IELTS Writing Task 2: Argument Essay with Sample Answer
Ielts writing task 2: question.
Try this argument essay question about access to a university education. It’s very important that you write a balanced argument before giving your opinion.
It is sometimes argued that too many students go to university, while others claim that a university education should be a universal right. Discuss both sides of the argument and give your own opinion.
IELTS Writing Task 2: Model Answer
In some advanced countries, it is not unusual for more than 50% of young adults to attend college or university. Critics, however, claim that many university courses are worthless and young people would be better off gaining skills in the workplace. In this essay, I will examine both sides of this argument and try to reach a conclusion.
There are several reasons why young people today believe they have the right to a university education. First, growing prosperity in many parts of the world has increased the number of families with money to invest in their children’s future. At the same time, falling birthrates mean that one- or two-child families have become common, increasing the level of investment in each child. It is hardly surprising, therefore, that young people are willing to let their families support them until the age of 21 or 22. Furthermore, millions of new jobs have been created in knowledge industries, and these jobs are typically open only to university graduates.
However, it often appears that graduates end up in occupations unrelated to their university studies. It is not uncommon for an English literature major to end up working in sales, or an engineering graduate to retrain as a teacher, for example. Some critics have suggested that young people are just delaying their entry into the workplace, rather than developing professional skills. A more serious problem is that the high cost of a university education will mean that many families are reluctant to have more than one child, exacerbating the falling birthrates in certain countries.
In conclusion, while it can be argued that too much emphasis is placed on a university education, my own opinion is that the university years are a crucial time for personal development. If people enter the workplace aged 18, their future options may be severely restricted. Attending university allows them time to learn more about themselves and make a more appropriate choice of career.
(320 words. IELTS 9.0)
Why does this Task 2 answer get an IELTS Band 9 score?
Task response: The model answer fully answers the question by stating several arguments both for and against the expansion of higher education. The candidate’s position is clearly expressed in the conclusion. The style is appropriate to academic writing and the answer is at least 250 words in length.
Coherence and cohesion: The model answer has an introduction and conclusion. Each body paragraph deals with a different side of the argument and begins with a clear topic sentence. Arguments are developed with logical connectives such as therefore and furthermore .
Lexical resource: There is a good range of vocabulary suited to an argument essay, including reporting verbs like claim and suggest , and hedging verbs like can and appear . There is native-like collocation throughout, including growing prosperity, enter the workplace and severely restricted .
Grammatical range and accuracy: The model answer uses a wide range of grammatical devices appropriate to academic writing. These include conditionals ( If… ), participle clauses ( …, increasing the… ), concessive clauses ( while it can… ) and passive constructions ( …it can be argued that… ). There are no grammatical errors.
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IELTS Argumentative Essay Structure: Here’s the Step by Step Guide You should Know
When you write a convincing article, you need more than an argument to make your voice felt. Even the best position would not be convincing if it is not well formulated and reinforced by sound logic and proof. Learn what elements each argumentative essay should contain and how to present the essay in a clean and attractive manner in this simple step-by-step tutorial. Read the article below to get a clear view of IELTS argumentative essay structure
What is an Argumentative Essay?
An argumentative essay is a form of essay writing that takes a stand on the matter. In a strong argumentative article, the writer tries to convince readers to consider and accept their point of view on the matter by outlining their reasoning and presenting facts to back it up.
Argumentative essay writing is a common task for high school students as well as IELTS aspirants Normally, argumentative essay subjects are linked to science, technologies, economics and medical care.
Argument Essay IELTS Structure: IELTS Essay Format
Argumentative essays should have a clear structure such that they are convenient for readers to understand. The purpose of the argumentative essay is to explicitly outline the perspective, the logic and the proof. Follow the IELTS argumentative essay structure below, to write a perfect essay for your IELTS writing task
Introductory Paragraph: IELTS Essay Structure Task 2
The first section of your essay should outline the subject, include the context details required to explain your case, outline the facts that you will be presenting, and state your topic.
The Topic Statement: IELTS Essay Structure Task 2
This is part of the first line of your order. This is a succinct, one-sentence description of your key argument and assertion.
Body Paragraphs: IELTS Essay Structure Task 2
A standard argumentative essay consists of three or four paragraphs that clarify why you endorse your topic. Each topic sentence should cover a different theory or bit of proof and contain a theme sentence that simply and concisely demonstrates why the examiner should agree with your argument. Body paragraphs are where you support up your arguments with examples, analysis, statistics, tests, and text quotes. Discuss and disprove contrary points of view or justify that you disagree with them. Presenting facts and considering a subject from both perspectives adds integrity and can help you win the confidence of the examiner
Conclusion: IELTS Essay Structure Task 2
One section that reiterates the topic and outlines all the points set forth in the sections in your body. Instead of adding additional evidence or further claims, a successful conclusion would cater to the feelings of the reader. In certain cases, authors will use a subjective opinion to illustrate how the topic affects them directly.
Also Read: Art is Considered an Essential Part of All Cultures: A Topic of IELTS Essay
IELTS Writing Task Sample Topic
It is often argued that not many students go to university, while others claim that college education should be a fundamental right. Discuss all sides of the debate and express your own view.
In certain developing nations, it is not uncommon for more than 50% of young people to attend university or college. Reviewers, though, contend that certain undergraduate programmes are useless and that young people will be best off learning expertise at the workplace. In this article, I’m going to discuss all sides of this debate and attempt to draw a conclusion.
Break the Paragraph: IELTS Argumentative Essay Structure
There are many reasons why students now feel that they have the right to higher education. Second, increasing growth in many parts of the world has expanded the number of families with resources to build for the future of their children. Around the same time, declining birth rates mean that one or two kids’ families have become normal, raising the amount of spending for each child. It is not shocking, however, that young people are able to let their families sustain them until they are 21 or 22 years of age. In addition, millions of new positions have been generated in the information industries, and these jobs are normally only available to university graduates.
Nevertheless, it also seems that graduates end up in jobs that are not relevant to their university studies. It is not rare for major English literature to end up employed in sales, or for an engineering graduate to retrain as an instructor, for example. Any commentators have indicated that young people are avoiding their entrance into the workplace rather than learning technical skills. The more important concern is that the higher cost of higher education would ensure that many families are hesitant to have more than one child, alleviating the declining birth rate in some countries.
In summary, while it can be claimed that so much focus is placed on higher education, my own view is that university years are a critical period for personal growth. When individuals enter the workplace at the age of 18, their career opportunities can be heavily limited. Attending a university gives them opportunities to think more about themselves and make a more fitting career decision.
Also Read: Is there a Fact Check in Essay Writing in IELTS? Here’s a List of Do’s and Don’ts
IELTS Argumentative Essay Structure Key Points
Make a question and answer it.
Set a major question that was asked of your essay or in the first few words. Then, accumulate your short paragraph to address the question. For illustration, in your title or introduction, you may ask, “What is the best kind of sandwich? ” And then respond with your sentence fragment: “The best type of sandwich is sour cream and jam.” This approach is successful since interesting questions pull readers in and inspire them to keep reading to find answers.
Make an Argument and Clarify It
Implement a concept that conflicts with your view, and clarify explicitly why you disagree with it. “While some people think that peanut butter and jelly sandwiches are too easy, they are flexible. Transform the subject into a question and answer it. Set a major question in the title of your essay or in the first few words. Then, accumulate your short paragraph to address the question. For instance, in your title or introduction, you may ask, “What is the best kind of sandwich? “And then respond with your sentence fragment: ‘The best form of sandwich is sour cream and jam.’ This approach is successful because interesting questions attract readers and inspire them to continue to read to figure out the answer.
Outline the Crucial Points
Introduce the key argument and clarify how you are going to back that up. For instance, “You can turn whipped cream and jam sandwich into a fine meal by using hand-made bread, toasting bread, and creating extra ingredients.” This approach is useful because it gives readers a good picture about what you’re about to cover in your article. It also acts as a route map to help you remain focused and on schedule.
Also Read: IELTS Writing Task 2 Samples: Exam Questions & Answers to Target Minimum Band 8
5 Argument Types: IELTS Argumentative Essay Structure
When you decide what you’re speaking about and know your conclusion point, imagine how you’re going to make your case. There are five forms of statement statements that can be used to guide your essay:
- Idea: whether the argument is valid or not.
- Description: a dictionary definition of what you argue, and your own personal understanding of it.
- Value: The value of what you’re talking for.
- Cause and consequence: what triggers the dilemma in your article and what effect it has on it.
- Strategy: why the examiner should take care of it and what they should do with it after reading it.
We hope we have given you a perfect article regarding the IELTS argumentative essay structure. To write a perfect argumentative essay you must practice daily. Opt for a lot of mock tests to get better.
Want to become perfect in the IELTS argumentative essay? Follow similar blogs from IELTS Ninja
Also Read: IELTS Essay in Writing Task 2: Here’s How to Organize it Well
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Opinion [Argument] Essay
This is one of the three types of essays in the IELTS writing exam . You should learn how to structure each type of essay, as each of the three questions requires a different structure.
Sample IELTS essay question Computers are being used more and more in education and some people believe there will soon be no role for the teacher in education. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Steps in Planning your IELTS Essay 1.Underline key vocabulary in the question and write words with the same or related meaning. 2.Decide what kind of response is needed. 3.Brainstorm key points for the answer. 4.Decide on the structure of the essay
Steps in writing your Essay INTRODUCTION: 1.Paraphrase the question 2. State your position [totally/strongly/somewhat+ agree/disagree]
BODY: 3. Write topic sentences for each body paragraph Sequencing word + topic + point The main reason why I believe teachers are necessary is because they are essential for disciplining and motivating students
CONCLUSION: 4. Summarise main points 5. Give your final opinion or recommendation/ restate your position
Sample IELTS opinion essay Technology is being used increasingly in the classroom and some people believe that educators will become redundant. I somewhat disagree that teachers will be replaced by machines.
