Writing is the third skill tested on the exam day, and the Academic version of the test is taken for educational purposes. There are two task in Academic Writing test. Task 1 and Task 2.
In Academic IELTS writing Task 1, all candidates are asked to describe information presented in graph, table, chart or diagram etc. and to present the description in their own words. Candidates are required to write at least 150 words in task 1.
Writing Task 2 requires the candidates to formulate and develop a position in relation to a given prompt in the form of a question or statement. Ideas should be supported by evidence, and examples may be drawn from the candidates’ own experience. Responses must be at least 250 words in length.
- Academic Report
- 150 Words
- 20 Minutes
- 250 Words
- 40 Minutes
- Task 1
- Visual information presented in: diagram, chart, graph, table, etc.
- Candidates describe the information of data
- No analysis required
- Task 2
- An extended piece of writing
- Candidates base the writing on a given point of view or problem
Target writing skills
- Task 1
- Present, describe, interpret, compare data
- Describe a process
- Use appropriate and accurate language
- Task 2
- Argue, defend or attack a point of view backed by evidence
- Present the solution to a problem
- Compare & contrast opinions drawing on personal experience
Basic Questions for Academic Writing
How is Academic writing different from General Training Writing?
In the General Training version of IELTS, Task 1 requires you write a letter. In the Academic version of IELTS, Task 1 requires you to write a report on a diagram. In both versions of the test, Task 2 is the same: a discursive essay.
Why is it so important to paraphrase the question?
If you repeat the question word-for-word in your introduction, these words will not be counted as your own and your word count will be lower as a result. You should always change at least a few words in the questions or rewrite it completely.
How many words and paragraphs should I write?
For Task 1, three or four paragraphs totaling 150 words are sufficient, In Task 2, you should write four to six paragraphs (depending on the number of ideas you have) and at least 250 words.
Is Academic Writing Task 1 always a graph?
No, the information students are given to interpret and describe may be in the form of one or more diagrams, charts, graphs or tables on a related theme.
What genre is Academic Writing Task 2?
Writing Task 2 has no specific genre although it always requires a discursive response and you should advise your students to read each question carefully and respond appropriately to the individual task they are given. For Writing Task 2 students may be asked to: present a solution to a problem; present and justify an opinion; compare and contrast opinions and evidence; evaluate and challenge an idea, argument or opinion. Their answer should always be in the form of a short formal essay for a tutor or examiner.
Should I try to write more than 150 or 250 words?
In IELTS Writing, there is no maximum number of words. However, you will not get a higher score if you write more words than required. For that reason, you should stop writing when you have reached the limit AND written a satisfactory conclusion.
What criteria are used to assess the answers?
These are the assessment criteria used: Task 1: Task Achievement; Coherence and Cohesion; Lexical Resource and Grammatical Range and Accuracy Task 2: Task Response; Coherence and Cohesion; Lexical Resource and Grammatical Range and Accuracy.
How is Academic Writing assessed?
The IELTS writing scripts are assessed by IELTS examiners. All IELTS examiners are fully trained in how to assess IELTS writing and speaking performances. Examiners’ training is kept up to date by regular standardization sessions and by a process called ‘certification’. This requires the examiners to demonstrate that throughout their examining they continue to adhere to the required assessment procedures and standards.
Are marks deducted for untidy handwriting?
No, marks are not deducted for handwriting specifically but, obviously, an illegible script cannot be marked. However, clear handwriting by candidates allows their message to be more easily understood by the examiner. Clear handwriting also helps students to communicate their ideas more effectively, so you should encourage your students to write as clearly as possible.
What will happen if I don’t write 150 or 250 words?
You will be given a penalty for this and your overall score in IELTS Writing will be at least half a band lower as a result.
What IELTS writing score is required for university entry?
It varies by university and many do not specify a requirement for each module. However, you should be aiming to achieve a score of at least 6 in IELTS Writing if you intend to study at an English-speaking university. A band score of 5 may be sufficient for some foundation and English courses.