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How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2

How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2

How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2 Question and analyze it. Best IELTS writing task 2 pre writing tips for essay of IELTS writing.

The purpose of this article is to explain how you can correctly analyze and understand any Writing Task 2 question in IELTS.

  • Visit our All in one IELTS material from IELTS Window to gather more information regarding IELTS exam and other IELTS modules such as speaking, writing, listening and reading + FAQs and IELTS Guides.

In order to score highly, it is essential you understand the question and what it asks from you.  My experience is that students often provide fantastic answers to questions that weren’t asked.  

It is so important that without answering the question directly you may be limited to a grade of 6 or lower in the task achievement part of your grade.

Due to the reasons listed above, it is important to know what you are going to answer before you start writing.

Go to the official IELTS website if you wanna learn it more deeply. Although, I have explained it in a better way as compare to them.

The reason students do not spend time analyzing the question is usually because they simply wanted to start writing as soon as possible.

It would be counterproductive to spend a little bit of extra time analyzing the question in order to ensure that you fully comprehend it to prevent you from answering it incorrectly.

Driving your car without having a clear idea of where you are going is like starting the IELTS test without knowing where you are going.

Mistakes that students make before IELTS writing task 2

how to understand IELTS writing task 2
  1. The questions are not carefully read and analyzed.
  2. This is because they aren’t aware of the type of question being asked.
  3. They don’t fully understand the question.
  4. Rather than answering a specific question, they discuss a general topic.

6 Important things to Know ” How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2

Take the time to carefully read the question and understand what the examiner is asking. It is very common for students to reach this part of the test with less than 40 minutes to spare, since this is IELTS Writing Task 2. When they read the topic statement, they panic, and they begin writing about what they believe the topic to be. It is a sure-fire way to get exceptionally low marks in Task Achievement, since the student has not even read the assignment.

On the basis of the example provided above, a student reading the topic statement might think that the question is about whether reading fiction books is worth their time or not. The student would only realize this after reading the following instructions that they actually have to write about whether reading fiction has more advantages or disadvantages. That’s what makes the difference between writing a relevant and ineffective response.

Identify the topic words Properly

Q:- How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2 topic words?

Space exploration is much too expensive and the money should be spent on more important things.

What is your opinion?

As you can see, the question is about spending money on space exploration.  We are probably not directly answering the question if we simply discuss space exploration and money in general. We might end up with a low score if we lose points because of this.

  • Visit our All in one IELTS material from IELTS Window to gather more information regarding IELTS exam and other IELTS modules such as speaking, writing, listening and reading + FAQs and IELTS Guides.

To improve our score and directly answer the question, we need to figure out precisely what aspect of space and money we are to comment on.

Identify other keywords

Q:- How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2 topic words and identify the keywords?

We should spend the money on more important things instead of on space exploration, which is too expensive.

What is your opinion?

Hopefully you can see from the highlighted words above that this question is actually asking about how we should spend our money as a society. The question doesn’t concern space or money in general.

You can accurately analyze the question with the help of modifiers.

A modifier is a word or phrase that adds emphasis, detail, or further explanation to a sentence by changing, explaining, qualifying, or limiting that word.  These words and phrases are usually descriptive words such as adjectives and adverbs or phrases such as adjective clauses and adverbial phrases. 

Here are some examples: Just, Almost, Hardly, Always, Only, At first, and Simply.

It is important that you pay attention to the fact that it says “much too expensive” in the above question.  The statement also states explicitly that it feels the current level of spending is excessive since it is making a value judgement.  

In addition, I have highlighted the word “should” since it is a modal verb that emphasizes duty and obligation.  “Should” suggests a desired action rather than one that is actually carried out.

Or, in other words, the question asks whether, in a perfect world, we should continue spending vast sums of money on space exploration or redirect it to other, perhaps more worthy causes.

Identify the instructional words

It is crucial that you identify the instruction words so that your response can be properly structured. 

It is always necessary to include instruction words after a question statement.

As a general rule, you can expect to be asked four types of questions in section 2 of the IELTS writing test. Nevertheless, be aware that some questions may actually require you to do two things: discuss both sides and express your opinion.  

  1. Opinion questions
  2. Advantage and disadvantage questions
  3. Discussion questions
  4. Problem and solution questions 

You will be able to identify which of the four types of questions you must answer by the instruction words.   This is important because the way in which you structure your response will have to match the nature of the question you are asked. 

We should spend more money on more important things than space exploration, which is too expensive.

What is your opinion?

