10 Useful Structures to Express Contrasting Ideas in IELTS Speaking & Writing Task 2

10 Useful Structures to Express Contrasting Ideas in IELTS Writing Task 2
10 Useful Structures to Express Contrasting Ideas in IELTS Writing Task 2

One of the most important factors that help you to achieve IELTS band 7.0 or higher in IELTS Speaking and Writing is to use high level language skills to immediately impress your IELTS examiner.

It is essential to learn how to express opposing ideas cogently and with clarity. In this post, I will talk about the importance of showing the opposing viewpoint in writing and speech. You will learn how to use words like “although”, “having said that”,  “albeit”, “regardless of”, “despite”, “in spite of”, and “nevertheless”. These words help you effectively introduce opposing ideas or facts in speech and writing.

Below are useful grammar structures which you can make the most out of to get a 7 or higher for fluency on the Speaking test and a 7 or higher for cohesion and coherence on the Writing test.

  1. Although X verb, Y verb

         ==>Although some people…., I prefer….

“Although”, also known as “even though” or “is to show this contrast. It’s a such a useful word when you’re writing essays or speaking in a formal setting.


  • Although X verb, Y verb : Although some people would like to have a lot of children, the cost of raising them has to be considered first.
  • Although some people…., I prefer….: Although some young people consider travelling as the best way to turn into a mature person, I prefer going abroad to study for a tertiary level to broaden my experience which can help me be fully developed in  mind.
  1. Despite the fact that + clause, X verb

If you are not a fan of using although, you can use this structure to be more flexible with your sentences, &                 make your English sound more articulate and fluent.


  • All in all, despite the fact that there are some interesting programmes, much of the time children spend watching TV would be better spent on other activities.
  1. Nevertheless, X verb, Y verb


  • It is true that more and more factories are being built along this stretch of the river and that a certain amount of waste will inevitably be discharged into the river. Nevertheless, in all the discussions that I have had with these firms’ representatives, I have not found one who does not have a responsible attitude to environmental protection.
  1. In spite of Verb-ing/ Noun-phrase, X verb


  • In spite of the advantages of living in big cities, people have a proclivity to live in the countryside.

      5. Regardless of Noun-phrase, Subject + Verb

           Regardless of: without regard or consideration for


  • Regardless of their skin color, background or what their language is, we should treat everyone equally.

      6. Albeit Noun Phrase/Clause, S + V

           Meaning: Although

            – Albeit is often used to introduce an adjectival or adverbial phrase that makes a concession about the                         preceding noun or verb


            The sponge was very absorbent, soaking up all the soda, albeit with some effort.

            – In rarer cases, albeit may introduce a dependent clause


            The good news is that he is back at Tannadice and has resumed his duties, albeit he will not rejoin the board.

       7. Having said that, S +

              Meaning: a signal that they will say something which will contrast with what they said a moment ago.


        I suppose many people could argue that my country’s food isn’t healthy. Having said that, there is a new trend now toward vegan or vegetarian food and there is a new restaurant in my neighborhood. I feel great when I eat there!

        8. At the same time S + V


         From my perspective, we are gradually moving towards technology for every kid in the classroom. At the same time I know there are a range of school districts who can’t afford that kind of technology.

         9. Notwithstanding Noun/the fact that Clause, S + V

           Meaning: is used in the same way as “despite” (more formal)


        Notwithstanding its profitability /the fact that the factory farming can be profitable, there are major doubts about its morality

          10. Much as Clause, S + V

           Meaning: A very strong form of “although”


           Much as mass tourism is harmful to the environment, it should still be encouraged.

All in all, it is very important for you to use these useful grammar structures to achieve a high band score for IELTS Writing task 2. If you have any questions, Let us know in the comments below or on Facebook.

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Written By

Nafia Zuhana is an experienced content writer and IELTS Trainer. Currently, she is guiding students who are appearing for IELTS General and Academic exams through ieltsmaterial.com. With an 8.5 score herself, she trains and provides test takers with strategies, tips, and nuances on how to crack the IELTS Exam. She holds a degree in Master of Arts – Creative Writing, Oxford Brookes University, UK. She has worked with The Hindu for over a year as an English language trainer.

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