Problem Solution Essay IELTS: Tips & Samples

Problem Solution Essay in IELTS

IELTS or International English language Testing System is a standardized examination that measures the English language proficiency of non-native English speakers. The writing section of the IELTS test has two tasks. The second task is an essay-writing test that has various question patterns like advantages/disadvantages, opinions, direct questions, and problem-solution questions. Problem solution essay in IELTS is the most common type of question in task 2.

In fact, it is considered to be the most challenging type of essay. In this type of essay, an issue will be given to you, and you need to discuss all the problems and possible solutions with regards to the issue. 

To further understand these types of problem-solution essays topics of IELTS and learn essay writing skills, let us take a look at all the tips and essay samples. This would surely help in your plans to move abroad or study abroad.

Sample 1 on problem solution essay IELTS

Sample 1

A lot of professionals like doctors and engineers are leaving their poor countries to settle down in developed countries. What are the problems? What can be done to control the situation? 

Immigration of talented young citizens negatively affects the economy of the native country. Brain drain has been a serious concern for poor countries. Young IT professionals, doctors, and engineers are looking out for opportunities with the top employers in developed economies of the world. It has even become a matter of pride to leave one’s country to contribute to a foreign economy. As a result, poor countries are getting poorer, and developed ones are reaching new heights. This can be solved by implementing many different measures, for example, good pay.


The impact of brain drain is alarming and it has caused an economic downturn in poor countries. The conditions created by the phenomenon have led to critical economic degradation and low living standards. It not only affects the economy but also the education and the healthcare sectors. Skills in fields like engineering, medicine, and IT are very important to maintain the key economic sectors like food production, business, healthcare, employment, and education in a country. Lack of basic facilities keeps poor countries from developing and encouraging investment.


The best way to tackle and restrict the brain drain from poor countries is to convert the push factors to pull factors. The government needs to create strategies and employment opportunities to increase the retention of talent. The poor countries can put a check on this by offering better work conditions, better pay, and a promising job market. The young generation is likely to stop immigrating if they can access a developed job market with better pay in their native country. This is one way of retaining the skills that the country needs to grow and develop.


Another way can be developing infrastructure for training and research programs to help the doctors and engineers work in their home countries after completion of their courses.


Lastly, better living standards should be offered in order to retain young talents. It is a positive way to inspire the talents to stay back and work for their own economy and develop it.


Another key reason for choosing Canada is the country’s welcoming nature as Canada is a melting pot where people of different ethnicities live together without fear of racial discrimination. Canada greets overseas students in a safe environment and offer the best quality of life and job opportunities.


I would like to conclude by saying that the solutions offered above will be financially demanding, and the poor countries have to look for financial aids to implement these strategies.

Source: E2 IELTS

Sample 2 on problem solution essay IELTS

Sample 2

Many countries do not show enough respect towards the elderly. What are the problems associated with this? List the possible solutions.

Being respectful towards the elderly is not in fashion. It is a fast eroding culture in developed countries. This is causing serious troubles both on individual and societal levels. Personal priorities are important in modern society but at the cost of what? This is an alarming aspect, but it can be tackled if proper solutions and strategies are adopted. 

Joint families are gradually losing their hold over modern societies. It is difficult to stay connected with the change in our lifestyle and daily priorities. There are a lot of issues emerging due to this change in the approach towards the elderly. 

The work pattern and lifestyle are undergoing major shifts. If one closely observes a corporate worker it becomes amply clear that the person does not have time for himself/herself, let alone others. Work pressure and competition have affected moral values and the race to earn money almost takes away a major portion of the life of the younger generations. After meeting strict deadlines and targets, individuals come home drained both mentally and physically. This need for financial stability has taken a toll on morality in Individuals. 

However, what is sad amid all this is the fact that the elderly at home are neglected. They do not have anyone to talk to. Even after having a full-fledged family, they are alienated. Not only this. The health conditions of older generations deteriorate as they do not get adequate care. The number of suicides among the elderly has seen a rise. Some even abandon their homes to live a lonely life.

