IELTS Writing Task 1 Academic : Complete Guide

IELTS Writing Task 1 Academic : Complete Guide

Updated on 18 January, 2022

Mrinal Mandal

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The International English Language Testing System (IELTS), is an international standardized test of English language proficiency for non-native English language speakers. The IELTS is designed to evaluate English language proficiency in applicants who are seeking higher education, work, and immigration opportunities in English-speaking countries. English language skills are important for applicants to communicate and study while they are residing in an English-speaking environment. IELTS is broadly classified into two types, IELTS Academic for education purposes, and IELTS General Training for work and immigration. There are four papers: writing, speaking, reading, and listening and the writing test is a compulsory section that tests the English language writing skills of applicants. 

IELTS Academic writing is meant for students who are applying for top-ranked universities and colleges in English-speaking countries. The writing task one is an academic summary writing based on diagrammatic and graphical representation. It is a 150-word length summary and the time allotted is 20 minutes. In IELTS Academic Writing Task 1, you will be shown a diagram, a visual way to represent information. The summary needs to be written in response to a particular diagram, picture, graph, map, process, pie graph, or histogram. The task evaluates the ability of students to select and analyze the most important features and facts, to compare data, identify significant data, and find trends in fact-based information and understand a particular process. The summary is written in a specific format, and the writing skills are tested and evaluated. The IELTS Writing Task 1 Academic tips and tricks will help the students deliver a winning summary that is expected by the IELTS examination board. To all the test takers, here is a complete guide to understanding the right path to obtain a good band in IELTS Academic writing task 1. 

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Tips and tricks for IELTS Academic writing task 1

  • The writing section is challenging due to the limited time duration. Task 1 is allotted only 20 minutes. Time management is the key. Plan the summary before you start writing. It is important to complete the task within the stipulated time duration. 
  • The word length of the summary is 150 words. It is important to stick to the word limit. If you exceed the word limit it will be a waste of time and the task will not be completed. Completion of tasks is important if you are aiming for a good band. 
  • In Academic writing task 1, an overview is very essential. To write your overview, pick three or four of the main features and write about them generally, without referring to any data. Do not refer to any reference, all you need to do is provide a precise outline about all the important features and facts related to the diagram or graphical representation. Outline the main changes, development, features, and trends that you can identify. 
  • The writing band depends upon four factors. The applicants are marked based on task achievement, grammar, vocabulary, and coherence. These are the main factors of scoring in task 1. Write to maintain all of these when you are writing task 1. To get a good band, all four factors are very important. 
  • Understand on what basis you will be marked. Being aware of the marking criteria helps a candidate provide the examiner exactly what they are looking for in the answer paper. There is no negative marking in writing. The answers cannot be differentiated as right or wrong, it will be evaluated based on the four factors.  
  • Academic writing is filled with data, statistics, facts, and numbers. Cross-check on the accuracy and relevancy. Make sure whatever facts you are stating are relevant and valid. 
  • Paraphrase the question. It is best to paraphrase the question in the first paragraph. You can do this by using synonyms. Paraphrasing is important. 
  • Write a winning introduction and conclusion. You write the introduction to tell the examiner what you are going to write about. So, it is basically the question paraphrased. Make sure you introduce the right words and close the summary with the right words. An excellent conclusion helps you with a good band. Invest a significant amount of time for the introduction and conclusion. 
  • To support the description you must present the key features and use data. Key features in response to the diagram or graphical representation are important. You need to outline all the important features that reveal an important piece of information. 
  • Organize the summary in short and crisp paragraphs. In a 150 word summary, you can have 3-4 paragraphs to make the write-up readable and interesting. 
  • You need to use appropriate language while describing or comparing the graphs. Make sure the summary is grammatically correct. Do not make any mistakes related to tense, spelling, or grammar. Read after you complete writing, so that you can proofread your work once. You must use the connectors to have appropriate grammar and vocabulary in the sentence. 
  • Practice all kinds of graphical representations and diagrams. The more complicated ones you will practice and solve, the examination will seem to be easier for you. Practice all the patterns and formats, so that you can attempt any question that you get on the examination day. 
  • Have a good vocabulary so that you can easily paraphrase your summary. You can do it well with the help of connectors and synonyms. Check for accuracy. The vocabulary need not be very complicated, but try to avoid even minor mistakes as vocabulary is an important factor for writing. 
  • Take feedback when you practice. Get your summary corrected by an expert. It will help you work on your weak areas so that you can get time to prepare and improve.


IELTS Academic Writing Task 1 aims to test and evaluate the English language writing skills with relevance to diagrams and graphical representation. To get a good band, it is important to complete the examination within the stipulated time and maintain all the prerequisites and factors that help in getting a good band.

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