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IELTS Writing Task 2: ✍️ Everything You Need to Know

When helping students prepare for the IELTS test, one of the biggest fears is how to do well in IELTS Writing Task 2. 

IELTS Writing Task 2 is the second part of the writing test, where you are presented with a point of view, argument or problem and asked to write an essay in response. Your essay should be in a formal style, at least 250 words in length and you should aim to complete it in under 40 minutes. 

IELTS Writing Task 2: Everything You Need to Know

how to write good essay for ielts

In this video, I’ll outline exactly what you must do to create an IELTS Writing Task 2 essay that could score a Band 7, 8 or 9.

It doesn’t matter if you’re new to IELTS or if you’ve failed the exam before – I’ve broken everything down into a simple 3-step process that anyone can use to improve their scores! Watch the video above to find out what they are.

5 Steps to a Band 7 in IELTS Writing Task 2

1. Understand the question.

You must understand the question before you attempt to answer it. This way, you’ll know exactly what the examiner is looking for. One of the biggest mistakes students make is not answering the question fully, which stops them from getting a score higher than a Band 5.

To analyse the question , you must first identify the question type, then identify the keywords in the question and finally identify the instructions words. This will help you understand exactly what the examiner wants you to do with the question.

2. Plan your answer.

The students who get the highest marks in Writing Task 2 always plan their answers for up to 10 minutes. Planning helps you organise your ideas and structure your essay before you write it, saving you time and helping you produce a clear and coherent essay.

3. Write an introduction.

The introduction should answer the question directly. This tells the examiner that you know what you are doing straight away and helps you write your main body paragraphs.

4. Write the main body paragraphs.

This is where you give the examiner more detail . You do this by stating your main points and supporting these with explanations and relevant examples.

5. Write a conclusion.

In your conclusion , you should provide a summary of what you already said in the rest of your essay.

how to write good essay for ielts

4 Ways to Improve your Score in IELTS Writing Task 2

Many people know they need to improve their writing skills but don’t know how to do it. Here are 4 ways you can boost your score in Writing Task 2:

1. Understand the exam.

You must first understand what IELTS Writing Task 2 is, what you are expected to do and how to give the examiners what they want. This is the first stage and one that is often overlooked.

There are many online resources, often with conflicting and poor-quality information, so finding a reliable source of information is key.

2. Identify your weak areas.

If your car breaks down, you would try and identify which part caused the problem. If you get sick, your doctor will run tests to determine the exact cause of your symptoms.

IELTS Writing Task 2 is the same. We must first identify WHY you are not getting the score you need before we can help you improve.

However, be very careful! You wouldn’t ask the average man on the street for medical advice, so make sure you find someone who knows what they are doing and has the expertise to help you with this.

3. Fix the problems.

Now that we know what the problems are, we must fix them.

If your grammar needs work, fix those issues. If your vocabulary is lacking, work on fixing this issue.

Just as a good doctor can help you fix a medical problem, a good IELTS teacher can help you fix your specific issues.

4. Practice and get feedback.

Practice alone will not help you. It is an essential part of your preparation, but you must also get feedback on your work if you are really going to improve.

You wouldn’t try to teach yourself how to drive without an instructor, would you?

Find someone who will give you accurate and helpful feedback on your work. Otherwise, you will not be able to move to the last stage.

Now that you have understood what you need to do, identified the exact areas you need to work on, improved those areas, and received feedback on your work, you are now ready to get the IELTS Writing Task 2 score you deserve.

how to write good essay for ielts

Writing Task 2 Structures 

I want to warn you about structures because they are not a magic wand that will help you automatically get a higher score. They WILL help you, but please realise that they are just a small part of your overall score.

These structures provide a sentence-by-sentence template for all the main Task 2 question types, making your job much easier on exam day.

  • Task 2 Essay Structures

Essential Writing Task 2 Skills 

how to write good essay for ielts

No matter how good your English is, you must still learn IELTS writing skills before taking the Writing Task 2 test. These helpful guides will take you through each of these skills step-by-step:

  • How to Plan an Essay

Making a good plan actually saves you time when you write your essay. This guide will show you how to plan and write a clear essay every time.

  • How to Think of Relevant Ideas

This guide provides 5 different methods to help you quickly think of relevant ideas that are directly linked to the question.

  • How to Write a Complex Sentence

Complex sentences help you boost your score for grammar. They are actually very simple to write and are not complex at all.

  • How to Paraphrase

Paraphrasing is one of the essential IELTS skills for all parts of the IELTS test. You should paraphrase the question in the very first sentence of your essay to help boost your vocabulary score in Writing Task 2.

  • How to Write a Supporting Paragraph

Supporting paragraphs are the main body paragraphs and are the meat in the sandwich. This is where you provide the detail the examiner is looking for in the form of explanations and examples.

  • How to Write a Thesis Statement

A thesis statement tells the examiner your opinion. Many IELTS Writing Task 2 questions specifically ask for your opinion, and if you don’t write it clearly, you have not answered the question properly. This article shows you how, where and when to give your opinion.

How many words should I write?

Around 250 words? Exactly 250 words or over 250 words? How many words over? How do I know how many words I have? Will I lose marks if I write too many words? This article answers all those questions.

  • How to Understand and Analyse Any Question

A critical part of answering any question. This article shows you how to break down any Task 2 question and identify the keywords, micro-keywords and instruction words to help you answer the question effectively.

  • How to Write a Great Introduction

The introduction is the first thing the examiner reads; therefore, we must give them a good first impression. I share a very specific sentence-by-sentence structure in this article to help you write introductions quickly and effectively.

  • Task 2 Marking Criteria 

Do you know how Task 2 is marked? What is the difference between a Band 5 and a Band 8 answer? This article breaks down the marking criteria and explains it in simple language so you can give the IELTS examiners exactly what they want.

  • How to Write a Conclusion

A good conclusion should be a summary of your main points. The conclusion is the last thing the examiner reads, and if you can write a good one, you will leave them with a very good impression.

  • Using Examples

Each of your supporting paragraphs should have a specific example that supports and illustrates your main point. This is an essential skill to learn if you want to get one of the higher band scores.

  • Cohesive Devices

Cohesive devices (sometimes called linking words) are one of the most misunderstood and misused elements of writing. Therefore, you must learn how to use them and when to use them.

  • The Danger of Synonyms

While synonyms are very important, they can also really reduce your mark if used incorrectly.

  • Paragraphing and Editing

This article will show you how to make your writing as clear and as easy to read as possible. It will also advise you on whether to use a pen or pencil.

  • IELTS Writing Task 2: 8 Steps to Success

Read this blog now to access our 61-page Task 2 strategy.

  • IELTS Writing Tips

I have compiled these tips after years of teaching IELTS, and all of them have been approved by IELTS examiners.

  • Coherence and Cohesion

This is a video lesson that shows you in practical terms how to improve your coherence and cohesion score.

how to write good essay for ielts

Writing Task 2 Common Topics 

how to write good essay for ielts

Knowing the common topics can help you prepare for the test more efficiently. Here are the 10 most common topics over the last few years. Studying hard is great, but don’t forget to study smart.

The article below will show you the top 10 most common IELTS topics.

  • Most Common Task 2 Topics 

Full IELTS Writing Task 2 Practice Lessons 

how to write good essay for ielts

Here are some lessons that I have used when teaching students about IELTS Writing Task 2. I have changed them so that you can easily learn from home. They are very long but contain all the necessary information combined with the skills above.

  • Agree or Disagree (Opinion) Lesson

In this lesson, we look at how to tackle an ‘agree or disagree’ question. Many people worry about whether to take one side of the other or discuss both sides. Additionally, people also worry about how to deal with ‘To what extent’ question types. We allay all of these fears in this lesson.

  • Discussion Essay Lesson

‘Discuss both views’ questions often confuse people because you are asked to do many things in one essay. As such, it is very important to remember that the question asks you to discuss BOTH views AND give YOUR opinion.

  • Problem and Solution Essay Lesson

These questions are much easier than you think. You probably discuss problems and solutions in your day-to-day life all the time. Keep it simple.

  • Advantages and Disadvantages Lesson 

There are a couple of different types of advantages and disadvantages questions. This lesson will show you how to answer them.

  • Writing Task 2 Exercise with Video

Writing is a skill, and just like any other skill, it is important to practice to improve.

  • From Band 6.5 to 8 Demo Lesson

This is my most comprehensive free lesson on IELTS Writing Task 2. We show you how we took one VIP student from Band 6.5 to an amazing 8.

Sample Answers

You must have some good examples to compare your writing and see if you are on the right track. Click the link below for lots of sample answers and over 100 questions.

Task 2 Sample Answers

  • Agree or Disagree Sample Essays
  • Task 2 Band 9 Sample Essay
  • Latest Real Task 2 Questions
  • Official Sample Test Questions
  • Cambridge Sample Questions
  • Free Practice Test
  • How To Use Task 2 Samples
  • Recent Confusing Questions
  • IELTS Writing Practice Guide

IELTS Writing Task 2 Essential Information

  • You must write an essay in response to a question.
  • You must write 250 words or more.
  • Task 2 is worth 2/3 of your total mark on the Writing test.
  • You should spend around 40 minutes on this part of the test.
  • General Training and Academic are essentially the same for Task 2. However, they are different for Task 1.
  • There are certain types of questions that you will be asked, for example, opinion, discussion etc. See below for more detail on these.
  • Task Achievement (25%)
  • Coherence and Cohesion (25%)
  • Lexical Resource (25%)
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy (25%)

Grammar and Vocabulary

how to write good essay for ielts

Grammar is one of the four things you will be marked on in the Writing Task 2 test. Finding out what your common grammar mistakes are and then fixing them is a very powerful way to boost your score in this area. Here are some common grammar mistakes I have found after making hundreds of tests.

  • Top 10 Grammar Mistakes

For most IELTS students, the problem is not grammar in general. In fact, it is usually just 1-2 problem areas. Therefore, when you fix these main weaknesses, you’ll be able to improve your grammar and your writing score dramatically.

  • Using Personal Pronouns

Hint- They aren’t as big of a deal as you think.

See the interactive tool below for the answers to the most commonly asked questions we receive about IELTS Writing Task 2: 

IELTS Writing Task 2 FAQs

How can i improve my writing.

You will find all the resources you need on our Writing Task 2 page. Click the link below:

Writing Task 2

We also have two Task 2 courses for those that need to improve their Task 2 skills and strategy. They are both based online and completely free of charge. Learn more about them below:

Task 2 5 Day Challenge

Task 2 Essay Builder

If you need serious help or personalised feedback, you should check out our VIP Course. There is a waiting list, but you can add your name here:

How can I get a Band 7, 8 or 9?

The answer to this question is different for every individual IELTS student, as it depends on a number of factors, including your work ethic, English skills and exam strategy. You'll find a guide to answering this question in this article

If you need serious help with improving your IELTS scores, you should check out our online writing course. There is a waiting list, but you can add your name by clicking the link below:

Can you correct my writing?

Please click the link below and it will give you all the information you need about our writing correction service:

Writing Correction Service

Do you have any sample answers?

Yes, you will find them at the link below:

Will using 'high level' or 'academic' words help me improve my score?

Probably not.

Read my recent article about IELTS vocabulary here:

5 Things You Need to Know about IELTS Vocabulary

Can I use idioms?

No, you should not write idioms for Task 2.

Can I use personal pronouns?

You should avoid using personal pronouns, but it is fine to use them when giving your personal opinion.

Do you write a conclusion for Task 2?

Yes, it is very difficult to get a good score in Task 2 if you haven't finished your essay with a conclusion. You will find an in-depth lesson on conclusions here:

How to Write an Effective Task 2 Conclusion

How many paragraphs should I write?

Most IELTS task 2 essays follow the same basic four paragraph structure:

  • Introduction
  • Supporting Paragraph 1
  • Supporting Paragraph 2

However, you can find more comprehensive help with structuring your Task 2 essays here:

5 Day Challenge

Do I need to plan my essay?

I would highly recommend planning your essay. A good plan acts like a map that guides you through the essay, ensuring that you give the examiner exactly what they need to award you the score you need. You can find help with planning your essays here: How to Plan an IELTS Essay

You must write at least 250 words in Writing Task 2.

I would suggest that you aim to write around 270-280 words in total. Aiming for 20-30 words more than the required amount makes you more likely to reach the word limit without setting an unrealistic goal.

Will I lose marks if I don't write enough words?

Yes, if you don't write the required number of words, you will lose marks in 'Task Achievement' for not answering the question fully. Read more here .

Can I use contractions?

No, should not use contractions when you are writing an academic essay.

how to write good essay for ielts

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10 steps to writing high-scoring IELTS essays

Date Published

01 February 2023

This article was first published on IELTS.IDP.com

Whether you take the General Training or Academic IELTS test, the second writing task is writing an essay in response to a problem or argument. Here are 10 easy steps, with lots of tips, to guide you on how to write high-scoring essays.

How is the IELTS essay component marked?

Fairness and accuracy are critically important when marking IELTS writing tasks . Your essay will be marked by at least two experienced IELTS examiners on the following criteria:

  • Task response - Whether you answered the question fully and supported your answer well.
  • Coherence and cohesion - How well you linked your ideas together.
  • Lexical resource - Whether you used a wide range of vocabulary correctly and appropriately.
  • Grammatical range and accuracy - How many grammatical structures you used accurately and appropriately.

Each of these criteria is worth 25 percent of your total score for the essay writing task. Both of your writing tasks are used to calculate your overall writing band score.

How to write high-scoring essays in 10 easy steps

Step one: plan your time.

The Writing test (consisting of Writing tasks 1 and 2) takes approximately 60 minutes. Plan to spend around 20 minutes on your first task, and 40 minutes on your essay task. A sample plan for your time might be:

  • 5 to 10 minutes reading the essay question and planning your answer
  • 15 to 20 minutes writing your first draft
  • 10 minutes proofreading and editing your essay

How to write a good introduction

Step two: Read the question

While you may be anxious to jump straight into writing, make sure you take the time to carefully read the essay question. If you misunderstand the question, you risk writing an essay that does not address the issues properly which will lower your score.

Top 10 podcasts to help you improve your English

Step three: Highlight the issues to address

There will be multiple issues that you will need to address in your essay. Addressing each issue individually is key to achieving a high essay score. Highlight each individual issue that you will need to address.

The A to Z of IELTS: E is for Essays

Step four: Outline your response

Create an outline of how you will respond to the issues in your essay. This will serve as your ‘blueprint’ when you write your first draft. As a general rule your essay should have:

  • An introduction stating what you will talk about
  • Two or three body paragraphs , each addressing one issue or idea
  • A conclusion summing up what was discussed in the essay

Make sure you note which idea or issue you will address in each paragraph. Check that the issues you highlighted are all accounted for in your outline.

Step five: Expand on your ideas

Write some notes about any key points or ideas you’d like to include in each paragraph. When you’re writing your first draft, these notes will help to make sure you don’t forget any ideas you want to include.

Mind maps to build your vocabulary resource for IELTS

Step six: Plan how you will connect your ideas

Connecting your ideas clearly and correctly is critical to achieving a high essay score. Try to use a range of linking words to make your essay easy to read. You can use connecting devices and phrases to:

List connected ideas

  • ‘Firstly, secondly, thirdly’
  • ‘Furthermore’

Provide more information

Compare ideas.

  • ‘On the other hand’
  • ‘Alternatively’

Don’t fall into the trap of trying to put a linking word in every sentence. Essays will score higher when the writer uses linking words only where necessary and appropriate.

Step seven: Write your first draft

Now that you’ve planned your essay, it’s time to write your first draft. Follow the outline you’ve created and expand on the notes and ideas you included there.

  • Avoid informal language unless it is appropriate.
  • Avoid spelling and grammatical errors where possible.
  • Use a mix of sentence structures such as simple sentences, complex sentences and compound sentences.

How to boost your IELTS Writing score

Step eight: Proofread your essay

When you have completed the first draft of your essay, it’s important to proofread it. Read your essay from start to finish.

You can read it silently, but it may help to read it out loud if you can do so without disturbing others. Make a mental note or mark your paper anywhere that you may need to fix an issue.

How to access FREE official IELTS mock tests

Step nine: Edit your essay

Carefully go through the issues you noted while proofreading. Edit or rewrite these until they look and sound correct. Examples of issues and how to edit them may include:

  • The sentence is too long. A sentence is probably too long if you need to take a breath in the middle of reading it. Try splitting this up into smaller sentences.
  • A sentence sounds strange when you read it out loud. Try using different words or punctuation until it sounds right. It may need to be connected to another sentence.
  • The same word appears many times. Think about any other words you could use instead.

There is more than one main idea in each paragraph. Move any unrelated sentences to the correct paragraph. Each paragraph should address one issue only.

IELTS Writing: How to organise your responses

Step 10: Proofread your essay again

After your edits and before submitting your essay , give it one final proofread. Make sure you have:

  • Included all the points you highlighted in step three
  • Followed your outline from step four
  • Used good connecting words from step six
  • Fixed any errors or issues in step nine

IELTS Writing: 8 steps towards a band 8

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Also, the IELTS Familiarisation test is designed to give test takers an idea of what to expect on the actual IELTS test. It includes sample questions from different part of the test, such as Listening, Reading, and Writing. Set yourself up for success and explore our extensive library of preparation materials today.

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How to write IELTS writing task 2

Home  »  IELTS academic task 2 » How to write IELTS writing task 2

The key to writing a good  IELTS essay  for task 2 is to use a process or system. For a writing task 2 IELTS academic essay that will bring you success in the  IELTS exam , you need to think, not just about the result, but consider the process too. An essay is the product of a process and if you leave out just one step in the process the result may be less than ideal.

Writing a good  IELTS Writing Task 2  starts with understanding the steps in the process and what the outcomes should be. Remember, you are recommended to spend 40 minutes on this task and you should write at least 250 words.

In this article, you’ll learn the following.

Why using a system or process is essential to the success of your writing task

A recommended process with suggestions on how you should handle each step in the process

How an explanation of what can go wrong and what mistakes you’re likely to make if you skip that step in the process

There is no magic formula to writing an excellent  IELTS essay  but the secret is to have a system and to adapt that system to one that gives you the best results.

Let’s look at the IELTS essentials for task 2

Step 1 – read the question and understand what the examiner is asking.

Make sure that you understand what question is being asked. One of the worst mistakes you can make is to go off on a tangent and fail to answer the question. IELTS questions are precisely worded and they require a specific answer. Time spent reading the question and understanding the requirements is time well spent. It is the surest way to ensure that you answer the question well.

IELTS is very specific and it is not okay to write about the general topic. Instead, the answer must be very specific and pointed.

Common errors

You completely misunderstand the question

The question looks like one that you have written in the past. You rewrite the same answer only to find that the question was not the same.

Your essay is too general and doesn’t answer the question that was asked. For example, the question asks whether you agree or disagree but you don’t give a clear answer.

Step 2 – think about what you’re going to write for task 2

This is the stage at which you plan the essay, but you can’t just plan. You must think. Don’t just react with a ready-made essay which may or may not answer the question asked. You need to carefully read the question and decide how you can answer it using your language skills, your experience, and your knowledge.

Of course, the essay that you have previously written may offer you some insights, vocabulary and even ideas, but make sure that what you use applies without doubt to the question which has been asked in the exam. It is as important that you consider parts of previous essays to include in the answer as it is to know what parts to exclude.

You set off to write the exam without putting in enough thought and part way through you realize that you haven’t answered the question, or the essay is incoherent. Now it is too late to start again.

You fail to answer the question asked.

Writing the essay

Every essay should have three parts, so it is useful to consider each part of the essay as a step in the process of essay writing.

Step 3 – writing the introduction

The introduction is an important step in the writing process. It sets the tone and gives the examiner the first impression of your skills and abilities, so if you get the introduction wrong you could start off on the wrong foot.

In IELTS writing task 2, the introduction should link your answer to the question. You should, therefore, write the introduction considering both the question at hand and the body of the essay that you plan to write.

For a top score, you need to ‘set out a position’ – in other words, if you are asked whether you agree or disagree with a statement, you should make it clear in the introduction which one you are going to be doing in the essay. This is because the task achievement score depends on you setting out a position and maintaining this throughout the essay. It shouldn’t be a surprise to the examiner at the end of the essay to find out whether you agree or disagree!

On the other hand, most task 2 questions do not require you to give an opinion. If you are required to discuss both sides or talk about the advantages and disadvantages of something, make it clear in the introduction that this is what you will be doing.

Having favourite phrases to write most essays is a huge help here. Practically any essay you can think of can start with ‘many people believe that…’ because as we know, ‘many’ does not mean ‘most’. ‘Some people think that’ or ‘some people believe that’ followed up by ‘while others are of the opinion that…’ is also useful when summarising the question and introducing new ideas.

You don’t link the question properly and identify its contents

Your position in answering the question is unclear.

Step 4 – developing the essay ideas, your approach, and your explanations

In approaching the main body of the essay, you must ensure that answer that you give is not only clear, and accurately answers the question, it must also be coherent and well-structured. Divide your essay up into paragraphs that explain just one idea per paragraph. Ensure that you explain how your ideas relate to the question.

Common errors found in task 2

Your ideas don’t adequately answer the question

You have not supported your ideas with examples or reasons

You have given plenty of detail but not make it clear how the details relate to the question.

Step 5 – conclude your essay with a summary that completes the circle

Before you write your conclusion, you need to read through your essay and make sure that it is complete and coherent. Your conclusion should round off your essay and complete it. It should summarise the main points in the body and reflect the connection between the introduction and the question.

A good conclusion summarises the contents of the essay in as few words as possible.

You fail to write a conclusion at all. An essay without a conclusion is, in fact, not an essay

The conclusion doesn’t summarise the essay or it fails to answer the question.

The conclusion recaps the question but doesn’t mention the main points (topic sentences) in the body of the essay.

Step 6 – re-read your essay

Unlike research papers or essays written as homework, you only get one chance at writing the exam essay. It’s a good idea to read your essay through at various intervals during the exam. Leaving this to the end may be too late. You should also read it once more when you get to the end to ensure that it makes sense and is a coherent whole. Your essay needs to be clear – and give your opinion only when toy are asked for it.

Stick to a process and you’ll avoid two serious problems

 What are the problems?

Incoherence – disjointed essays that cause confusion

You have a much better chance of ensuring that your essay is coherent if you use a set method to write it,. This is because with a method you would have gone through all the steps necessary to ensure coherence, moving from step 1 to step 2 to step 3 and so on. This means that you have given each part of the essay an equal level of importance. If you start with the end in mind without considering each step along the way, you may miss out on an essential stage of the process and end up with an essay which lacks coherence.

Answering the question with the wrong essay

Many students write essays in preparation for the exam. The problem with this is that, in your eagerness to answer with a carefully prepared essay, you may not answer the test question as it has been asked. This is especially true for ‘what do you think’ essays.

It may also happen that the essay question that you are faced with may not fit any of the pre-planned essays that you had in mind for your answer and you panic. In this case it is useful to have a reliable process to help you to write that winning essay. If you have a process you should not be worried and can enter the exam room with confidence, knowing that you have a system that will allow you to answer almost any question that’s thrown at you. When you have learnt the process of answering IELTS exams it all gets a lot easier.

Giving a list of reasons rather than a clear argument and supporting arguments for each paragraph.

 This can be challenging for a lot of students. Many IELTS students think that the more ideas mentioned the better in writing task 2 questions, but that isn’t usually true. When talking about the advantages and disadvantages of solar power, for example, many students would be tempted to mention as many ideas as possible in the ‘advantages’ paragraph in order to maximise their score – reliance on sunshine, cost, challenges of setting it up and repairs in remote regions of the world… but you will score more by focusing on one strong argument in your answer and include examples from your own experience and more information.

Now for some practice

Take an essay that you have previously written and rewrite it. This is not an exercise in correcting errors in the prior essay, but rather an opportunity to take note of the process of writing an essay. The reason we use an old essay is that the ideas and vocabulary already exist. So, you can pay attention to the process, or the how of writing rather than the what.

Don’t worry too much about how long its takes, but pay attention to each phrase and ask yourself what you are trying to do all along the way

Take a look at some  sample task 2 essays to help you prepare. We also have an IELTS  writing evaluation service  that will help you improve your band score!

Here’s another example.

Where it says ‘do you agree or disagree’, that means you MUST make it clear what you think. Although it’s fine to say there are arguments for both sides it’s easier to come down firmly on one side or the other. Similarly, ‘is this a positive or negative development’ questions are easier to answer by choosing one or the other UNLESS the IELTS question specifically says ‘discuss both views and give your own opinion’. Here is an example:

IELTS Agree/Disagree question

‘To what extent do you agree or disagree’ questions or ‘discuss both views and give your opinions’ are better for looking at both sides. For an agree or disagree question, it’s fine to focus on just one.

Writing Task 2 Tips for IELTS (Question Analysis) - Complete Test Success

TOP TIP – write a concession!

A concession phrase is a high-level skill that will boost your task achievement score if done correctly. The idea is to use an OPPOSITE argument to show that you understand another perspective. For example, if you were writing two body paragraphs agreeing with the statement in the question above, you could also write:

Although some people may be concerned about the cost of replacing plastic goods with glass, it could be argued that our first responsibility is to the environment.

You’ve shown you understand another view (it’s expensive to change current production methods) but made a new point (the environment is more important).

However, if you’re going to do this, remember that a concession statement can ONLY be half a sentence. Any more and you’ve gone off topic and your paragraph will not match your topic sentence. Look for examples of strong concession statements in example essays and only attempt it if you’re feeling very confident.

Keep practising!!

It is important to practice as many questions as you can, and many people say that they improved their score by focusing on planning as much as writing full writing task 2 questions. Keep these tips and ideas in front of you to check your planning and writing strategies.

It’s also useful to keep a list of relevant examples from your own life to mention in the test. These can include large companies you know about, local businesses you are aware of, and even government policies for your region (and whether they are a positive or negative development and whether you agree or disagree with them!)

Audio tutorial

We also have audio tutorials available.

You can download or listen to the audio version here:

| Direct Download Here  |  Stitcher  |  iTunes  |  Spotify  |  Transcript

Tutorials and Tips to Prepare for Task 2

How to Get Ideas for Task 2

Band 9 Sample Essay

Extremely Useful Sentences for Task 2

Five Powerful Sentence Structures to use in your IELTS Writing test

How to use comparisons in Task 2

Concession Paragraphs for “do I agree/disagree essays”

How to write an IELTS Essay Conclusion

IELTS Cohesion and Coherence

3 ways to paraphrase for your Task 2 introduction

Marking Criteria for IELTS Writing

Topics Sentences for Your Essays

7 Ways to Improve your Sentences in Your IELTS Essays

Grammar for IELTS Writing

Academic Collocations for Task 2

Podcast: Play in new window | Download

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  • Academic practice
  • General practice
  • Task 1 Academic
  • Task 1 General
  • Task 2 (essay)

Essay samples with tips and answers

Sample 1 ("Violence in media") Presenting opinion

Sample 2 ("Working students") Suggesting a solution

Sample 3 ("Death penalty") Pros & cons

Sample 4 ("Loss of bio-diversity") Cause/solution

Sample 5 ("Obesity") Causes and effects

Sample 6 ("Salary vs. job satisfaction") Agree/disagree

Sample 7 ("Sedentary lifestyle") Problem/solution

More IELTS Writing task 2 questions >

IELTS Writing task 2 - Essay

Here you can find all the essential information about IELTS Writing essay .

IELTS Writing task 2 (or IELTS essay ) is the same task for Academic and General IELTS . You will be presented with a specific topic and asked to write an 250-word essay about it. You should normally spend 40 minutes on IELTS Writing task 2.

On this page you will see :

IELTS Writing task 2 question sample

  • Types of IELTS essay questions
  • How to answer these questions
  • More IELTS Writing task 2 questions and answers

You can get a lot of different topics for your IELTS Writing task 2. You can be asked to give your opinion, to state solutions to some problem, to describe advantages and disadvantages of something and so on.

Here's an example of how your IELTS Writing task 2 may look like :

Immigration has a major impact on the society.

What are the main reasons of immigration? To what consequences can it lead?

Write at least 250 words.

You can find the band-9 answer here >

More IELTS Writing task 2 questions & topics >

how to write good essay for ielts

How to write IELTS Essay?

1) Determine your opinion on the topic

  • Giving your opinion
  • Agree/disagree
  • Suggesting a solution
  • Pros and cons

Depending on the topic, decide what is your opinion on it and why. Have a clear position, don't hesitate between two opinions! Then find examples you will use for this task. You should spend a few minutes on planning.

2) Write an answer using the following structure:

Note that this description is very general. To learn more specific answering strategies, look at the different question types .

3) Style your essay

Use various words and structures , linking devices and avoid repetition.

Use some words from academic word list .

Do not use informal style and avoid irrelevant information, you will receive less points for your work.

Also, don't forget to write at least 250 words, writing less will affect your mark negatively. You should aim at 260-280 words. You won’t get more points for a longer essay.

Other things that might affect your mark:

  • Fluency : if your handwriting is not illegible for the examiner and he/she can’t read it properly, you are likely to lose points.
  • Unoriginal answer : if you learnt a topic by heart and wrote it, you might get a low score for your essay. IELTS examiner assesses only your own thoughts and opinions.
  • Limited answer : if you only answer half of the question and don’t expand your opinion, you will not get more than a band score 5 for the task.
  • Information about IELTS Writing test
  • Top 10 IELTS Writing tips
  • Writing vocabulary

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how to write good essay for ielts

IELTS Writing Task 2: 8 steps towards a band 8

In IELTS Writing Task 2, you will need to write an essay. Let our IELTS Experts walk you through 8 steps that can help you get a band 8. Take a closer look at the assessment criteria, how to structure your essay and common mistakes to avoid.

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To achieve a band 8 in IELTS  Writing Task 2 , you will need to produce an essay that contains all the positive features contained in the band 8 writing assessment criteria. Let's take a look at these in the table below.  

Using the band descriptors as a guide we are going to go through the 8 steps to get you on your way to a band 8 in Writing Task 2.  

We will start with the task response before moving through all the criteria to show you what an examiner will be looking for in your response.

Step 1: Answer is relevant to the question

Answer what you have been asked in the question. Don’t produce an essay that is close to a topic you have previously prepared. Make sure your examples and ideas are relevant. If you generalise too much and are not specific enough this will affect how your ideas are presented to the examiner.  

Make sure your ideas are directly related to the question  

Use ideas and examples that you are familiar with, and that relate directly to the topic 

Extend your answer to include a number of ideas that will support the question.  


Include irrelevant information  


Produce a memorised essay  

Present ‘recent’ research or statistics related to the topic “At least 41% of all men…”

Step 2: Answer all parts of the question

You must read the question carefully and decide how many parts are in it. You must answer all parts of the question to reach a band 6 or higher.  

Let’s look at some example IELTS question prompts and see how many parts are in each, if you need to present your opinion. Remember, it is very important to present a clear position when answering the statement to show that you understand the question being asked and to keep that position clear throughout the essay.

Read the question carefully and decide how many parts are in it 

Present your opinion and support it throughout the whole essay 

If asked to present both views, make sure each view is presented equally (similar paragraph length) 

Watch for plurals. If you are asked to give ‘advantages’, you must present a minimum of 2  

Watch for ‘and’. You may need to comment on more than one element  

Write more than 250 words.  


Ignore parts of the question  

Assume that your opinion is clear, use the first person to ensure the examiner knows it’s your opinion ‘I think’  

Tell the examiner what you are going to say and what you have said  

Produce a short essay. 

Step 3: Organise your essay logically, with clear progression using linking phrases

Ideas must be expressed and ordered clearly - starting with an introduction and moving through to a conclusion. 

If you are asked to present both views and your opinion, state your opinion at the beginning of the essay and then move on to present both views. You can then come back to your own opinion and then conclude the essay. This is a logical way to present these ideas.  

Use a range of linking words and phrases, but don’t overuse them 

Use adverbial phrases, rather than single basic linkers 

Use referencing and substitution to avoid repetition (this/them/the issue/the problem)  

Use punctuation to make your writing coherent  

Make sure your ideas are sequenced correctly  

Make sure your ideas are logical and easy to follow  

Use a separate paragraph for the introduction and the conclusion   

Use one paragraph for each idea or topic area. 

Overuse basic linking words like firstly (instead, try using ‘The first reason for/ The primary reason for this’)  

Start every sentence with a linker (Try to put it in the middle of a sentence. E.g. “Some people believe, however, that individuals must also take responsibility for the environment” or “I believe, on the other hand, that individuals do have a responsibility to…”)  

Use numbers, symbols or abbreviations (1, 2, etc, &, +)  

Use headings or subheadings  

Underline words or phrases 

Use one-sentence paragraphs  

Start every sentence with a linking device. 

Step 4: Organise your essays into paragraphs

Use paragraphs to organise your essay into clear parts. Make sure each paragraph contains a clear and developed topic with a minimum of two sentences.  

You can use the acronym “PEEL” when writing your essay:  

Point – introduce your topic or topic sentence 

Example – an example that supports your point 

Explain – why this evidence supports your point 

Link – transition to the next topic or paragraph 

You must use enough paragraphs to clearly show a structured response. This will show that you can organise and present your thoughts and ideas logically.  

Here are some ideas on how many paragraphs you could include in an essay: 

Use paragraphs 

Use linkers between and within your paragraphs 

Leave a space between each paragraph (a line)  

Use a paragraph for each topic  

Use an introduction and a conclusion. 


Use single-sentence paragraphs 

Use very long paragraphs that cover a whole page (IELTS on paper)

Step 5: Use less common vocabulary and spell it correctly

You will see in the band descriptors that a band 8 writer skillfully uses uncommon lexical items. When we learn a language, we use common and uncommon terms.  Common terms  are words and phrases we use every day to refer to personal experience and daily habits.  Uncommon terms  are used when we discuss specific topics or when we use idiomatic language (phrasal verbs).  

Words that are old-fashioned and not used in everyday speech should not be used. If you choose a synonym, the meaning must be the same and must not alter the idea being presented. For example, adolescent/teenager have close meaning and can be used interchangeably, however, toddler/baby have quite different meanings. 

Collocation is also mentioned in band 8, and it is assumed that you know which words go together, and which words are suitable to use for different topics.  

If you are discussing child crime, you could use the term ‘minor’ as this is a legal term used to describe children under the age of 18.  

If you use phrasal verbs, make sure that you are using the correct preposition as it can change the meaning:  

throw  out/away = discard  

throw up  = vomit/get sick  

Idioms (cultural language) should only be used if you understand them completely and if they fit the topic you are discussing.  

Use precise word choices  

Use language that we use in everyday speech  

Use words that you understand  

Use words and phrases that are related to the topic  

Use collocation and phrasal verbs (words that go together naturally – environmental pollution | major issue | promising future) 

Make spelling mistakes  

Make typos  

Mix up American and British spelling (You should use one or the other)  

Use a word if you don’t understand it or cannot spell it.  

Use imprecise words like ‘stuff/thing’  

Use slang like ‘gonna’  

Use old-fashioned language [the masses| denizens | myopic view | Hitherto]  

Overuse synonyms, one is enough 

Use idioms/clichés  

Use contractions (can’t, doesn’t)

Step 6: Don’t use memorised language, phrases or examples

Don’t use any memorised language, phrases or examples throughout your essay. They are easy for examiners to spot and don’t demonstrate your ability to write fluently.  

Overused phrases, idioms, proverbs and clichés should also be avoided, again, they are often used when speaking. These include phrases like:  

The grass is always greener on the other side  

Love is blind  

Off the top of my head  

Old is gold  

A friend in need is a friend indeed  

Additionally, the following terms should not be used when writing as they are vague and do not address a task appropriately. You should always be using clear language and make appropriate word choices that will express your ideas clearly. 

Step 7: Use a variety of complex sentence structures

At band 8 it is expected that you can use a wide range of structures accurately to present your ideas and opinion. Show the examiner that you can use a wide range of structures and make sure your sentences are error-free. 

It is important to use a mix of complex and simple sentences. But remember, your complex sentences should not be long and complicated.  

Your punctuation needs to be accurate, using capitalisation, commas and full stops correctly.  

The most common errors made can be found below:

Step 8: Checklist

Use the following checklist to make sure that your writing contains all the positive features at a band 8

If you follow these 8 steps, you will be well on your way to a band 8 in Writing Task 2. 

Is IELTS writing hard?

IELTS writing is not so hard if you have a thorough understanding of the test format and are able to organise your thoughts into grammatically-correct, well-structured sentences. Obviously it requires a fair amount of practice. To make it easy, IDP has launched IELTS Prepare where you can access a range of preparation materials: from practice tests, sample answers, videos and articles, all the way to expert assessments, online courses, webinars and more.

IELTS writing for beginners

Join our free IDP IELTS webinars that are designed to give you a sense of what to expect during the IELTS Writing test and guide you towards reaching a high band score:

Improve your understanding of the writing test format and questions

Identify key points

Make your answers relevant

Organize your answers in a more coherent manner

Share this article

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IELTS Writing Task 2: How to write a good introduction

Grammar 101: How to use who and whom correctly?

Best tips to improve your IELTS band score, from an IELTS teacher

How to Manage Your Time During the IELTS Test

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How to Plan & Write IELTS Opinion Essays

IELTS opinion essays, also known as ‘agree or disagree’ essays, come up frequently in the writing exam. In this lesson, I’m going to show you how to plan and write them step-by-step.

Here’s what we’ll be covering:

  • 3 Common mistakes
  • Essay structure
  • How to plan
  • How to write an introduction
  • How to write main body paragraphs
  • How to write a conclusion

Click the links to see lessons on each of these Task 2 essay writing topics. 

Once you understand the process, practice on past questions. Take your time at first and gradually speed up until you can plan and write an essay of at least 250 words in the 40 minutes allowed in the exam.

The Question

The first part of the question for an IELTS opinion essay will be a statement. You will then be asked to give your own opinion about the statement. Here is some typical wording that might be used:

  • What is your opinion?
  • Do you agree or disagree?
  • To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Want  to watch and listen to this lesson?

Click on this video.

Here's a question from a past test paper.

A big salary is much more important than job satisfaction.  

Do you agree or disagree?  

Give reasons for your answer and include any relevant examples from your own knowledge or experience.

Write at least 250 words.

I’ll be using this question to guide you through the process of planning and writing an IELTS opinion essay.

3 Common Mistakes

These three errors are common in IELTS opinion essays.

  • Not stating an opinion.
  • Giving arguments for both views.
  • Not supporting your opinion with clear reasons.

The most common mistake that students make is not giving an opinion. The question will clearly state that you must choose one side of the argument. If you fail to do this, you will get a low score for task achievement.

It doesn’t matter which side of the argument you take or even, that you agree with it. Choose the one you can develop the best argument for.

Make sure that you don’t change your opinion part way through the essay, and don’t give reasons for the opposing view.

Essay Structure

Now let’s look at a simple structure you can use to write opinion essays. It’s not the only possible structure but it’s the one I recommend because it’s easy to learn and will enable you to quickly plan and write a high-level essay.

1)  Introduction

  • Paraphrase the question
  • Give your opinion
  • State two supporting reasons

2)  Main body paragraph 1

  • Topic sentence – outline 1st reason for supporting this view
  • Explanation – explain this idea
  • Example – give an example  or expand the idea

3)  Main body paragraph 2

  • Topic sentence – outline 2nd reason for supporting this view
  • Example – give an example or expand the idea

4)  Conclusion

  • Summarise opinion and key reasons

This structure will give us a well-balanced essay with 4 paragraphs.

We now need some ideas to add into the structure and we’ll have everything we need for our essay.

How To Plan IELTS Opinion Essays

# 1  decide on your opinion.

The question I've chosen to work on is quite straightforward and easy to understand so we don’t need to spend time analysing it. The first task, then, is to decide on our opinion.

Here’s the question again:

A big salary is much more important than job satisfaction.

Do you agree or disagree?  

For this essay, I’m going to disagree with the statement and argue that job satisfaction is more important than a big salary.

# 2  Generate ideas

The second task is to generate some ideas to write about.

Since I‘m going to argue that job satisfaction is more important than a large salary, I need ideas to support this view.

There are several different ways to think up ideas. I cover them fully on the  IELTS Essay Planning  page.

With this particular question, I immediately thought of a couple of examples of situations where job satisfaction did prove to be more important than a high salary, so I’m going to use the ‘example method’ of generating ideas.

Once you’ve thought of an example or two, ideas to include in your essay should come to you easily.

You might want to try this yourself before reading on for my ideas.

Here are my examples and some ideas they generated.

Both the examples are partly true but I've adapted them to better fit the essay. It's fine to do this as the examiner won't check your facts.

  • Uncle Barry – boasted about high salary but hated his job. Nervous breakdown – lost job & can’t work.
  • Me – gave up teaching. Now enjoy my work and am much more relaxed and happy even though I earn much less money.
  • High-salary jobs are generally more stressful
  • Stress leads to ill health, both mental and physical
  • 40 hours a week at work – a third of the day
  • Money doesn’t bring happiness
  • Better quality of life
  • Sense of fulfilment
  • Less stressed – healthier and happier

I’ve got more ideas here than I need so I’m going to pick two to develop in the essay – one for each of the main body paragraphs.

Idea 1 – High-salary jobs are generally more stressful and can lead to ill health.

Idea 2 – Job satisfaction gives a sense of fulfilment.

We’re almost ready to start writing our IELTS opinion essay but first, we have one other small task to do.

# 3  Vocabulary

In an IELTS essay, it’s important to be able to say the same things in different ways, either by paraphrasing and/or using synonyms. During the planning stage, quickly jot down a few synonyms of key words you could use to save you having to stop and think of the right language while you’re writing.

For example:

satisfaction – fulfilment, achievement, sense of accomplishment, content, sense of well-being

salary – income, wages, pay, earnings

important – significant, valued, has more meaning

job – work, employment, position

With that done, we can focus on the first paragraph of the essay – the introduction.

How To Write an Introduction

A good introduction has a simple 3 part structure:

1)  Paraphrased question

2)  Thesis statement

3)  outline statement.

An introduction should:

  • Have 2-3 sentences
  • Be 40-60 words long
  • Take 5 minutes to write

1)  Paraphrase the question

Start your introduction by paraphrasing the question.

     Question:  A big salary is much more important than job satisfaction.

                       Do you agree or disagree?  

Paraphrased question:  

It is argued that earning lots of money has more significance to people than being content in their work.

Note that I’ve used some of the synonyms I listed, although it’s fine to repeat one or two words if you need to. Above all, your language must sound natural.

In IELTS opinion essays, the thesis statement is where you state your opinion. For example,

    Thesis statement:  

    This essay totally disagrees with that statement.

That’s all you need to say.

If you decided to agree with the statement, you would write:

'This essay completely agrees with that statement.'

Finally in the introduction, you must outline the two main points (ideas 1 and 2 above) that you’ll cover in the rest of the essay. Do it in one sentence, or you can add them onto the end of the thesis statement if appropriate.

Outl ine statement:  

I believe that people are increasingly concerned about the risk of stress-related ill-health frequently experienced by people in highly paid positions and they care more about feeling fulfilled at work.

So, let’s bring the three elements of our introduction together.


how to write good essay for ielts

This introduction achieves three important functions:

  • It shows the examiner that you understand the question.
  • It acts as a guide to the examiner as to what your essay is about.
  • It also helps to keep you focused and on track as you write.

The two ideas in your introduction will become your two main body paragraphs.

Main body paragraph 1  – concerns about the risk of stress-related ill-health

Main body paragraph 2  – a sense of fulfilment at work

How To Write Main Body Paragraphs

The structure of a good main body paragraph has 3 parts:

  • Topic sentence
  • Explanation

If you can’t think of an example, you can add further supporting ideas but we already have our two examples so that’s not an issue here.

A common problem when writing main body paragraphs for IELTS opinion essays is having too many ideas. Again, we have already chosen the two ideas we are going to develop, so we are all set to start writing.

You can see how important the planning stage is and how it makes the actual writing of the essay far quicker and easier.

Main Body Paragraph 1

The  topic sentence  summarises the main idea of the paragraph. That’s all it needs to do so it doesn’t have to be complicated.

It plays an important role in ensuring that your ideas flow logically from one to another. It does this by acting as a signpost for what is to come next, that is, what the paragraph will be about.

If you maintain a clear development of ideas throughout your essay, you will get high marks for task achievement and cohesion and coherence.

We’ll now take the idea for our first main body paragraph and create our topic sentence.

Main idea 1  – concerns about the risk of stress-related ill-health

Topic sentence:  

Employees earning a large income are generally under significant mental and emotional pressure to perform well and achieve targets.

Next, we must write an  explanation sentence . This explains to the examiner what we mean. It expands on our first idea.

Explanation sentence: 

This causes many individuals to suffer high levels of stress which can result in both mental and physical health problems.

Finally, we add an  example  to support our main point. I thought of this in the planning stage so I have it ready to use.

If you can’t think of a real example, it’s fine to make one up, as long as it’s believable. The examiner isn’t going to check your facts.

Example sentence:

This happened to my uncle. He used to boast about his huge salary but the boss kept increasing his sales targets and in the end, the stress became too great and he had a nervous breakdown. Now he regrets being driven by the money.

That’s the 3 parts of our first main body paragraph complete. Here’s the finished paragraph.

how to write good essay for ielts

We now follow the same process for our second main body paragraph.

Main Body Paragraph 2

Main idea 2  – Job satisfaction gives a sense of fulfilment.

First, we write the  topic sentence  to summarise the main idea.

Topic sentence:

Having a job that they enjoy doing, and in which they feel valued, is a major concern for most of the modern workforce.

Now for the  explanation sentence  to explain this idea.

Explanation sentence:

A significant number of people are giving up well-paid positions to do jobs which pay less but that they find more enjoyable and less stressful.

Finally, an  example  to support our main point. As before, I thought of this in the planning stage so just need to form it into a couple of sentences.

I am an example of this myself. A year ago I left the teaching profession because the workload had become too great and I am now a gardener. I feel really fulfilled in this work and I am much more relaxed and happy even though I earn far less money.

That’s the 3 parts of our second main body paragraph complete. Here’s the finished paragraph.

how to write good essay for ielts

Now we need a conclusion and our IELTS opinion essay is done.

How To Write a Conclusion

Conclusions to IELTS opinion essays should do two things:

  • Summarise the main points
  • State your opinion

This can generally be done in a single sentence.

If you are below the minimum 250 words after you’ve written your conclusion, you can add an additional prediction or recommendation statement.

Our essay currently has 233 words so we’re on target and don’t need this extra sentence but you can learn more about how to write a prediction or recommendation statement for IELTS opinion essays on the Task 2 Conclusions page.

The conclusion is the easiest sentence in the essay to write but one of the most important.

A good conclusion will:

  • Neatly end the essay
  • Link all your ideas together
  • Sum up your argument or opinion
  • Answer the question

If you achieve this, you’ll improve your score for both task achievement and cohesion and coherence which together make up 50% of the overall marks. Without a conclusion, you’ll score below band 6 for task achievement.

You can start almost any final paragraph of an IELTS opinion essay with the words:

  • In conclusion


  • To conclude

Now all you need to do is briefly summarise the main ideas into one sentence.

Here’s a top tip . Go back and read the introduction to the essay because this is also a summary of the essay. It outlines what you are going to write about.

To create a great conclusion, you simply have to paraphrase the introduction. Let’s give it a go.


how to write good essay for ielts

Here is the same information formed into a conclusion:

how to write good essay for ielts

That’s it. We’ve completed our essay. Here it is with the 4 paragraphs put together.


   A big salary is much more important than job satisfaction.

   Do you agree or disagree?

Finished IELTS opinion essay.

how to write good essay for ielts

Go through this lesson as many times as you need to in order to fully understand it and put in lots of practice writing IELTS opinion essays from past exam questions. Practice is the only way to improve your skills.

5 More Model IELTS Opinion Essays

how to write good essay for ielts

This pack contains another step-by-step lesson and  model essay. P lus 4 additional opinion essay questions with model answers.

Carefully created to help you achieve 7+ in your Writing test.

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More help with ielts opinion essays & other task 2 essays.

IELTS Writing Task 2  – T he format, the 5 question types, the 5 step essay writing strategy & sample questions. All the key information you need to know.

The 5 Types of Task 2 Essay   – How to recognise the 5 different types of Task 2 essays. 15 sample questions to study and a simple planning structure for each essay type.

Understanding Task 2 Questions  – How to quickly and easily analyse and understand IELTS Writing Task 2 questions.

How To Plan a Task 2 Essay  – Discover why essay planning is essential & learn a simple 4 step strategy, the 4 part essay structure & 4 methods of generating ideas.

How To Write a Task 2 Introduction  – Find out why a good introduction is essential. Learn how to write one using a simple 3 part strategy & discover 4 common mistakes to avoid.

How To Write Task 2 Main Body Paragraphs  – Learn the simple 3 part structure for writing great main body paragraphs and also, 3 common mistakes to avoid. 

How To Write Task 2 Conclusions  – Learn the easy way to write the perfect conclusion for a Task 2 essay. Also discover 4 common mistakes to avoid.

Task 2 Marking Criteria  – Find out how to meet the marking criteria in Task 2. See examples of good and poor answers & learn some common mistakes to avoid.

The 5 Task 2 Essay Types:

Step-by-step instructions on how to plan & write high-level essays. Model answers & common mistakes to avoid.

   Opinion Essays

   Discussion Essays

  Problem Solution Essays

  Advantages & Disadvantages Essays

  Double Question Essays

Other Related Pages

IELTS Writing Test  – Understand the format & marking criteria, know what skills are assessed & learn the difference between the Academic & General writing tests.

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How to structure your essay for the IELTS writing test


If you're preparing for the IELTS exam, you know that a clear and well-structured essay is essential for success on the writing test. The IELTS writing test is designed to assess your ability to write clearly and effectively in English, and a well-structured essay is crucial for making a good impression on the examiners. In this blog post, we'll discuss how to structure your essay for the IELTS writing test.

1. Introduction

The introduction of your essay should introduce the main topic and provide some background information. You should also state your main argument or thesis in the introduction. The introduction should be brief, generally no more than a few sentences, and should set the stage for the rest of your essay.

2. Body paragraphs

The body paragraphs of your essay should present your main ideas and supporting evidence. Each body paragraph should have a clear topic sentence that introduces the main idea of the paragraph and a number of supporting sentences that provide evidence or examples to back up your argument. Make sure to use transitional words and phrases to connect your ideas and create a logical flow.

3. Conclusion

The conclusion of your essay should summarize your main points and restate your thesis. It should also provide some final thoughts on the topic and may include a call to action or a suggestion for further research. The conclusion should be brief, generally no more than a few sentences, and should leave a lasting impression on the reader.

4. Use proper paragraph structure

Proper paragraph structure is essential for a clear and well-structured essay. Each paragraph should contain a single main idea and a number of supporting sentences. The topic sentence should be the first sentence of the paragraph and should introduce the main idea of the paragraph. The supporting sentences should provide evidence or examples to back up the main idea and should be arranged in a logical order. Make sure to leave a blank line between paragraphs to help your essay look more organized and professional.