The main reason why I think that teachers are essential is because they encourage and discipline students. Many people find it difficult to be interested in learning new things. Therefore educators are needed to make classes more interesting and stimulate students’ desires for learning. Also, in the case of young people, teachers often need to force students to learn through the use of punishments.
Another reason why teachers are needed is because they can teach young people important skills and values. This is because educators serve as role models to their students and teach them how to appropriately interact with their peers. Therefore, if people only learn using machines they will lose the opportunity to learn important social skills and values.
However , studying over the internet certainly offers a lot of convenience. First, we are able to study in the comfort of our own homes, without the need to commute to school. Second, we can choose to study at any time we like even in the middle of the night.
In conclusion , I somewhat disagree that machines can replace teachers. This is because teachers can encourage students to learn and teach them how to interact with other people. However, computers do offer the ability for people to learn anywhere at any time.
Template for opinion essay The template below has been used to write the essay below it.
Introduction Some people believe [rephrase topic] I totally agree/disagree with this opinion because [reason 1 + reason 2]
Paragraph 2 The main reason why I believe/don’t believe XYZ is because… [reason 1]
Paragraph 3 Another reason why I support/don’t support the notion that XYZ is due to the fact that… [reason 2]
Conclusion In conclusion, I completely agree/disagree that XYZ because [rephrase reason 1] and [rephrase reason 2]. Given this situation, it seems that [give a final recommendation or opinion]
The main reason why I believe a minimum standard of health care is needed is because it’s a human right to have some level of access to health services. In some situations, such as when a person doesn’t have a job, basic healthcare should be available. For instance, if somebody has a life-threatening car accident emergency services should be available free of charge. This is because it is not humane to let a person die just because they don’t have sufficient funds to pay for treatment in this sort of situation.
Another reason why I support the notion that free health you should pre-provided is due to the fact that it is sometimes necessary to protect the health of all citizens. Certain medical situations, such as an outbreak of a virus, require quick and widespread medical attention. This can best be achieved by having a free medical system, in order to circumvent financial issues that might prevent certain individuals from having access to treatment. For example, the current coronavirus is spreading more rapidly in countries without free healthcare because people are often reluctant or unable to seek attention if they have to pay for it.
In conclusion, I completely agree that every country should have basic minimum level of health because it is a basic human right and it’s necessary to prevent widespread medical crises such as the Corona virus.
Writing task 1 & 2
32 thoughts on “Opinion [Argument] Essay”
Hi, thank you for posting task2 essay. I have a question on the essay above. In the last sentence of the last paragraph, you used ‘Although’. I was wondering,should it be ‘however’?
Yes, I agree with you. Well spotted. I am changing this right now.
I have a query , in essay planning it was mentioned that we need to give examples but in the above essay I am unable to figure out the example in the body paragraphs.
Hi, You do not have to give examples in your essays. You are allowed to, and when you do it they should clearly illustrate the point you are making. In fact, previously IELTS writing tasks in the real test had the words “give examples from your own experience” and this is now removed. The reason for this removal is to avoid suggesting that examples must be given.
Hi mike, i bought your book task 2. Something it`s still not clear for me. It is how can I play the next question. I`m struggling with what its the right structure for. Some museums and art galleries charge admission fees, while others have free entry. What are the reasons? Do you think the advantages of free admission outweigh the disadvantages?
it is a two question essay so you should use the following structure: introduction question one: reasons question two: whether you think the advantages of free admission outweigh the disadvantages conclusion
Hi Mike. Is there an template which we can follow like the one given in both sided essay ? and Thank you for such helpful videos and tips
Template for what? for other types of essays? please see these links on how to write the other kinds of essays: https://www.ieltsanswers.com/ielts-opinion-essay.html https://www.ieltsanswers.com/two-question-essay.html
Hi, Mike. What is the grade for the essay answer you’ve provided on this page?
I provided you with a model answer… the shouldn’t be any problems with it and therefore it should be getting 9.
Hi, Mike. thanks for the video. i have a question. in this type of opinion essay – “‘to what extent do you agree or disagree”, i thought is 50-50 essay where you give like 2 points to agree and 2 points to disagree with the question. Also, do you need to totally agree in this type of opinion essay or you somewhat or partly agree?
The word extent is a key here. Extent means how much. You have been asked how much you agree or disagree. It could be totally agree, strongly agree, somewhat agree…. And the same for disagreeing. it’s important that your opinion matches what you write in the body of the essay. If you totally agree then you are only going to be writing about agreeing. if you somewhat agree then you going to be giving reasons for agreeing and disagreeing.
Why you not use in introductions this sentence (in this essay iwill discuss my opinion and will give examples) during give your opinion
That is OK, but I think it is better to say what your opinion is and why: EXAMPLE “I totally disagree because it is cheaper and more convenient”
Due to the increase in usage of computing technology in the teaching domain, there may not be any need of teachers for schooling in the future. I somewhat disagree with this notion as teachers can influence the students and are always needed in some cases; however, computers are cheap and convenient.
The main reason why teachers are essential is that they can serve as role models for their pupils. Students are often impressionable and can be impressed by the good qualities of their teachers. For example, if a teacher maintains cleanliness, students will do that too. Thus, teachers can offer more than just formal education by influencing children to do good. Another reason is that some situations demand educators instead of computers. Consider teaching students with disabilities who need to be handled with care and are unable to use machines. As machines may only use specified ways to teach, they can not adapt to the requirements of the learner. Therefore, teachers are better able to cater to the needs of disabled pupils in particular.
On the contrary, computers can be helpful in education as they are economical. It can save people from extra dues like commuting to schools and school fees. Additionally, they make the process of learning easy. Not only we can study at the comfort of our homes, but also we can study at any time of the day.
It can be concluded that computers are easy to use and budget-friendly, whereas teachers can serve as ideals and fulfill the demands of their students. That is why tutors would still be needed even in the presence of the technology.
You say you somewhat disagree but then you do not really provide any reasons to not disagree. You give advantages of computers, which seems like a reason to not agree but these advantages are not reasons to not have teachers. So really you have totally disagreed. For somewhat disagree you need to say a situation where we do not need teachers. For instance, “Adults don’t need teachers because they don’t need teachers to serve as role models or to monitor their behaviour”
Safer and easier to just totally agree/disagree!
What would be the overall band score for this ? Thank you so much for valuable information.
For the essay, I wrote on this page? Band 9. Why would I bother to write something less!
Greetings Sir! i have just started watching your videos and they are really helpful. I ll highly appreciate if you can give a and score of this essay. Thanks in anticipation.
Some people think that women should not be allowed to work in police force.Do you agree or disagree?
It is often argued by some that females should not be employed by the department of police. I entirely disagree with this notion as not only hiring women as police officers will lead to gender equality, but it will also be suitable in some situations.
The main reason why i believe this is, if ladies work in the department of security, it will be a significant step towards ending gender discrimination. People tend to claim that the counterpart of men is weak and easily overpowered and hence should not be employed for such demanding jobs. However, by working in an organization that demands agility and physicality, ladies will have a chance to prove them wrong. These officers can serve as role models, and it may influence other departments to change their policy of hiring males only.
Another reason why women may be employed in the police force is their suitability for specific tasks and circumstances. Some aspects of police’s work might require dealing with compassion and politely. Women can serve this purpose well as opposed to their more stringent counterparts. For instance, police officers at the airport security-checks need to behave well with the passengers. As females are relatively more friendly, people like them to be performing these sort of jobs rather than males. Based on their suitability for the work, women should be given priority in such cases.
It can be concluded that some people tend to argue that only males should be working in the police department. However, I would suggest that females should be hired as well because this would promote their fundamental right to equality, and they fit specific areas of the job better.
band 8 1. start your final paragraph with “in conclusion” 2.leave out what other people might believe in your conclusion
Hi Mike i have been watching your videos and they are really helpful. Can you tell me what band score this essay will get. Much thanks!
some people say that in order for a hobby to be enjoyable, it must be hard in some way. do you agree or disagree?
Whether or not a hobby should be tougher is a debatable topic.It is often argued by some people that for a pastime to be amusing, it must be hard in one way or the other. I entirely disagree with this notion, as a hard hobby is likely to be given up and it may put added stress on the person. The main reason why I believe this is that people might be fed up with their hobby if it is tough. It is because people may not be able to go any further at some stage of its pursuit and hence, they may give it up altogether. Consider someone who tends to like solving puzzles in his free time. If he is not able to solve a difficult one, he will get annoyed at being stuck. After failing several times, he may lose interest in it and consequently may not try it again.
Another reason is that complicated hobbies may be additional stress on an individual. Hobbies are meant to be fun and stress-relievers. However, if they are demanding, they may superimpose on the pressure a person already has. For instance, consider someone whose work requires physical work and chooses gardening as a source of pleasure. Although it may please him, he might not be able to pursue it for an adequate time as it will tire him up.
It can be concluded: some people argue that only sophisticated hobbies can be fun. However, I believe that a rather simple one is better as compared to complex one as they may end up being boring and putting more stress on the pursuer.
