How to write like an IELTS expert:
- Take the time to plan your essay.
- Identify what you should discuss from the given question.
- Write your answer clearly and concisely.
- Leave time to review and edit your answer – mistakes will cost you marks.
- Watch this video to see how an IELTS teacher writes an essay.
How to use idioms:
- Only use idioms when you are comfortable with them. Using them incorrectly will lower your Band score.
- Learn some idioms, and use them in conversation with a native English speaker. They will be able to tell you if you are using them correctly.
- But don’t memorise lots of idioms. You won’t be as comfortable using them, and the examiner will know when you use them inappropriately.
We get lots of emails every week thanking us for our articles and resources, but they normally end with things like:
I’ll never be able to write like a native speaker.
I wish I could write like you.
Tell me how to think like an examiner.
I need your brain.
I can’t give you my brain, but I can talk you through how I answer an IELTS Writing question. I decided to record my computer screen and think out loud while I wrote the answer to a Task 2 question I had never seen before. This will, hopefully, give you an insight into how I think about these questions and my various thought processes. The video is below.
I actually made a big mistake with the timing and thought I had no time left when I actually had 10 minutes to go, so the essay could be improved further, but I think that it shows just how tricky timing can be and has given me more sympathy for students.
You will also notice that I made quite a few mistakes and I went back and deleted whole sections of the essay. I think that this shows that everyone does make mistakes and how important it is to read each sentence immediately after you have written it and then review your whole essay at the end. If I had not done this, I think I would have got a pretty low mark.
So here is the video. I hope that it helps you gain an insight into how I go about answering these questions.
Please set the resolution to at least 480p to see the writing clearly. Sorry if you have a slow connection.
What did you think? Would you change anything about the essay? Will it help you improve? I would love to hear from you in the comments below.
If you would like more access to Task 2 resources, please check out our IELTS Writing Task 2 page.