What is on the IELTS writing exam?

 

In the IELTS writing exam, candidates must complete two writing tasks in 60 minutes.  

 

ACADEMIC TRAINING

 

In writing task 1, candidates write an information report of at least 150 words describing a diagram, which could be a graph, a table. a map, a process diagram or a combination of the above.

 

In writing task 2, students write a 250 word essay in response to an essay question. Each essay question includes a task, which may be to agree or disagree with a statement, to describe problems and solutions or to discuss the arguments for and against an opinion.

GENERAL TRAINING

In writing task 1, candidates write a letter of at least 150 words in response to a task in which they may need to ask for information, make a request or complain about something.

 

In writing task 2, students write a 250 word essay in response to an essay question. Each essay question includes a task, which may be to agree or disagree with a statement, to describe problems and solutions or to discuss the arguments for and against an opinion.

 
How is your writing evaluated?
 
Ielts examiners consider 4 criteria when evaluating your writing:
 
  • Task Achievement/Response  - how well you answer the question and respond to the task
  • Coherence and Cohesion  - how well you organize and link your ideas
  • Lexical Resource (Vocabulary)  - the words you use
  • Grammar  - the sentence structure and grammatical features you use
 
Examiners will look for both positive and negative features for all of the above criteria. Therefore, when analyzing your own work, you should consider the same criteria and identify areas which you need to improve.  
 
In the vocabulary section, for example, negative features could be incorrect spelling, words with the wrong meaning or incorrect forms of words.   Positive features could include the use of higher level, academic or less common vocabulary and expressions.
 
Download the public band score descriptors for the IELTS exam:
 
                                                                      
 
 
 
TASK 1
TASK 2

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