Whether or not a hobby should be [tougher] TOUGH
This is probably going to be 6.5 overall due to a low score for task response. The problem with the task response is that you have focused on the opposite of what you’re supposed to be doing. You have explained why difficult hobbies won’t be enjoyable… But you’re supposed to be arguing why hobbies have to be easy to be enjoyable. Sorry but it’s not the same thing! All you need to do to get this essay to band seven or above is reshaped the way you’ve presented your ideas. 1. hobbies should be easy so that people will want to keep doing them [instead discussing quitting difficult hobbies] 2. hobbies should be easy so that they are stress relieving [instead of difficult hobbies are stressful]
in your model answer I noticed that you wrote a new idea in your conclusion, that you did not mention any thing about it in body paragraph (However, computers do offer the ability for people to learn anywhere at any time.)
I feel it is not perfect to mention something for the first time in conclusion. Thanks
I am paraphrasing what I wrote in paragraph 4. Any time is mentioned, any place is kind of inferred, but arguably not enough.
your introduction says,
Some people believe [rephrase topic]
I totally agree/disagree with this opinion because [reason 1 + reason 2]
But I don’t see any of your introductions for opinion essays have reasons in the introduction.
“Technology is being used increasingly in the classroom and some people believe that educators will become redundant. I somewhat disagree that teachers will be replaced by machines.”
1) Rephrase the question 2) Just the opinion
What is the correct form here?
Both ways are correct. It’s better to include the reasons… If you look at some of my more recent essays these are all written this way… You can see an example on this page: https://www.ieltsanswers.com/cambridge-ielts-14-writing-test-essay-task-2/
In the first paragraph of your sample essay you have written about the other side of the argument; saying,
“…. . Therefore, if people only learn using machines they will lose the opportunity to learn important social skills and values.”
How is this idea matches to the topic here. how does it affects the cohesion? is it only appropriate here because of your unfavorable opinion (i.e. somewhat agree) ?
If you have completely agreed with the “teachers are a must” idea, would writing this sentence in the body paragraph would reduce the cohesion?
When it comes to planning and constructing new buildings in large towns, it usually carried out in two ways. Mainly, either by the government of a given city proposes a plan for the structure according to the city’s plan or an investor chooses the design for their buildings. This essay discusses both views and supports the idea that authorities should carry out the planning.
The design of a building includes its structural as well as cosmetic values. When investors employ designers to design a building, they usually hire the best in their field who have lots of experience and unique ideas. These designers can create strong structures while it gives iconic value to the city. For instance, Tokyo Skytree not only a popular tourist attraction but also a strategically placed communication tower. If authorities override this flaw and use their designers, every building may seem similar, creating a boring town.
If you take the last sentence of above paragraph, it is somewhat related to the approach you took in this essay. is this ok?
It’s incredibly difficult to try and establish what it is you’re trying to ask me but I will attempt to answer your questions below.
1. “…. . Therefore, if people only learn using machines they will lose the opportunity to learn important social skills and values. This sentence is providing contrast. It’s supporting the need for teachers by explaining what happens if teachers aren’t used. This has nothing to do with whether my opinion is somewhat agree or totally agree. This paragraph is about why I agree teachers are necessary and this point is supporting the reason why I agree. It’s the third body paragraph that deals with why I disagree…. In order to support my stated overall opinion in the introduction that I somewhat agree 2. “If you have completely agreed with the “teachers are a must” idea, would writing this sentence in the body paragraph would reduce the cohesion?” No. I really think you have misunderstood something. 3. “If you take the last sentence of above paragraph, it is somewhat related to the approach you took in this essay. is this ok?” Oh gosh it is just too difficult try and understand what you trying to ask me here… I really don’t know what approach you referring to in this sentence and whether or not your last sentence fits with this or not.
Hi Mike, Thanks for your struglles. I just want to start ielts academic task 2. Kindly tell me where should I start it from ?
Hi Mike I have been watching your videos and they are really helpful. Can you tell me what band score this essay will get? It is important for people to take risks, both in their professional lives and their personal lives. Do you think the advantages of taking risks outweigh the disadvantages?
Living has a range of multiple-choice, sometimes this is a good or dangerous way but people have to choose a flexible way for themself. They might take risks in their career life as well as personal lives. Personally speaking, in some situations the merit is better than the drawback. In this essay, this phenomenon will be discussed.
Firstly, risk-taking is one of the ways to make individual experience to be successful. For example, Mark Zuckerberg dropped out of Harvard to focus on building Facebook, it could be replaced by another platform and now Facebook is the biggest social media. In my country, Ho Chi Minh’s president as known Uncle Ho, he was traveled around the world and do everything job to have enough money to study and support the journey to save the country and national liberation. If he did not leave Viet Nam without money, we could not be independence. What is more, risky situations teach people to make fast and exact.
In contrast, making a risky move may hurt a person short time. Teenagers are psychologically controlled by their parents because they still receive financial support from them. When they want to follow their dream and beyond their life so they do not have money from their parent. Maybe they feel a short-term downside of losing in the way they choose. However, all mistakes they have taught help them go out of their comfort zone. For instance, Thomas Alva Edison was the person who invented the Light Bulb, trying more and more after many failures to finally be successful with the invention. In Viet Nam, we have the idiom Do not give up yet, Failures teach success, which makes people have a strong mind to face difficult challenges in their life.
In conclusion, taking risks is a task for people to complete, then life teaches them the right way to follow. Although making a risk may harm an individual for a short- time, this downside incredibly creates a life-changing and strong mind for them. So one should prepare oneself with some skills to make them more confident to face challenges.
A rough estimate is 6.0 1. the introduction could state your opinion about which side is stronger 2. 1. the conclusion MUST state your opinion about which side is stronger 3. don’t start sentences with conjunctions like “so”; So one should prepare oneself with some skills to make them more confident to face challenges.
I have an editing service here: https://www.ieltsanswers.com/writing-correction-ielts.html
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How to write a good argumentative essay for your ielts test.
- February 11, 2020
- Posted by: isb_admin
- Category: Uncategorized
In our last blog post, we talked about what is the IELTS and what makes it different from other English language tests. Now, we’re giving you a deeper overview of the components of the IELTS exam specifically the writing section.
The International English Language Testing System or better known as IELTS is composed of four writing sections: Listening, Reading, Writing and Speaking. Out of all these sections, writing can be the most challenging for test-takers given the time limit.
The writing component is composed of two tasks which you are supposed to accomplish for 60 minutes only. In both the IELTS Academic and IELTS General Training writing exams, the second task would be essay writing . In this task, you will be asked to come up with an argument based on the specified topic. You are only given 40 minutes to write a good argumentative essay and reach the established word count of 250 words for this section.
Provided these guidelines, we understand how the writing component of the IELTS can be overwhelming for anyone which is why we devised a few tips that can help you write a good argumentative essay and help you ace your IELTS writing exam!
Start with planning
We know that given the time limit, answering the test right away would be the usual course of action. However, taking around 2 to 3 minutes to organize your thoughts and plan makes a huge difference.
After making sure you have completely understood the topic, start making an outline of your arguments. Write down your major points specifically your reasons for choosing that position in the topic (i.e. why do you agree or disagree on parents allowing children to watch television unsupervised, etc.).
Allotting a couple of minutes for planning will make your writing process go smoothly and because of this, trust us, it will save you a lot of time!
Establish a good thesis statement/main point
This may sound more complex than it really is. However, a thesis statement would just refer to the main point of your argument. Having a strong main point would help you defend your supporting ideas better.
Presenting this at the start of your essay would also provide a clear picture of your stance on the topic. It would help your panelist understand the flow of your essay and your arguments.
One body paragraph is to one supporting idea
In writing an argumentative essay, the usual flow and number of paragraphs would be the introduction (1), body (2-3), and conclusion (1).
In the introduction, that’s where you’ll introduce your topic and your thesis statement or main point. The conclusion should summarize your arguments and restate why they should believe your stand or position on the topic. The body would then showcase your supporting ideas to your thesis statement or main point. In this, you’ll explain your reasons for choosing your stand.
Limiting one paragraph to one supporting idea would make your essay readable and concise.
Present your arguments logically
This is in relation to the previous tip. Presenting your arguments logically is extremely important because ultimately, when someone reads your essay as a whole, everything has to make sense. Hence, making sure that everything in your essay transitions smoothly from one paragraph to another is a must.
These are just some of the learning hacks that you could use in writing your best argumentative essay. Remember all of these and soon we know you’ll be acing your IELTS test!
I Speak Better also offers guided lessons to help you prepare for your English language exams including the IELTS. Learn more about our IELTS course here .
IELTS Writing preparation by the Global IDP IELTS via https://www.ieltsessentials.com/prepare/preparation-course/writing Argumentative essays by Purdue University via https://owl.purdue.edu/owl/general_writing/academic_writing/essay_writing/argumentative_essays.html
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IELTS Agree Disagree Essay Sample Answer
For an IELTS agree disagree essay you can either agree with the statement, disagree with the statement or give your opinion which contains a balanced approach to the issues in the statement. However, this does not mean you can discuss both sides impartially – you must give a clear opinion to get a good score in the criterion of Task Response which is 25% of your marks. Another name for an agree disagree essay is an opinion essay or argumentative essay.
IELTS Opinion Essay Question
The growing number of overweight people is putting a strain on the health care system in an effort to deal with the health issues involved. Some people think that the best way to deal with this problem is to introduce more physical education lessons in the school curriculum. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
IELTS Agree Disagree Model Essay
Below is a model answer for the above Opinion Essay: Agree/Disagree Essay.
