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Wednesday, April 10, 2019


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Hi Simon,

I always write only one idea in one body paragraph. Please check my essay below.

Wealthy countries should accept more refugees and provide them with basic assistance, such as food and housing.
To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Rich nations ought to permit the entry of a higher number of asylum seekers and support them with daily needs, namely food and residence. I favor this view altogether as this is the moral responsibility of all humans, and spending large sums of money is not a concern for such countries.

A greater number of refugees should be accepted by some western countries, which have an abundance of financial resources, as an act of humanitarian service. This is because they had to leave almost everything they earned by hard work even without their mistakes to save themselves and their families from some anti-social groups of terrorists. They will be died due to hunger, diseases, or fear from criminals if they do not receive help from other nations. For instance, in 2015, many refugees from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan died because of the lack of support from the United States Government.

Most wealthy countries are capable enough to support refugees with daily necessaries. That is to say, they have lesser financial issues than other developing countries as most of their states report significant growth in business, technology, and other sectors every year. Not only this, many refugees might have education in diverse fields, and thus they can become a valuable asset, in terms of workforce, for countries which supported them in their worst time. For instance, in Canada, many refugees are currently working as engineers, doctors, and accountants, and contributing in country’s development, and this becomes possible as Canadian Government accepted more than 5000 refugees in 2016.

In conclusion, I completely agree that developed nations should accept and help more asylum seekers as this is as an act of humanity, and they can afford to spend extra money to help such needy people.

Hello Simon,

I am not sure if I leave my question on the correct place. However, I have a huge problem. I am a GT IELTS test taker and I cannot invent a story for task 1 in a short time. It is hard to explain for me. The same applies to speaking part 2.

What should I do ? Do you have any suggestions?

By the way, Best of luck with your new project. I am sure you will make a great success of it.

Lots of practice before the exam without the time pressure?


1) "a residence" would be a place to live. The same word without an article in the context of asylum seekers would prima facie be shorthand for "residence permit/visa". https://www.ldoceonline.com/dictionary/residence

2) -> fully support this view altogether


4) https://www.google.com/search?q=%22an%20act%20of%20humanitarian%20intervention%22&tbm=bks&lr=lang_en

5) "This is because they ": who? Western countries? Unclear referencing. -> the refugees have had to ..

6) "even without their mistakes": not clear what is meant by this.

7) "to save themselves": sometimes it is better to add in "in order to", in order to make the idea of purpose clearer and improve cohesion/coherence.

8) "They will be died": 'die' is never passive because it is intransitive. Use 'kill' (which is transitive) to form the passive; OR 'they will die of hunger ...

9) https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=capable+enough+of+*&year_start=1960&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t2%3B%2Ccapable%20enough%20of%20%2A%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bcapable%20enough%20of%20giving%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bcapable%20enough%20of%20being%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bcapable%20enough%20of%20what%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bcapable%20enough%20of%20rendering%3B%2Cc0

10) "this becomes ": when? In the past, present or future?

11) "some western countries": the question says "wealthy countries", which would include non-western countries such as Saudi Arabia, China, Japan, Qatar, Kuwait. Make sure not to go off-topic.

Good day Mr Simon,great job you are doing?
Pls is it better to be impersonal in the introduction of opinion essays or include "I partly agree/disagree" ... ?
Thank you
I asked earlier in the forum but I guess for some reason,it did not reflect

Pls ignore the first question mark,I commended for the good job you are doing.

I can't thank you enough for your highly valuable response Beyonce!

crystal clear sir.For example, Agree/disagree type essay one central idea in a paragraph is perfect but it is supported by reasons and examples.However, if the essay has plural forms in the questions then it is given more than one idea per paragraph such as advantage/disadvantage, problem/solution, cause/effect and cause solution.


In their model answer introduction, British Council use "I do not think this is true", and "I (do) believe" in the body and conclusion.

