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IELTS General Writing Task 2

For IELTS General Writing task 2, you have to present your views on the topic question. There are very minor differences between the general task 2 and academic task 2. The scoring is done the same for both but the general Task 2 questions are easier and the topics are simpler.

Important Information about Task 2:

  • Writing Task 2 is worth 66% of your writing score, whereas task 1 is with 33%.

For General Task 2, your marking criteria is as follows:

    • Grammar - 25%
    • Vocabulary- 25%
    • Task response - 25%
    • Coherence & Cohesion - 25%
  • You should try to spend about 40 mins on task 2 and the minimum word count is 250.
  • The types of questions for Task 2 will require you to address the topic in various ways, whether it is discussing two contrasting views or the advantages and disadvantages of a specific topic, namely related to health, education or the environment.

Things to consider for your Task 2 essay

  • The goal of task 2 is presenting your views on the topic. You should always aim to answer the question in a logical structure, using language that easily understood and clearly expresses your views.
  • Task 2 will require that you showcase your writing skills to express both sides of an opinion.
  • You never have to persuade the reader of your opinion in task 2, but you need to be able to demonstrate both sides.
  • It is important to practice your writing before this exam, reading past essay questions can help you formulate ideas more quickly so that you don’t run out of time in your exam. 
  • It is important  to build your vocabulary for Task 2 around being able to express your opinions and points of view clearly.
  • A lot of students are worried that they won’t know enough about the topic. Most of the questions will be about general knowledge subjects and remember that the examiner is not testing your knowledge about the topic, but rather your ability to express your views about the topic.

Basic Structure to follow for your task 2 essay

  • Analyse the question

Read the question carefully and make sure that you understand exactly what is expected of you.

  • Decide your position

Decide what position you will take for this essay.

  • The Introduction

What is important in the introduction is paraphrasing the question. It is important to not copy the question directly, but to put it in your own words.

Once you have repeated the question, it is the right time to state your opinion clearly, this will give the examiner an idea of what is to come in the essay.

  • Provide examples to support your opinion 

Once you have stated your opinion, you should provide examples to support your point of view. It is important to remember that there are no right and wrong answers.

  • Provide the opposing point of view

Remember that you should also include the opposing point of view. This shows the examiner that you are able to write a balanced essay.

  • The conclusion

The conclusion will be the time for you to summarise your point of view. What is important here is to not simply repeat sentences that you have previously used in the essay, but instead try to use synonyms and try to paraphrase your writing.

 For more help with your Task 2 preparation, take a look at the following tutorials: