How to Approach the IELTS Academic Writing Task 1

Saturday, April 20, 2013

In the part one of writing test in IELTS, candidates need to describe the data in a table, graph, chart or they need to describe a process diagram. 

It is not a easy task to do as most of the candidates need to figure it out within 20 minutes. Without practice and know-how it is impossible to complete it within that time constraints.

IELTS Academic Writing Task

Areas of Concern

This writing task-1 will be marked in four areas: Coherence & Cohesion, Lexical Resource and Grammatical Range and Accuracy although it conveys less weight than task-2. 

The final mark will be the weighted average within these four areas. Accuracy means you have fulfilled the task by describing major facts and figures. 

If you miss major points to discuss and focus on peripheral data, then you will be penalized. So, you need to present, highlight and illustrate the key points appropriately.

Coherence & Cohesion means your writing has a natural flow. There should be a logical bindings between the fact and example you describe in your writing. Sentence need to fit together in a meaningful way. 

It need to be understood easily without much uncertainty. Every type of reader should be able to get the idea and facts you have presented. The improper use of linking words can be fatal in this case. 

For example. “The price of oil rise in 1998 so the supply was minimal at that year” is a incorrect sentence as the correct one would be “The price of oil rise in 1998 as because the supply was minimal at that year”.

Presenting the writing in different paragraphs is necessary to make it easily readable otherwise it would be monotonous and difficult to get the flow of writing. 

Overall, good cohesion and coherence in writing allows the writing to be read easily with appropriate paragraph usage.

The variation in word using is also marked here which is called lexical resources. You should use the write word in the right place without too much repetition. 

For example, you can use the linker “therefore” like: The price get a hick in 1980s, therefore the demand falls at the same year. 

On the other hand, the price reached the low point in 1990s, therefore (should replaced with “so”) the demand got a bump. Using academic vocabulary is essential with this regard.

You should also use a range of grammatical structure in the writing, ie. Simple, complex and compound sentences and sometimes mix of compound and complex sentences. 

Grammatical accuracy is not examined in the hard line as it carries only a fraction of assessment procedure. IELTS writing is much more focused on using variation in sentence rather than accuracy.