IELTS Writing: General Training Task 1 sample

Here is an IELTS General Training Writing Task 1 practice.

The local council has decided to build a block of flats on the park opposite the place where you are living.
Write a letter to the editor of the local newspaper ;
 - Where did you hear this news and your opinion
 - The reason why you protest it
 - Make suggestions for what people can or should do to stop the development.

You should write at least 150 words.
You do NOT need to write your address or the address of the newspaper.
Start the letter as follows:

Sample answer:

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IELTS Writing: course and employment topic

A course of study that has no direct employment opportunities serves no purpose. To what extent do you agree with this statement?

Here is a model essay (Please note that this is just one example out of many possible approaches.)

For many people, the main purpose of education is to provide the necessary knowledge and training to obtain a job, yet there are also people who hold that any further education can be said to have potential in the job market. I agree with the latter opinion.

Primarily, there is the difficulty in knowing exactly which course of study would have clear employment possibilities. For those students opting to study arts subjects such as English literature, there is no direct path; potential opportunities could include becoming a librarian, author or teacher, but none of these can be said to be direct. Yet there is undeniable value in studying these subjects, as they allow for a more open-minded view of the world, an attitude which could later be useful in a business setting.

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IELTS General Training Writing Task 1

Task Achievement (answering the question) is one fourth of your total mark and it is an area in which everyone should do well in IELTS General Training Writing Task 1. This is often, however, not the case.

What you must do is to write a letter, which would fully answer the needs of the problem in a real life situation. For example, a question I have seen somewhere gives the candidate the following task:

You have some library books that you are unable to return as a member of your family in another city has fallen sick and you have had to go and look after them.
Write a letter to the library. In your letter, you should:
    – Explaining the situation. 
    – Apologize for the inconvenience called
    – And say what you are going to do.

You should write at least 150 words.

This seems a fairly typical IELTS General Training Task 1 writing question.  Answering the question in a way that will get you a good Task Fulfillment grade needs a number of things for you to do.

1) Write at least 150 words.

Writing less does not answer the question, which tells you to write at least 150 words. If you write less than 140 words, the examiner marking your paper will give you a maximum of 5 for Task Fulfilment or even less.

2) Fully do all the things that the question asks you.

In this case it asks you to do 3 main things:

  - explain the situation
  - apologize for the inconvenience
  - say what you are going to do

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IELTS Reading: few, a few, and quite a few

Many candidates sometimes misunderstand or are confused about the phrases: "few", "a few" and "quite a few"

few: a small number of; hardly any; none
a few: more than one but indefinitely small in number; some
quite a few: many

Reading the following paragraph and answer the question below.

The Royal Flying Doctor Service of Australia

Over the years, the RFDS has developed to take along medical specialists, dentists and various health related professionals. Sister Myra Blanche was the first nurse employed by the RFDS in 1945 undertaking home nursing, immunizations, advising on prevention of illnesses and, on occasion, filling in for the doctor. However, flight nurses as we know them were not used by the Service on a regular basis until the 1960s. Today, based on the judgment of the doctor authorizing the flight, up to 80% of medical evaluations are made with only the flight nurse and pilot on board.

Here is one “True / False / Not Given” question:

 - Quite a few RFDS flights today don’t even have a doctor on board.

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IELTS Listening: a Section 4 Practice

Here is a practice of IELTS Listening Section 4 - In this section you will hear an extract from a BBC television program on acid rain. 

Section 4 Questions 33 – 40

Questions 33 – 35 (You may select more than one options for each answer)
33. Which countries are affected by Britain's pollution?
34. Which country relies heavily on nuclear power?
35. Which countries use lime filtering to reduce the amount of chemical pollutant released into the atmosphere?

A.    Australia
B.    Belgium
C.    Denmark
D.    France
E.    Germany
F.    Holland
G.    Japan
H.    Sweden
I.     the USA

Questions 36 – 40 Write NO MORE THAN THREE WORDS for each answer

36. When did the fish stock there begin to decline?  __________
37. What did scientists inject into the land?   __________
38. Has the situation improved?   __________
39. How effective is the use of limestone slurry?   __________
40. What is one of the major disadvantages of using limestone slurry?   __________


34: D
35: E,G,I
Hits: when you read the questions, be careful about the singular/plural of the nouns. (Questions 33 and 35 ask you "which countries" which means your answers should be MORE THAN ONE. Question 34 asks you "which country", which means the answer is just ONE.)
36: (in) (the) 1950s  (NOT 1950)
37: lime
38: yes
39: 90% / ninety per cent (be careful, it's "pre cent", not "percent")
40: expensive


Section Four. You will hear an extract from a BBC television program on acid rain. First you have some time to look at Questions 33 to 40.

Now listen to the first part of the discussion, and answer Questions 33 to 35. 

Acid rain is a problem facing many countries at the moment, and a global solution is required. One of the most concerning elements of the problem is that it disturbs the natural balance of lakes and rivers, poisoning fish and wild lives, and it even corrodes metal and stone work. In parts of Scandinavia, thousands of lakes are so polluted that it can no longer sustain fish life. Acid rain isn't entirely a new phenomenon. It in facts started around the time of industry revolution of the 19th century, but it's getting worse. Britain contributes to the pollution problems in Denmark, Holland, Sweden, and Germany, and at present, we produce as much sulphur dioxide in the U.K. as France, Germany, Sweden, Norway, Denmark, Austria, Switzerland, Luxembourg, and the Netherlands all put together. Most of this pollution is caused by power stations, which have emerged as the result of Britain rich coal deposit. But France, on the other hand, derives three quarters of its electricity from nuclear power.

But there are things we can do to help the situation by reducing the amount of chemical pollutant we release into the atmosphere. And in Japan, Germany, and United States, power stations use a lime filtering process, which removes around 90 per cent of the sulphur emissions.

Now answer Questions 36 to 40. Write no more than Three words for each answer.

At Lock Fleets in Galloway in the south Scotland, a similar experiment is being conducted by British Coal and a number of other electricity boards. Fish stocks here began to decline in the 1950s, and within 20 years, there was no brown trout left. By injecting lime into the land around the water and neutralizing the effects of acid, scientists have created conditions in which fish can survive. This is maybe one solution, but we need to consider how to control sulphur emissions. While, one way, of course, is to scrub out the sulphur dioxide by means of lime stone slurry. Very effective, 90 per cent in fact. But it does have the disadvantage of being expensive, which will put up the cost of electricity 10 to 15 per cent, which may cause difficulties for British industry. And it has its own environmental problems because the limestone has to be dug out of the ground often in very attractive parts of the country transported to the power station. And we have eventually a large waste disposal problem. Alternatively, you can use imported low sulphur coal. We might increase the amount of natural gas we burn, or even increase the size of the nuclear power program. But there are environmental objections by many people to nuclear power.