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Today I'm attaching a model answer for a 'formal letter' question.
Click here to download
It would be a good idea to print last week's informal letter and compare it with today's formal letter. In particular, compare the 'tone' and the vocabulary.
Posted by Simon in IELTS General Writing | Permalink
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Really good model answer simon. It would be great if we get the model letters like "Apply for the position" and "Apologize to someone".
Thanks again for the amazing work.
Monday, May 21, 2012 at 08:52
i just want to discuss with you that i am so unconfident person and particularly in writing task 2 i can't think about the general statemnet of the essay that means first line of essays.pls tell me how can i improve it. my writing level is 5.5.ple tell the answer for this question.
Monday, May 21, 2012 at 12:15
No problem Vivek. I'll get onto those topics soon. Good suggestions!
The best way to achieve confidence is by making sure that you are well-prepared. This means that you need to keep working hard and practising! There is no other solution I'm afraid.
If you need more support, it would be a good idea to take some lessons with a private teacher.
Monday, May 21, 2012 at 14:34
Would you tell us the band scores of the two letters that you posted? Thanks!
1. Words or phrases that suggest formality:
with regard to; I await your prompt response; I have decided that I would like a ...; I would also like you to ...; I am entitled to... etc.
The letter is also made more formal by using full forms, which means there're no contractions like "I'm".
2. Yes. The purpose of this letter is clear, and all the points are covered.
3. Yes. The letter is well-organized and all the points are logically developed in the sense that they are presented chronologically. This helps reader go through the letter with ease. Respecting examples of linking, we can see the writer uses a range of cohesive devices which show logical progression/development of ideas. "However" and "consequently" are two examples. Besides this, we can also find an adverbial clause of time: "when I phoned your shop ...". When it comes to referencing, we can find different pronouns and determiners scattered throughout the letter; examples include "it", "that" and "this".
4. "failed to spin" is an example of related vocabulary items, which is like the concept of "topic vocabulary" as we often mention in task 2. This phrase clearly shows that the writer is able to describe the problem, as required by the question (the first bullet point).
"assure" is also an example of good vocabulary. Although this word may appear "easy", it is a better word when compared with "say" when we explain how the staff member responded.
The phrase "under warranty" is used correctly, and I think this is an example of good vocabulary as well because it fits the context well. t
"I am entitled to ..." shows that the writer knows how to express the meaning of "a customer has the right to ...".
"a replacement" is used accurately in this context.
"wait for" (as in "I am still waiting for your call") and "await" are used by the writer to show his/her range of vocabulary. This shows that s/he can vary the language by using another verb (phrase), showing the examiner that s/he understands the concept of transitivity. (because wait is a transitive verb, and await is an intransitive verb, so 'for' is needed after await.)
"prompt response" is a commonly used phrase in business letters or letters written by customers to companies. This shows that the writer is aware of the context and the register.
Simon, please feel free to comment. Thanks! :)
Monday, May 21, 2012 at 19:10
Great analysis MT.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012 at 06:40
I agree with Vivek. MT's analysis is excellent!
Both model essays are band 9:
- they fully answer the question
- the 'tone' is appropriate
- well constructed
- good, relevant vocabulary
- zero grammar mistakes, and a nice range of structures
Tuesday, May 22, 2012 at 09:17
there is no doubt your site is fantabulous. but i am looking for some another website which have writing task 2 with answers.
Tuesday, May 22, 2012 at 13:29
I can not open both frmal and informal letter on my system. Can you senmy again om mu email?
Ziaul huda |
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 07:51
The formal letter is well structured with all the relevant information. I would like to read more sample letters (both formal and semi-formal) like this one.
Manish T |
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 12:04
Maybe you need to update your PDF reader at adobe.com (it's free), or try on a different computer. It works for everyone else I think.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 15:05
If you don't mind I would like to know the meaning of the phrase you have written in your first letter
I hope this letter finds you well
Because my teacher said to me that this is the first time he came across it and he think it's wrong to say it.
Wednesday, May 23, 2012 at 23:30
It just means "I hope you are well". It's a common phrase in English. Here's a Google search result for it:
Thursday, May 24, 2012 at 10:48
I am wondering that whether or not the "washing machine" belongs to the category of "kitchen equipment."
All the best
Sunday, July 15, 2012 at 10:32
Yes, to me it definitely does.
Monday, July 16, 2012 at 15:21
Thanks for your great website which provides us with invaluable information and knowledge!!!!!
I have read all the comments on this post so far and not sure whether you will return to this post since it was posted several months ago.
As for this letter, i still have some concerns:
Firstly,is "washing machine" under the category of "kitchen appliance", if not, will this be judged "off topic".
Secondly, sometime i get confused when using present or past tense to describe a fact! For example, i know the present tense used in the sentence "Consequently, it leaves clothes wet but not clean" is to express a fact so it should be fine even if this fact happened in the past.But i am not confidence to use it this way because the fact happened in the past and the we are talking about it at present, so i would rather use "Consequently, the clothes were left wet and not clean" (is the expression fine in your eye).
Thirdly,can "replacement" act as an adjective to describe "washing machine". I am a little confused!
Hope you will see this post and give me some hints!
Wish you a great Christmas!
Friday, December 07, 2012 at 21:00
I read the sample answer of formal letter and i found it quite worth reading. However,I have a question regarding the choice of kitchen equipment as mentioned in the rubric.Because in answer it is about washing machine and i doubt it:I guess washing machine is not a kitchen equipment. Is it ok? or would it affect the score.
Waiting for reply and would like to thank Simon for your lessons .
Sunday, December 22, 2013 at 10:20
First off, many thanks for teaching us via your excellent blog.
I have a quick question. You have used the phrase "On the 10th May". I think if "the" is used, it will require an "of" - i.e. "On the 10th of May". Am I right?
I looked up on Google and found this resource http://www.englishlessonsbrighton.co.uk/how-to-write-dates-british-american-english/ which seems to agree with what I think.
Wednesday, February 10, 2016 at 16:54
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