5. Use headings and subheadings

Headings and subheadings can help you organize your essay and make it easier for the reader to follow. Headings should be used to introduce major sections of your essay and should be written in bold or italics. Subheadings should be used to introduce subtopics within the main sections of your essay and should be written in regular font. Make sure to use headings and subheadings consistently and to choose ones that accurately reflect the content of your essay.

Structuring your essay is an essential part of the IELTS writing test. By following these tips and using proper paragraph structure, headings, and subheadings, you can improve the organization and clarity of your essay and increase your chances of success on the exam. With a little bit of planning and attention to detail, you can create a well-structured and effective essay that impresses the examiner.

The English Bureau

English for IELTS, Business & Advanced


22nd August 2019 By Alex Markham 9 Comments

Students often feel that writing near perfect IELTS essays are the most difficult part of the exam.

However, there are several strategies and techniques you can use to help you to to write a great Academic IELTS Task 1 and Task 2 essay.

perfect ielts essay


Task 1 requires you to distill and report the information from a graph or table and for Task 2, you are expected to develop and support an opinion based on a question or point of view. And all this in your 2nd or 3rd language.

However, once you understand how to respond to the questions and what the IELTS examiners are looking for, then things become a little more straightforward.

Follow these 10 tips below and you’ll be on your way to a better mark. Maybe even the perfect IELTS essay .


Each of the two IELTS writing tasks are marked using 4 criteria. Each one of the criteria is worth 25% of the total mark for that task. Only two of the criteria cover grammar and vocabulary so you need to also focus on how you answer and structure your essays.

These are the criteria that the examiner will use with a brief explanation of what you need to do:

Task Response: You need to address every part of the question. You need to demonstrate a clear opinion. Your points need to be developed and supported.

Coherence and Cohesion: Your essay is structured logically. You have used appropriate paraphrasing and synonyms. You have used linking and connecting words and phrases correctly.

Lexical Resource: Wide range of vocabulary and phrases. Good use of less-common vocabulary. No or few spelling mistakes.

Grammatical Range and Accuracy: Uses a wide range of advanced grammar structures. Sentences contain no or few errors.


plan ielts essay

You will have one hour to write two IELTS essays. You should allocate 20 minutes for Task 1 and 40 minutes for Task 2. Use the question paper to make some notes before you start to write the report/essay.

  • Allocate 2 to 3 of your 20 minutes of task 1 for planning. Finish after 20 minutes. Do not eat into your Task 2 time.
  • Allocate around 4 or 5 minutes of your 40 minutes for Task 2 to planning.
  • Allow a minute or 2  at the end of each of the tasks to check for errors.


Read the question carefully and underline all the information you need to include . Plan your response and only then begin to answer the question  exactly as it asks for.  

For example, if the Task 2 question asks for your opinion on university education, stick to university education. Do not stray into other types of education as the examiner will probably ignore it.

25% of your mark is on Task Achievement. You are required to address every part of the question. Re-read the question to make sure you have answered everything asked for.

For Task 1 , all the information you need to include is in the chart/graph/table/diagram. Identify the key points before you start writing.

It is a good idea to mark them on the question paper. Look for the main trends and comparisons. Do not describe the detail but the key points and main trends. Give a fully developed response.

Do not use the data to give opinions or develop ideas. Report the data as it is presented only.

For Task 2 , you will need to develop your own position and opinions based on the question. You should support this with background information on your own experiences and knowledge.


The examiner will be looking at the organisation and structure of your work. Remember, 25% of the marks are for coherence and cohesion.  This means clear and obvious paragraphs and logical sequencing of the information.

Leave white space between each paragraph. The examiner will expect to see clearly separated paragraphs with paragraph one as the introduction and the last paragraph a conclusion or summary.

For Task 1 use three paragraphs as a rule, maybe four. Paragraphs two and three will be the description of the chart/graph/table.

For Task 2 use four paragraphs as a rule but five may at times be required. paragraphs two to four will be your main arguments.

For more details on how to structure and organise your IELTS Task 2 essay click on this link: How to Structure IELTS Writing Task 2


Task 1 requires a MINIMUM of 150 words. Ideally aim for 170 to 190.

Task 2 requires a MINIMUM of 250 words. Ideally aim for around 270 to 290.

If you don’t write enough words, you could lose up to 25% of your mark. Ensure you don’t write too many words as this is just a waste of your time.

Make sure you know what 150+ and 250+ words looks on the pages. Do not waste your time counting them in the exam.


Remember coherence and cohesion. You need to demonstrate an ability to paraphrase and use synonyms.

You will receive no marks for any phrases copied from the question; the examiner will ignore this text. The copied text will be deducted from the word count and may leave you with fewer words than the minimum required meaning you haven’t achieved the task.


You must use formal language for tasks 1 and 2 in the Academic IELTS. However, this does not mean you should try to use overly complex language.

What is means is do not use contractions and try to use Latin-based verbs over phrasal verbs where possible. For example use continue rather than carry on or enter rather than go in . Never use slang or colloquial idioms.

To see a simple technique for making your essay more formal click on this link: Nominalisation – A Simple Technique for Formal Essays


ielts grammar

Ensure you use a wide range of grammar structures. Practice the use of grammar such as 1st and 2nd conditionals, inversions and perfect tenses, for example, before your exam.

Use sophisticated vocabulary and lexis (common word chunks). You will lose marks for incorrect spelling, punctuation or word order.

Remember to use collocations, for example: a fundamental problem, a complex issue, addressing the problem, experiencing difficulties, significant improvements, gradual decline/increase, extensive research and so on.


linking words

Remember that you need to demonstrate coherence and cohesion with linking words for a perfect IELTS essay.

Task 1: use linking words such as respectivel y to show a sequence, whereas to show a contrast, furthermore to give more information or since to give a reason.

Finish with a summary paragraph signposted with in summary or overall .

Task 2 : For the introduction paragraph it’s a good idea to signpost your opinion with linking phrases such as: In my opinion…. or I (strongly) believe (that)…

Sequence your essay with firstly, secondly, finally, to begin with, as a consequence, in addition, as a result, however, nonetheles s etc.

Show that the last paragraph is your conclusion. Start it with phrases such as: In conclusion…  or In summary…


perfect ielts essay

The point of the IELTS writing task exercise is to for you to show the examiner your abilities in the English language in grammar, lexis, structure, and task achievement.

You will receive no marks for original ideas or for demonstrating an extensive knowledge of the subject area. Your opinions can be dull and obvious but that is unimportant as long as you have an opinion and are able to support it with good English.


perfect ielts essays

Remember the four areas that the examiner will be marking your essays and you will be able to write an essay much closer to the perfect IELTS essay.

I can correct your IELTS essays for €15 for each essay and provide full explanations and suggestions for writing the perfect IELTS essay.

If you would like to use this service then get in touch with me by clicking on contact me and completing the form.

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28th January 2020 at 17:07

I want to take the IELTS exam, but before doing that I will like to attend or take IELTS tutorial classes. I feel it will help me get prepared and know how to approach questions when writing the exam. Your article has really gotten my interest and I am going to bookmark your blog and keep checking for new details every week. Follow the link below to reach my website and check out its contents . Please let me know if this okay with you. Many Thanks!

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16th February 2020 at 12:52

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31st January 2020 at 06:55

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16th February 2020 at 12:50

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14th November 2020 at 12:46

Very informative article. Have been having issues with my IELTS skills and by reading this blog I think I have been equipped with the right skills. Thanks very much for sharing this information.

14th November 2020 at 14:50

Hello Anna, thanks for the comments and good luck with IELTS. Any questions, leave a comment

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20th April 2021 at 15:17

Great Post! I got too much Information & guidance for IELTS Preparation. I am glad to read this awesome post. Thanks for sharing such a helpful Post.

2nd May 2021 at 19:18

Hello Pamela, nice to hear it was useful

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21st May 2021 at 12:13

Very informative blog! Your tips for writing perfect IELTS essays have been very useful for me. I was preparing for IELTS during the last two months. But I was not confident in writing essays. Your blog really helped me. Thank you for sharing this information.To know more visit : https://www.uowdubai.ac.ae/ielts/test-centres-and-dates

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How to Write an Essay in IELTS – Tips, Patterns, and Samples!

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The International English Language Testing System ( IELTS ) is an English language proficiency test for those who are seeking international education, a job, or migration. Two types of IELTS examination-IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training, are carried out to measure English language proficiency and skills that are important to communicate in English-speaking countries. Writing for IELTS Task 2 includes an essay writing task of 250 words in 40 minutes. The essay writing task is designed to understand the writing skills, grammar, vocabulary, ideas, and reasoning capabilities of applicants. Task 2 contributes twice Task 1 to the writing score. Essay writing tests English proficiency in terms of writing skills, and it is one of the most important and compulsory sections. To write a winning essay in IELTS, applicants must follow the below-mentioned tips and band 8 essay samples. Let’s learn – how to write an essay in IELTS.

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Tips and patterns for writing a band 8 essay

1. Lexical resources should be appropriate while writing the task 2 essay. Applicants should use a broad spectrum of vocabulary with zero errors and complete accuracy. The lexical terms should be used and demonstrated in a sophisticated manner throughout the essay. 

2. Stick to the word limit. The word limit for task 2 essay writing is 250 words. Make sure you write a maximum of 260-280 words and not any extra. Quality over quantity will matter in writing a winning essay. Don’t waste time on writing extra; instead, take time to draft a brilliant introduction and conclusion. 

3. The essay should be coherent and cohesive. The ideas and information should match with one another throughout the essay. Compose the ideas and details in an organized manner following the instructed format. The essay writing should be cohesive. When the information is cohesive, you will not require too many connectors or linking words to connect sentences. 

4. Increase the readability of the essay by organizing the entire 250-word essay into small paragraphs. It will attract attention and increase readability. Avoid writing a 100-word-long paragraph at a stretch. Short paragraphs and sentences are good and crisp. 

5. Read the question well, to understand the expectations of the examiner and maintain a unique and ideal write-up. Choose the right words to draft a 250-word length descriptive essay that meets the relevancy and purpose of the question.

6. Use positive words. Even if you don’t support the question and speak against the statement, you cannot use negative words or disrespect the opinion of anyone else. It will be a neutral statement where you just need to talk about your opinion and support your statement with enough ideas, justification and add on some real-life experiences to make it a winning essay. 

7. An accurate and rich vocabulary is important to write a winning IELTS essay that can give a band 8. Read and listen to magazines, newspapers, articles, and journals to get some good words that you can use in the write-up. Do not use common and daily used words. The way you talk randomly with your friends is not the way that you draft your IELTS task 2. It needs good words to increase the quality of the essay. 

8. Follow the format. The essay has three main parts: introduction, body, and conclusion. The introduction and conclusion are very important. The examiner should be able to figure out the entire content and purpose of the essay by reading the starting lines of the introduction. Effectively close your essay. The conclusion is an important part of the essay.

9. Work on grammar. The essay should be grammatically correct. Don’t make major grammatical mistakes. Read your essay once after completing it. You will be able to scan various minor and major errors that can bring down your band. Always set aside some time to read before submitting the essay.

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Sample IELTS Essay Writing Task 2

Crime is a big problem in the world. Many people think that nothing can be done about crime to prevent it. To what extent do you agree or disagree? Give your own opinion. Ever-increasing crime is irrefutably one of the most overarching and major issues every country is facing in recent times. Although many people believe that nothing can be done to prevent crime, I believe that crime can be controlled by treating it as the main issue and executing the measures differently. 

While many people believe that common crimes such as robbery, theft, murder, hate crimes, and others cannot be regulated, I think that Government can control it up to a great extent by making strict rules. Making strict rules and compelling citizens to religiously abide by them will instill the fear of punishment in people.  Also, severe punishments like longer imprisonment will discourage people to indulge in common crimes and thus it will reduce crime significantly. For instance-lifetime imprisonment for murders or sexual assault will make people think twice before committing such crimes, which will ensure less crime in society. 

The second major change the Government of every country needs to ensure is the basic rights of health, housing, and education to reduce the crime rate. Substandard living conditions are the main reason why many people gravitate toward committing various crimes and hence ensuring basic facilities for everyone will reduce the crime considerably. 

To conclude, I feel that the only logical solution to preventing criminal activities is through appropriate action taken by the government and society.

The English language is the medium of communication in English-speaking countries. The IELTS Writing section focuses on the skills required for writing, in terms of vocabulary, grammar, and writing style. Writing task 2 is an essay. It is a descriptive essay that evaluates grammar, ideas, opinion, format, fluency, and structure. To write a winning essay, refer to the sample and tips provided above.

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Opinion Essays [IELTS Writing Task 2]

Posted by David S. Wills | Nov 14, 2022 | IELTS Tips , Writing | 1

Opinion Essays [IELTS Writing Task 2]

In the past, I have explained how to answer each type of IELTS writing task 2 question and today we are going to look at a set of question types called “opinion essays.”

What do I mean by this? Well, generally we divide IELTS essays into 5 categories:

  • Agree or Disagree
  • Advantages and Disadvantages
  • Problem (or Cause) and Solution
  • Discuss both views
  • Two-part Question

Sometimes, people call the first one “opinion essays” but I don’t like that term because actually other question types also call for your opinion. Therefore, I think of “opinion essay” as a term that covers several question types.

Let’s look at this topic in more detail.

types of opinion essays for ielts task 2

What is an Opinion Essay?

To put it as simply as possible, an opinion essay is an essay that gives an opinion. In the context of IELTS, that means giving your opinion about a stated topic.

I mentioned above that there are several question types that could require you to give an opinion. These are most common:

  • Agree or disagree
  • Advantages and disadvantages
  • Two-part questions

This is why it’s important to read a question carefully rather than just scan for keywords and then begin writing.

Of these, the agree/disagree and discuss both views question types are always going to require an opinion, but for the others you need to read more carefully. A two-part question, for example, might ask your opinion as the second question, but it won’t always do this.

Note that most advantage and disadvantage questions do not require your opinion but some do. If they ask you whether or not the advantages of something outweigh the disadvantages, then clearly you are required to give an opinion.

How to Write an Opinion Essay

As with all IELTS writing task 2 essays, you need to do several things:

  • Read the question carefully in order to analyse it
  • Think of a reasonable answer
  • Create a coherent structure
  • Put your ideas forth clearly and consistently
  • Use appropriate language

That’s about as simply as I can put it for you, but let’s explore further.

First of all, any time you are given an IELTS task, you need to read it carefully and analyse it so that you truly understand the question. Some are quite straightforward but others are very difficult. ( Here’s a video about what I think is the most difficult question.)

One of the problems with opinion essays is that you won’t necessarily be asked to “give your opinion.” You will have to use common sense in order to determine whether your opinion is required. Some words that could indicate an opinion are:

Do you agree or disagree?

  • To what extent do you agree?
  • Do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages?
  • What do you think…?

Remember: If you are asked for an opinion, then give one. If you aren’t, then don’t. Failure to interpret the question properly would lead to a poor score.

You then need to think of a response and write about it using intelligent ideas. As you are giving an opinion, you need to justify your viewpoint. One big mistake here is failing to be consistent. For example, some people do not put their opinion into their introductions. This would mean that your score for Task Response would be quite low. Really, you ought to include your opinion in the outline sentence , then explain it in the body paragraphs, and finally reiterate it in the conclusion .

Although it’s possible to produce a good structure in different ways, an excellent IELTS essay will probably look like this:

ielts essay structure

For more general information about writing a great IELTS task 2 essay, see this article .

How to Start an Opinion Essay

A good essay should begin with a good introduction. There are various ways to achieve this, but in IELTS writing task 2 that means introducing the topic and stating your opinion clearly. I’ve written at length about how to write a good introduction here .

Think of your introduction as having two key components:

  • Introduce the topic
  • Give your opinion

You can do that in two or three sentences. It isn’t hugely important. However, you must achieve both of those things.

When you introduce the topic, you basically aim to convey the main idea to your reader. A lot of people just paraphrase the question but this isn’t always a good idea. In fact, paraphrasing more often than not leads to big problems in language and logic.

Still, you want to convey the idea in the question and that does mean taking an idea and putting it into your own words. For example:

All cars that burn fossil fuels should be banned and electric cars should replace them. Do you agree or disagree?

In my introduction to this opinion essay, I would write:

During the twentieth century, people around the world began using vehicles powered by fossil fuels, and in this new millennium that trend has continued, with a vast uptick in the number of privately owned cars. However, it has become apparent that this phenomenon is causing major environmental damage and needs to be stopped. This essay will argue that humans ought to switch to electric cars.

This is a little complex, but what you can see is that I have used two sentences to introduce and explain the main idea and then one sentence to put forth my opinion.

how to write good essay for ielts

Beware: Your introduction should not be too long. This is an example of a band 9 essay. It uses complex language and structures to convey intelligent ideas. If your introduction is longer than your body paragraphs, it is not a good sign.

Opinion Essay Structure

When writing an opinion essay, you should keep the structure simple and use it to convey your ideas as logically as possible. There are different ways to do this effectively, but I generally recommend a four-paragraph essay structure. (You can read about 4 vs 5 paragraphs here .)

