A Complete Guide to IELTS General Writing Task 1

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IELTS General Writing Task 1 is one of the easiest sections for most IELTS test takers. This is because you are expected to use ready-made phrases.

Moreover, the IELTS general writing task 1 deals with formal letter writing. It consists of standard structure and phrases.

Moreover, the IELTS general writing task 1 deals with formal letter writing. It consists of standard structure and phrases.

  • Overview of IELTS General Training task 1
  • Format of General Training Task 1 Letter
  • Task 1 Scoring Criteria
  • IELTS General Writing Tips
  • IELTS Letter Writing Checklist
  • FAQ

Let’s start with what actually the IELTS general writing is?

IELTS general writing lasts for 60 minutes and consists of two writing tasks of 150 words and 250 words respectively. You have to respond to the given situation by writing a letter.

Moreover, the IELTS general writing task 1 assesses your ability to communicate about common practical issues.  Furthermore, you have to provide an essay that is relevant to the question.

Your response is worth about 30% of your writing score and is graded separately from the task 2 essay.

Based on the task given, candidates are assessed on their ability to:

  • Engage in personal correspondence
  • Elicit and provide general factual information
  • Express needs, wants, likes and dislikes
  • Express opinions (views, complaints, etc.)

IELTS General Writing Task 1

The length of this test is 20 minutes and you are expected to respond to the given question by writing a letter to a person/institution/company.

Remember, you have to write at least 150 words. 

There are two possible letters they will ask you to write:

  • A formal letter: letter to a business or a local newspaper
  • A Semi-formal letter: letter to your work colleague
  • An informal letter: letter to your family and friends

For General Training Writing Task 1, you will be asked to write a letter. The letter must be written in the correct style. Click here to learn about general IELTS test formats.

Task 1 Scoring Criteria

Understand how to attain a high score by knowing what examiners look for and how they award or deduct points.

General Writing Task 1 Scoring Criteria:

  • Task Achievement(25%)
  • Coherence and Cohesion(25%)
  • Lexical Resource(25%)
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy(25%)

Then the score for IELTS Task 1 points in all four areas divided by 4, which is your IELTS general task 1 score.

How to Crack IELTS General Writing Task 1?

To crack the IELTS general writing task 1 is a tough job as it consists of letter writing in different types. However, you have to excel in the primary concepts of the English language such as vocabulary, grammar, phrases, etc…

Additionally, follow some proven tips recommended by IELTS experts. Develop and implement these IELTS general writing tips in your IELTS exam to achieve your desired score. Moreover, they will elevate your IELTS general writing skills thus helping you attain a higher score.

Identify the letter type: This is the first step of IELTS general writing task 1. As discussed earlier, task 1 is of three types:

  • Formal
  • Semi-formal
  • Informal

Identify the purpose: It will be easy for you to identify the type and purpose of the letter given through proper practice.

Letter TypePurpose
FormalRequesting information from a company
Semi-formalAsking a professor for permission, Complaining to a landlord
InformalInviting someone you know well, Apologizing or asking for advice

Opening and Closing: Opening and clear closing is the best thing to gain the impression as well as the good band in IELTS general training writing task 1. Moreover, here are some standard forms of letter opening and closing.

Letter StyleLetter CharacteristicsOpeningClosing
FormalTo an unknown person or companyDear Sir/MadamYours Faithfully
Semi-formalTo someone you may or may not have met, whose last name you knowDear Ms. StoneYours sincerely
InformalTo someone, you know well, whose first name you know and use Dear SamBest regards

Understand and use the standard written phrases: In the letter writing, we use several standard phrases and expressions. They not only save your precious time and effort but also helps the reader to understand the meaning.

  • Please accept my sincere apologies for…
  • Could you please…
  • I am writing to find out about…
  • I look forward to meeting you…
  • I am writing to express my annoyance with…     
  • I was really sorry to hear that…
  • I was delighted to learn that…
  • I am sorry to tell you that…
  • Thank you for…
  • I am pleased to advise you that…
  • This is a result of…
  • Perhaps it would be possible to…

Write at least 150 words:  In the IELTS general writing task 1, you’ve to write at least 150 words. You will lose marks if you are unable to provide the minimum account.

Use and Spell common words correctly: Practice the correct spelling of words that most people misspell. For example, words like “faithfully’, “sincerely”, “apologize” and so on. This practice helps you boost your score.

Remember to Include the Three Bullet Points: It is essential to include the three major points in your essay:

  • Paragraph 1- Say why you are writing to them
  • Paragraph 2- Bullet point 1 and supporting details 
  • Paragraph 3- Bullet point 2 and supporting details 
  • Paragraph 4- Bullet point 3 and supporting details

Write a polite letter closing. If you exclude any of these, you’ll get a lower grade.

Break your letter: Dividing the letter into paragraphs is one of the best tips that help you score high. Usually, you need four paragraphs:

  • Introduction
  • Problem / Situation
  • Solution / Action
  • Conclusion

Read model letters: For ideas on letter writing, read the sample letters but don’t blindly memorize them. Moreover, try to get an idea of the overall flow and expressions.

Finish in time: Remember to finish task 1 in 20 minutes. Try to complete it within that and have a quick look at what you wrote.

Click Here : How to Crack IELTS Writing – Tips

IELTS Letter Writing Checklist

The checklist is the best source that assesses how effective your letter is.

Here are some questions you should ask yourself when answering any General Training task 1 question.

  • Is it a formal or informal letter?
  • Have I used appropriate language?
  • Have I read and understood the instructions?
  • Have I avoided copying the question and varied my vocabulary?
  • Are my ideas clear and easy to understand?
  • Have I made a plan?
  • Have I supported each bullet point with relevant details?
  • Have I included both the reason for writing and the 3 bullet points?
  • Have I separated my letter into paragraphs?
  • Have I checked my letter for grammar and spelling mistakes?

Hope the post is useful to you. For any assistance and information on IELTS General Writing, please do contact us at any moment.

FAQs

1. How much does the IELTS general writing task 1 worth?

Task 1 worth one-third marks of the general writing test.

2. How many types are there in general writing task1?

You just need to write a letter for task 1 in general training.

3. What are the differences between the general and academic writing task 1?

You have to write a letter in general writing task 1 whereas you have to create a report in academic writing.

4. What type of letter I might find in my GT IELTS writing test?

There are three types of letters you might encounter in your GT IELTS: Formal, Semi-Formal and Informal.

5. What is the length and duration of general writing task 1?

You have to write at least 150 words in 20 minutes.

6. How many types are there in general writing task1?

You just need to write a letter for task 1 in general training.

7. What are the differences between the general and academic writing task 1?

You have to write a letter in general writing task 1 whereas you have to create a report in academic writing.

8. What type of letter I might find in my GT IELTS writing test?

There are three types of letters you might encounter in your GT IELTS: Formal, Semi-Formal and Informal.

9. What is the length and duration of general writing task 1?

You have to write at least 150 words in 20 minutes.

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