Common mistake in the IELTS Writing test. As you may know, there are 2 tasks, Writing Task 1 and Task 2, and in both Academic and General Training modules Task 1 is shorter (150 words) than Task 2 (250 words). Often people decide to write the Task 2 first, before writing Task 1. No problem so far, but we are getting to the really important bit.
It is essential that you pay attention to the Answer Sheet and write your answers in the right places. There are 2 marked spaces on the Answer Sheet that you get in the Writing test, one says "Task 1″ and the other says "Task 2″. To avoid confusing the examiner who will check your work, you need to make sure that the the essay is written under "Task 2″ and the report (for Academic) or the letter (for General Training) - under Task 1.
You should spend about 40 minutes on task 2:
☛ write in a formal style
☛ write at least 250 words
The difference between formal and informal styles is mainly in the vocabulary. Informal words are the ones used in everyday conversations and formal are used in books, contracts, business letters and essays. If the task requires formal writing - avoid using informal vocabulary. If the task requires informal writing, such as a letter to a friend, avoid using formal 'heavy' words.
Not everyone knows that there is a British and an American way of spelling words, and they are different. The question about the acceptable spelling came up a lot lately and I found out that many students are unsure how to spell words in the IELTS Listening, Reading and Writing tests - the British or the American way.
First, for those who have no idea what I'm talking about, let me explain: if you ask someone from the USA and someone from the UK to spell a word such as color, the American will spell "color" and the person from the UK will spell "colour". There are many other examples:
favorite (USA) - favourite (UK)
honor (USA) - honour (UK)
memorize (USA) - memorise (UK)
check (USA) - cheque (UK)
Transitional words and phrases are what gives your essays coherence, we need them to join sentences and thoughts together. Look at the lists below. These are transitional phrases that you can memorize and keep in your arsenal for the IELTS writing module.
Also, plus, in addition, further, furthermore, moreover, additionally, to add to that, next, in accordance with, accordingly, in agreement, finally, for instance, for example, in exemplification, exemplifying that, in fact, factually speaking, in terms of, and so forth, looking at the nexus between, in coordination with, along those lines, collectively speaking, generally speaking, indeed, undoubtedly, obviously, to be sure.
However, contrastingly, in contrast, on the contrary, on the other hand, To put it into perspective, from a different angle, nonetheless, nevertheless, but, yet, a catch to this is, sadly enough, as a hindrance, looking at the holdups, oddly enough, instead, in direct opposition, still, and rather.
You should spend about 20 minutes on task 1
☛ write in a formal style
☛ write at least 150 words
In the actual test you will be given the following instructions:
☛ Do not open this question paper until you are told to do so
☛ Write your name and candidate number in the spaces at the top of this page
☛ Read the instructions for each task carefully
☛ Answer both of the tasks
☛ Write at least 150 words for task 1
☛ Write at least 250 words for task 2
☛ Write your answers in the answer booklet
☛ Write clearly in pen or pencil; you may make alterations, but make sure your work is easy to read
☛ At the end of the test, hand in both the question paper and your answer booklet.
☛ The total time allowed for the IELTS Academic Writing test is 60 minutes.
☛ Time yourself and allow just one hour to complete both parts of the test.
☛ Task 2 contributes twice as much as task 1 to the Writing score.
In Task 2, candidates are asked to discuss a topic in response to a statement which presents a particular point of view, argument or issue. The task requires candidates to write a discursive piece of writing in which the question will typically ask them to discuss factual information, discuss a problem and present solutions, evaluate ideas or justify opinions. Candidate answers for Task 2 should be at least 250 words in length.
In Task 1, candidates are asked to write a letter which may need to be semi-formal or formal in tone in response to a given problem or situation. Candidates will be asked to include information relating to three bullet points in the question. Candidate answers should be at least 150 words in length for this task.
The answer is well written and contains some good arguments. It does tend to repeat these arguments but the writer's point of view remains clear throughout. The message is easy to fol ow and ideasare arranged well with good use of cohesivedevices. Thereare minor problemswith coherence andat times the expression is clumsy and imprecise.There is a wide range of structures thatare well handled with only small problemsinthe use of vocabulary,mainlyinthe areasofspelling andword choice.
The candidate has made a good at empt to describe the graphs looking at global trends and more detailed figures. There is, however, some information missing and the information is inaccurate in minor areas.The answer flows quite smoothly although connectives are over used or inappropriate, and some of the points do not link up well. The grammatical accuracy is quite goodandthelanguageusedtodescribethe trendsiswell handled. However,thereare problems with expressionand the appropriate choice ofwordsandwhilstthereis good structuralcontrol,thecomplexity and variation in the sentences are limited.