What I like to carry out is one idea in intraduction, one idea in second paragraph, one in third para, and one or two ideas in conclution. Is it a better method sir? Please tell me.


Its not good idea to use ideas in the conclusion because it summary or repetition of your opinion from the introduction.

Dear all,
the last comment (on which Vishaal has suggested) in the name of Pachu is not written by me.it is very strange to see the comments.Who is writing this? please tell me.


.. in the introduction, one idea in the second paragraph, one in the third para, and one or two ideas in the conclusion.


-> What I like to do is put one idea in ...

As Vishaal says, the conclusion is a summary, and should never introduce new ideas or material.

Mr Sjm recently made the following comments:
"a) 'progression' refers to the organisation of ideas so that they logically build on each other. ''throughout' means in all parts of the essay. Think of this like constructing a building. You need your foundation (overall position/opinion), your arguments (reasons for your opinion) and your details (to give your reasons strength). Sometimes candidates write something and it's not clear how the argument supports the opinion, or how the example supports the argument. This means 'progression' is damaged.

Band 6 is general progression: the essay generally makes sense and we can understand how the arguments support the opinion. Band 7 and above means that all details must logically make sense and support the opinion.

b) This means provide details to support your reasons. The most common form of details are examples and consequences (explanations). Lacking focus would be trying to present an example but not being specific enough eg: 'Men, for example' - many examiners would find 'men' to be too large a group to be an example."

I believe this shows that it is the quality of your arguments in the main body paragraphs that is decisive. The marking criteria for Band 7 state: presents a clear central topic within each paragraph.

Having disconnected ideas, or 'wandering' within a paragraph is not going to get you to Band 7.


I just updated my essay based on your suggestions, request you to spend a minute or two to skim through it and suggest if anything is missing.

Rich nations ought to permit the entry of a higher number of asylum seekers and support them with daily needs, namely food and a residence. I fully support this view as this is the moral responsibility of every individual, and spending large sums of money is not a concern for such countries.

Countries that have an abundance of financial resources should help a greater number of refugees in order to serve humans in danger. That is to say, many refugees have had lost almost everything they earned by hard work due to anti-social activities of terrorists, and in such worst condition, if they do not receive support from other nations, most of them will die of hunger, diseases, or fear from criminals. For instance, in 2015, many refugees from Syria, Iraq, and Afghanistan died because of the lack of support from the United States Government.
Many wealthy nations are able to spend money to support refugees with daily necessaries. That is to say, they have lesser financial issues than other developing countries as most of their states report significant growth in business, technology, and other sectors every year. Not only this, many refugees might have education in diverse fields, and thus they can become a valuable asset, in terms of workforce, for countries which supported them in their worst time. For instance, in Canada, many refugees are currently working as engineers, doctors, and accountants, and contributing to country’s development and economy, and this has become possible as Canadian Government accepted more than 5000 refugees in 2016.

In conclusion, I completely agree that developed nations should accept and help more asylum seekers by considering this as an obligation towards humanity, and they can afford to spend extra money to help such needy people.

in such worst condition


or fear from criminals

Thank so very much indeed *BOGDEN* for your instruction.

Hi Simon,
I passed the IELTS exam last month.
I have learned many things and tips your lessons in all sections. You are really great teacher and I owe you because of this excellent website. Please inform me what you want in Turkey, I would like to help you.
Thanks for everything :)

Hello Oleg, Beyoncé

What is Norma graph. How can it help us in studying English.?

Hello Simon,

You are doing a great job. I’m learning a lot from this website. Thank you for your help.


You have really good ideas for the essay writing. The problem is seen in cohesion and coherence.


Thank you for sharing the useful information.

Bless you all.


Let us take the phrase "in such worst condition" as an example. On google books this only comes up once, and, judging by the name, the author is not a native speaker. We may therefore conclude that this phrase is not a 'natural' phrase as stipulated in the marking schema for Band 9.

