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IELTS DO’s & DON’Ts – ESSAY WRITING

Band 7+ essays needs

a) Complex sentence structure
b) Complex vocabulary
c) Complex grammatical use and variation

The Do’s of IELTS Essay

– Conciseness (8-15 words per sentence)
– Cohesion (link ideas, paragraphs, sentences together)
– Coherence (all ideas should be easily understood by the reader)
– Composition (use the correct essay structure)
– Answer the question fully (cover all points asked in the task statement)

– Use the official writing task to practice and check what 250 words look like in your own handwriting
– Read many essay topics/types for reference
– Know the right structure for all essay types

– Add examples from your own experience if asked
– Use smart words and noun groups
– Use punctuation & grammar correctly
– Separate the arguments “for” and “against” into different paragraphs
– Use the right tone (essays are always formal)
– Only use possessive/personal pronouns when giving your opinion
– Lead from one paragraph to another well – connecting words are vital
– Write neatly as it values the reader-writer relationship
– Write maturely to reflect a mature way of thinking
– Make a plan in 3-5 minutes: it makes your essay more organized, mature and precise
– Make your opinion very clear: formal and reasoned point of view, give details

The Don’ts of IELTS Essay

– Write too many words if your English is average (aim for 250-275)
– Use contractions such as “don’t”, “shouldn’t”, etc.
– Overuse connecting words (assessors expect that!)
– Jump from one idea to the next: link, link, and link!
– Mix arguments “for” and “against” in the same paragraph
– Use the wrong tone (essays are always formal)
– Use of abbreviations
– Repeat words or overuse primitive verbs (does, makes, gets)
– Write illegibly & cross out any things or go off the topic
– Use idioms too frequently or inappropriately
– Write in a babyish manner (bad grammar and poorly developed ideas)
– Become a clock victim (constantly look at the clock and panic)
– Start writing without a plan
– Forget to leave a blank line between paragraphs
– Use generalizations (“All”, “Every”) as this reflects an immature way of thinking
– Use simple sentences if you want a high score
– Use clichés as they are often too informal
– Use ‘lazy’ expressions (“and so on”, “etc.”).
– Copy or repeat part of task question
– Agree with both sides – choose one side to make your opinion clear
– Let adrenaline make you arrogant

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