It is hard to generalise because your structure will ultimately be dictated by your opinion and that is something personal. However, you should use your essay to state your opinion in the most effective way. For example, if you strongly agree with something, you might create the following structure:

This is a basic structure but can be used very easily. Of course, if you totally disagree, you can replace “agree” with “disagree” and use the same structure.

It is also possible (but not required) to write a balanced essay that neither wholly agrees nor disagrees with an idea. In such cases, you would need to modify your structure a little. For example:

As long as you make this clear, there should be no problem and you would stand to get a good score for Coherence and Cohesion . One big mistake that occurs here is that people start by saying they have a balanced opinion, then they mostly explain one side of the issue, leaving the reader a bit confused. If you want to give balance, then make sure your body paragraphs are fairly even.

Using the above question (about electric cars), I would create the following essay structure:

You can read my answer in the next sentence:

Opinion Essay Example

Sample question.

All cars that burn fossil fuels should be banned and electric cars should replace them.

Sample Answer

The damage done by traditional style cars is obvious. One only needs to look at a big city like Beijing or Los Angeles to see the vast smog clouds lingering over highways to recognize that these vehicles are emitting unpleasant chemicals from their exhausts. Scientific studies over the past few decades have confirmed that these chemicals cause significant damage to our health and our environment, as they turn into acid rain or are inhaled into our lungs, where they cause certain types of cancer. This is in addition to the fact that fossil fuels are a finite resource, and that their extraction from the earth is often incredibly destructive.

On the other hand, electricity can be generated in any number of ways, many of which are relatively harmless. It is possible to generate electricity from the wind or sun, thereby gathering energy without damaging the earth or causing harm to human beings. As an infinite source of energy that can be gathered and used without harm, it is obvious that electricity is the power that should drive cars in the future.

In conclusion, traditionally powered vehicles are destroying our world and need to be phased out in favour of electric vehicles. Electricity can be generated harmlessly and endlessly and is therefore superior to fossil fuel.

When it comes to writing opinion essays, you need to make sure you understand the question, then formulate an appropriate response. You should devise an intelligent structure that allows you to convey your ideas clearly and consistently throughout the whole essay. Make sure that your ideas are realistic and try to avoid being overly complex as this could create further problems.

It is worth reading articles about common IELTS topics in order to prepare for this sort of essay. These can teach you both vocabulary and ideas. They can also help with coherence. For example, you could Google “electric cars” and find an article there. The recent one was published in the New York Times.

About The Author

David S. Wills

David S. Wills

David S. Wills is the author of Scientologist! William S. Burroughs and the 'Weird Cult' and the founder/editor of Beatdom literary journal. He lives and works in rural Cambodia and loves to travel. He has worked as an IELTS tutor since 2010, has completed both TEFL and CELTA courses, and has a certificate from Cambridge for Teaching Writing. David has worked in many different countries, and for several years designed a writing course for the University of Worcester. In 2018, he wrote the popular IELTS handbook, Grammar for IELTS Writing and he has since written two other books about IELTS. His other IELTS website is called IELTS Teaching.

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How to prepare a strong IELTS Task 2 essay argument

By ielts-jonathan.com on 10 April 2022 0

Writing an argument for IELTS and Academic Writing.

The kind of writing we are going to describe here is ONLY suitable for IELTS Task 2 Writing and not IELTS Task 1.

Why is this?

Well, in an IELTS Task 1 report, you are not required to add additional opinions, or comments or speculate on reasons why figures or numbers might be the way they are.

In Task 1, there is no argument to write, you should only report the figures you can see.

Task 2 Writing

In a Task 2 essay, the task is completely different.

You have to respond to a prompt or preposition and often put forward ideas solutions or even measures.

A good way of improving your IELTS band score and a great way to substantially improve your writing is to be objective .

This is very different to subjective writing , where you only use your opinions or personal point of view.

If you try to be objective, you can provide support for your ideas, your opinions or when responding to the prompt given. 

At times in your essay, you may still need to use the personal pronouns such as “ we ” and “ I “. 🙁 

You may find you can not avoid these words, but you should aim to be objective by using examples and explanations more than your subjective or personal viewpoint . 

Writing objectively for IELTS

Compare these two sentences and then consider which is subjective and which one is objective.

It seems to me that people who continue to smoke in public places are rude and selfish. It seems likely that those who continue to smoke in public places lack manners or are anti-social.

Compare these sentences and decide which puts forward examples and explanations and which is a personal viewpoint.

It is pretty clear that stronger punishments are needed. If these people were fined heavily or even threatened with a criminal record then this problem would disappear. An effective way to deter people from smoking in public places might be to introduce more severe punishments. Heavy fines or even the possibility of a criminal record are examples of how this issue might be reduced.

Ways of providing support for objective IELTS Essay writing

There are two simple ways to provide support in your IELTS essay and to strengthen your argument. 

The first way is two follow a simple formula: in other words, what you could say is a template, and the second is to introduce support from outside sources.

If you follow a template it will help you develop your ideas and will help you write with clarity.

A paragraph template for IELTS

A good piece of writing makes a point clearly and may illustrate it to help the reader understand. 

To avoid rambling, plan the points in your essay argument and the evidence that you will use to illustrate your ideas, and only include the necessary detail .

Plan just one main point per paragraph and expand it like this:

P:  Topic sentence introducing the point  with essential detail. E:  Illustration of point using  evidence : using an example. A:  Critical analysis of point and explanation . L: Summing up the point, linking it to the question or your argument.

What not to do in an IELTS Essay

Academic writing tends to be impersonal in style.

It tries to be impersonal in order to be objective .

This may make it appear formal and students stress that they must use formal words and waste valuable preparation tie doing this.

My advice is to be certain about what words ARE informal and just get writing.

This is a far better solution.

Unfortunately, a bigger issue is that too many IELTS Candidates write in a subjective style .

If an IELTS Task 2 appears too subjective , this can affect the tone of the writing.

This can create a negative impression in the examiner and this can lower the essay band score.

This issue is a big problem in my country but it is pretty clear to me that stronger punishments are needed for dangerous driving offences. If these people were fined heavily or even threatened with a criminal record then this problem would disappear.

TASK 2 Successful IELTS Writing

It is important to be aware and notice how academic writers express themselves and support their opinions, like this.

Dangerous driving is an issue in many countries, however it seems clear that stronger punishments are needed for the most dangerous driving offences. If offenders were fined heavily or even threatened with a criminal record then this problem in general would most likely be reduced.

How can you support you effectively ideas

Support consists of evidence.

Here are four kinds of evidence you can use to make your argument stronger:

1. Example: from your own experience or from what you heard or read.

2. Common Sense: things that you believe everybody knows.

3. Expert Opinion: the opinions of experts or professionals

(e.g. scientists or doctors) — this comes from research.

4. Statistics: numbers (e.g 75% ) — this also comes from research.

Writing a supported argument

Read the arguments for the following statement:

Statement: “Smoking should be banned in all public places”

This is the position I am going to take.

Position: Agree

So, now I am going to agree with this statement by providing an example.

1. By Example:

For example / for instance / let me give an example “ Let me give an example: Whenever I go to a restaurant or bar and there are people smoking near me, I feel that I am breathing in their smoke. This makes me a smoker even though I don’t want to be ”.

or by providing a shared belief

2. Common Sense:

Everyone knows / it’s common knowledge that / it’s no secret that “ It’s common knowledge second-hand smoke is very unhealthy for  non-smokers ”.

or by providing figures or percentages.

3. Statistics:

“ Second-hand smoke causes about 250,000 respiratory infections in infants and children every year, resulting in about 15,000 hospitalizations each year ”.

or by provide the voice of another.

4 . Expert Opinion:

According to…/ to quote…/ the book _____ says… “ According to the Environmental Protection Agency, second-hand smoke causes approximately 3,000 lung cancer deaths in non-smokers each year ”.

Task 2 Objective Writing

A balance of objectivity and time in the exam

For the IELTS test, there is not enough time or number of words to allow a completely written IELTS essay in an academic style.

The ‘ take home ‘ to remember is to aim for a balance.

So remember, although IELTS writing is not informal, it is much more semi-academic in style.

Other things to avoid in your IELTS essay.

Your writing should be formal, but it does not need to be over sophisticated.

To be formal, there are various colloquialisms and shortened forms to avoid:

Avoid shortened forms:

Shouldn’t, it’s for it is

Avoid phrases or cliches such as:

at the end of the day; in a nutshell; when it comes to the numbers

Replace with: finally, in summary, in a crisis

Avoid colloquial words such as:

literally, really, okay, maybe.

Avoid rhetorical questions

Don’t pose questions to the IELTS examiner, for example

‘ Wouldn’t you feel happier if you could wear what you want at school?’

Avoid emotive language

Don’t use language that appeals to emotions, for example,

‘Many children are forced to suffer the indignity of wearing clothes that do not match their personal style.’

The essay should be a considered, objective response.

Avoid Hyperbole

Don’t use exaggeration purely for effect, for example, 

Millions of school children every year ………

What you should do in the IELTS Exam

You do not have much time, but planning the paragraph structure is the key to a higher writing score.

Remember to only plan one main point per paragraph using the PEAL format:

P: Main point with essential detail.

E: Evidence of the point using an example.

A: Analysis of point and explanation.

L: Linking to the question or your argument with a summary. 🙂

That’s it on preparing a strong argument that free from distractions. 

I hope that you found this information valuable and you have taken on board some of the tips.

I would appreciate if you could share this to someone you know.


I also recommend taking a look at my free blog below, or join my IELTS Membership Course which gives further instruction on how to give that perfect Task Response:

The Best Approach to Task 2 Writing

Paragraphing in Task 2 Writing

Strong Arguments for Task 2

Writing the Introduction

Writing a Line of Argument

Cohesion for Task 2 Writing

Writing – Benefits of a Foreign University Education

I’m Jonathan

I’ve taught IELTS and University English in more than a dozen universities and schools around the world.

I’m a parent, traveller and passionate about language teaching and helping students achieve their dreams.

Whilst living in Austria or working in Asia, I run IELTS courses to help students get to where they want to be.

If you are serious about IELTS, connect with me to see how I can help you.

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Different Types of Essay in IELTS

Different Types of Essay in IELTS: 9 Tips to Write a Perfect IELTS Essay

In the IELTS writing task 2, you are given an essay question that must be written in a minimum of 250 words and for this, you are given 40 minutes. There are different types of essays asked in the IELTS writing task 2. Let us discuss the different types of essay in IELTS Task 2.

Different Types of Essay in IELTS Task 2

In the sections below, you will learn about the types of essays of the IELTS Writing section and some tips to help you score a good band in your next exam.

Types of Essay in IELTS: How Many Types of Essay in IELTS?

Ever wondered about how many types of essays are there in IELTS? Fret not! After reading the section below, you will have knowledge about all of them.

Discussion and Opinion Based Essay

This is a typical IELTS writing job 2 essay question. In this form of essay, you must address two opposing viewpoints presented in the question statement and include your own personal viewpoint.

Some people believe that using animals for food and transportation should be prohibited entirely. Others, on the other hand, assume that using livestock for meat and research is appropriate.

Discuss all points of view and express your own.

Agree or Disagree Type

Another kind of IELTS writing task 2 essay is one in which you are given an argument and must clarify whether you agree or disagree with it. You may also accept and disagree with the assertion in sections. However, it is preferable to express oneself strongly and unequivocally.

With the advent of technologies, the crime rate has risen.

How far do you agree or disagree with this statement?


Two Parts Type

The questions in this IELTS writing assignment 2 essay form are divided into two sections. There are two pieces of the issue that you must answer.

Many children have developed a habit of excessively using smartphone applications at all hours of the day and night.

Why do you believe this?

What will parents do to prevent this condition from deteriorating further?

Also read: 5 Previous IELTS Writing Task 2 Exam Questions and Answers To Target Band 9

Compare and Contrast Type

Another kind of IELTS writing task 2 essay requires you to make distinctions between two items by listing their similarities and differences.

Some people choose to live in homes, while others think apartments are preferable to houses.

Compare and contrast the benefits and drawbacks of living in houses versus flats.

Problems and Solutions Type

The other kind of IELTS writing task 2 essay is one in which you must list problems associated with a certain subject and then propose solutions to those problems.

One of the big problems in cities is traffic congestion.

What are the issues that people face as a result of traffic?

Discuss potential options for solving it.

Solutions Type

Another form of IELTS writing task 2 essay that is identical to problems and solutions essays is the reasons (causes) and solutions essay, which can be divided into three parts: causes, reasons, and solutions, or two parts: causes and solutions.

As more people turn to personal cars, pollution levels have skyrocketed.

What are the main sources of pollution?

Discuss possible alternatives to the emissions crisis.

Advantages and Disadvantages Type

In this sort of IELTS writing task 2 article, you can discuss the benefits and drawbacks of everything. You must respond to both in order to complete the mission.

Online payment is rapidly replacing cash or other payment types as the primary form of payment.

What are the benefits of making an online payment?

What are the drawbacks?

Also Read: How to Write Agree and Disagree Essays in IELTS? Tips to Write the Perfect Essay

Tips for Perfect IELTS Essay Writing

Examine the essay prompt.

The most critical step in writing an essay or a research paper is thoroughly understanding the essay topic.

Create a Conclusion Argument

Begin your writing with a statement that will drive the rest of it. Your writing statement should be brief but include all of the key points you want to include in your article. When writing your article, keep your topic argument in mind at all times and never break from your key points. A strong essay argument may mean the difference between an A and a B on a test.

Create an Outline

Before you begin writing your essay or study article, create an outline. Plan out however you want your paper to move and what details you want to include, starting with your statement. This will greatly simplify the process of writing the final draft of your paper.

Focus More on the Body

Some students struggle the most with the presentation, so write it later to avoid being bogged down. This will encourage you to thoroughly form your thoughts and ideas before returning to incorporate the key points into your introduction.

Begin Each Paragraph with a Topic Sentence

Begin each paragraph with a subject sentence that reflects the paragraph’s main concept. To justify your subject sentence and argument, each paragraph should include quotes or explanatory material.

Also Read: Is there a Fact Check in Essay Writing in IELTS? Here’s a list of Do’s and Don’t

Use Some Reliable Sources

Quotes and historical facts are critical for maintaining legitimacy and defending the point, so make sure they come from reliable academic sources. Academic papers, peer-reviewed papers, textbooks, books by accredited writers, and NPR posts are all examples of scientific outlets. Magazine blogs, free forum submissions, encyclopaedia entries, and unverified web references are examples of insufficient scholarly outlets.

Don’t Try to Fool the Examiner

Avoid writing an article that fails to properly respond to the challenge. If you do not thoroughly grasp the essay prompt, you should stop rambling or fluff. Instead, ensure that each sentence brings value to your job. Remove something that isn’t completely important. Most teachers would choose a well-written article that falls short of the length requirement over a paper that satisfies the length requirement but is 80 percent fluff.

Conclude the Essay

Often starting your conclusion by restating your essay argument. This is your chance to tie all of your key points together and end with a high note. A successful conclusion would answer the key points of each body paragraph in a concise manner while still thoroughly proving your essay assertion.

Revise Again and Again

Reviewing is important for writing an excellent one. Any reviewer would not even read these if they are not grammatically correct or are littered with spelling errors. Here are a few suggestions for making your research paper more academically appropriate and ultimately perfect.

To achieve outstanding results and a high band score, greater attention must be paid to learning all about the structures and topics along with the various questions posed in those tests. Hopefully, you find this knowledge helpful, and if you have any more questions, concerns, or problems, please let us know in the comments down below, and we’ll be pleased to assist you.

If you are looking for essay topics, you can visit IELTS Ninja and click on the blog section. Find a wide range of essays under the Writing Task 2 tab.

Also Read: IELTS Writing Task 2 Samples: Exam Questions & Answers to Target Minimum Band 8


One Comment

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Thank you for providing diferent types of essay, this was very helpful, can you also provide tips for vocabulary?

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About the Author

Madhurjya chowdhury.

Madhurjya Chowdhury, a web content writer in Ufaber EduTech has a very strong passion for writing and alluring the readers. You can find him writing articles for the betterment of exam aspirants and children. With immense interest in research-based content writing and copywriting, he likes to reach out to more and more people with his creative writing style. On the other side, he is an Electronics and Communication Engineer from LPU, Jalandhar. In his leisure time, he likes to play badminton or read about space discoveries. Apart from this, he is a pro gamer on PC, PS and Mobile gaming platforms.

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5 Writing Tips for the IELTS Essay

IELTS Writing 2

The IELTS is scored overall from 1 (lowest) to 9 (highest). The IELTS Writing Task 2 (AKA the IELTS Essay), is scored similarly, from 0-9. It’s a formal essay, the second part of the writing test, and the one most feared by test takers. You are presented with a POV, argument, or problem, then asked to write a response where you defend a position. Your essay should be at least 250 words in length and should be completed in 40 minutes or less. But there’s nothing to fear. Unlike the other parts of the IELTS exam, there is no right or wrong answer for the essay question. This is your chance to show that you have what it takes to communicate effectively in English. You can show your grasp of language, your experienced use of vocabulary, and your knowledge of the topic to demonstrate that you know and comprehend the task.