Owing to the problems which a growing population of overweight people cause for the health care system, some people think that the key to solving these issues is to have more sport and exercise in schools. I completely agree that this is the best way to tackle the issue of deteriorating public health in relation to weight.
Firstly, dealing with the issues surrounding obesity and weight problems is best solved by taking a long term approach and introducing more sport and exercise in schools. This method will ensure that the next generation will be healthier and will not have such health problems. At the moment, the average child in the West does sport possibly twice a week, which is not enough to counteract their otherwise sedentary lifestyle. However, by incorporating more sports classes into the curriculum as well as encouraging extracurricular sports activities, they will undoubtedly become fitter and more active.
Another point to consider is that having more sports lessons for children in schools will probably result in children developing an interest in exercise which might filter through to other members of their family and have a longer lasting effect . In other words, parents with sporty children are more likely to get involved in sport as a way of encouraging their ch ildren . By both parents and children being involved, it will ensure that children grow up to incorporate sport into their daily lives. This is certainly a natural and lasting way to improve public health.
In conclusion, to deal with an increasing population of unfit, overweight people, changing the lifestyle of the coming generation by introducing sport in schools is the easiest and most effective method to use.
Download a PDF copy of the model essay below: IELTS Agree Disagree Model Essay
- Make sure your introduction is not too long. Just paraphrase the essay question and present your opinion.
- Make sure your opinion is consistent from introduction to conclusion.
- Each body paragraph presents a reason for your view.
- Your body paragraphs should explain your views with relevant detail.
- Never miss the conclusion. Keep it short, but make sure you write it!
- It is possible to have a partial agreement for this essay where you think sports lessons are a good solution, but there is another more effective solution.
Advanced IELTS Writing Task 2 Lessons
Are you struggling to hit band 7 or above? My Advanced Lessons are the answer to high band score techniques. You can also find a useful “Ideas for IELTS Essay Topics” e-book to help you with ideas and vocabulary.
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IELTS Model Essays
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Hello Liz, thank you for making your website a great resource for many of us who are studying for the IELTS!
Essay on obesity topic, any inputs or comments would be greatly appreciated:
Reducing weight can be a challenge for many, and figuring out a solution to this health issue is an important task. Being overweight comes with its own related co-morbidies, such as heart disease, hypercholesterolemia, and osteoarthritis, just to name a few. Consequently, these health issues invariably put a strain on the healthcare system, through the involvement of multidisciplinary teams needed to manage these conditions as well as the cost of medications needed to treat the symptoms. Having said that, physical education lessons implemented at school is a possible solution. However, I disagree with the view that it is necessarily the ‘best way’ to deal with this problem.
Being overweight is defined as having a body mass index greater than 25 kilograms per meter square. Overweight and obesity are becoming an increasingly prevalent condition across the globe, more specifically in first world countries. This is partly because of the surplus in food available (especially fast food) as well as the sedentary lifestyles afforded by the children.
Physical activity in schools is just one way to combat obesity. Evidence-based research has shown that being overweight is not just caused by a sedentary lifestyle, it is a multimodal condition with several etiologies: genetics, diet and lifestyle. Hence, just focussing on one cause will insufficiently address and tackle the issue at hand. There needs to be enough done on all fronts in order to not only tackle the present issue, but also to take preventative measures for future generations.
Besides physical educations classes, governments can direct funds towards preventative campaigns through educational sessions in both school and through advertisements. Moreover, policy changes need to be implemented, which include -but not necessarily limited to – the following: banning sugary drinks and candies from school canteens, reducing junk food availability and providing healthier options such as salads. Parents should also be educated on the need and importance of reducing screen time – a known risk factor for obesity.
In conclusion, there cannot be one “best way” to deal with a complex issue such as overweight. This has to be tackled in a more holistic way in order to attain more statistically signifiant results and outcomes to have an impact on the healthcare system.
I am so grateful for your tutorials. I followed all your lessons, bought some of your e-books for my personal studies and finally wrote my exams this year. I am happy to say that I had Reading 8.0, Listening 7.5, speaking 7.5 and writing 7.0. Now I have informed all my friends about your wonderful website. God richly bless you Liz.
That’s wonderful. Well done to you 🙂 And thanks for sharing my website with others 🙂
Could someone please give feedback on my essay.
The health care system is struggling to resolve the health problems caused by a number of more and more overweight people. It is addressed that introducing more physical education lessons in the school curriculum is the most efficient method. I totally agree that applying the new classes is the key for public health improvement. One plausible effect of the method is that people will spend more time outside and less time in bed. In fact, overweight and obesity people who are likely to eat quite much are not very active. Additionally, modern technologies contribute a huge impact on the sedentary lifestyle. Therefore, getting them engaged in such outdoor activities will help to improve their body health in a positive way. In other words, they can do frequent exercise and burn more unnecessary fat. Creating a stronger society bond is another feasible consequence of the teaching application. Attending physical lessons at school, people can find new friends, especially when they work in teams, and enhance the mental health. Achieving which, a chain effect on their existing relationships such as parents, siblings and classmates will blast. Gradually, people will get to know each other more and more. Nationwide competitions can be held on a regular basis, producing TV shows which entertain viewers and reducing stress among workers. Therefore, the health care system is no longer restrained. In conclusion, to tackle overweight problems, I consent that people should be active on both their mind and behaviors by emerging themselves in the school curriculum. This is among the easiest and most effective way that is either good for body development and social connection.
You’ve got some grammatical errors and I suggest contracting contractable words…. so instead of saying obesity people, say “obese.”
Overall, good job!
It is thought that some of the problems that the health care system faces due to the growing populations of overweight people can be solved by introducing sport and exercise lessons in the schools’ curriculum. I completely agree that this is the best solution to overcome such some of the health issues, in addition to increasing the awareness of people about healthy diet.
Firstly, I believe that making sport as a mandatory subject in schools will decrease the problems that face the health care system. When children do some exercises at different times in the day, they will get healthier and more fit in the future. Also, this will be reflected to their parents as they watch them. For instance, when parents take their children to a garden and the children start to practice what did they learn in their school, their parents will notice the elasticity of their children and they will start do like their children. This encourages most of people and increases their awareness about the importance of sport to their health.
Secondly, besides sport, an awareness about a healthy diet should be taken into account. Eating a lot of fats and sugar can cause some health problems regardless that someone does some exercises. For example, the government should put some taxes on fast food and reduce the taxes on the healthy food.This will encourage people to buy healthy food and as it becomes a habit to them and their children and they notice the difference in their weight and in turn their health. Thus, I strongly recommend to increase the awareness of people about their healthy food bedsides doing sport.
To conclude, I believe that sport and healthy diet will make a big difference in the health care system when they are introduced to children at schools. This results in increasing the awareness of the next generation about avoiding health problems and following a healthy lifestyle.
I dont think the second point was relevant. If it is being marked for Response point, adding and explaining how diet is helpful seems off-point. I think answering like that will be good for questions that ask you for more ways and solutions to the problem, rather than this type
Hello Respected Madam Liz 💗 Please help me to sort out the problem with the question type * To what extent do you agree or disagree) please i am having so much trouble in this ..
If you need training, please go to my store where you can find an advanced lessons about this essay: https://elizabethferguson.podia.com/
Obesity has become more common in our society due to the busy lifestyle practiced by individuals. This has caused enormous strain on the health care system, which can be avoided by practicing a healthy lifestyle.
It is important to promote awareness among the general public of the health problems that can occur due to obesity.
Increasing the frequency of physical education alone will not effectively solve the issue. That is one of the several other steps to inculcate a healthy lifestyle among people. Exercises have the potential to eliminate the excess calories present in our bodies. Exposing children to a variety of sports can help to identify their interests and sometimes, it can help to create a habit among them. In such cases, it can be taken as a very effective option to prevent the flooding of the health care system due to obesity. According to available statistics, the probability of such an occurrence is negligible.
More than that, a well-balanced, nutritious and healthy diet should be practiced. Governments should step up measures to reduce the accessibility of fast foods rich in Sodium and Sugar. They also can educate their citizens about the healthy diet options, which can be easily substituted for the fast food.
In conclusion, a healthy lifestyle, involving nutritious food, adequate sleep, rest and exercise, when combined in the right proportion, is the only solution to deal with any of the lifestyle abnormalities which overwhelm the health care system.
Hi Liz, Is it correct to write the thesis statement as: “I completely agree with this statement for two reasons which I will elucidate below.” Here, I am not using words related to the prompt because they will be used again in the topic sentences of both the body paragraphs.
That is a learned phrase. Each sentence should be connected to the topic you are given and created uniquely by yourself in the test. Is the topic about family? Is it about education? Each sentence must connect to the specific issues presented in the essay question. However, please note that all my advice is aimed at people aiming for the higher band scores. If you are needing only band 5 or around that score, it would be fine to use such techniques in your essay.
Wow… Liz you are back ..so happy for you ❤
Liz, hi. When they ask to what extent do you agree can I write my thesis statement I completely disagree. What is the difference between to what extent do you agree or disagree question and to what extent do you agree question.
There is no difference at all. IELTS like to paraphrase instructions – it’s still the same essay.
Thank You Liz.
I started my prep using your site, a week before my IELTS exam and I scored an overall 7.5 using your tips. Thanks for uploading such amazing tips and samples. They really helped me a lot in my exam.
Great to hear that you did well. Good for you !! 🙂
Hi. Pleaseeeee answer me if possible. In body paragraphs of agree/disagree essays, the first body paragraph should be assigned to agreement side and the second paragraph should be assigned to disagreement side? Or both paragraphs could be assigned to agreement or disagreement side? Thanks in advance.
