IELTS Writing Test Format

The IELTS writing test assesses a myriad of writing skills. It expects the candidate to organise ideas while responding to the task, write cohesively and coherently, exhibit a wide range of vocabulary sentence structure and grammar accurately.

IELTS Writing Format:

The writing section is allotted 60 minutes and there are two tasks to perform. The Task 2 has greater weightage than Task 1. 

Writing Section has different versions for IELTS Academic and IELTS General Test.

Total Time60 minutes

Task 1


Academic General
What does Task 1 assess?
It assesses the candidate’s ability to identify the most important and relevant information and trends in a graph, chart, table or diagram, and to give a well-organised overview of it using English language accurately in an academic style.
It assesses their the ability to follow English letter-writing conventions (i.e. what order to put information in, what style to use, how to start and finish a letter), to use language accurately and appropriately and to organise and link information coherently and cohesively.
Content
Test takers may be asked to describe facts or figures presented in one or more graphs, charts or tables on a related topic; part from this they could be given a diagram of a machine, a device or a process and asked to explain how it works.
The test takers are presented with a situation and are supposed to write a personal response in the form of an informal, semi-formal or formal letter.
Source and approach
This task involves sources from educational, research or work related literature. Candidates should write in an academic or semi-formal/neutral styles and include the most important and the most relevant points in the diagram. Some minor points or details may be left out.
The situations they are asked to write about are common, everyday ones such as: writing to a college accommodation officer about problems with accommodation, writing to a new employer about time management problems they are having, writing to a local newspaper about a plan to develop a local airport, writing to a renting agency to sort out problems with the heating system in their house
Response Time
20 minutes
20 minutes
Response Limit
At least 150 words
At least 150 words
Scoring

Each task is assessed independently.

  • Responses are assessed based on
  • Task achievement
  • Coherence and cohesion
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy.

Each task is assessed independently.

  • Responses are assessed based on
  • Task achievement
  • Coherence and cohesion
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy.

Task 2


AcademicGeneral
What does Task 1 assess?
It assesses the ability to present a clear, relevant, well-organised argument, giving evidence or examples to support ideas and use language accurately.
It assesses the test-taker’s ability to follow English discursive writing conventions like what order to put information in, what style to use, how to start and finish discursive writing, how to organise information in paragraphs, to organise and link information coherently and cohesively and to use language accurately and appropriately.
Content
Test takers are given a topic to write about an academic or semi-formal/neutral style. Answers should be a discursive consideration of the relevant issues.
Test takers write a semi-formal/neutral discursive essay in response to a point of view, argument or problem. The candidates have instructions regarding how to discuss this, which may involve providing general factual information, outlining and/or presenting a solution, justifying an opinion, evaluating evidence and ideas.
Source and approach.
Test takers should make sure that they read the task carefully and provide a full and relevant response. For example, if the topic is a particular facet of technology, they should focus on this facet in their response. They should avoid writing about technology in a generic way and focus on the facet/side of technology the task focusses on.
Topics are of general interest,  - such as: whether children’s leisure activities should be educational, why families are not so close as they used to be and how they could be brought closer, how environmental problems can be solved, who should pay for the care of old people, whether smoking should be banned in public places.
Response Time40 minutes40 minutes
Response Limit
At least 250 words
At least 250 words
Scoring

Each task is assessed independently.

The assessment of Task 2 carries more weight in marking than Task 1.

Responses are evaluated based on

  • Task response
  • Coherence and cohesion
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy.

Each task is assessed independently.

The assessment of Task 2 carries more weight in marking than Task 1.

Responses are evaluated based on

  • Task response
  • Coherence and cohesion
  • Lexical resource
  • Grammatical range and accuracy.



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Read more about IELTS

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IELTS Listening


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