Tip 1: Understand the prompt clearly

The prompt, the task, or the question, for which the essay asks for a response, should be clear in your mind. One of the first things you must do is to identify the task. Once you understand what the task is asking, then identify your position as well as the topic or main idea your essay will take. Engage with the prompt throughout your essay–your answer should be relevant to the prompt. For example, if you’re asked about government regulation of the arts, your answer shouldn’t be about science. Your answer should be a thorough and thoughtful direct response to the prompt. Otherwise, you will be marked with a 5, for having an irrelevant answer.

Secondly, you will be asked to defend a position, either to agree or disagree. For example, if you are given a prompt about how technology and the arts are not able to coexist, then the prompt will ask you, “Do you agree or disagree?” You must be clear about your answer–whether you agree or disagree. Then you must back up your stance with your main idea and supporting detail. Doing so will get you at least a 6.

Tip 2: Outline your essay structure

Once you have your position clear, outlining will get you further in answering the prompt/question thoroughly. Once you have your position of agreeing or disagreeing, explain why. This explanation should form your outline, with the main idea or main reason why, and two or three supporting details. For example, your outline might look like this:

I. Introduction II. Main Body 1 III. Main Body 2 IV. Main Body 3 V. Conclusion

This outline would ideally be five paragraphs long, with your introduction, three body paragraphs (your details at length to support your main idea), and your conclusion. However, some writers may opt to make paragraph variations to this outline, such as having only 2 main body paragraphs. It’s just a sample, so feel free to use your own. Just a note here that a concluding paragraph is necessary, as you may be marked down without a concluding paragraph.

Tip 3: Employ good use of vocabulary

Vocabulary choice is particularly important in this essay since they will be noting how you use vocabulary throughout. Here are some ways to use good vocabulary for the IELTS:

  • Vary your sentences with vocabulary that you know how to use
  • Use synonyms and antonyms that will show your knowledge of English vocabulary
  • Use linking words for structural directions throughout your essay, such as despite, although, moreover, since, however

Tip 4: Support your opinion with details

Use relevant examples in your defense. For example, if you’re writing about how you agree with nationwide governmental regulations regarding climate change, you will be tasked with providing evidence to support your claim. One could be the effectiveness of climate change regulation in socialist countries. Another could be the ineffectiveness of countries without climate change regulation. Make sure to know the details surrounding these points, as well as their significance or how they help prove your answer.

Tip 5: Proofread

When you’re in a timed exam, you may think proofreading is not important and you don’t have time for it. This kind of thinking can get you into trouble and may cause a markdown. Remember, the exam is testing your English writing skills, and with that comes right spelling, grammar, verb agreement, as well as clear and polished writing. Take some time to go over what you’ve written, whether you’ve answered as comprehensively as possible, and what other changes you could make to improve it further.

The Takeaway

The key to scoring well on the IELTS writing tasks and the overall test is writing well and to do so you should practice, practice, practice. Take practice tests such as this frequently. Browse through encyclopedias and dictionaries for vocabulary practice. Make flashcards. Read anything and everything. And you’re sure to do well on the exam.

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hi, i will get a beat number in ilets i need to help, specially in reading amd Writing, could you help me, i really need,

Within each body paragraph, you should have a general sentence structure of: 1st, a topic sentence that introduces this paragraph by summarizing what will be discussed, 2nd-4th, a detail or evidence that supports the main point, and 5th, a concluding sentence that discusses significance and transitions into the next paragraph.

There are differences between the academic & general modules, but they’re not super significant. One, the general training one is often easier, since the academic one is more specialized. Two, the academic has a wider range of topics. The essay types though remain the same.

Hope this helps!

Kindly tell more about body paragraphs. Is there any differece between academic & general module writing task 2? Regards

Thank you so much,

You have nailed it.

Leave a comment

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IELTS Preparation with Liz: Free IELTS Tips and Lessons, 2024

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  • Test Information FAQ
  • Band Scores
  • IELTS Candidate Success Tips
  • Computer IELTS: Pros & Cons
  • How to Prepare
  • Useful Links & Resources
  • Recommended Books
  • Writing Task 1
  • Writing Task 2
  • Speaking Part 1 Topics
  • Speaking Part 2 Topics
  • Speaking Part 3 Topics
  • 100 Essay Questions
  • On The Day Tips
  • Top Results
  • Advanced IELTS

IELTS Essay Introduction for an Opinion Essay

This lesson looks at how to write an IELTS essay introduction for an opinion essay. The introduction is the easiest part of any IELTS essay as it follows a similar content for all IELTS task 2 types.

This lesson is a follow-on lesson from last week. Learn how to find main points before continuing with this introduction lesson:  Finding Main Points for an Opinion Essay :

Every one of us should become a vegetarian because eating meat can cause serious health problems. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

How to write an IELTS essay introduction

  • Write one statement paraphrasing the information given. This will be your background statement. Make sure you paraphrase the information exactly and don’t include any irrelevant or extra information in it.
  • When you paraphrase, make sure you are using words that you are confident with. It is good to paraphrase but you will reduce your band score if you have too many errors.
  • Introduce your answer in the thesis statement. The thesis statement follows the background statement. It should contain your answer, your main points.
  • Don’t write more than 50 words for your introduction.
  • cause serious health problems = damage our health
  • become a vegetarian = adopt a vegetarian diet

Next lesson, we will look at how to write the body paragraphs for this essay.

Recommended Lessons

Finding Main Points for an Opinion Essay (Previous Lesson for this topic) IELTS Video Lesson for Writing Task 2: How to write an introduction IELTS Video Lesson for Writing Task 2: Connecting Sentences IELTS Liz YouTube Channel

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It is believed that all of us should shift into a vegetable-only diet, as consuming meat can often lead to critical health issues. In my opinion, although the benefits of vegetables are widely known and highly appreciated, right proportion of meat products should still be included in one’s diet.

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Is it correct to say: It is often considered by some that all of us should switch to a vegetarian diet, as foods composed of meat could be harmful to our health. I believe that eating vegetables is healthy; however, consuming healthy meat in the right proportion is equally important.

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Though meat is a good source of nutrients, it is believed that having non-vegetarian food can lead to serious illness and it is advised to shift to plant-based food habits. I completely agree with this notion as meat can be a communicable means for the transfer of diseases to the human race and even human organs are not developed to be omnivorous or carnivorous.

Animals are affected by different diseases that do not develop in human beings. But these diseases or their sources can be transferred during the consumption of animal flesh. The major severity linked with these diseases is that our body does not generate antibodies to such microorganisms or viruses that cause such harmful diseases. It has been seen in the past that diseases like Rabies and Ebola are spread to the human race from animal life.

Human body parts are naturally made to be vegetarian. The length of our teeth, nails, and intestines clearly differs from that of carnivores. Since we are not supposed to eat non-vegetarian food, it takes longer to digest the animal flesh which could lead to indigestion problems. However, people believe that consuming meat provides more nutrients, but the same amount of nutrition and balanced diets can be taken from plant-based food options.

In conclusion, having looked at the topic in detail, I agree with the fact that a vegetarian diet is a healthier and balanced diet for us whereas non-vegetarian food can cause health concerns and various diseases in the human body.

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I am just wondering, I have been watching your videos from 10days and l want to book a date,but I’m bit confuse in reading task,so what shall I do for that.?hope you will suggest me.🙏and another thing, I love your teaching and appreciate your help for all students.

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Don’t book a date until you are confident you can get the score you need. Get the IELTS Cambridge test books and start working through them – they contain past papers and are officially published by IELTS.

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Adopting a vegetarian diet is recommended to prevent chronic health issues resulting from eating meat. In my opinion, I agree that consuming too much meat could lead to serious health challenges. However, a balanced diet is essential for developing and improving health.

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Many health problems occurs because of having lack of non veg food. Recent study shows that an individual having meat daily is hospitalized every week. To overcome such problems, everyone should follow vegetarian diet instead of non veg food. I believe that each and every person should become vegetarian not only it will help to rermain healthy but it also helps in maintaining cholestrol level.

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It is advised that everyone should develop into a vegetarian and avoid the consumption of meat to prevent health challenges. In my opinion, I agree meat can cause some serious damage to the body, but it and some other dairy products provide the protein that the body needs.

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Meat consumption can be detrimental to our health, despite its health benefits, some people think every one should become a vegetarian. In my opinion, animal fat metabolism takes a longer period to undergo assimilation. Nonetheless, eating a diet with nutrients in their proportion in highly encourage.

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It is suggested that people should intake vegetables only because meat consumption is detrimental to our health. From my perspective, although a vegetarian diet is beneficial to our health, a balanced diet that contains considerable meat and vegetables is more important to improve health conditions.

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Becoming vegetarian seems to be a new lifestyle as it tends to decrease many health problems. In my opinion, turning vegetarian not only makes someone healthy as it requires a balanced vegetarian diet.

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All people should stop eating meat as it’s consumption may lead to complicated health related problems. In my opinion, I agree that being a vegetarian is healthy. However, a good number of meat and diary products have a lot of healthy benefits.

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Eating meat is considered to cause serious health problems which is why some recommend becoming a vegetarian. In my opinion, vegetables are the key to being healthy because they contain the richest minerals and proteins, though, meats can be part of a balanced diet.

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Every individual should adapt the vegetarian food and avoid the meat habit as it can deteriorate the health. In my opinion, yes I agree with this statement and government should take some necessary steps to put ban on selling meat.

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Some people believe that everyone should adopt a vegetarian diet because the consumption of meat can lead to serious health complications. In my opinion, having a vegetarian diet is healthy but having meat such as fish and chicken can also contribute to a healthy diet once there is a balance.

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Adopting the vegetarian lifestyle should be the goal for all people because it is believed that meat consumption causes serious health implications. It is no doubt that following a vegetarian diet can lead to improved health choices and keep certain diseases away, I however I do not believe that eating meat is simply a ticket to poor health.

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Eating meat may have critical health issues.so, all are trying to shift their diet similar to vegans diet. However, in my opinion eating meat do have some advantages. Only having veggies in our food would not help in building or getting essential nutrients to our body. even few vegetables like potato have many disadvantages

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some scientific reserchers counter that all individual can intake / adopt vegetrian dieat instead of eating fish,meat whereas they can lead /harm to our health .In my iopinion intaking a vegetrian dieat was a good balanced diet,good for health but taking a meat with a proper amount was not harm to our health system .i disagree with the statment i shall discuss all pros nd cons in further paragraph

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All people must adapt vegetarian food habits as consuming meat may impact their health and can lead to various diseases. I partially agree with the proposed idea because our body needs a balanced diet for healthy functioning, which cannot be availed “only” from the vegetarian food sources.

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Nowadays increasing number of health issues, people are changing to vegetarian, being than meat-eaters. But in my opinion, it is impossible that everyone relies only on vegetables for our body nutritional needs.

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Being a vegetarian have risen in popularity among the people, as it is believed that meat provokes numerous health diseases. From my point of view , I agree that a drastic change in our daily eaten habits must be considered not just to stay healthy in the long term but also to preserve our valuable natural resources.

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It is thought that having meat based diet can lead to critical health issues, that is why every individual must go for being a vegetarian. In my opinion, having fish, poultry, and red meat is as important as eating vegetables as long as your consumption of meat is well balanced.

Can someone please comment and let me know where the improvements are needed? Thanks 🙂

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Hlo liz Please check my intro The consumption of meat has had a detrimental effect on health hence all of us should be take vegetarian diet. However, while i believe that adopting a vegetarian diet can help us make ourselves healthy, i agree that meat is a main source of protein that completes our diet so both are needed in a balanced diet. Thanks for lesson.

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A diet rich in meat can have a detrimental effect on health. While it can be beneficial to reduce the amount of meat eaten, i don’t think becoming a vegetarian is necessary.

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Vegetarianism has been increasingly becoming a well-known trend globally. Its proponents are claiming that abstaining from the consumption of meat is the best way to be free from any forms of illnesses, while the opposition believes that eating meat is crucial to maintaining one’s well-being. In my opinion, a balanced portion of both food groups mentioned is the key to being healthy.

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I have watched your advanced lesson on Agree/Disagree essay, but one question is there for which I could not find an appropriate answer

Let us take an example, the one used here,

“Every one of us should become a vegetarian because eating meat can cause serious health problems.” Agree/Disagree?

1) If I completely “Agree” then do I need to mention both parts in the “Thesis Statement”? Is that the correct approach? Thesis statement should include: a) I agree that everyone should become a vegetarian. b) I agree that meat can cause health issues.

2) Then I need two body paragraphs, a) State reason + supporting point exclusively on why everyone should become a vegetarian. b) State reason + supporting point exclusively on why meat could cause health issue.

Do you think above approaches are correct?

3) What if I need to write three paragraphs then what should I mention in third paragraph? Because I covered two parts of the question in the two paragraphs already.

Thanks again for amazing advanced lessons.

Looking for your expert advice

Thanks, Yash

I don’t understand question 3 – “what if I have to write three paragraphs..” – you choose if you write two or three. It’s your choice. If you have two main ideas, you have two body paragraph. The number of paragraphs matches your ideas. Your structure otherwise is fine. I teach the optional third paragraph to offer people flexibility and choice. Glad my Advanced lessons are good.

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All of us must only consumer vegetarian food as non-vegetarian diet can potentially lead to critical health issues. In my opinion, a vegatarian diet is not the key to a healthy life. Having a balanced diet and regular exercise is important for developing a healthy body.

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Some people concede that meat consumption contributes to negative health impacts. Preventing those impacts, therefore, those people decide to become vegetarian. Personally, I believe that adopting a vegetarian diet can help us to have a healthy life. However, I think it is more essential to have a balanced diet with an adequate amount of meat as well as fruit and vegetable.

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According to some, due to the fact that eating meat might result in various illnesses, becoming a vegetarian is a must. in my opinion, this can improve the human health.

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Each one of us should adopt vegetarian diet because eating meat damage our health . I totally admit it, from last few year scientists research on it and find that meat eaters have more health problems like cancer , heartattack issue etc in comparison with vegetarian .

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I understand you do not offer writing correction services. Just want to know if the structuring below is appropriate.

Consuming meat can cause critical health issues, hence all of us should adopt a vegetarian diet. In my opinion, while fruits and vegetables bring vital nutrients & vitamins to the table, meat is a major source of proteins that completes out diet. Moreover, quality sourced meats are free from the risk of contamination and disease.

Is it ok to use idiomatic expressions or phrases in writing, esp in introduction?

Thank you. Shailesh

It’s a good introduction. But make sure you differentiate between other people’s views and your views. You can do this by using “It is thought” in your first sentence – that indicates it is an opinion held by others. Don’t use “&” – use words. Be careful describing a vegetarian diet as fruit and vegetables – vegetarians also eat beans and pulses which contain high quantities of protein. Otherwise – all good 🙂

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Hi Liz… I have a question regarding Opinion Essay. Firstly, the topic is: “Some people claim that not enough of the waste from homes is recycled. They say that the only way to increase recycling is for governments to make a legal requirement. To what extent do you think laws are needed to make people recycle more of their waste? ” Here, I have a confusion that either this asking for agreeing or agree/disagree both?

It is asking you to present your opinion – Do you think laws are needed to make people recycle more? Present your view.

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Some people say every individual should follow a vegetarian diet because consuming meat is considered as injurious to health. In my opinion, I completely agree with that vegetarian people have less health issues while meat eaters likely to have diseases like cancer, heart stroke etc.

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Hi Liz Is that right or no? We should be vegetarian which is eating meat can give us problems in our health. In my opinion, I disagree that eating meat is the key to have problems with heath. However, I also believe that have vegetarian life can destroy our health.

You have a problem with grammar and vocabulary – this means your English language contains too many errors. Your technique is fine.

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Hi liz, i have a simple question. Is the command “give your own opinion” the same with “agree/disagree” question type? I’m a little bit lost here. Thanks liz.

Yes, it is 100% the same. Any instructions that ask directly for your opinion is an opinion essay. The instructions are often paraphrased, but you approach it all in the same way.

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Exactly this is what I thought as well. I thought the thesis would be for u to state whether you agree or disagree with the statement. And the introduction should give what will later be discussed in the passage. Pls address this thanks

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Hi Liz, This is Sharmila ….Thank u so much for addressing all our needs…..Hereby I have written an introduction part for the above statement .So please give me some suggestions……

Some people claim that consuming meat will give adverse effects on health,so they stick to follow a vegan diet.But actually,that is not the key for that problem. In my opinion,I do not completely agree that everyome have to become a vegetarian.Howeover ,sometimes eating vegetables too affect our health.According to me it has it own pros and cons either being a vegetarian or a Non-vegrtarian.

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Being a vegetarian should be the goal for everyone, as eating meat can lead to dangerous health issues. I believe that everyone should balance their diet between meat and vegetables to be able to get all body requirements.

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Majority believe that everybody ought to be vegans since consuming meat products is considered to have harm to human’s health. However, to say that some people can not imagine their menu without meat is a conservative statement.

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Would you please review my answer and provide feedback.

All individual must only consume vegetables, as non-veg edibles may have fatal health concerns. In my opinion, it is crucial to include vegetable as a part of our daily diet but I also believe that our food should be equally balanced by making meat a part of it.

I do not offer marking.

