IELTS Writing Task 1 – Understanding the Insights!

IELTS Writing Task 1 – Understanding the Insights!

Updated on 18 January, 2022

Mrinal Mandal

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IELTS or International English Language Testing System is the world’s leading English-language test used for work, foreign education, and migration. The IELTS test has two types – IELTS Academic and General Training. There are four compulsory sections of the test – Writing, Reading, Speaking, and Listening. There are two IELTS Writing tasks. The writing Task 1 is different for IELTS General Training and Academic. The task 1 for Academic is a summary of graphical representation and for General Training, it is letter writing. Applicants preparing for IELTS Writing Task 1 should have complete knowledge about the task, test pattern, skills, and tips to get an excellent band. 


IELTS General Writing Task 1

General Writing Task 1 requires applicants to write a formal or semi-formal letter on a particular subject in 150 words. The question focuses on testing the functional writing skills of the students. It evaluates the English language writing skills and the applicant’s ability to draft a letter for purposes like an apology, invitation, complaint, job application, or requesting information. It also evaluates the ability of applicants to write about practical issues in English before working or studying in an English-speaking country. 


IELTS Academic Writing Task 1

In IELTS Academic Writing Task 1 starts with a diagram, a visual representation of information. It can be a table, map, graph, process, diagram, or picture. Applicants need to draft a summary of 150 words within 20 minutes based on the visual. It evaluates the applicants’ ability to select and analyze important facts, data, and features, by comparing data and trends or developing a particular process. The task measures English language proficiency and analytical skills. 



Tips for IELTS writing task 1

Task 1 is different for IELTS Academic and General Training.

Here are all the important tips that can help applicants from both academic and General Training modules. 

IELTS General Writing Task 1 tips

  • Draft the letter as per instructions. Identify the type of letter, and make sure the tone and style match the type of the letter. A formal tone cannot be used for an informal letter. Choose the right words.
  • The letter must have an introduction and conclusion. The introduction should have all the necessary details that justify the purpose of writing the letter. It should have a clear picture of the entire letter.
  • Don’t use common vocabulary in the letter. Use positive words and avoid a negative tone.
  • The letter should be grammatically correct. Draft short, coherent, and organized sentences. Do not make mistakes in using the tense forms and sentences should be linked properly with connectors.
  • Organize the entire 150 words in small and readable paragraphs. Do not write lengthy paragraphs.
  • Do not make spelling mistakes. Avoid complicated and long words if you are unsure about them.
  • The letter should have all three points – explaining the problem, describing the cause, and suggesting a remedy or solution.
  • Read sample letters of both formal and semi-formal formats. Practice writing letters for different purposes and do not memorize them.


IELTS Writing Task 1 Academic tips

  • Keep the summary within 150 words. Finish task 1 within 20 minutes to have sufficient time for task 2.
  • Focus on task achievement, grammar, vocabulary, and coherence. These are the main factors of scoring in task 1.
  • Mention all the relevant data, information, and facts after analyzing the diagram carefully. Do not miss out on any information from the diagram.
  • Study and understand the diagram properly. Only then you will be able to state the important features and information represented in the visual.
  • Sentence construction is important. Use connectors to maintain the right flow of ideas and opinions while writing.
  • To write your overview, pick 3 or 4 of the main features and write about them generally, without referencing any data.
  • Support the key features with the data in a new paragraph.
  • It is best to paraphrase the question in the first paragraph. Do this with the help of synonyms.


IELTS Writing Task 1 skill

Both IELTS Academic and General aspirants must have the below-mentioned skills: 

  • Task 1 of both Academic and General Training should be completed in a unique manner. The answers are not marked right or wrong. They are evaluated based on facts, grammar, and vocabulary. Test takers must have unique writing skills.
  • Finding the facts to draft an overview paragraph is the most important part of your whole Task 1 essay. It must include the factual information and features that will represent the data.
  • Ability to select & report the main features, describe & compare data, identify significance & trends in factual information, or describe a process.
  • Having a wide vocabulary is an asset of a successful writer. To enhance your writing skills, try to listen, speak and read a lot of English language every day. The more you read and listen, the better words you will know.
  • Grammar, spelling, and punctuation are very important no matter how well you write. These are some of the must-have writing skills. Poor punctuation and spelling affect the quality of writing.
  • Maintaining a tone is an important writing skill. It should be as stated in the question. Academic writing is always in an informative and formal tone.
  • Use facts in your task 1. Facts and numbers enrich your essay. Use evidence when the question asks you to do so.


The IELTS Writing Task 1 is designed to test the English writing skills of individuals planning to immigrate to an English speaking country for work, education, or for general purposes. The test is different for General and Academic applicants. The IELTS Writing Task 1 Academic needs applicants to summarize information provided in visuals like tables, graphs, diagrams, pictures, etc. IELTS General Writing Task 1 needs applicants to write letters for various purposes. Certain tips and tricks can help applicants to understand the test better and get a good band score. For more queries related to the writing section, consult academic counselors of upGrad Abroad.

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