IELTS Writing Academic Task1: Common Mistakes

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Let's look at the following paragraph. It consists of the most common mistakes, where some of them are not related to grammar.

In 1980, the US produced 131 millions of tonnes of waste. Japan was in second place with 28 millions, while the figures for Poland, Portugal and Ireland were less than 5 millions. In 1990, the US was 151, and in 2000 it rose to 192 millions.
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Mistakes:

  1. When there is a number we say "131 million tonnes". Only use "millions of tonnes" when there is no number.e.g. Millions of people travel abroad each year.
  2. Don't write "in first/second place". It's not a competition!
  3. Don't write "the US was + number"

So, here's the corrected paragraph:

In 1980, the US produced 131 million tonnes of waste. Japan produced the second largest amount, with 28 million tonnes, while the figures for Poland, Portugal and Ireland were less than 5 million. In 1990, the US created 151 million tonnes of waste, and in 2000 this rose to 192 million tonnes.

Try to avoid this mistake in writing task 1 – examiners notice it!

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