Your whole essay is a presentation of your opinion. It is not a discussion essay. If you are unsure, please get my Advanced Lessons: https://elizabethferguson.podia.com/
Hi, Liz. I’ve seen certain solutions to the writing task 1 and 2 with a heading or title. Is that necessary please?
You definitely do not use headings or titles in any IELTS Writing task.
Hi Liz, I had practiced GT Writing Task 2 recently first time. Please check and tell that how much band score I’ll get if the following question will come. I’ll be thankful to you for this. Q- You should spend about 40 minutes on this task. Write about the following topic. Write at least 250 words.
In some countries it is thought advisable that children begin formal education at four years old, while in others they do not have to start school until they are seven or eight.
How far do you agree with either of these views?
Answer- In world, some countries believed that proper education of a child should start at the age of 4. On the other hand, other countries do not want to start the education of child before the age of 7 or 8. In my opinion, children have to start his/her education from the age of 4 so that basic concepts will be clear in coming 3-4 year. Firstly, if we discussed about formal education, it requires a formal schooling with adequate content and materials that create interest and increase knowledge related to the subject in a child. A young child brain is in developing stage up to the age of 5. If any country want to start primary education in formal way, it helps to increase knowledge of the children’s. Additionally, They will catch the new terminologies and content in a different ways e.g., play-way method. Secondly, if a country want to start children’s study from the age of 7-8 in formal school, they have to provide some materials and content before school. In other words, they have to provide them education in play schools and with new techniques e.g., learn and play, visual learning etc. When children join the formal school, an evaluation test needs to be taken to check the knowledge and capability they’ll have. After that, based on the performance, particular actions and classes should be arrange so that they all come at equal level. Lastly, I want to share my view that early education is very important. I would prefer to provide early school from the age of 4 so that kids brainstorming can be done at right time. I am strongly agreed to start education from the age of 3-4 years.
Hello, I just took Ielts indicator test. I really messed up with the writing task 2. What I wrote is off topic. I don’t remember the question clearly. It is about lectures and technology and maybe it means that teaching in the class I wrote about lecture paper and students should find information from internet by their own I didn’t write about teaching in class. Do you think I can get 6. Please, reply my message I really need to know If I can’t get 6 I have to try again on 27. I need all skills at least 6.
For listening, In Sec 4, there are 4 multiple questions so I think questions are not the same. I just wanna share the others.
It is important to understanding the way Writing Task 2 is marked. If your essay is off topic then you might get only band 4 or 5 for Task Response. It will depend on whether some parts of your essay are relevant as to what you get for Task Response. Task Response counts for 25% of your Task 2 marks. The other marking criteria for Task 2 will not be affected. You could get band 4 in TR, but get band 8 in the other three marking criteria. You can do the maths. On top of these considerations, you must also consider that Task 1 counts for about 33% of your final marks for Writing. With all these considerations, your overall score will depend on so many factors. You will need to judge for yourself what score to expect in the three other criteria then calculate your prediction for your score in Task 2. Then you will need to add your prediction for Task 1 on to that as well.
Thank u so much for your reply Tr, Liz. In task 1 they asked for one bar chart and pie chart and I think I did well. And thank you so much for your lessons. These help me a lot I really appreciate all these lessons provided, I really mean it. In speaking part 2, the time you didn’t tell a truth to your friends and in part3 why children lie to parents and why people tell lies and that kinds of questions. (just sharing the other friends ). I can’t use earphones in speaking maybe because I’m under 18 and my father had to sit near me. It is ok to use earphones in listening.
Good luck with your results !! Let me know how you do when they arrive
Yes, teacher, I will. Thank u so much for the lessons. My result will not be good as others but I’m glad to study your lessons.
GOD Bless You Hello Liz very thnx for your help
You’re welcome 🙂
Good afternoon Liz.I should say You are very intelligent and thank you very muuuuuch .Since your tips help improve my writing .Thanks😘
Please Liz I took my ielts today I completely agreed on an opinion in my introduction but ended up discussing on partially agreed in the paragraphs, please how will this affect my score
It will affect your score for Task Achievement which is 25% of your task 2 marks. If you look at this page: https://takeielts.britishcouncil.org/sites/default/files/ielts_task_2_writing_band_descriptors.pdf , you’ll see that presenting a clear position throughout is a requirement for band 7. This means that for this marking criterion, you would struggle to hit band 7 if you alter your opinion in the middle or end of your essay. But luckily. it won’t affect your score for the other three marking criteria for task 2. Hopefully other people reading this comment thread will see the importance of fully planning your essay before you start writing your introduction.
Thank you very much Liz for such a kind support. Your’s blog is the best one which i follow the most in my preparation. Specially i recently bought your Essay ideas e-book, which is also very helpful.
I’m so glad you are enjoying my Ideas for Topics E-book 🙂
Hello, ma’am, I took my IELTS exam on 11th nov. 2020. and i got only 5.5 band(overall).i am struggling with grammar and lack of confidence. please assist me for that.
This year I released a Grammar E-book. However, the level of the e-book is quite high. It will help you, but make sure you don’t overreach yourself. It is important to only produce English within your level rather than trying to impress. The more errors you make, the lower your score. So, use the e-book to improve your accuracy and reduce your errors: https://elizabethferguson.podia.com/
Thank you liz.।।। Making content accessable
I took the test on 12th of Sept 2020. Here is the Writing Task 2 question: The most important priority of any governments is to provide housing. To what extent do you agree or disagree. I hope it helps.
Dear Liz, Your lessons are really very helpful and easy to understand.Thanks for the useful instructions:) Could you please help in assessing the below essay?
Looking at the eating habits and sedentary lifestyle of people, obesity problem has grown over the years which in turn is increasing pressure on the healthcare systems. In my view, introducing physical exercise lessons alone in the school cannot solve this problem. In addition to this, proper eating habits should be followed by people.
Firstly, there is no doubt that physical education can help people maintain their weight and thereby reduce the health problems arising due to overweight. Making students aware of the importance of body stretching on a regular basis is the initial step towards solving this problem .Students can learn a lot about the body structure , its functioning and the ways to keep the body fit through exercises. When the students understand the value of physical exercise, they can pass on this information to their families as well. This is the kind of transformation which is possible only by involvement of not only students but also elders .
Secondly, doing exercise alone cannot be a solution to this problem. There are many more factors such as eating habits (junk food) and sleep cycle , which are responsible to this overweight issue.So , along with the physical fitness, people should start working on their eating patterns and the type of food they eat. Taking an average amount of sleep is also required for healthy lifestyle.This can be achieved by introducing healthy-lifestyle specific lessons in the school curriculum and make children implement the healthy eating habits in their life.
In conclusion, adding more physical fitness lessons at the school level will greatly help in improving the health of people. However, eating habits should also be in control to keep oneself fit and active.
Thank you very much for the free lessons. Can I partially agree in agree and disagree essay even when I’m not asked: ”to what extent do you agree”?
Yes, you can.
But, I was told never to have a clear opinion in agree and disagree question. It’s not only in situations of “to what extent” that we can decide our grace.
Do you agree? Do you agree or disagree? To what extent do you agree? To what extent do you agree or disagree? What is your opinion? All the above are the same instructions which are used for an Opinion Essay. They are not different instructions. This means the techniques for an Opinion Essay apply to an Opinion Essay regardless of how the instructions are phrased. They are simply paraphrases of the same instructions. If you are confused, please get my Advanced Lessons so you can learn the right way to tackle an IELTS essay: https://elizabethferguson.podia.com/
My instructor told me my reasoning behind my opinion was not strong enough. For instance, when the topic was about the advantages of having older people in a country, I discussed my views as “Children need older people at home for supervision as most of them have working parents”, whereas, my instructor thinks, I should’ve discussed it in country’s perspective saying ” older people are experienced in their occupations”.
I described my arguments clearly with supportive lines. But he didn’t like the “argument” itself. Is that a problem? Will I get less marks for this?
Both you and your instructor are thinking about two different points, not the same point. Your instructor is talking about how older people have more experience in their work which is beneficial for a country. Your point is that elderly people provide family support to take care of the grandchildren if their parents are working. Both points are relevant, but they are completely different points. You get a high score to organising your clear points into logical paragraphs and explaining what you mean in detail. As long as your point was well explained, it’s fine.
You are really super and your explanatory techniques and exemplification in addition to how simple you discuss and present the material are awesome. you have a high talent or skill in analyzing all the discussed and handled topics. thank you from the depth of my heart as you are helping me alot Haytham Selim Egyptian in UAE
I’m really pleased you are finding my lessons useful. Good luck in your test!!
hey liz, Thank you so much for your free content. I did my IELTS test today and it was quite fair. My task 2 was “employers should give their employees at least 4 weeks holiday per year. Do you agree or disagree with the statement?”
Thank you so much for the wonderful tips and lessons, I have learned so much in my short time of preparing. I would be taking the test for the first time in Aug. I hope I make it.
I do have a question on paraphrasing. Is it OK to paraphrase only the 1st sentence of the question, as I saw this done on a model essay. The 2nd sentence was used as the thesis statement. Please find Sample question below. I would truly appreciate it if you could give a model answer.
