The second integrated speaking task is based on a lecture. Almost any subject that can appear in the listening section lectures (or in the reading section) may also be used for speaking task 4, including literature, business, psychology, meteorology, and biology. You won’t need any prior knowledge of these subjects in order to do well on this task.
The reading passage for speaking task 4 will be the same length as the passage for task 3; you will have about 45 seconds to read it. It will introduce a topic, often by defining a key term or idea with general descriptions. You can (and should) take notes as you read. Write down the key concept of the passage, and then touch on the main points that the passage makes. Generally speaking, this information will only be necessary to provide background; lecture-based integrated speaking questions do not ask you to discuss the reading passage in detail, because there is much more information in the lecture.
The speaker in the recording for speaking task 4 will always be a professor. S/he will elaborate on the topic found in the reading passage, by adding more details and giving specific examples that illustrate the information found in the passage.
Then you will need to talk in detail about how the lecture explains the ideas described in the text. Good, detailed notes will be crucial to answering this kind of question fully, so it’s important that you strengthen your note-taking skills by doing lots of practice! You cannot rely on the reading to give you your answer; you need to remember the specific details that were given in the lecture. Basically, you will summarize first the general idea in the reading, then the details in the lecture.
You will have thirty seconds to prepare your response, time that you should use to jot down the major points you want to make and to draw any necessary connections between the reading and the passage. Then you will speak for sixty seconds. Answer the question in enough detail and in such a way that someone who had not read the passage or heard the lecture could make sense of your response.