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People all around the world need to be a vegetarian since consuming meat can lead us to serious health diseases. In my opinion that people should consume vegetarian food instead of meat. However, our diet should be supported by supplements such as vitamins and pills.

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Majority of people give thoughts on diseases “they say the non-vegetarian meal may be effect on body problems such as heart attack”.This essay will discuss about how it worst our body and what thing will protect to us

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We all must become veggie because eating meat can lead us to fatal diseases. In my opinion, I believe that eating vegetables can make us more healthy rather eating meat.

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hi, Can i use ‘as far as iam concerned ‘instead of ‘ in my opinion’. Thank you

Do not use informal language in a formal essay.

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Due to serious health issues caused by eating meat,some people think that everyone ought to be a vegetarian.In my opinion,l agree that a small portion of meat and vegetables is healthier.

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Hi Liz. I am new on you blog but i have enjoyed most of the things you have posted here.

Can you please help me with this introduction. I have 14 days more for my IELTS exams

Some people believe that several health risks could be prevented if we avoid consuming meat products and take in vegetables. I agree that eating meat have the potential to cause detriments to health , however I disagree that all person should become vegetarians by avoiding meat to leave healthy.


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Thanks a lot liz, this my introduction . Hope you could revise it Some people believe consuming animal products damage the health and being a vegetarian away from harmful food will keep body away from illness as heart attack. In my opinion, I think consuming both kinds of diet in a balanced level with a healthy cooking style will provide us a required amount of supplements as our body needs to be healthier.

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It is considered by some people that, people need to change their meat diet instead of becoming vegetarian as consuming meat can occur severe disorders in human health.In my opinion, i admit being vegetarian will definitely reduce several health problems. In addition, i also think eating meat is also necessary to keep our health fit.

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You said that it’s okay to keep some word as it is since it already a scientific word or either if you unsure about the perfect substitution of the word. My question is, do you have any maximum of the word that you keep for paraphrasing?

For example like this: Artist need a certain amount of freedom to develop their creativity. Some people think that artist should have total freedom to express any thoughts and ideas. To what extent do you agree or disagree.

I think I can keep the word “artist” and “creativity”. But I doubt about “freedom”, I might use its explanation but somehow freedom seems to be a perfect word to be keep as well. Also, how far I need to find synonym for “people”? Or just let it be..?

Tomorrow I will put up and exercise on this website about your question and the day after I will show you a model and explain.

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All the people in the world should be an omnivores as in taking non vegetarian fodd damages our health. I agree that, eating a vegetarian diet is healthy.However, having a balanced diet including vegetables, fruits and some healthy meat is the best.

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Regarding to the debate on dietary topic, there are more and more people opting for vegetarian diet because of health issues, spiritual belief or environmental awareness. While it is true that a meat-free diet can contribute to the betterment of a certain number of people, I do not think that everyone should follow this trend.

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According to the perception of some people meat is harmful for human health thus vegetables should be the diet solely. However in my opinion I disagree that to have some meat in lunch can be considered dangerous. I also believe vegetables are essential for balanced diet.

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hi liz could you please check my introduction and please tell me is it a good one or not

Imposing a vegetarian diet on people cannot be tolerated, even though it can cause serious health problems.However, one could not say vegans are free from any life style diseases as most illnesses have historic routes. Moreover, there are shreds of examples that vegetarians are more prone to nutritional deficiency diseases, due to the lack of nutrients that they get from non-vegetarian foods. Therefore, I completely disagree to this view and opine that a combined diet is vital for the health of an individual.

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Hi Liz, Could you please review my introduction.

Some people believe that eating meat could affect badly our health. Therefore, people should focus on eating vegetable solely. In my opinion, I disagree that having a reasonable amount of meat in daily food could harm the body. However, I also believe that eating vegetables is key to have a healthy life.

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People must have balance diet,which include vegetable ,fruits ,meat ,dry fruits etc.it helps in maintaining health

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Hello,, can you please evaluate my introduction . a detailed comment could help me alot.

Eating meat might be the main reason of a major health issues and disease, therefore, some people think that everyone have to become a vegetarian. In my opinion, i disagree that eating meat could be a reason for health damage.

Thanks in advance

You didn’t give your opinion on whether you think everyone should become vegetarian. You must address the task – this means answer the whole question.

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Diet is essential part of our daily routines. Some people suggest that we all should avoid eating meat and perfer to become vegetarian because veg diet always keep us healthy and keep away from health diseases. I believe that vegetarian food have more nutrients, vitamins and diseases free such as heart attcaks, diabetes instead of non vegetarian.

Check my intro. And give suggestions

Definitely review your vocabulary and spelling.

Thanks, liz

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Hi Liz, kindly help check my introduction. Thanks.

Vegetarians are people which do not eat animal flesh and, or products. Some people believe that meat is related to serious health problems, thus, instigating their decision to become vegetarians. I strongly disagree that everybody should become vegetarians. Although red meat can be detrimental to health, it can be consumed moderately or substituted with white meat like chicken and mutton.

Did you watch my video on this page which explains that you don’t need a hook. Your first sentence is not needed. The examiner knows the meaning of the word “vegetarian”. Cut your first sentence and you have a good intro.

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I only came across your site a couple of days ago, and I wish it was sooner. My exam will be this coming 4th March and I am extremely nervous. In spite of all the preparation I have done, I still do not feel confident enough to ace the test. I tried every way that I can think of to pass this exam, perhaps the effort was not good enough, perhaps my method is insufficient. I just want to make it, I seek online/personal tutor, never ending IELTS reference books was read, and practice test done. I am keeping myself on the positive side, but this exam truly challenge my sanity. So true is sad that it will come to that extent, that I doubt myself on failure to this. There has to be a way, formula to make it easy. Thereby coming across your site was a blessing, and you make every lessons comprehensible and interactive. With that, every credit should all be yours. Learning English has been tough journey for me, indeed and to be honest, together with other examinees who have tried this exam many times, it can be frustrating. Anyway, enough of the ranting and let us get back into real business. I wrote a sample introduction here, and please let me know what you think.

It is believed that most people should adopt a vegetarian diet because meat consumption causes a detrimental effect on our health. In my opinion, not only eating vegetables is beneficial to our body, it also promotes less damage to other living organisms.

* I am not sure if I used the correct conversion for this thesis statement.

Kind regards, Avy

Your background statement is fine. Your opinion presents a clear position but you don’t actually state if you agree that eating meat is damaging to our health. What is your opinion of that? Make sure your opinion covers all aspects of the question and issue. See my main page for writing task 2: https://ieltsliz.com/ielts-writing-task-2/ . All main pages can be accessed through the red bar at the top of my website. If you need more help with writing task 2, think of purchasing one of my advanced lessons: http://subscriptions.viddler.com/IELTSLizStore . You’ve got almost a week before your test – you can learn a lot in that time.

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Hi, Liz. I’ve been following your site mainly because it is the best teaching site for IELTS I’ve came across, so far. I think you know that by now. 🙂

Anyway, just want to ask you this: I understand that it is important for us to give our opinion in the introduction, but we would repeat the same message in the conclusion part. Wouldn’t that be redundant?

If you have to write an opinion essay, you introduce your opinion, explain it in the body paragraphs and conclude / restate it again in the conclusion. This is the structure of an agree / disagree essay. See this page: https://ieltsliz.com/ielts-writing-task-2/

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Hey Liz I’ve been following your website for quite a long it’s very helpful. My question is that can we write our opinion on the new line after paraphrasing the question…?

The background statement and thesis statement are in the same paragraph. Watch the video on this page to learn: https://ieltsliz.com/ielts-writing-task-2/

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Hey Liz, i’ve been following your website for quite sometime now. Can you check the introduction I made about this topic? thanks

All of us are required to be vegetarians due to the reason that consuming meat products might result to life-threatening health conflicts. in my opinion, I agree that vegetables should have more proportions in our meals but I believe that we also need meat for a balanced diet.

Your background statement should not express a fact in this case, it should express “other people’s views”.

so i missed putting the word “some people believe”?

That’s right. You are not presenting a fact in this case.

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How can I know that this essay is a Balanced Opinion or One-sided Opinion … do i decide something like that or he will tell me to do it with a certain way? please clarify this point as on your 1 hour OPINION essay writing task 2 video I purchased you didn’t mention how can we figure out that? thank you!

This is a balanced view. If it was one sides, we would agree that being vegetarian is the ONLY way. A one sided essays agrees 100% and does not add any other information or specific view point.

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Hi liz, Thanks for your great help, What if i agree to the statement, and consider vegetarian diet the healthiest. Furthermore, If i wont to add another opinion like talking about another unhealthy food that should be avoided

As long as you present a clear opinion and support it, then it’s fine.

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topic :- Prevention is better then cure…..

first of all , Prevantion is that for example, the Prevention means ” Stop The Process or Work the Cure means ” Solving The Problem”.

Prevention when occur then, we create the problem and hoe to stop that problem is called Prevention. i think prevention is necessary at this time, Because we think about prevention that means because the time for process and decrease the money cost behind expenses behind work. Preventioon before the problem occur that means we always aggresive in work, in future any type of work we always have solution behind the process. Cure Means according to my thought “Medicine”. If we have a medicine then we can easily frfee from problem. it happens in future then also. Prevention & Cure both are little bit same but if we think Prevention before any kind of work that means we were always in safe side, but when we dnt think about prevention but not only dependent on cure that means we have no option because of we applied about cure only.

Cure is also good but lots of type of cure like ‘medicine’,’physical’,’financial’,’friendly’. in that condition we always cover for us with cure. One more important used cure at this time is “Life Insurance” Policy. it’s always cure about your futurre as well as your family. if we take an insurance that means we protect the own & family. Insurance is fully protect the family from any human being problems like accident, death causes, etc.

Prevention is i think always beteter then cure.

In my point of view , i conclude that Prevention is always save the time & money in future.

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Liz, would you mind taking a look at this conclusion:

All people must practise being a vegan because detrimental health conditions related to health result to eating meat products. In my opinion, I agree that eating vegetables may significantly improve health. However, I also believe that intake of meat is also essential to our overall nutritional condition.

You don’t need a long conclusion – it won’t help your score at all. Just one sentence is enough (two at most).

Hi Liz – my bad. The paragraph I wrote above is for my introduction and not conclusion. Thoughts please? 🙂 Thank you.

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Liz, How about the following introduction paragraph for above task.

“We should start eating only vegetables due to the fact that taking meat in our food may result into major diseases. In my opinion, I do not agree with the concept of avoiding meat. However, there should be a balanced food consists of meat as well as vegetables.”

Avoid using “we” in IELTS essays.

Noted with thanks

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ht is considered by many that it would be beneficial for all of us if we opted completely for vegetables as meat intake can result in major health issues. In my view, even though eating vegetables is considered healthy, a well balanced diet is more crucial for the well being of anyone. thank u so much for your extremely thorough explanations. I have given a go at the introduction for above mentioned topic. I would be grateful if u could comment on my effort. Looking forward to your reply..!! Take care

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Hlo Liz , will you plz tell me we can mention words like in my opinion or I am agree or disagree in task 2 essays???


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Goodevening Mrs Liz,

Thanks for your wonderful website. I really appreciate what you have done for us.

While studying writing Task2 introduction with the model introduction you wrote page-up I found missing commas -but I am not sure in the first setence of it ” Eating meat is considered by some to damage out health (,)and for that reason(,) they believe …”

Honestly, I am still not sure where commas are used in sentences. However, can you answer my question I asked earlier?

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hmmm…..I find it very difficult in writing essays ……plz Auntie Liz …help me ..how do I write …I have a paper on january

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Hi liz… If I didn’t use this layout in my exam introduction will it affect my score?and if yes for which criterion?

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dear Liz any positive criticism please, apart from typos ? some people believe that every person in the commumity ought to eat vegetables to avoid devastating health issues,which could be caused by eating meat.In my opinion, i don’t agree to this idea, for meat has vital role to play in developing people’s body and helps make a balanced diet.

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can you give your idea for this introduction

Food is fundamental need for every living being.If the people can feed on only vegetables, they may obtain healthy life.It is generally accepted that consuming meat is one of the fact that cause dangerous diseases. In my opinion, I agree that vegetarian diet is the key to health. However, meat is required to develop the body cells in growth of human.

Sorry I don’t comment on writing. All the best Liz

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Hi Liz! I recently found out about your blog and It’s a great help for many students who are preparing for their IELTS exams. I watched your video about writing introduction for task 2 and tried myself writing an Introduction. So, here it is.

Nowadays, many people believe that we should adopt a vegetarian diet and give up theconsumption of meat – as eating too much of meat can lead to some severe health issues. In my opinion, I think, following a vegetarian diet is good for health. However, I also believe that one should focus on having a balanced diet which include moderate amount of meat.

Sorry I don’t comment on writing but I’m glad to see you are practicing. All the best Liz

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Plz help me to improve ielts writing task 2

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Hi Liz, I have written this Intro is it okay. “Some people believe that meat as diet can cause major health issues, so best way to health would be to become vegitarian. In my openion, vegitarian food is definetely a healthy option. However, having balanced diet which includes both vegitables and some healthy meat, is the key. “

Sorry, I don’t comment on writing. Thanks Liz

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I have booked and exam appointment for September 26, 2015 and would like to know what to do from now till the exam date.

Please watch the “How to Prepare for IELTS” video on my home page. Then start working through information and tips pages. The review model answers. After that do practice lessons. All the best Liz

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I’ve purchased all your three video lessons for writing task 2. They are quite useful. Thank you! And I’m just wondering when the video clips for another two types of writing will be online? Thanks.

Unfortunately, not until next Spring. If I have time, I will try and finish speaking part 2 video lesson for next month. All the best Liz

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Hey my also 26 of september.wherevare you from

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How can i get the body paragraph of this essay??

Sorry, I don’t provide full model essays for all lessons. Liz

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Hi Liz! I am posting this comment just to thank you , you’re a very good teacher! I am gonna be examinated tomorrow, I admit I haven’t studied that much during the last days, so your website has been very helpful . I hope you’ll keep on doing this for the students’ sake 🙂 All the best from Italy, Francesco

Good luck tomorrow!!! Keep your mind focused on the questions and remember this is about technique and English language. Let me know how your exam goes 🙂 All the best Liz

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Hi liz, I have 2 questions to ask. the first one is `can I use I deem or it is demeed to be in order to paraphrase I think or it is considered?` The second one is in part 0 of speaking task, when I’ll be asked `how are you?` Can I use a slang to respond, for instance by saying I got a hitch in my giddy up. Looking forward to your answer.

Thanks for all the lessons.

I wouldn’t use the paraphrase “I deem”, it rarely used these days. For your question about speaking, it is unlikely the examiner will ask this question because it is not part of any topic and it is not part of the ID check. But if the examiner does ask it, you must answer naturally “I’m fine” or “I’m feeling ok today, thanks”. Avoid putting unnatural idioms into your answers – it won’t increase your score and the example you gave above is not only inappropriate but also incorrect. All the best Liz

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It’s considered that consuming meat might cause adverse health outcomes and thus everyone should be adopted to a vegetarian diet. Likewise, being a vegetarian outweighs it’s benefits than it’s risks.

One of the key advantages of being a vegetarian is lowering the cancer risk as especially red meats are known to have carcinogenic compounds. Besides, it prevents having non communicable diseases like hypertension, because the meats contain the bad types of cholesterol.

On the other hand, there is a vast majority of nutrients available in meat like high quality proteins and vitamins. Therefore lacking those nutrients might lead to neurological as well as musculoskeletal issues.

To conclude, there are numbers of health benefits of being a vegetarian compared to the counterpart. Nevertheless, it is essential to replace the aforementioned major nutrients by consuming the alternatives like eggs.

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Ielts exam preparation for a higher band score., tips on how to write your ielts essay, some great tips on how to write your ielts essay:.

Well, this is a widely discussed issue about answering the Writing Task 2 of an IELTS test. In fact, the test takers are in deep trouble to deal with the questions and their potential answers. But this is not a big deal if someone follows some precise rules. This article is about some useful tips to start an IELTS essay and get a good band in the test. Before moving to the topic, some issues need discussion for you. So, an introductory speech would not taste bad to the beginners of IELTS test.

Achieving a band like 7.5+ is a long mountain to climb if the candidate lacks necessary preparations. The answers need to be perfectly correct and up to the standard. Application of grammar, spelling, punctuation, and vocabulary in right ways is also desired to achieve the score. The IELTS test taker should write the answers not entirely based on real facts. They have to apply their imaginations as well.

In IELTS Writing Task 2, an applicant is supposed to answer some particular questions. But, keep in mind – there is a limitation of time. The candidate should present the topic skillfully and obviously with no mistake. A pencil and paper will be used for the purpose, however, use of a pen is not prohibited. The candidate has to complete the task within the budgeted time – 40 minutes. No extra seconds will be offered.

There are some variations on the type of essays you might get in your writing task 2 question. They are usually – Opinion, Argument, Advantages/Disadvantages, Problem/solution and mixed essay. The candidates are also expected to use their experience and examples while answering them.

Actually, grading of the essay is predefined. The examiners mostly care about the coherence of the topic. Grammatical accuracy is also required. If you do not care about the grammar in your writing, you will lose a good portion of your score. Hence, this is always a good idea to know grammar, coherence, cohesion etc. while answering the writing section of this test.