“According to a recent study, the more time people use the Internet, the less time they spend with real human beings. Some people say that instead of seeing the Internet as a way of opening up new communication possibilities world wide, we should be concerned about the effect this is having on social interaction. How far do you agree with this opinion? ”
Thank you for your help ☺️
Learn how to write an introduction and see model essays on this page: https://ieltsliz.com/ielts-writing-task-2/
Hey Liz, It’s Mr. Jasjit singh here and I am working as an IELTS trainer in a company. Here, my concern is to point you out that you have used “sporty children” in the essay’s body para – 2, even though, the word SPORTY is an informal. According to the parameters of marking, the informal language must not be used basically in the essay writing, otherwise there is a penalty. Do you think it is worthy to be used by the candidates?
Kindly share your perspective asap!!
“sporty” is completely fine. However, to use the word “kids” is too informal.
I have a question, please answer me.
In my IELTS writing, while checking things at last minute, I did a foolish mistake and change all the words next to comma “, ” in a capital letter.
i.e “However, This was…..”
So, the question is how many marks did the checker will cut or how many bands of mine are at risk. I am worried sick.
Well, I still don’t understand how I did that mistake. Time was ticking and something pushes me to do it :@ maybe this was because of C.D test. I am.sure if I were writing on a paper it would not happen. But fate :@
Since childhood, we know that after full stop next letter is Capital and not after the comma :@ but…argh
This would just count as one systematic error. It means you make the same mistake over and over again. It will affect your score for Grammar, but it isn’t possible to predict your overall score. Your Grammar score will depend on how many other errors you made and the range of grammar features you used. Good luck with you results! Try not to worry too much.
Hello Liz and thank you for all the info that you give us!! I would like to ask you. In this type of essay can I add examples from my personal experience? or I just say my opinion at the introduction and nowhere else?
The style of all essays should be formal which means you should avoid writing about your family and friends. Instead share your experience of the people in your country or around the world.
Dear Liz, Please, I am confused; agree/disagree is opinion essay? I mean: both are the same? Regards
Yes, they are the same. Do you agree or disagree? To what extent do you agree? What is your opinion? All the above are Opinion Essays.
Should I write the word count at the end of the writing task 2?
No, definitely don’t waste your time with that. The examiner will count the words himself if necessary.
Hi Liz, First of all thanks a lot for your great website and youtube channel. These are treasure troves of information. Millions of thanks to you.
I took the test couple of days ago. Writing part 2 was a bit confusing for me.” some people agree it is the best way to make detailed plan of activities in their free time”. While others disagree. Discuss both the views and give your opinion. I read this question more than 10 times, meanwhile, I was writing the essay. Whether it is asking about ‘ free time activities plan’ or ‘If we are free and utilize that time to make a plan about upcoming activities’. I hope you can solve my confusion.
However, the remaining questions are:
Writing part 1: write a letter to the manager about an accident you met with? Speaking: part1: about me, my residential area, facilities, whether you like living in an apartment or not? did you write with a pen or pencil as a child? what do you think if you get a pen as a gift? How do you think when it is compulsory to write only using a pencil-like this test? speaking part 2: An incident when you were not allowed to take a phone with you. (No more points to explain). speaking part 3: why the phones are restricted in some areas of the hospital? Importance of politeness, Need of rule for using mobile phones.
You haven’t remembered the essay question correctly – there are English language mistakes in it. For this reason, I can only speculate. Most questions like this are about whether you should make plans for free time activities or not. Many people like to plan each and every activity they do in their free time, whereas others prefer to wake up and decide what to do based on how they feel that day or how the weather is etc – they don’t want to schedule or plan.
I am preparing my IELTS exam and I have written the below eassy all myself can I please have your feedback
Since the 18th Century technological advances have replaced people in the workplace. with today’s technology this process is happening at a greater rate. Technology is increasingly responsible for unemployment.
To what extent do you agree or disagree with this statement? Since Industrial age technological breakthroughs have taken the place of individuals in many companies. Now a day’s Digital process plays a great role in many organizations due to which a lot of people are jobless. I completely agree that machines have taken place of human beings. Firstly, mobilized process has fasten the work and brings out better results than of humans. Organizations doesn’t have to double check the work as its scientifically proven that computers and machines are not liable to make errors or mistakes. Many firms are trying to replace the employees with robots where possible to reduce the number of workers in their company, save money which can be used to do investments, buy shares and make profit. For instance, I work in a water company, where distribution of water is 24hours. there are many departments were large number of employees are working. In the production department, earlier men’s where used to drive the forklift and load the trucks now they have been replaced with robots to do the same job.
Secondly, Using Scientific advancement can lead to organizational growth in very less time. As the employer doesn’t have to go through the hiring process which is time consuming and sometime leads to failure as the wrong person is hired for the job. A good illustration of this is, Accounts department is the most important section in any huge firm if the employees are not provided with computers the calculations may go wrong and in worst case the firm could face loss.
In conclusion, I would highly recommend especially large organization to save their time, efforts and utilize their money in digitalizing their work which will lead them to huge profit.
Number of overweight people and children are increasing from last 10 years. Some people think that to solve these issues, facilities of sports and exercises should be provided in school. I completely agree that this is the best solution to tackle the issue for improving public health in relation to weight.
Firstly, to deal with increase in number of obesity and weight of people, some steps should be taken by schools and colleges. Easy access and more facility in sports should be introduced for children and people. This will ensure fitness among students and people interested to take part can join with no age barrier. This will result in reducing sadentry lifestyle and will encourage all to take part in competition.
Secondly, the sports lesson for children in school would result in children developing interest in exercise which might encourage the old age or parents to get motivated. In other word parents with sporty children will try to involve themselves with sports to make their children happy. If both of them get interested, they will practice daily. This would be the best and natural way to improve health of people.
In conclusion, to deal with reducing laziness and overweight people, changing the lifestyle and access to more facility will change the body shape with less problems.
Hi Liz, Is this an opinion essay and we need to cover both sides? Or just the side that I support. I am confused.
It is generally accepted exercise is good for children and teenagers. Therefore physical education and sports should be made compulsory for all students in all schools. What do you think ?
IT is asking for your opinion. It is an opinion essay. It is the same as “do you agree or disagree?” or “To what extent do you agree?”. You present your opinion of the issue or issues stated and use the body paragraphs to give reasons and explanation for your opinion.
Thank you so much Liz! I got a score that is very useful (lrsw=8,9,8.5,7.5). I was just 0.5 away from 8 in writing to get a perfect score! It was an opinion question. I agreed in part in other to have ideas to get my body paragraphs. Number of words 330 essay and 190 letter (computer-based IELTS is the best if you enjoy typing but hurrible hand written like me). I looked through all your model essays, and I discovered that my issues were mainly articles and punctuations).
Well done with your results 🙂 I’ve put loads of information about articles in my new Grammar E-book as well as a chapter on punctuation. I hope to have the e-book ready at the end of April or beginning of May 🙂
May I ask could I take both sides on the question like “Do you agree or disagree”?
Sorry, I think I just found the answer in the comments… 100% same. Which is strange. I thought agree or disagree should give only one position; and for “to what extent do you agree or disagree” require two positions.
Thanks for the great community!
They are the same instructions, just paraphrased.
Hi Liz, is “the key to solving these issues is” correct? Shouldn’t it be “the key to solve” ? Thank you
“the key to solving” is 100% correct. The word “to” is used as a preposition in this phrase, not as part of the verb.
Hi, Liz! I’ll have an IELTS test next week, but am still confused about agree-disagree essay.
Here’s the question: Some people think that employers should not care about the way their employees dress, because what matters is the quality of their work. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Is that alright if I say on my introduction as follows: In my opinion, dress codes are significant in a working environment, while employees’ competence should matter as well.
My first body paragraph explains the reason why dress codes are important, and my second body paragraph is about why competence should matter.
I do hope you answer my question. Thank you, Liz! Get well soon.
You’ve got the right approach for a partial agreement. However, you need to address your English. “In my opinion, both dress codes and employee competence should be important to any employer.” Try to aim for accuracy and clear meaning in your written English. Don’t try to write in any particular style – just be clear and direct.
Wish me all the best liz!!… I ve covered all your lessons!!…
Thank you very much Liz. Your lessons were of immense help. I got the band score that I wanted.
That’s great to hear. Well done 🙂
Thanks for all time! We truly appreciate your efforts in making IELTS easier to tackle. However I would like to ask about recent questions reported by student for writing task 2. My exam is on the 13th of this month.
Thanks! Don’t forget to get well soon 🙂
I will post Recent Questions for January 2020 soon.
Hi Liz, Thank you soo much for your help.
Should we quote example only if they asked for it in the question or should we give it for all essay questions?
You give examples when you know of a good example to use that will help support and explain the main idea of the body paragraph.
Hi dr liz u r great soul i ever seen wish u a happy happy new year
Thanks 🙂 Happy New Year 🙂
Hi dear liz,wish u a very happy new year ,stay blessed always. U r the great soul i ever seen. I have a doubt regarding essay. If the question was asked about leadership innate or achieved opinion essay shall i write my balanced view lik this, i agree that this skill must be innate for political leadership i bliv this should be achieved for managerial leadership.is this stand ok for partly agree. Thanks in advance for reply
If you want a quantified response which you by you say it is X in this situation and Y in this, make sure your grammar and language are 100% clear. If you make any mistakes with that statement it could have serious consequences. So, make sure you write it clearly without any errors at all.
Really you are a very good trainer.
How are you ? Will you please explain the difference between writing task 2 of academic and general? in your website nothing is mentioned like for academic and general for writing task 2. i am preparing for general. please let me know writing task 2 is same for academic and general or different ?
Go to the RED MENU BAR and select “Test Info”. You’ll see an option for GT IELTS information. Always use the MENU BAR to access what you need.
