, Fishmonger, Jobless, Hair dresser
        C) Jobless, Salary, Porter, Fishmonger, Hair dresser
        D) Fishmonger, Hair dresser, Porter, Jobless, Salary

Score =

Correct answers:

Exercise 2 – Identification of Spoken Definition

In this ESL work listening task you need to listen to the spoken definitions in the following recording and then decide which word (A-D) in each question matches the definition. To see the correct answers and your score just click the get score button.



ESL Work Listening Identification of Vocabulary Meaning


Listen to the recording of the meanings of the five vocabulary words given above and decide which word out of the options (A-D) in each question matches the meaning.

1) What is the meaning of the first definition in the recording?
        A) Workload
        B) Craftsperson
        C) Clerk
        D) Farmer
2) What is the meaning of the second definition in the recording?
        A) Apprentice
        B) Worker
        C) Jobless
        D) Chef
3) What is the meaning of the third definition in the recording?
        A) Coach
        B) Salary
        C) Jeweler
        D) Employer
4) What is the meaning of the fourth definition in the recording?
        A) Hair dresser
        B) Baker
        C) Vacancy
        D) Tailor
5) What is the meaning of the fifth definition in the recording?
        A) Technician
        B) Vet
        C) Chambermaid
        D) Job

Score =

Correct answers:

Exercise 3 – Listening Comprehension

This ESL work listening task is a comprehension activity in which you need to listen to the spoken passage in the following recording and then answer the 5 following questions. Listen to the passage a few times if you need to. Then use the get score button to see how many answers you got correct.

At the end of this page there is a link for you to use that will show you a transcript of the passage so you can use it to make sure you understood it properly.



ESL Work Listening Comprehension


Listen to the recording of the passage about work above and answer the following five questions.

1) What are the criteria used in rating the best and worst jobs?
        A) environment, outlook and salary
        B) environment, outlook and stress
        C) stress, physical demands and salary
        D) stress, salary and environment
2) What is an actuary?
        A) A person who analyzes stock shares.
        B) A person who makes expense reports.
        C) A person who writes business plan.
        D) A person who analyzes statistics.
3) Where does an actuary usually work?
        A) In schools
        B) In banks
        C) In hotels
        D) In the zoo
4) Why is a news reporter a stressful job?
        A) It needs strong analytical skills.
        B) It does not provide incentives.
        C) It involves tight deadlines.
        D) It requires excellent writing skills.
5) What makes print newspapers survive?
        A) Some people still enjoy reading a morning paper.
        B) Only few people like reading online media.
        C) Print newspaper is cheaper than electronic newspaper.
        D) Print newspaper is free.

Score =

Correct answers:

Exercise 4 – Dictation

For this ESL work listening task you need to listen to the following recording and then write down exactly what is said. You can listen several times. The recording has the passage spoken twice: the first time at a slow speed and the second time with pauses after every few words and the punctuation included.

At the end of the page there is a link to click that will show you the full text so you can check your answer.



Show Hidden Answers Listening Comprehension Passage
Show Passage »


Dictation Passage
Show Passage »

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