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IELTS General Writing Task 1 Tips
IELTS General Writing Task 1 Tips

IELTS General Writing Task 1 Tips

IELTS General Writing Section consists of 2 parts – Task 1 and Task 2. IELTS General Writing Task 1 is letter writing. It is advisable to spend 20 minutes on writing task 1 and write at least 150 words. 

Writing task 1 letter can be of any of the 3 types as given below

  • Formal
  • Semi-Formal
  • Informal

Task 1 is responsible for 33% of the total writing marks. It is marked based on 4 parameters.

  • Task Response (25%): Identify the purpose of the question and develop a fully developed answer by covering all the necessary information.
  • Coherence and Cohesion (25%): Organise your answer in a well-structured format by logically infusing all the relevant information and ideas you want to convey. 
  • Lexical Resource (25%): Use less common vocabulary in the right context. Avoid spelling errors.
  • Grammar and accuracy (25%): Form well-structured sentences and avoid any grammatical errors. 

Purpose of Letters

Informal Letter Formal Letter Semi-Formal Letter
Written to someone whom you know personally. Written to someone whom you don’t know personally. Written to someone whom you only know formally. 

Writing task 1 letters may include: 

  1. Letter of Appreciation
  2. Letter of Invitation 
  3. Letter of Suggestion 
  4. Letter of Advice
  5.  Letter of Apology
  6. Letter of Complaint 
  7. Letter of Recommendation 
  8. Letter of Enquiry 
  9. Letter of Request 
  10. Letter of Application
  11. Letter of Explanation 
  12. Letter of Complaint 
  13. Letter of Information
  14. Letter of Amendment
  15. Letter of Accommodation

Writing task 1 tips

1. Follow a well-structured format while writing letters

Start with: Greetings

Followed by: Purpose

  Paragraph 1

Paragraph 2

End with: Sign-off

2. Choose the opening and closing sentence appropriately

Formal Letter 

Opening Sentence: Dear Sir/Ma’am

Closing Sentence: Yours Sincerely/Yours Faithfully

Semi-Formal Letter 

Opening Sentence: Dear Ms. Rose

Closing Sentence: Yours Sincerely/Best Wishes

Informal Letter 

Opening Sentence: Dear Jessica

Closing Sentence: Warm Regards/Warm Wishes

3. How language differs for different types of letters

Formal:

Dear Sir/Ma’am

I am writing this letter to draw your attention to an application which I filed last week.

Semi-Formal:

Dear Ms. Susan

I need your help regarding an application which I filed last week.

Informal:

Dear Elizabeth

I hope you are in good health. I am writing to ask a favour regarding an application which I filed last week

Write standard sentences

Write the information you would like to convey in standard sentences. It helps you save time and convey your message directly without digressing from the topic. 

Pay attention to vocabulary and spellings.

Practise and learn to use a wide range of vocabulary to understand the correct use of words. Moreover, pay attention to the spelling of words while writing the answers. It will help you boost your writing scores. 

Address all three bullet points asked in your letter

By addressing all the bullet points, you will be able to cover all the information in a fully developed manner. It will also help you to provide an overview of the answer in a detailed form. 

In the letter:

  1. Explain the purpose of the letter
  2. Describe your issue and why it bothers you
  3. Suggest a solution/ request an action or explanation

Practice sample papers

Practise writing sample letters regularly and get them checked by someone knowledgeable. It will give better control over time.

Our collection of useful IELTS Writing task 1 free practice papers can help you achieve this. It also helps to verify and compare your answers with band 9 sample answers. 

Refer to the link to access free practice tests:  https://ieltsmaterial.com/general-writing-task-1-practice-test/ 

Written By

Janet had been an IELTS Trainer before she dived into the field of Content Writing. During her days of being a Trainer, Janet had written essays and sample answers which got her students an 8+ band in the IELTS Test. Her contributions to our articles have been engaging and simple to help the students understand and grasp the information with ease. Janet, born and brought up in California, had no idea about the IELTS until she moved to study in Canada. Her peers leaned to her for help as her first language was English.

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