Improve IELTS General Training Letter
The IELTS General exam is for those who wish to migrate to an English speaking country for work. IELTS General Writing task 1 evaluates your English writing abilities by asking you to write a letter.
In IELTS, General Writing task 1 involves letter writing, usually formal, semi-formal, or informal.
Dedicate 20 minutes to write a letter and do not write less than 150 words. If you write less than 150 words, you will end up with a low score. So, make sure you take care of the word limit while writing the letter.
You live in a block of flats, your neighbour makes a lot of noise which has caused problems for you. Write a letter to your landlord.
- Explain the situation
- Tell him/her how you are affected by this
- Suggest what you want the landlord to do
Sample low scoring Answer:
Hello Mr. Nitin, (WRONG GREETING)
This is to bring to your kind notice that my neighbours are causing a lot of issues. (ABRUPT OPENING) I have to tell you that I live with my parents and the noise caused by my neighbour is affecting my parents’ ability to sleep properly. (ISSUE NOT ADDRESSED PROPERLY)
I would really appreciate it if you solve this issue so that my parents and I can enjoy your peaceful time at home. If you’d like to chat about it, please feel free to give me a call on my number. (SUGGESTION FOR REMEDIAL ACTION NOT GIVEN)
I am looking forward to hearing from you.
Adnan Singh (INCOMPLETE SIGN-OFF)
Issues with the above letter
- Although the task is completed, it does not meet the word limit of 150 words. It is 97 words. It will not help because it shows a lack of attention to details.
- The opening line is abrupt. For a semi-formal letter, the opening line should be based on the purpose.
- The tone of the letter should be semi- formal, not informal.
- The letter is to complain about the issue, not inform it. Remember to pay attention to the bullet points listed below the question. It defines the list of details required in your answer.
- The letter is not well- organised. The elaborate explanation of the issue is missing.
- Sign-off is incomplete. Along with your name, you should add ‘your sincerely’ or ‘yours faithfully.’
Band 8+ Sample Answer:
Dear Mr. Nitin, (GREETINGS)
I am Adnan, and I live in your 24 Goodwill apartments. As I write this letter, the din from my neighbour upstairs is all but drowning out the sound of the television. (OPENING LINES) You must be aware that I live with my aged parents and my neighbour upstairs has six children, all under the age of 12, making loud noises most of the time.(EXPLAIN THE ISSUE)
I am forced to complain about the resident of 26 because my parents and I are unable to tolerate the noise they make. They shifted to this flat a couple of months ago. The children yell and scream at each other almost the entire day. If not, then they listen to loud television or music.
I also would like to let you know that my parents are heart patients. Due to the screams and loud television, they do not sleep properly through the night. It is extremely dangerous for their health. I have informed the association about this, and I am waiting for action. (ELABORATE ON THE ISSUE)
Though I have reported my concern to them, they do not pay attention to the complaint. I would like you to step in and solve the problem. Else, I will have to find another accommodation. I would appreciate your intercession in this matter. (SUGGEST A REMEDIAL ACTION TO THE ISSUE)
Adnan Singh (SIGN-OFF)
Tips to improve the IELTS letter writing with the help of sample letter
- The task has been completed in 213 words. This means that the word limit has been taken into consideration. Don’t forget that the word limit plays a vital role in the answer. It helps you to convey the issue briefly without stuffing too much unnecessary information and words.
- Before you begin to write, think about how you are going to write? To get a high score in writing, you need to follow a consistent tone, just like it has been done in the sample answer. To identify this, you have to understand what type of letter you are going to write.
- Furthermore, your letters should follow a structure, just like the sample letter.
Introduction: Introduce your problem/issue
Paragraph 1: Describe the problem/issue
Paragraph 2: Elaborate on the same
Conclusion: What measures are you suggesting/asking someone to take
Sing-off: Close your letter according to the letter type.
Reasons why you are scoring low:
- Incorrect greeting
- Weak beginning
- Lack of structure in the letter
- Repetitions of the words
- Not meeting the word count
Lastly, Practice is the key to success and improvement
Practise letter writing every day when preparing for the IELTS exam. But Practice is not the only key to success. If you practise every day and do not get it checked by someone knowledgeable, it is a total waste of time. A feedback can help you improve your weaknesses and also give you tips.