Hi Liz !thanku so much for your topic they are all very useful. I think I got a high band score for writing task 2 thankuuuuu sooo much dear.
That’s really good to hear !! Very well done 🙂
Hi liz, this is the first time I am commenting! Hope you are well. Please tell me where I can find the model answers of writting task 2 provided in your WT – 2 section !
You can find all model essays, tips etc in the main writing task 2 section of the website. Just click on the RED MENU BAR at the top of the page to open the section of the test you want to learn.
That’s is really great for my IELT practice and I’m just 13 and I’m gonna take it when I’m 13 and a half thanks for the information
Good luck 🙂
hi !!! Can we use ‘A LOT OF’ and ‘SO’ in task 2 ? as someone told me that we cannot use it in writing , reason being these both are INFORMAL. Is it true ?
No, that isn’t true. It’s completely fine to use those words.
Hey there!! Can we use “And” and “But” For the beginning of the sentence in between the body paragraphs to add and contrast information respectively ???
PLEASE PROVIDE ME WITH AN EXPLAINED INFORMATION ASAP, I WOULD BE GRATEFUL FOR THAT.
— Jasjit Singh
No, you can’t. See the linking words page for details: https://ieltsliz.com/ielts-writing-task-2/
Hi Liz , I sat for my academic test on the 28 of September, 2019. I got an overall score of 7.5. LRWS = 7.5, 8.0,6.0,8.0. For the Speaking questions. Part 1: 1.Tell me your full name please? 2. Do you work or study? 3.How is the weather in your country?. 4.Would you like to live in a place with a different weather from your country? 5. Where do you like to read? 6. Do you like to read in an hot weather or cold weather?. Part 2: Talk about an historical building you visited in your country. Part 3:1. Should the appearance of public buildings be designed ? 2. Do you think people should pay taxes to use public buildings? I can’t remember the other 3 questions she asked. For the reading questions, most of them were Yes, No, and Not given questions. I think I did well because the passages were close to what I studied in school. The listening was easy. I got lost in some places though. Writing Task 1. I was given a table to describe the population of people in Jakarta, Sao Paolo, and Bangkok in 1999 and 2001. There was a column for the projected population in 2001.The numbers were too close. I got confused a bit. Writing task 2: Some people believe that university admissions should only be offered to young people with the highest merits while some believe that admissions should be given to all people without considering their grade. Discuss both views and give your opinion. I didn’t finish my writing to my satisfaction. I think that’s the reason for my low score. Time finished faster than I thought. I just want to say Thank you Liz for everything. I learnt a lot from your lessons. Hopefully,i won’t write this exam again.
Well done with your results and thanks for sharing 🙂
Hi Liz, I love all your content. Thank you so much for helping us through IELTS. I just wan to know is there a difference between “Do you agree or disagree” and “to what extend do you agree or disagree ” also are opinion essays same as agree disagree essays ?
They are 100% the same.
Hi Liz, thanks for all your help to prepare for my IELTS exam. I can’t thank you enough. I have a doubt regarding “To what extent do you agree or disagree” question. Can I just see it as Agree or Disagree question and just take one side or do I need to address both the side? This question type is really confusing. Kindly advise me. Thanks again for all your help and you are indeed my God for IELTS 🙂 🙂
They are 100% the same essay – no difference at all.
I am also confused about “to what extend do u agree or disagree” and “Do u agree or disagree” Is there any diference in their answer plz explain
No, there is no difference at all.
hello madam I’m Nikhil I have a doubt that crushing my mind since 10days, please madam could you solve it.
my Institute tutor said we must follow this pattern for agree or disagree question Introduction paraphrase question thesis statement ( not mentioning agree or disagree)
para1 (agree|) statement ! example
para2 (agree) sate3ment2 example
para3 statement3 example
conclusion now I must discuss my opinion
Above essay can also write in vise verse with disagree madam, I already comment you, but you didn’t give reply madam please help me out from this problem, I would be ecstatic.
There is no such thing as a fixed content for body paragraphs. Of course you should state your opinion in the introduction – give your answer and then explain it in the body paragraphs. Please see my Advanced Writing Task 2 lessons if you need training: https://elizabethferguson.podia.com/
Hi Liz! Thank you for your lessons. They are all very useful.
I would like to ask your opinion regarding examples in body paragraphs.
To get a high band score for writing task 2, it is necessary to support and develop our main ideas. I found some websites recommend providing examples from surveys, polls, government report, etc to support main ideas. Is example really needed? Are there any other ways to support main ideas without using examples?
If we really want to give an example, does it have to be a real example? Can we fabricate false/unreal example?
I look forward to hearing from you.
Thank you, Liz!
Examples with data from sources are definitely not required. You can explain and illustrate your ideas in any way you want. Giving the source of information is a waste of time in IELTS because a) it is written as a learned phrase which doesn’t help your language score b) the examiner doesn’t mark data in task 2 so it won’t help your score either. You decide how to explain your main ideas. You can see most of my essays don’t have examples with data.
Thanks, Liz! It’s so helpful.
Hi Liz, i want to clear my doubts regarding this essay type. There is an essay question in your website which is about the rapid expansion of supermarkets because of which local shops are closing, and some people believe that this is causing death of local communities.
I disagreed with this argument and wrote that supermarkets provide efficacious results for native communities. In body paragraphs i wrote reasons of my opinion, and i hadn’t mentioned local shops in body paragraphs. I just wrote reasons to support my view that this and this are the advantages which benefit local communities. I want to ask is it okay to not mention local shops because i am supporting my view for supermarkets?
You can’t ignore part of the essay question. The fact presented to you is that supermarkets are expanding and local shows are closing. This is the basis of your essay. The opinion you tackle is “do you think this is the death of local communities?”. So, if you think supermarkets are good for local communities – do you also think it is good that local shops are closing?? You need to address the issue or issues in the question.
But if i also acknowledge that local shops are good for local communities then i might be contradicting my own agreed view point that supermarkets are good for local communities, so it means that i have to say that local shops are not good for local communities?
It would mean you have a partial agreement. You don’t have to agree with one side. Think more carefully about why you think supermarkets are good for local communities and then think about what effect local shops closing will have. Once you’ve brainstormed, analyse your ideas and think of exactly what your view is and how to you will express it. After that, plan supporting points. Hopefully you can now see how important planning is 🙂
Hi Liz… Your website is so helpful for me. Thank you much for that. My confusion is…. In this model esssy, there is no discussion about health system. Should we avoid discussion about it? I used to elaborate about helath system in one paragraph . Am I wrong? Please guide.
An opinion essay is not a discussion essay. This essay does not ask you to discuss the health care system. It is asking your opinion about whether you think the problem that obesity is causing on the health care system can be solved by offering more physical education in schools – do you agree with this solution?? Your whole essay from beginning to end is about your opinion of solutions to the problem.
Hi Liz, thank you for all the tips and essay examples. They really help us to achieve better scores on IELTS. Anyway, I was practicing this essay before reading the example, and I wrote it differently. So I want to know your opinion on how I wrote it.
In the first body paragraph, I wrote that including physical activities such as sports in schools’ curriculums is the best way to introduce children to an active and healthier life, giving the example of how US do this.
However, in the second body paragraph I explained that there are other approaches that should be done to countries witness a really dramatic decrease of healthcare use: lowing the taxes of companies that produce natural and organic food, to make these types of food cheaper to people, and making awareness campaigns about having a healthier diet.
I conclude restating that physical activities in schools are essential to create the habit of being physically active, but it should be combined with an awareness of healthy diet.
So the question is: can I agree and also include other aspects to the subject? Thank you!
Yes, of course. It’s called a partial agreement (or balanced approach). It means that you agree to some extent but not 100%. So, you would explain what you agree with and then add what else needs to be considered. I find this approach to be very useful sometimes because it’s easier to find unique ideas for each body paragraph which results in a more focused essay and also a better range of language. See my Advanced Writing Task 2 lessons if you want more training: https://elizabethferguson.podia.com/
Oh nice! That’s a relief. I don’t agree completely sometimes with the affirmation on the question, so I’ll look the page that you recommended. Thank you very much for the answer!
I love this response.
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IELTS Writing Task 2 Essay Structures
The four most common IELTS writing Task 2 questions are: Opinion, Advantages and Disadvantages, Problem and Solution Discussion
IELTS Task 2 Essay Structures
Knowing how to structure your IELTS Writing Task 2 essay is an essential skill that can make the difference between getting and not getting the band score you deserve. With that in mind, we have outlined the most common IELTS Writing Task 2 structures below.
The five most common IELTS Writing Task 2 questions are:
- Opinion (Agree or Disagree)
- Advantages and Disadvantages
- Problem and Solution
- Discussion (Discuss both views)
- Two-part Question
Below I will outline examples and a structure approved by experienced IELTS teachers and examiners for each type of question. This will help you write a clear, coherent answer and hopefully boost your IELTS band score. I also include an example answer for each type of question so you can see the structure in a real essay.
Please note that these are general structures and may vary slightly depending on the question.
Please also note that no ‘one’ Task 2 essay structure will get you a high score. There are many types of structures that can get you a high score. These are just some I think are effective and easy to learn.
Please visit the lessons below for more detailed guidance on each type of question. I have provided a link at the end of each section.
Opinion Questions (Agree or Disagree)
Typical Question Words --
What is your opinion?
Do you agree or disagree?
To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Example Question --
Some people believe that unpaid community service should be compulsory in high school programmes (for example, working for a charity, improving the neighbourhood or teaching sports to younger children).