Luckily, a wide number of tips and suggestions are available both online and offline, and the IELTS candidates can take a great help from those materials. It needs some moments to focus on the materials and know the secrets of success in IELTS.

I think you have got some ideas about the IELTS Writing Task 2 by now. So, let us start the tips.

Know the question:

Many of the IELTS candidates do not have any idea about the question as they do not read the question attentively. They simply answer the questions and copy some question lines on their answer script. They think it will add some exception. Wrong! I will not suggest copying questions from the question paper. Rather, my suggestions would be to follow the question. Get to know the question. Ask the question what it demands. In fact, this is a simple task. If you know your question completely, you would be able to understand what actually is demanded by the questions. You should never copy the question but always paraphrase it.

But if you know your question properly, you can answer them without losing any score. Knowing the questions plays a vital role here. DO NOT COPY questions on the answer script. Having the right knowledge on the question will help you answer them smoothly.

Take some notes:

A notable number of IELTS candidates avoid this step to save time. They do not take notes to deal with the questions. They have to realize that note taking is a part of the test. They need to take small notes either on their answer script or on their minds. This is a good way to raise the band score. A huge number of benefits are available in taking notes.

For instance, the IELTS question asks the candidate to write an essay about a problem about traffic congestions in his city and describes the detrimental impacts of the problem. Now the task is to describe the problems with proper examples.

In this case, a candidate should –

  • Take some notes on the negative effects of traffic congestions. Pondering about the problem will help to sort out the harmful effects like wasting time on streets, loss of working hours etc. And this is not waste of time at all.
  • Then the candidate should suggest some solutions. Adding some examples would raise chances of higher band in the test.

A brief model answer of the questions might be like this:

“Traffic congestion is increasing around the world. What is the situation in your own city? Do you have any suggestions that can help reduce the traffic jams?”

Answer: People consider traffic jam a curse as it kills valuable times and working hours every day.

(The candidate is supposed to take some drafts and then add the ideas into his answer) Reduction of traffic congestion is impossible to overnight. Awareness should be raised among people. Private vehicles should be reduced during peak hours.

Simply a model like this is helpful and the candidate should elaborate the answer necessarily.

Stick to the point:

While answering the Writing part 2, majority of the IELTS test takers are unable to stay focused to the point. They enlarge their answer unnecessarily. Most of the times, they cannot keep the track what they are writing. The entire writing becomes a hotchpotch for them. They forget about the rules and most importantly, they do not care about question topic. As a result, they miss the vital points of the questions. They forget about any important instruction. They also do not know what to do in such cases. Consequently, the Writing Part 2 becomes a nightmare for them. They blame their luck for not being successful in the test or for not getting the desired band.

Following a simple rule will improve the situation. As an IELTS test candidate, you will not need to elaborate the answers unnecessarily. You just need to stick to the main points. Write the answers to the point. Try making the points in line with the questions. If you want to put a logic, please keep it aligned with the question or with the relevant situations. Actually, the questions are not to assess your intelligence rather your knowledge on the topic. Underlining the keywords from the question will help you to set the answers.

For instance, the questions say to show the detrimental impacts of technology on youth and potential ways to get rid of it. And you begin this way-

“Technology is a blessing for all and it has countless benefits. It helps live a meaningful life but sometimes it has negative effects on young minds. People around the world are now dependent on technology. Youths are part of it. But they use it in a different manner. They are glued to the technological device. This is not good for them, I believe”

In fact, this is not the right approach. Your answer is derailing from the topic with unwanted lines. It wastes time, loses chances to a good score. Focusing on the problem would be more beneficial and you can do it this way –

“Technology is an asset but youths at present are abusing it. They waste time needlessly ….”

Budget your time:

Well, this is another important matter in the IELTS test. The time for the tests is limited. An applicant is to follow the time management skills while appearing on the test. There are varied suggestions regarding the time management. It is told before that the examiners will not allow a single extra second to the candidates to complete the test. When the time will be up, the live examiners will ask the candidates to stop writing or they will take the answer scripts. Hence, the candidates should be careful about time.

Planning ahead of time for the test would be the best. For completing an essay worth 250 to 280 words, an applicant should not use more than 36 minutes. This is from my personal experience. Though experts suggest spending around 40 minutes in this section and remaining 20 minutes for Writing Task 1. If someone can complete the task within 30 minutes, it points that s/ he will get a 10 minute extra. This 10 minutes could be used for different purposes. The applicants are in rush in the last moments. This extra minutes will help them in rush. They actually will not need to rush at all.

  • Budgeting the time for each of the section is a must. And this is too important for the Writing Part 2.
  • The applicant should not spend for over 5 minutes in thinking and planning. Actually, time flows rapidly in the test centres and exam halls.
  • Map your answers spending not more than 5 minutes.

Think out of the box:

IELTS is a competitive skill assessment test. If you are unable to score a better band, some other will have that. So, your thoughts on the test need to be critical. Please keep in mind that if you cannot think out of the box, you will lose chances to have a remarkable band. When your thoughts would be critical, you would be able analyzing the questions from different perspectives. Actually, the examiners want the candidates to think deeply and make a unique resolution to the problems. Unless the answer scripts are filled with out of the box ideas, the examiners do not find interest in scoring a higher band.

As an IELTS candidate, you also should know that an examiner takes part in various activities. Examining the answer scripts is one of them. And if the answers are not attractive, they will lose interest in the answer script and consequently, the candidate will have a poor band. You do not need to be a rocket scientist. Your writing does not need to win the Nobel Prize. Simply it should provide the necessary answers in proper details.

The answers should be well organized with a simple look. The answer should be easily comprehensible for the readers (or the examiners). If you can think crucially, reflect the thoughts on the answer script.

Care Lexical features:

Well, an IELTS test is about testing the English language skills of the applicants. The examiners are expected to assess your capabilities and capacities with the language. Many of the applicants do not have the idea about the lexical features. They repeat words again and again. This is a kind of expression of empty inside for the candidates. The examiner expects to see some variety of language in the answer script. They also have an expectation that the candidates should use different terms and phrases in the answer script to describe their imaginations. But in reality, they do not find such variations.

This is an important part for the IELTS candidates. They should check the words they have composed on the answer script. It is wise not to repeat words in the answer script. The more you will repeat, the more the examiner will have a negative impression about your vocabulary. He will comprehend that as an IELTS test taker, you own a poor language knowledge. So, the band will be selected accordingly.

Hence, this is extremely important to select your words and apply them in the right place and in the right manner. A revision is required to change the words repeated in the answer script. It is easier to find the repeated words. Since you are not writing an epic at the test centre, you definitely will have some time in hand (if you budget your time for each of the questions accordingly).

Use Paragraphs:

Many of the IELTS test takers are unaware about the fact. They do not use paragraphs in their writings. They write the answers on the answer scripts in a single para. They clearly express their opinions on the lengthy single paragraph. But this is not the way of making a respectable answer to Writing Task 2. Hence, the candidates should take the matter seriously. Breaking down the ideas in several paragraphs is a helpful method. The candidates should follow the method to have several paragraphs while answering the questions. Actually, the candidates are asked to write an essay. But a lengthy paragraph makes the answer a ‘paragraph’ only. This is not an essay.

Thereby, the chance of a higher band is reduced in this case. The examiners do not care for such essays and grade poorly. The best idea is to make a detailed plan. Make sure you break down the paragraphs before writing the answer. Experts appreciate around four paras for an essay.

You can take an example-

An agree-disagree Writing Task 2 asks you to write about the matter or brushing teeth twice in a day and seeks your opinion about it.

– The first thing is an introduction. You can introduce your ideas in the first paragraph. – Place the agreements or logics that you generate on the second paragraph. – Write down the disagreements on the third paragraph. – Finally, place your own ideas in the last paragraph.

But you need to remain careful. Do not put any unwanted information on the paras. Do not add any expletives to expand the lines. Rather, it would be appreciated if you only expand your ideas with the right words.

At the end, you will find a healthy essay in all terms. To know more about paragraph writing on Writing Task 2, you can check some model answers from this website […………………………..].

Complete answers:

Interestingly, to reduce the pointless words, many of the IELTS test takers do not complete the answers. They prefer to write small sentences and in some cases, they write points only. But this is thoroughly a bad practice in IELTS test. The examiners are dissatisfied with such answers. The test is meant to assess your knowledge and skills on the English language. And if you do not complete the answers, the examiner will be unable to assess your potentials. Some examples might clear the fact.

An IELTS candidate can get a Writing Part 2 question like this:

“Climate change is a serious issue in these days.

What is causing global warming? How could they be neutralized? Is there any role of civil society other than the government?”

And many of the candidates fail to address the questions in right manner. Some of the wrong answers are as followed:

“Climate change is bad. This is hampering development. The potential ways to reduce climate change are –

– Reducing carbon emission – Planting trees – Stop deforestations – And so on …….”

But in reality, an examiner does not prefer such answer against this weighty question. The answer should be planned in a different technique.

The answer has no serious problem but if the answering way is changed, it will bring a better result. Adding the points into a paragraph (each point in a para with an explanation of one or two lines) could do much better. The answer will be completed.

Know grammar, spelling, and punctuation:

An IELTS candidate should care about the application of spelling, grammar and punctuation marks. Using the wrong grammar, making some informal sentence structure or not putting punctuation marks on right places can reduce marks in Writing Part 2. The candidates have to be careful about the issue. A prior practice is desirable to have a high band score in IELTS.

You might write the answer script filled with mistakes of grammar, punctuation, and spelling. And it quite natural to make mistakes if you are writing in an offline setting. An example may prove beneficial here.

If we consider the former question given above –

“Climate change is a serious issue in these days. What is causing global warming? How they could be neutralized?” “Reducing carbon emission is a great way to control climate change. People should be made aware of the issue. Planting trees everywhere is another way to defuse the problem.”

Be formal in language:

Application of informal expression is a common issue nowadays while discussion. But using the same type of language in Writing Task 2 is a big offence. In fact, the examiners will not love the matter. They would expect you to be formal in writing. Using the inappropriate terminologies and language is annoying for the examiners when they check the answer scripts.

Final words –

If you are armed with necessary knowledge, it is easier to have some high band score. Before moving for an IELTS Writing Task 2, a prior reading and knowing all the rules of the Grammar and language is a must. The tips here would also be supportive of potential candidates for IELTS takers. They should keep in mind that mistakes are unwelcomed and reduce the chances of success. Becoming practical is another way to carry some good bands. Be clear in expressing ideas without overstating. Adding examples than explanations will improve the writing style. The tips in this post will help them to get some good band score in this writing section.

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how to write good essay for ielts

How to write good examples for your IELTS essay

Hey! Following on from last week’s episode, in which Nick and I explained how damaging fake examples are, today we look at how you can come up with good examples for your IELTS essay quickly and easily.

The key is taking your own life experience or an observation that you have made in the real world, and turning it into universally accepted statement. Imagine that there are 100 people in front of you – a good example will be clear and accepted by 99 of them without question! Still confused? Then listen to find out more!

Below, you can find a summary of the episode, which includes all of the links to useful materials and the times of each part of the discussion (so you can go directly to the part you want to listen to)   🚀

Subscribe to My IELTS Classroom podcast on Apple podcasts   here  Subscribe to My IELTS Classroom on Google podcasts   here

3 reasons why you should NEVER use fake examples in IELTS essays

00:00 – 13:24 –  introduction: the l anguage  of sleep.

Nick and I are both bad sleepers, so I thought that we would start the lesson with a vocabulary game based on the topic of sleep. Then, you can use the lexis that we give here when thinking of examples for the essay question:

Nowadays, many people complain that they have difficulties getting enough sleep. What problems can lack of sleep cause? What can be done about lack of sleep?

13:25 – 36:45 – Using good examples in your IELTS essay

How to turn the personal universal.

In the episode Nick and I discuss how you can take personal examples and turn them into universal ones. I have written about this before, so if you are interested in looking at more clear examples of how to use your personal life experience to generate examples that are suitable for an academic essay, then you can read more here. The key is to avoid using subjects like “I” or “My friend” by changing them to more universal ones like “Many people in my country” or “most students”.

Where should you put an example in your essay? 

There seems to be a misunderstanding that examples should always go at the end of a paragraph. While it is true that examples tend to come at the end of arguments (although not always), you have to be VERY CAREFUL to make sure that the examples is proof of the sentence this is directly before it. Again, I have written about this before in a blog post, so you can read more here .

36:45 – END – Finding good examples practice

Nick and I end the episode by putting our money where I mouth is and coming up with good ideas for 4 recently reported IELTS essays. This shows how the topic of your essay can make a huge difference as to how easy or difficult it is to find examples (SPOILER  – I would hate to have the topic of artificial intelligence in my exam!)

All of the questions that we answer come from my recent blog post “ 50 recent IELTS essay questions “. Why not go to the blog post yourself to see if you can come up with examples for other essays? Remember, the more your practice, the easier it will be in your test to come up with a good example!

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IELTS Sample Essays

Here you will find IELTS Sample Essays for a variety of common topics that appear in the writing exam.

The model answers all have tips and strategies for how you may approach the question and comments on the sample answer.

You can also view sample essays with band scores on this page. 

Looking at IELTS essay topics with answers is a great way to help you to prepare for the test. 

These IELTS sample essays have been categorised in a way that makes it easy for you to see how certain essay question types require you to provide certain responses to ensure the question is fully answered. 

Specifically these are:

  • Agree / Disagree
  • Discuss Two Opinions
  • Problems and Solutions
  • Advantages and Disadvantages
  • Other Types

Agree / Disagree Type Questions

In these types of question you are given one opinion and you then have to state the extent to which you agree or disagree with that opinion:

  • Advertising
  • Alternative Medicine
  • Spending on the Arts
  • Human Cloning
  • Social Interaction & the Internet
  • Airline Tax
  • Free University Education
  • Scientific Research
  • Banning Smoking
  • Employing Older People
  • Vegetarianism
  • Paying Taxes  
  • Examinations or Formal Assessment 
  • Multinational Organisations and Culture
  • Internet vs Newspapers
  • Technology Development  
  • Dying of Languages
  • Animal Extinction
  • Truth in Relationships
  • Role of Schools
  • Return of Historical Artefacts

Discuss Two Opinions Type Questions

In this essay question type you are given two opinions, and you have to discuss both of these and then give your own view:

  • University Education
  • Reducing Crime
  • Animal Rights
  • Child Development
  • Diet & Health
  • Donating Money to Charity
  • Closing Zoos   
  • Becoming Independent  
  • Formal and Informal Education  
  • Influence of Scientists and Politicians
  • Sources for Stories
  • Searching for Extraterrestrial Life

Cause Type Questions

There are a variety of 'cause type' essay questions. In these you first have to give the reasons why something has happened, in other words the causes, but then discuss a different aspect of it, such as the effects, solutions or the extent to whether it is a positive or negative development:

Causes & Effects:

  • Child Obesity
  • Skin Whitening Creams
  • Family Size
  • Having Children Later in Life
  • Time Away from Family

Causes and Solutions:

  • Youth Crime
  • Global Warming
  • Paying Attention in Class
  • International Travel & Prejudice 
  • Museums & Historical Places
  • Disappearance of Traditions
  • Communication Between Generations

Causes, Pros & Cons:

  • Family Closeness
  • Living Alone
  • Rural to Urban Migration

Problems & Solutions Type Questions

In these type of questions, instead of discussing the causes of a problem, you need to discuss the problems related to a particular issue in society, and then suggest what can be to solve these problems:

  • Overpopulation
  • Competing for Jobs  
  • Professionals Immigrating

Advantage & Disadvantages Type Questions

In these type of questions you are asked to discuss the positive and negative sides of a particular topic. You will usually be asked this in the context of giving an opinion ( e.g. Do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages? Is it a positive or negative development? ): 

  • Traffic Problems
  • Food Additives
  • Computer Games
  • Age Discrimination at Work  
  • Children using Tablets and Computers  
  • Cell Phones, Internet, & Communication  
  • Working from Home 
  • Eating Locally grown  Produce  
  • Oil and Gas Essay  
  • Peer Pressure on Young People
  • Online Fraud

'Hybrid' Types of Essay Question

There are sometimes questions that don't fit easily into a particular category as above. I've called these 'hybrid', as they are of mixed character, are composed of different elements from other types of essay, or are perhaps just worded differently. 

  • Protecting Old Buildings
  • Animal Testing
  • Fear of Crime
  • Communication Technology
  • Influence of Children's Friends  

Sample Essays with Band Scores

You can also view some sample essays that have been written by candidates practising for the test and have band scores and comments by an experienced ex-IELTS Examiner based on the IELTS marking criteria. 

  • IELTS Band 8 Essay Samples
  • IELTS Band 7 Essay Samples
  • IELTS Band 6 Essay Samples
  • IELTS Band 5 Essay Samples
  • IELTS Band 4 Essay Samples

Student Sample Essays

For more IELTS essay topics with answers you can also view essays that have been written by students. Some have feedback from other students or IELTS teachers:

  • Student Model Essays  (with comments by other students)
  • Student Model Essays (with comments by IELTS buddy)

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