Tips for the Writing Task 1 of the IELTS Academic test

As I promised to many of you, this is what you need to know about the Academic IELTS Test Writing Task 1.

The task here is to describe a graph in a report. The report is intended for a university lecturer, so the language you use should be appropriate.

There are several different graphs you could see in a Writing Task 1:

  • Single line graph – see example
  • Double line graph – see example
  • Bar graph (Single, Double or Triple bar graph) – see example
  • Pie chart – see example
  • Table – see example
  • Process
  • No matter what graph, diagram or table you are describing, you shouldn’t break these rules:

  • Your report must be of at least 150 words written in 20 minutes.
  • You shouldn’t write your opinion or copy words from the task prompt – rephrase and use synonyms instead.
  • Never use bullets, write as if you were writing an essay or a letter.
  • When your Academic Writing Task 1 is graded by IELTS examiners, they look for this structure:


    The Introduction should describe the purpose of your report and say what overall trends you see.
    For example, if the graph is climbing up or dropping down, you should mention that.You need to remember that you are describing a graph to someone who doesn’t see it. Write what the graph is about, its dates and location.

    The Body should describe the most important trends, while all information is summarized to avoid unnecessary details. For example, if there is a graph that has 2 peaks, you should mention them; tell when those peaks appeared and what the peak values are. Notice how many distinctive features the diagram has and divide information into paragraphs, one paragraph per feature. You should link the paragraphs by sentences that logically connect them to one another.

    Important! You need to write about all the periods of time and all the subjects of graph. If it shows several years (1992, 1993, 1994) – write about all of them, if it is about men and women – write about both. Remember, summarizing doesn’t mean throwing away information. The secret here is to select what’s important, organize it, compare and contrast.

    The Conclusion should sum up the global trends shown on the graph and compare them if possible.

    And if you need some sample answers, here they are, enjoy.

    6 thoughts on “Tips for the Writing Task 1 of the IELTS Academic test”

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