1- Paraphrase Question
2- Give your opinion and outline the main ideas.
Main Body Paragraph 1
1- Topic Sentence
2- Explain Topic Sentence
Main Body Paragraph 2
1- Summary of main points and opinion
Student Sample Answer
It is argued that volunteering should be made part of the school curriculum. This essay agrees with that suggestion completely because it help pupils develop soft skills and helps them gain much-needed work experience.
Education should not be limited to strictly academic pursuits, and those in education should also develop life skills, such as teamwork, empathy and self-discipline, and one of the best ways to hone these aptitudes is through community service. Serving those less fortunate than ourselves teaches us many lessons, including how to work with people from other backgrounds and the value of hard work, thus enabling us to hone these skills before becoming an adult. For example, many young people from wealthier countries take a gap year and help those less fortunate than themselves to increase their gratitude for what they have and improve their work ethic.
Many colleges and companies are also increasingly looking for this type of experience. Most school leavers have the same grades, and charitable work can help set you apart from other students when making college applications. For example, Cambridge and Oxford receive thousands of applications from straight-A students yearly and can only accept a small percentage of applicants. What you have done outside the classroom often differentiates you from everyone else and gets you that coveted spot.
In conclusion, teenagers should be made to partake in unpaid work as part of their schooling because it will help them learn things they wouldn’t ordinarily learn from their teachers, and it will also boost their chances of getting into third-level education.
For more detail on how to answer agree or disagree questions, please visit our opinion essay lesson .
Need help writing essays like this? Check out our ESSAY CORRECTION SERVICE .
Advantages and Disadvantages Questions
Typical Question Words
Discuss the advantages and disadvantages.
What are the advantages and disadvantages?
Technology is being used more and more in education.
2- Outline Main Points
Main Body Paragraph 1
1- State Two Advantages
2- Expand/Explain First Advantage
3- Expand/Explain Second Advantage
1- State Two Disadvantages
2- Expand/Explain First Disadvantage
3- Expand/Explain Second Disadvantage
1- Summary of Main Points
Student Sample Answer
It is argued that technology plays an ever-increasing role in schools and universities. Increased access to information and student freedom are the main advantages, whereas dependency on technology and decreasing levels of face-to-face contact are the main disadvantages.
Access to more information and student autonomy are the principal advantages of increasing the use of electronic devices in education. With the internet, students can access all the information available about any topic, regardless of what books and other resources are available in the school. Furthermore, students can focus on whatever topic or subject they want and study it in depth. A prime example of this is the number of online university courses available to students, covering a myriad of subjects that, up until recently, were unavailable to most learners. This has resulted in more people studying third-level degrees than ever before at a pace and schedule that suits them.
The main disadvantages associated with the increasing use of technology in education are the dependency on this technology and the decrease in face-to-face interaction between students. With many students now using the internet as their primary source of information, they often struggle to use other academic resources to find what they’re looking for. As well as this, students spend more time looking at computer screens by themselves than interacting with each other, which is thought to lead to lower levels of emotional intelligence. For instance, the recent explosion in smartphone use has been at the expense of genuine human interaction. This results in soft skills, such as verbal communication and empathy, being affected.
In conclusion, the benefits technology brings to education, such as unrestricted access to information and student autonomy, must be weighed against the drawbacks, such as dependency on this technology and the negative effects on human interaction.
For more detail on how to answer advantage and disadvantage questions, please visit our advantage and disadvantage lesson .
Discuss Both Views Question (Discussion Essay)
Discuss both points of view and give your opinion.
Technology is being used more and more in education. Some people say that this is a positive trend, while others argue that it is leading to negative consequences.
Discuss both sides of this argument and then give your own opinion.
1- Paraphrase Question and/or state both viewpoints.
2- Thesis Statement
3- Outline Sentence
1- State first viewpoint
2- Discuss first viewpoint
3- Reason why you agree or disagree with viewpoint
4- Example to support your view
1- State second viewpoint
2- Discuss second viewpoint
Sentence 1- Summary
Sentence 2- State which one is better or more important
There is an ever-increasing use of technology, such as tablets and laptops, in the classroom. It is often argued that this is a positive development, whilst others disagree and think it will lead to adverse ramifications. This essay agrees that an increase in technology is beneficial to students and teachers.
The Internet has provided students with access to more information than ever before. This has allowed learners to research and learn about any subject at the touch of a button. It is therefore agreed that technology is a very worthwhile tool for education. Wikipedia is a prime example, where students can type in any keyword and gain access to in-depth knowledge quickly and easily.
However, many disagree and feel that technology deprives people of real human interaction. Human interaction teaches people valuable skills such as discourse, debate and empathy. Without these soft skills, many people find it difficult to become successful in work and their personal lives. Despite this, human interaction is still possible through the internet, and this essay disagrees that technology should be dismissed for this reason. For instance, Skype and Facebook allow people to interact in ways that were never before possible.
While the benefits of technology, particularly the internet, allow students to tap into limitless sources of information, some still feel that people should be wary of this new phenomenon and not allow it to curb face-to-face interaction. However, as long as we carefully consider the importance of human interaction in education, the educational benefits are clearly positive.
For more detail on how to answer discussion questions please visit our discussion essay lesson .
Problem and Solution Questions
Problem and solution.
Cause and solution.
Students are becoming more and more reliant on technology.
What are some of the problems associated with reliance on computers, and what are some of the possible solutions?
2- Outline Sentence
1- State Problems
2- Explain First Problem
3- Explain Second Problem
4- Example of Second Problem
1- State Solutions
2- Explain First Solution
3- Explain Second Solution
4- Example of Second Solution
Learners are becoming increasingly dependent on technology, such as the Internet and mobile devices. This essay believes the main problems associated with dependence on computers are the lack of original thought and copying original work from others and suggests critical thinking classes and writing analysis software as the most viable solutions.
The principal problems with over-reliance on technology are people being unable to think for themselves and plagiarism. With access to so much information, students often rely on other people’s opinions instead of forming their own. As well as this, they often use search engines to answer a question and copy the text from a website rather than thinking about the question. This practice is prohibited in schools and universities and stunts students’ intellectual development because they will never truly think for themselves, which is what university is supposed to be for. For example, many teachers complain that students copy web pages straight from Wikipedia word for word rather than giving a reasoned answer to their questions.
Solutions to these worrying problems are special classes to focus on critical thinking and teachers using anti-plagiarism software to detect copying. If teachers create situations where students have to infer meaning and express opinions based on a small amount of information, this will ensure that students have an opportunity to develop these skills. Also, if students know that their assignments are being checked for plagiarism, this will be enough to deter them from doing so. For instance, many universities already use this kind of software to scan coursework for plagiarism, and it could be extended to include all homework by learners in both secondary and tertiary education.
In conclusion, the main problems with the overuse of technology in education are the lack of original thought and plagiarism. These can be solved through special classes that teach students analytical skills and plagiarism detection software.
For more detail on how to answer problem and solution questions please visit our problem and solution lesson .
There will normally be a statement, and they will then ask you to answer separate questions.
As most people spend a major part of their adult life at work, job satisfaction is an important element of individual wellbeing.
What factor contributes to job satisfaction?
How realistic is the expectation of job satisfaction for all workers?
2- Outline Sentence (mention both questions)
1- Answer first question directly
2- Explain why
3- Further explain
1- Answer second question directly
As most adults spend most of their time at work, being content with your career is a crucial part of a person’s health and happiness. This essay will first suggest fair pay as a key element leading to job satisfaction, and it will then state that it is not very likely that everyone can be happy with their job.
The most important thing that satisfies someone at work is being compensated fairly. If those more senior than you respect you as a person and the job you are doing, then you feel like you are valued. A fair salary and benefits are important marks of respect, and if you feel you are being underpaid, you will either resent your bosses or look for another job. These two factors came top of a recent job satisfaction survey conducted by Monster.com, which found that 72% of people were pleased with their current role if their superiors regularly told them they were appreciated.
With regard to the question of happiness for all workers, I think this is and always will be highly unlikely. The vast majority of people fail to reach their goals and end up working in a post they don’t really care about in return for a salary. This money is just enough to pay their living expenses which often means they are trapped in a cycle of disenchantment. For example, The Times recently reported that 89% of office workers would leave their jobs if they did not need the money.
In conclusion, being satisfied with your trade or profession is an important part of one’s well-being, and respect from one’s colleagues and fair pay can improve your level of happiness; however, job satisfaction for all workers is an unrealistic prospect.
Can I get a band 8 or 9 following these structures?
Nobody can give you a Task 2 IELTS structure that guarantees high scores. Your score is dependent on how good your grammar and vocabulary are and how well you answer the question. A good structure will help you answer the question to some extent and boost your score for coherence and cohesion, but you must use relevant ideas and use these ideas well to answer the question.
You can see how my student scored a Band 8.5 in IELTS Writing here:
We hope you found those IELTS Writing Task 2 structures useful. Looking for some more sample questions? Here are over 100 sample questions from past exam papers.
If you would personalised feedback and guidance until you get the score you need, you can join the Waiting List for my VIP Course here.
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My name is Christopher Pell and I'm the Managing Director of IELTS Advantage.
I started IELTS Advantage as a simple blog to help 16 students in my class. Several years later, I am very humbled that my VIP Course has been able to help thousands of people around the world to score a Band 7+ in their IELTS tests.
If you need my help with your IELTS preparation, you can send me an email using the contact us page.
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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 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.
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.
- 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
- 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.
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?
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,
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.
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
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
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Here is the same information formed into a conclusion:
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.
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
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.
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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