The elderly generation is suffering from physical abuse and assault as well. Many such cases happen daily in developed economies, and it is depressing. It is also common these days to find elderly homeless seeking shelter in government camps, and their numbers are only rising. The idea of a family seems to be a myth as the older generations, the pillars of the family carrying values and traditions face neglect.

Solutions need to be implemented both at societal and individual levels to address this concern. There should be awareness programs on family values and the roles played by the elderly. Companies should offer work-life balance to employees so that they can have more family time. The elderly deserve attention, care, and respect. The government should implement strict laws and punishment for those that harm the elderly. Lastly, education will play an important role. The school curriculum should also include sessions and programs on elderly care and importance so that the child grows up with the right values. 

As per my opinion, the cycle of life keeps moving and if we are disrespectful today, we will receive the same in the future. Elderly generations are the pillars of the family. We do not have the right to disrespect those that have made uncountable struggles and sacrifices just to bring us up. Elderly concerns need to be dealt with priority. 

Tips to write a problem solution essay

  • The word count of the task 2 essay is a minimum of 250 words. There is no upper word limit.
  • You have 40 minutes to complete the essay writing task. The duration of time cannot be extended under any circumstances.
  • The essay structure is divided into four parts for a problem-solution question – introduction, problem, solution, and conclusion. The introduction will have the opening lines and a complete overview of the entire essay. The problem part will have all the problems and the solution part will have the measures and solutions to the problem. The conclusion will have your opinion and summary. 
  • In a problem-solution essay, your focus should be on two things, problem and solution. You need to answer to yourself, what are the problems caused due to this and what are the measures that can reduce the problem or what are the possible solutions to handle the problems.
  • Do not list the problems and solutions in bullet points. You need to simply state 2-3 problems and solutions, and expand your ideas and thoughts about them. 
  • Do not write problems and solutions that are not directly related to the question. For example, if you are asked about the problem caused due to overpopulation, you cannot write about problems caused by globalization. 
  • Identify the keywords, and relate them with problems and solutions about that keyword. For example, the keyword in the second sample is ‘elderly’, so focus on the problems caused to the elderly. 
  • Link problems to solutions while writing a problem solution essay in IELTS to score band 9. You may have amazing ideas for problems, but if you cannot link, it all goes wrong. 
  • Do not write solutions that do not look realistic.
  • Paraphrasing is important. You need to increase the readability of the essay so that it urges the examiner to read the entire essay. 
  • The conclusion cannot have any new problem or new solution. It should be a summary of all that you have already stated in the entire essay. Choose the right words, to sum up, your essay within 4-5 lines. 
  • Use idioms wherever you feel necessary. Do understand the meaning and if it is relevant, only then place it.
  • The essay should be grammatically correct. Make sure there are no errors with punctuation, spelling, verbs, adjectives, and tenses. 
  • Proofread your essay after you complete writing it. When you proofread you will be able to scan some minor or major grammatical errors. Keep 1-2 minutes, in the end, to proofread and do the needful. 
  • Do not write lengthy sentences. Instead, frame short and crisp sentences.
  • Some questions will ask about reasons and solutions, and not problems and solutions. So, read the question very carefully before you start working on your essay. 
  • Answer all parts of the essay equally. If you answer one part and ignore the others, the essay will be incomplete.
  • Keep the tone semi-formal. Do not use informal and personal words.  
  • Practice various problem solution essays so that you have an idea about attempting the question correctly. Practice both simple and advanced topics. 
  • If any fact or statistical data is being used, make sure they are valid. It cannot be hypothetical numbers. The examiners do cross-check when you write sentences like ‘ 58% of elderly are affected.’ It is better to avoid using facts if you are not aware of them. 
  • Use collocations, linking words, and phrases so that your essay is accurate and looks colorful.

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