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Sunday, April 09, 2017


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Dear Simon

Thank you for your tips again, but I have questions.

Does this way of writing work?

Background & issue & my position
(e.g I mostly agree...)

[Body 1]
①Some say disagree...
②This is because...
③However, I strongly agree...
④support sentence

[Body 2]
①In addition, the reason why I agree...
②③④support & example & effect & body conclusion

I agree...because...

The reason why I write about some people's view is that to admit opposite view to some extent, so my position is `mostly agree`.

I feel that the way of writing above function well when question type is 'Discuss both views'.
Is that right?

I believe that I should defeat opposite view when question type is 'Discuss both views'.
I think that it is not enough to write my position and opinion in conclusion sentence. I should make both views fight in 2 body paragraph.
Is that right?

I'm sorry about poor English.
Thank you.

Hello Sir,

recently i appeared for exam and the following was the question

The best way to reduce traffic on buy roads is to pay road toll to drive on busy roads

do you agree or disagree?


i have followed the following structure

Para 1

Introduction and mentioning opinion that i partly agree and other important measures are also required to tackle the problem.

para 2

There are several reasons why for imposing road tax on drivers

para 3

however, there are other important steps that government can take to curb traffic on major roads

para 4


my question is that,have i explained as a opinion essay or i have made this as a discussion essay?

Thank you :)

can I discuss the Two Views Of Other People and end with my opinion in the conclusion?

Two views of other people
So I'm thinking his or her plan is ;
Para 1: others view
Para 2: others view
Conclusion: own opinion

It must be clear from d start what is our opinion and stand (agree or disagree)

Am i right if I plan;
Intro with opinion (agree)
Para 1: why some people disagree
Para 2:why I agree + supporting ideas
Conclusion: restate that I agree

Please do reply.thanks!

Thank you very much, Teacher Simon!

Well sir...there are also other kind of essay..so can u plzzz tell us tht on which type we can give our opinion or on which side we jst discuss about gernal views?

Hi Vicky,

You can check on the left side of this page, there is one link called "writing task 2". Inside this page, you can find lots of Simon's articles, which tell you how to answer and write the essay. You can also google anything you want to know about Ielts writing by typing Simon's name on the end. For example: I use google and type key words like "Simon type essay".

Then you can find this page on the top which tell you there are 4 types of questions in Ielts exam.

Here is the page below:

Dear Simon
first of all i would like to appreciate all the work you have done and the help you provide to people in need.

secondly,I have a big problem in writing skill, it's not just in English, i am an ARABIC native speaker and i have the same problem. in my last IELTS exam i scored Overall band 7
L 8
R 7
W 5.5
S 7
what can i do to improve my writing skill specially Task 2??

best Regards


Just make sure that in every opinion essay (any essay that asks you if you agree or disagree, and questions that say 'provide your own opinion', or questions that use language like 'should') that you present a clear opinion that is evident in every paragraph.

What Simon means here is that it's not a good idea to present other people's opinions without saying whether you agree or disagree with them. If you do this, you might write a paragraph that doesn't tell the examiner what you think.

It's perfectly fine to talk about other people's views in any essay, as long as you say if you agree or not. A good way to do this is to get used to including your view in the topic sentences of body paragraphs, even when you present a view that you do not completely agree with.

Dear Simon,

Recently, I saw a writing topic. The question has the words "give your opinion", but in fact I think it's a discussion topic since it asked me to write both the benefits and drawbacks of the phenomenon. I believe it has more benefits than drawbacks, so I will write drawbacks at paragraph two and benefits at paragraph three. And in conclusion, I will express that it's a positive trend.

Am I right to consider it as a discussion topic and write this structure of my article? I would be extremely grateful if you could give me some suggestions about it.

Thank you!

This is the topic,

"Nowadays, people in some countries can choose to live and work anywhere they want because of the improvement of the transportation and communication technologies. What is the benefits and drawbacks of the phenomenon? Give your opinion and some explanations of your experience."


This is NOT a real IELTS question because it contains grammatical errors, and the question itself is confusing. It asks you to identify benefits and drawbacks, but then it asks for your opinion, although the question has not stated what you are supposed to give your opinion about.

Be careful about getting questions from websites (especially websites that are run by non natives) because the questions are often wrongly remembered by candidates.

Don't waste your time with this question, because the wording is clearly not correct.

Hi, sjm. Thanks a lot for your advice, i will be careful about it.

Hello everybody!

I've passed IELTS on February 25 and my score on speaking was 7.0. It would be great if someone could help me improve my speaking IELTS. You can email me: fira.rahmonov@gmail.com

Regards, Firdavs.

Hi simon,
i had two consecutive ielts exam two months ago. The questions in both tests were "To what extent do you agree or disagree?"

In the first, I picked just one side and agreed with the opinion, and i got 6 band score.

In the second, I both agreed and disagreed, and I got 7.5 !

So, why do you say we must pick one side only?

Hi Simon. Thanks for your great help
If the question was: To what extent do the disadvantages outweigh the advantages?
how should the response be structured?

This was a question in 4th march academic module in KSA
asking about globalization

Thank you 🌺

Hi Simon!

Regarding the "To what extent do you agree or disagree" question, can I answer as following:

The restoration of old buildings in major cities in the world spends numerous government expenditure. This money should be used in new housing and road development. To what extent do you agree or disagree?

P1. Disagree. The reasons is that whether to restore an old building or not should depend on the whether the building is of great historical value or not.

P2. Old building not of great historical value. Can be demolished.

P3. Heritage: should be restored.

P4. Conclusion:disagree. depends on the needs and meaning of the building.


But what if u are partly agree??

Hi simon,
i had two consecutive ielts exam two months ago. The questions in both tests were "To what extent do you agree or disagree?"

In the first, I picked just one side and agreed with the opinion, and i got 6 band score.

In the second, I both agreed and disagreed, and I got 7.5 !

So, why do you say we must pick one side only?


Congratulations on getting such a good score!

I don't tell people to pick one side only. In fact, I tell people that there are 4 main ways to write that kind of essay. Have a look at this lesson:


Hi Simon,

I followed your method for writing both the letter and essay for General test, I scored a 7.5 in my first ever IELTs attempt. Also, for speaking I just followed your method of having key words and vocabulary for six main topics and scored a 8.5!!!.

Thanks a lot for this useful blog and I appreciate all the good work you are doing in this space.


That's great news Pavithra! Congratulations on getting such good scores!

Hi Simon,

As above: "This is the big mistake that so many people make - they write a "discussion" essay instead of an "opinion" essay."
In an OPINION essay, if you did not discuss your opinion but only others' , it would be a pretty bad error.
I would like to ask you how much big is this kind of mistake. How bad could be? How would be value at least? Would it be an 5 in TA? Or worst?

Thanks for your useful work.

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