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Writing Task 2

22 MISTAKES STUDENTS MAKE IN IELTS WRITING TASK 2

Posted: May 17, 2019 at 6:59 pm   /   by   /   comments (0)
1.
Do
not
use
(…) (etc)
when writing a list. Instead, lists of examples should
follow the pattern; (A and B), (A, B, and C), or (A, B, C, and D). For
example:
one of the biggest problems in big cities is unemployment, crime
and pollution.
2.
No question mark
in your essay: Do
not
ask the reader any
questions
in
your essays. For example;
“How do you think we can solve the problem of
over-crowding in cities?”
3.
Do
not
use
exclamation points
in your essays. Don’t yell at the reader.
For example;
“In my opinion, it’s the best solution to over-crowding in
cities
!
4.
Phrases like
“more and more”,
“bigger and bigger”, “greater and
greater”
are too informal
, and
only good for speaking
,
not good for
academic writing
. Instead of writing
“more and more people are driving cars
these days”
, you could use trend language in task 1 writing to write this
sentence like
“increasing numbers of
people are using cars these days
” “a
significantly larger number of people
using cars these days
” “a growing
increase in the number of people
using cars these days
”, “nowadays, the
number of people who own cars has increased”; “increasing numbers of
students
are going abroad for university study
”; “the number of cities that
suffer from pollution has increased tremendously in recent decades”
. That’s
much better
than
“more and more”
. In addition, instead of using the
structure such as
“much more”,
you can say
“a great deal larger”
.
Also,
“big”
is too informal for reports and essays, we should use
“large”
“sizeable” “significant”
instead
.
5.
Do not begin sentences with
“And”, “But”, “Or”.
Instead use linking
phrases that sound more academic such as
“In addition/Furthermore”,
“However”, “Since”, “As a result”.
6.
The first sentence of each body paragraph should be
a topic sentence
,
it
should
define the content of the paragraph in general terms
. The number one
job of the topic sentence is to tell the readers what they are going to read in
that paragraph. It’s a signal to the readers. A topic sentence can do other
things, but its number one job is to send the signal to the readers.
7.
“Most/almost”:
“Most”
is an
adjective
(usually) which means
the greatest
quantity, amount, measure, degree or number of something
. It is followed by
a noun, prepositional phrase or adjective:
“Most people”, “the most popular”
“most of his time”, “most of my friends study abroad”
.
“Almost”
is an
adverb
which means
very nearly
(a language of
estimation), it means
close
, but NOT totally.
Examples:
“We’re almost
home.”, “almost finished”, “almost every house”, “almost never” “almost
all of the students”
.
8.
Manage your time well
.
Task 1= 20 minutes. Task 2=40 minutes
. A
poorly written essay for the report will receive a higher band score than an
incomplete one.
Task 1 = 150 words, Task 2 = 250 words
. Make sure you
write the minimum number of words.
9.
Subject-verb agreement
:
He, she, it
….play
s
, do
es
, receiv
es
, negotiat
es
,
etc
. This is a rule you learned in elementary grammar. You cannot still be
making this mistake on the IELTS test. If you make this mistake in your
essay, you can forget about getting a good band score.
10.
Use the correct verb tenses
.
This is another elementary mistake that will
keep you from getting a good band score. Pay attention to every verb you
write and consider what tense you should be using. Particularly,
present
tense
. Most of the time, the vast majority, the overwhelming majority of the
time, you are using the present tense. I would say that really
no need for past
tense
,
maybe some future
,
maybe modal verbs
, but most of the time, you are
using the present tense
(present simple, present perfect, present continuous)
.
That’s what something you should be thinking about.
11.
Articles
(a, an, the, no article):
The last of the three biggest elementary
mistakes. Maybe because you have articles in your own language. It’s a
foreign concept to you. The other thing is you don’t read them out, and you
usually use articles in theories whereas the best way on how to use articles is
by looking at a lot of proper accurate writings. Review the rules about articles
and apply them to every noun you write.
12.
Singular/Plural, Countable/Uncountable
: When speaking in general
about something, use the plural form. For example: “
People
use
computer
s
in their
office
s
every day. (Don’t say: people use
a computer
in their
office
every day); or: people need a lot of money for their
lives
(don’t say: people
need a lot of money for their
life
.)
When it comes to Countable & Uncountable, it’s a bit challenging here
because there aren’t rules what is countable and what is uncountable. I would
say keep a little list of words that are countable and uncountable. I don’t want
to see
equipments
,
knowledges
,
advises, informations
, etc.
these are common
mistakes students make.
13.
In essays,
no personal opinions
in the body paragraphs
(
NO
I think
,
I
believe
,
in my mind
,
in my opinion
,
as far as I am concerned
,
for me
,
to me
,
etc.)
, only in the introduction (for thesis-led) or conclusion. Use
impersonal
opinions
in the body paragraphs such as
“some people think, other people
believe, many people claim that, as far as some people are concerned”
. Try to
give other people’s opinions,
not
your opinion in your body paragraphs.
14.
Write your essays from a
global perspective
, because the questions are
asked from a global perspective. Try to avoid relating the essay question only
to your country. It should be about the world in general. If you say
“traffic in
the city is a serious problem when you are traveling down
Madison Avenue
at
rush hour”
,
it’s very specific
. Instead, you should say:
“when people travel
down
busy streets in urban areas
during rush hours…”
now you are not
talking about problems of a specific city, you are talking about
problems that
every city faces
. That’s what you want. You want to be general.
15.
Use
linking words and transition phrases
at the beginning of all body
paragraphs,
and the conclusion.
Keep your sentences short and well linked
.
It’s a key if you want to improve your grammar. It will help your grammar
and your organization as well. For example:
Firstly, on the one hand, on the
other hand, in summary
.
16.
No contractions
; for example:
“shouldn’t” = should not, can’t = cannot,
wouldn’t = would not, shouldn’t = should not, etc.
17.
Keep pronouns out of the essay body paragraphs
. Words such as,
you,
we, I, us,
should be omitted or written as
people, students, society, etc
. For
example, instead of saying “when
you
go abroad,
you
will have a chance to
experience new cultures”, you should say “when
a student
goes abroad,
they
will have a chance to experience new cultures”
18.
Active tense
can be changed to
passive tense
to omit the pronoun
.
19.
Effect
is
a noun
.
Affec
t
is
a verb
.
20.
In the introduction,
do not tell the reader what you’re going to do
.
For example:
In this essay I will discuss the advantages and disadvantages
of studying abroad
. No need. The way that I will teach you how to give an
introduction is going to
be incredibly clear
, and
incredibly high level
. I’m not
just teaching you how to write essays for a 5.5 in the exam, I’m teaching you
how to write essays that will be good for any university in the world. So, my
method is incredibly clear, but helps you with your organization. So, instead
you could write
a concise thesis statement
like
“This essay will show both the
positive and negative benefits of studying abroad”
.
21.
Avoid using
absolutes
such as;
all, every, none, only, always, never,
completely, totally
. For example: when
everyone
goes abroad, they
always
suffer home sickness. Be careful of using 100% and 0% statements.
22.
Don’t use
the word
“thing”
to name the object or action you’re writing
about
. For example, instead of writing
“when students go abroad, they have
opportunities to experience many different
things
, you should write
“when
students go abroad, they have opportunities to experience many different
things
,
such as new cultures and make new friends
. That’s ok, because you
are giving two specific examples about what things you are talking about.
Review this list. When you’ve done with your first essay, go through the list
to make sure you are not making some of these mistakes
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