The ngrams graph shows that "in such bad shape" is a commoner expression, and therefore 'natural'. We could equally well use "in such poor shape", which is less common, or even "in such a sorry state". We are not really interested in the ups and downs of the graph line, just in which phrases are more common. If a phrase does not come up at all, it is probably a good idea to avoid it in the exam. Putting together unusual phrases will make our English sound unnatural. It is almost as if we just need to string together cliches.

So we can check whether our phraseology is natural either by using nGrams or Google Books. Perhaps the most useful feature of Ngrams is the wildcard asterisk, which will bring up the top ten collocations. For example, try entering "in such bad * ".


There's a good example of using Ngrams to check which phrases are natural in the comments section here:

You'll have to copy and past the longer links as they do not work properly.

Congratulations Kerim. I'm happy that my lessons helped you to pass - that's enough for me!

Thanks Oleg

hi, hello Simon.

I have questions for IELTS writing task2.
I have an "idea for IELTS" book but I don't know how to use it.
could you give me an example of how to use this book for writing task2?

thank you so much.

Hi dear Simon!
Is paraphrasing facts that we are given in the question ok? The reason why i'm asking this is that i usually find it difficult to introduce the topic and i usually lose most of my time because of this.
Thank you!

Being a celebrity- such as a famous film star or sports personality- brings problems as well as benefits.

Do you think that being a celebrity brings more benefits or more problems?

There are certain pros and cons of becoming renowned personalities, such as actors, actresses, or sports stars. In my opinion, being a famous person is more advantageous as one can make a significant amount of money, and contribute to society by spreading positive messages.

Most celebs earn far more money than any other professional in the current job market. This is because millions of people around the world spend money to see their work, such as movie or sports tournaments. Also, many advertisers prefer to hire celebrities by paying large sums of money to endorse their products due to their huge popularity among people. For instance, a recent article in Forbs magazine has revealed that Indian Cricketer Virat Kohli was at second place among the richest sports stars in the world in 2018.

Most celebrities possess the power to influence a large number of people, particularly young individuals, as they are being seen as role models by many people in society. Therefore, if they suggest anything that has a positive impact on society, most of the fans will accept their advice and will work to improve their cities or even states to make them better places. For example, many young adults, who idolise the Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar, prefer to consume only healthy diet regime and follow some workout programs regularly just because they want to mimic the lifestyle of their favorite actor.

I believe that gaining fame and becoming a well-known personality is largely beneficial in the sense that this will allow people to become rich, and to influence society in a good way.


1) -> advantages and disadvantages to becoming a well-known film or sporting personality. Please note that 'pros and cons' is normally used only in the context of weighing up information to make a decision, or when evaluating the strength of an argument: it is not a general substitute for advantages and disadvantages. It is often followed by 'of' plus a noun defining the decision area. Film and sports people do not sit down and make a conscious decision to become famous, so 'pros and cons' is not appropriate.




My general advice would be to stay away from 'pros and cons' in Task 2, as it usually comes across as forced and unnatural.

2) "Celebs" is an abbreviation; -> celebrities.

3) "movie or sports tournaments": I have never heard of a 'movie tournament'.

4) https://books.google.com/ngrams/graph?content=*_ADP+second+place&case_insensitive=on&year_start=1960&year_end=2008&corpus=15&smoothing=3&share=&direct_url=t2%3B%2C%2A_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%2Cs0%3B%3Bin_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bfor_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Binto_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3BIn_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bof_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bwith_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bfrom_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bthan_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bover_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0%3B%3Bat_ADP%20second%20place%3B%2Cc0

5) "particularly young individuals,": does this refer to the celebrities or those being influenced?

6) -> adopt a healthy diet, OR maintain a healthy diet regime:


Thanks a lot Zara for invaluable suggestions!

hi there, there is any who have exam 27th april generalfrom india


"Costs and benefits" is just as common as "pros and cons" and a better substitute for "advantages and disadvantages". See revised graph below:


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