Quite simply, why are you asking the question above?. We are being asked here what our opinion is, so in order to respond, we must provide our opinion and give evidence to support it. 

As well as asking you to what degree or extent you agree with a statement, opinion questions may also ask you how much you agree with it.

This part is not too difficult. You will normally be asked to discuss both sides if it is a discussion question, but if it is an advantage and disadvantage question, you will be asked to discuss both advantages and disadvantages. 

You should be able to complete this process within 2 to 3 minutes, even though this blog is quite long.  Planning is an essential part of the writing process, and to start writing before knowing exactly what you have been asked to do is risky. 


Spending money on endangered animals seems wasteful to you. Describe your reasoning for your opinion. Put everything on paper. No idea is bad during brainstorming. Your notes could be something like this:

  • Money should be spent on more important things, such as poverty, education, and food
  • However, the program does not work
  • We have zoos.
  • Cloning animals in any way will soon be possible
  • There is no importance to animals, only to humans.

For the main body paragraphs (paragraphs 2 and 3 in a four-paragraph essay), two of these will be the main ideas. Each paragraph should present one main idea.

Now, I want you to think about which of those five ideas you can write a good, well-founded sentence about? Can you provide reasons, explanations, explanations, causes, definitions, and examples supporting any of these ideas? Choose the TWO ideas that you have the most evidence for.

Here’s what I’d choose

  • It is a very broad subject, and you can spend money on other things that are more important.
  • It is easy to write about science and technology by saying, ‘in a few years we’ll be cloning animals in any way we like’.

Specialized knowledge is not as important as you might think

It is important to remember that only topics that do not require specialized knowledge will be available on IELTS Writing Task 2. Regardless of age or nationality, everyone can answer the questions. As a result, finding points should not be difficult as IELTS does not judge you on your content but on how you present it. If you have met all the IELTS criteria, then your score will be good regardless of how academically sound the ideas you present.

Plan your supporting tests

You could support your argument on this topic (There are more important things to spend money on) with one or more of the following examples:

Example : education

Reason : Why is it more important? A greater number of people will benefit from this than from spending money on endangered species.

How will this affect the world? It’s more important to educate humans than animals because it will increase their standard of living and life expectancy, which will make the world a better place.

Spending money on education can include benefits to animals, too, since you’ll learn more about them when you’re educated.

The bottom line: Better return on investment

You now have five or six sentences that will form a good paragraph.

Your third paragraph should follow the same five steps as the previous two paragraphs. That’s your plan for y

Here is what you should do on your IELTS Task 2 essay to get it right: plan the essay, identify the topic, brainstorm, and plan your supporting tests. Following these 5 techniques will help you score well on your IELTS Task 2 essay. Best wishes!

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FAQ: How to Understand IELTS Writing task 2?

  1. How do I do well in IELTS writing task 2

    IELTS writing task 2 is not a piece of cake but it is not that difficult. There are 3 most important factors which you have to implement before writing IELTS writing task 2.

    1. Vocabulary
    2. Comparision words
    3. Relevant ideas

    Vocabulary is one of the most crucial things on which you have to focus. Advance vocab words can enhance your IELTS writing band score up to 1 complete band.

    You can’t ignore the comparision words because there should be a one comparing idea in each paragraph. If you grab them then your work is complete.

    Relevant ideas with the question matters a lot. If your ideas are not matching with the question and you are going off topic. That means you are loosing you band score.

  2. How can I get band 9 in IELTS writing task 2?

    This is the question of thousands of students. As per my experience, only 2% of cases out of 100 students can get 9 bands in IELTS writing task 2 in their first attempt. I am not saying that it is difficult but to grab the exact IELTS writing task 2 format and checking format is designed in different way. Once you attemped the exam, after that you can analyse the writing and Examiner demands.

    Rather than that, let’s focus on some tips which can help you to get 9 bands in IELTS writing task 2.

    High vocabulary
    – Using varity of Sentense structure
    – Writing in proper format
    – Enough relevant ideas and examples
    – Understanding conclusion
    – No spelling mistakes and other mistakes
    – 100% accuracy with time completion

  3. How do I start my task 2 in IELTS

    As you know, starting with the introduction is the way to start your writing task.

  4. Which tense is used in IELTS writing task 2

    Only present tense you should use in IELTS writing task 2

  5. Is grammar important for IELTS?

    Yes, without grammar you can imagine you as a complete IELTS student. Even grammar is one of the most important factors in IELTS preparation. Each and every modules of IELTS will hit you in grammar.

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