Challenges in Writing

Common mistakes made in the IELTS Writing task

There are two tasks Writing task 1 and Writing task 2, and in both Academic & 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.

It is essential that students should pay attention to the Answer Sheet and write answers in the right places. There are two marked places in the Answer sheet which says Task 1 and Task 2 to avoid the confusion examiner would explain you the same. Students have to make sure that Essay is written under Writing task 2 and the report for (Academic) or the letter for (General) – under Task 1.

Academic Writing Task 1 –

Report must be at least 150 words written in 20 minutes.

You should not write your opinion or copy words from the question given in question paper. Instead you may rephrase or use synonym.

Students tend to use bullets, never use Bullets.

Students assume that Task 1 in the Academic IELTS will be a chart or a graph, but even a diagram can be asked. As students don’t practice diagram then in the examination instead of completing the task in 20 minutes they take 30 minutes. This could be easily solved by practicing beforehand

When Academic Writing Task 1 is graded by IELTS examiners, they look for structure:

  • Introduction
  • Body
  • Conclusion

The Introduction should describe the purpose of your report and over all trends mentioned.

The Body should describe most important trends, avoid unnecessary details. Summarising doesn’t mean throwing away information, you need to select what’s important, organize it, compare and contrast.

The Conclusion should sum up the information given and compare if possible.

General Writing Task 1-

There are three types of Letter asked.

-Formal Letter

-Semi-Formal Letter

-Informal Letter

7 Essential elements of a Complete/Proper Letter

  1. Beginning (Dear…)
  2. Purpose (I am writing in regards to…)
  3. Body Paragraph 1: Describe the situation
  4. Body Paragraph 2: Solution
  5. Conclusion
  6. Concluding Line (Looking forward to hear from you)
  7. Closing Salutation (your name)

Very Important –

In IELTS your marks are taken away for writing an essay, a letter or a report that is too short. If you have written words lesser than 250 in writing task 2 you will lose marks. If a student doesn’t have enough time to write 250 words, should at least try as much as he/she can. It is best to aim 250-265 words to avoid penalty for under length. If your essay, letter or graph is not on the topic there are chances of it getting disqualified.

Writing Task 2 –

This is how your IELTS Essay is graded: you receive points for Task Response, Coherence and Cohesion, Lexical Resource & Grammatical Range and Accuracy.

‘Task Response’ means that your essay shows you have understood and covered topic from all its sides.

‘Coherence & Cohesion’ means how well you connected the paragraphs and sentences inside each paragraph. Every paragraph should be logically connected.

‘Lexical Resource’ means vocabulary and different types of sentences, simple and complex. You should be able to use words and their synonyms.

‘Grammatical Range & Accuracy’ means spelling and grammar of sentences. You should be able to spell words correctly by not avoiding articles and punctuation is also very important.

The first thing is to understand what kind of topic it is.

  • For an argument – you need to explain both the sides and agree with one of them
  • For an opinion – you need to present another point of view and say which one you agree with and why
  • For a problem – it has to be explained, discussed and solution has to be offered.