The length of the answer is just acceptable. There is a good atempt to describe the over all trends but the contentwouldhave been greatly improved ifthecandidate had included somereferenceto thefiguresgivenon thegraph. Withoutthese, thereaderislacking some importantinformation. The answer isquite difficultto followand there aresome punctuation errorsthatcause confusion. The structuresarefairlysimpleandeffortsto producemore complex sentencesarenotsuccessful.
In both Academic and General Training Modules Task 2 requires the candidates to formulate and develop a position in relation to a given prompt in the form of a question or statement. Ideas should be supported by evidence, and examples may be drawn from the candidates' own experience. Responses must be at least 250 words in length. Writing scripts are marked by trained and certificated IELTS examiners. Scores may be reported as whole bands or half bands. On the next pages you will find can did at es' answers to two sample Writing tests. There are two answers for each Writing task. Each answer has been awarded a bandscoreandisaccompaniedbyanexaminercommentonthecandidate'sperformance for that task.
The IELTS General Training Writing test takes 60 minutes. Candidates have to complete two tasks, of 150 and 250 words, as in the Academic module. However, Task 1 is always a letter, while Task 2 is an essay based on a given topic. The topics of the questions will be of general interest, and no specialist knowledge is required. For example, topics can include travel, accommodation, current affairs, shops and services, health and welfare, health and safety, recreation, social and physical environment.
The answer dealswellwith both the individualmedia trendsandthe overall comparisonofthese trends.The opening couldbe morefully developed with the inclusionof informationrelating to the groups studiedand the periodof time during which the study tookplace. There is a good variety of cohesive devices and the message can be followed quite easily although the expression is sometimes a little clumsy.Structures are complex and vocabulary is varied but there are errors in word forms, tense and voice thought he sedo not impede communication.
This criterion refers to the range and accurate use of the candidate's grammatical resource as manifested in the candidate's writing at sentence level.
This criterion refers to the range of vocabulary the can did ate has used and the accuracy and appropriate of that use in terms of the specific task.
Thiscriterion is concernedwith theoverallclarity andfluencyofthe message:howtheresponseorganizesandlinksinformation, ideasand language.
Coherencereferstothelinking ofideasthroughlogicalsequencing.Cohesionreferstothevaried and appropriate use ofcohesive devices (for example, logicalconnectors, pronouns and conjunctions) to assistinmakingthe conceptual andreferentialrelationships between andwithinsentencesclear.
Thiscriterion assesses howappropriately,accuratelyand relevantlytheresponsefulfilstherequirements setoutin thetask,usingtheminimum of150words. Academic Writing Task 1 is a writingtaskwhichhasadefinedinputanda largely predictable output.Itis basicalyaninformationtransfer taskwhichrelates narrowly tothefactualcontentofan inputdiagram and notto speculated explanations thatlieoutsidethe givendata. General Training WritingTask 1isalso awritingtaskwith a largelypredictableoutputinthateach tasksetsoutthecontextandpurposeoftheleter and the functionsthecandidateshould coverinordertoachievethispurpose.
This is the same as the IELTS writing Academic module. You will need to write an essay responding to a point of view, argument or problem. However, the essay may be in a slightly more personal style than for the academic essay.
The task of the general training module is to write a letter. You will be presented with a situation and you will need to write your letter explaining the situation or asking for information. The letter may be one of three styles:
Your response will have to reflect the appropriate style.
Here is an example question:
You should spend about 20 minutes on this task.
You want to sell your television. You think a friend of yours might like to buy it from you.
Write a letter to your friend. In your letter explain
Why you are selling the television
Describe the television
Suggest a date when your friend can come and see it
Write at least 150 words.
You do NOT need to write any addresses.
Task 2 is an essay question. You will have to write a response to the question giving reasons and examples to support your answer. The topics are general interest.
Here is an example of a question:
You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
Write about the following topic:
The dangers and complexities of the modern world have made the mobile phone an absolute necessity for children.
To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge and experience.
Write at least 250 words.
In the first section you will need to describe, summarize or explain a graph, diagram or process. Here is an example question:
You should spend about 20 mintues on this task.
The chart shows components of GDP in the UK from 1992 to 2000.
Summarize the information by selecting and reporting the main features and make comparisons where relevant.
The writing part of the IELTS test varies depending on whether you are taking the exam to study or work abroad.
If you are going to study abroad, you will take the Academic Writing Section.
If you are intending to work abroad, you will take the General Training Section.
The total test time for both is 60 minutes.
The first parts of each are different. In the general training module, you will have to write a letter, but in the academic module, you will have to describe some kind of graph or diagram.