About the IELTS Test – What the top students don’t want you to know!

< !--facebook-members-- >The IELTS test covers four important aspects of Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening. With regard to the writing section, there are two modules, namely the Academic and the General Training.  The first task in the Academic module deals with charts, graphs and diagrams which are to be described.  This task is to be completed in about twenty minutes and about 150 words need to be written on it.

In the IELTS test, the first writing task of the Academic module is concerned with describing a graph, chart, and so on.  You must show the examiner that you know what the two aces represent but it is not necessary to describe in detail the two axes.  But the information given about the axes should be complete. When you see the graph, think about what the two axes represent and write a general statement about what the graph represents.  Then you can write about the trends shown.  Instead of writing a separate sentence for each aspect of the graph, which would be highly repetitive, one should make sentences describing the important features of the graph.

Do not try to present any general information that is not present in the chart or graph, as you will not be awarded any extra points for this.  In fact, you may be penalized as it may be considered irrelevant.  In most of the description, you will be required to compare and contrast information and the examiner will be inspecting whether you have the structured the answer and connected the different ideas or trends appropriately.  Use the appropriate linking word and the correct grammar.

Sometimes a huge amount of data may be presented in the first writing task of the Academic Module for IELTS test.  In this case, it would be better to group the information as each bit of information cannot be described independently.  Some of the similar data can be grouped together and described.  When describing the graph, chart, table, process, diagram and so on, think carefully about the tenses and the vocabulary that you will be using.  Sometimes, past trends need to be compared with present ones and hence the appropriate tense needs to be employed for describing them both. Consider and write about all the comparisons that you could make relating to the information provided.

It is important to note that in the IELTS test, if you present inaccurate or wrong information regarding these charts, you are likely to lose marks, even if the grammar and other aspects of your sentence are perfectly correct.  Sometimes, in the Academics module of the IELTS test, you are asked to describe a process or pictorial information which could be in the form of a cycle or a map.

You must first carefully examine the picture or map given in this task of the IELTS test and make sure you understand it.   One must specially look at the beginning and the end of the process.  Initially, you can begin with a general sentence about the process and then give an overall summarization of the process or cycle.  Do not copy any information as it is from the given task of the IELTS.  You could even try jotting down a few points first and then elaborate on them.

To sum up, the first task of the Academic version of the IELTS Writing section involves representing in words something that has been shown to you in a graphic form.  The answer that you write must recreate the graphical representation in the mind of the examiner.  The presentation should naturally be clear and logical and you must make sure that you stick to the topic without straying from the main focus of the given topic.  Try not to include any extra information in your answer and describe only what is given.  You are not being asked to give any opinion here.

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