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IELTS Writing Task 1 Tips from a professional teacher for students. 

Here we put down the most essential strategies for the first written component of IELTS Academic Module, something which you won’t find in most of the textbooks. 

Step by step guide on how to achieve band 8 in IELTS task 1. 

The following list is valid for describing pie charts, lines, graphs where comparison is required. Processes will be discussed separately.

  1. Read as many model answers as possible (make sure you find good ones – in coursebooks and testbooks). Be careful with the ones on the internet.
  2. Once you have found them, read them carefully, analyse their structure and underline useful language. I’ll strongly recommend you copying whole descriptions and learning them by heart. 
  3. When you write your version, stick to the following:
  • Start with an introductory sentence. Don’t use the same words as in the task. Paraphrase.
  • Quickly analyse the information, concentrate on main trends and facts and ignore detail. 
  • Don’t describe; compare and contrast all the time, using set phrases (conversely, by contrast, in comparison with, in a similar way).
  • Strike a balance with the figures. Don’t use too many of them, but use sufficient (this is one of the hard points).
  • By no means express opinion or judge. Just analyse the information you are given. 
  • Write a conclusion that follows logically from what you’ve written so far. Summarise the most important trends in a clear, well – expressed way. 
  • Use neutral language, avoid expressive words (such as "wonderful", "great", "amazing"). Don’t use contractions – I’m, he’s. 

These tips have helped students achieve bands as high as 8.5. 

Useful language for trends:

Rising: kept on rising, steep increase, sharp rise 

Falling: dropping to, considerable fall, marginal decrease, substantial decline

Neutral: remain relatively stable, fluctuates within limits.

Good luck and remember practice is the key to success!

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