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Conflicting Advice on IELTS Essay Writing

by Dzmitry


I have the following problem: in different places on the Internet there are different tips on how a Task 2 essay (academic) should look like.

For example, some say you mustn't introduce examples from personal experience, while others say it's okay. They say that's how introduction should be structured, that's the way you should present your arguments, while when I look at sample essays they don't always follow it.

So, my question is: is there some "true" advice about this stuff, something official? Official criteria for examiners seem rather vague.

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Aug 16, 2023
Conflicting Advice on IELTS Essay Writing
by: IELTS buddy

You may see differing suggestions because teachers have different techniques on how to best write an essay in a short space of time.

You could get two different suggestions but they could both be ok.

There are certain things that should be done which is true for essays generally - have an introduction that introduces the topic and has a thesis statement, keep a clear and consistent opinion throughout, clearly structure and support ideas, avoid repetition, end with a conclusion etc.

You must of course ensure you answer all parts of the question.

As for personal experience - that is ok as the question specifically mentions that you can provide it. You wouldn't though want to make too much of the essay about personal experience as it will look too informal, but it's ok briefly for your examples.

You can look at the IELTS public band descriptors which are online to see what examiners use to grade your writing.

If you just go online and search on how to write a good essay (nothing to do with IELTS), the information you find is likely to still apply to an IELTS essay as it's just a mini version of what a longer essay should look like.

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