IELTS Writing: the Topic and the Topic Question


It is important to know precisely what the topic is, and what the question is concerning that topic.

Look at following IELTS writing topics

1. Studying the English language in an English-speaking country is the best but not the only way to learn the language. Do you agree or disagree with this statement?
2. The world is experiencing a dramatic increase in population. This is causing problems not only for poor, undeveloped countries, but also for industrialised and developing nations. Describe some of the problems that overpopulation causes, and suggest at least one possible solution.

The first one is “studying the English language in an English-speaking country”. The question asks you to consider the alternative: studying English in a non-English-speaking country. I would recommend you compare the advantages and disadvantages of both ways, otherwise it may most likely mean a lower score.

The topic in the second one is “overpopulation”. If you wrote at length about overpopulation not being a problem, it would be irrelevant. In addition, you would score less if you failed to offer a solution.

7 Comments IELTS Writing: the Topic and the Topic Question

  1. bohang yang

    Hi, Jeffery
    it’s me again. thanks for you patience for such a annoying student

    I came across a question: some people believe that individuals can not improve environment, but only governments and big companies can make a difference. To what extend do you agree or disagree.

    in my opinion I think I can give a balanced idea: I disagree that the individual could not make any changes for the environment, and I do believe that governments and organizations should assume responsibilities to improve our surroundings.

    Am I right???

    1. Jeffrey

      yes, by saying “disagree”, then you could discuss both individuals and governments/companies could make contributions to the environment.

  2. bohang yang

    Hi, Jeffery.
    I came across with one phrase: ” manage to” in one piece of reading in ielts9. I know it means that you put an effort in order to achieve something. what I want to ask is “manage to do something.” means that if the people actually achieved the goal or not.I was bit confusing about the ielts test2 question 23 which is related to my question.

    1. Jeffrey

      This expression – manage to, which many of my students misunderstand. This is used when talking about something we are able to do successfully, but that was not easy to do. For example:

      I woke up late this morning, but I managed to get to work on time.

      My team had to work overtime, but we managed to meet our deadline.

      So in all of these examples, those people are successful, but when they say “manage to”, they are stressing the fact that it was difficult to accomplish.

  3. Kyle

    Great article and good info on writing. Ill look forward to reading more of your stuff in the future.

  4. Rose

    This is the best free ielts webinar for Chinese candidates. Thank you for your contribution Jeffery.
    However the format of these 51ielts web pages are too difficult for iPad users. It is impossible to make the content bigger directly just by two fingers’ simple movement.
    Love this website!

    1. Jeffrey

      thanks for visiting my blog. Currently, i can’t fix that problem, but anyway, it’s good to know.


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