IELTS writing task 2 structure

Overview of IELTS Task 2

IELTS writing Task 2 requires the candidates to write a composition on a specific topic. These topics are usually based on social, environmental or economic issues and concerns. These are of general nature and designed as such that the candidates need no specialized knowledge on them. The examinees are expected to produce an academic style composition, usually targeted towards educated non- specialists. In order to suit the task in the question, a certain style stared below should be followed. The question in the IELTS test will essentially follow the types below-

  • Argument
  • Cause and Effect
  • Comparison and contrast

In IELTS writing task 2, candidates are judged on their ability to

∇  Advantages Disadvantages

  • Present solutions to a problem
  • Present and justify an opinion
  • Compare and contrast evidence , opinion and implications
  • Evaluate and challenge ideas evidence or an argument.

∇  In task 2 of the writing exam, candidates are judged on-


Task response ⇒

How responses are assessed

The overall development of candidate s viewpoints-clear, relevant ,and appropriate ,supported by example.

Coherence and Cohesion

The overall clarity and fluency of the message
How well the candidates has organized and linked information and ideas

Logical sequencing and appropriate use of linking devices between and sentence

Lexical Resource

Range of vocabulary has used
How Accurate and appropriate the vocabulary is in relation to the specific task

Grammatical range and Accuracy

The range and use of grammar as seen in the candidates writing at the sentence level

Typically, the instruction read the following

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
Present a written argument or case to an educated non-specialist audience on the following topics.

‘’ The instances of part time jobs have rapidly increased in recent time. Some say that it provides student with valuable experience while others say that it derails the students from studies’’

To what extent do you agree to this statement?

You should write at least 250 words.

You should use your own ideas, Knowledge and experience and your argument with examples and relevant evidence.



Let us break down the components of the question stem-

  • Time constraint

Spend somewhere around 40 minutes to write the essay, break this time down even further like-


Brainstorming -10 minutes

Writing the essay-25 minutes

Revising -5 minutes

  • Target Audience

The target audience of the intended piece is an educated, non-specialist (of the subject matter), make sure that your writing is free of technical jargons. You may be specialist, but your audience is not .make you’re writing easily comprehendible to them.

  • The topic

See above.

  • Word Limit

You have to write at least 250 words on the topic, meaning that fewer words will be penalized. There is no maximum word limited for this task, but remember, the more you write, the more prone you are to make mistakes. Being practical try to write approximately 280 words or thereabouts.

  • Requirements

The topic requires that your argue either in favour of or against the proposition that part time jobs are good or bad you should provide relevant, preferably your own experience as example in favour of your chosen stance. Do not get confused with this thing .They require your own experience and you can always frame up a relevant experience as being yours.

Understanding the essay and its components

Let us first take an insight into the structure of writing test 2.The suggested format of the task will include an introduction ,a body consisting of three paragraph and a conclusion we will take a look at the topic and the concept of thesis.

The topic

The compositions for writing task any other composition include a topic that contains everything required to elaborate and explain, normally the topic is provided in the following format.

You should spend about 40 minutes on this task.
Present a written argument or case to an educated non-specialist audience on the following topic:


‘’ The instances of part time jobs have rapidly increased in recent time. Some say that it provides student with valuable experience while others say that it derails the students from studies’’


To what extent do you agree to this statement?


You should write at least 250 words.

You should use your own ideas, knowledge and experience and support you argument with examples and relevant evidence.



If you have a close look at the topic , you would see that it contains everything that needs to be explained. It includes the suggested time limit, the target reader of the composition, the topic itself, word limit and other requirements of the task .but the most important part of it is the bold italicized part, the topic itself. Everything else is secondary, and the topic is of primary importance.

The Thesis

Actually the reaction of the examinees to the topic is the thesis. Take the topic provided abodes as an exemplary one. The topic states that part time jobs have increased in recent time. It state that although there are good sides to part time jobs there are also its problems. The immediate following sentence asks if the examinee agrees or disagree to this proposition .When the examinee decides in favour of going either for or against the preposition, it turn into a thesis.

On the basis of this identified thesis the examinee has to design his or her composition. After the thesis is formed the student should start finding out what he or she would write to support the chosen stance. Now, let us take a look at the formal structure of the composition.


The introduction of any essay, or composition as we say is the brief overview of the topic state. It can include the definition of the subject, or what the topic actually means. Remember, the introduction is followed by mean writing. Hence, it is quite necessary to provide a clear picture of what you are going to write in the upcoming phases. A good introduction can take long way in achieving good marks in the writing task because if it is catchy, it will create a favorable first impression of from the examiners side. You can always provide relevant examples or anecdotes (a short and relevant story) .But if you are not good at providing any such thing go for what the topic defines and mention what you are going to write next. This lead us to the concept of the thesis statement


A thesis statement is probably the most important part of an introductory paragraph. As we mentioned earlier your introduction should give a clear picture of what you are going to write next. The thesis statement incorporates all the ideas, or points that are going to form the body of your composition is one sentence. Thesis statement is a proposition of a subject to be described, scenario to be narrated and an opinion to be supported. It necessarily evolves from a point of description / argument embedded within the topic statement in the questions paper. The concept of thesis statement will be elaborated later.


Once the introduction is formed well, the rest of the writing becomes a lot easier. The part that follows the introduction is the body of the composition. The body should consist of some three paragraphs, all having separate themes. Every sentence in particular paragraphs must be directly related to its individual theme. Hence during the period of brainstorming, students should find out at three points. Basing on which the body will be formed .As we explain earlier, the thesis statement must comprise of all the points that form the body. All these things must be kept in mind while designing the body of composition. Each of the body paragraphs consists of several sentences that are arranged in a logical way to strengthen and develop a main idea. Try to develop each paragraph adequately. This may be done through the use of examples, explanations details ,logical references and making comparisons or contrast.

The body is the most important of all the parts of the essay. The actual finding and thoughts general by you are elaborated in the body of the composition. So in order to design a good body part , every single preceding process starting from brainstorming to writing the introduction and forming the thesis statement should be done with intense care and thought. Being able to do so will certainly add much value to the quality of your composition.

Structuring the body

The whole body in our opinion should consist of three four paragraphs, with all individual paragraph are separate and individual themes. Consider the example provided in the introduction. The topic was, The instances of part time jobs have rapidly increased in recent times. Some say that it provides students with valuable experience while others say that it details the students from studies. To what extent do you agree to this statement? Now let us consider an examinee who agrees to this proposition, which means that he is in favour of part-time his order to strengthen his arguments he may think of the following three points, Part –time jobs allow the person to obtain valuable work experiences which are excellent for a resume, they may provide constructive use of free time. So this person has to prepare three separate paragraphs basing on the stated three findings. Each paragraph should elaborate one sub- topic, which would be strengthened further by relevant logics. Same would be the case for examinees writing against the proposition.

Never undermine the importance of putting examples to strengthen your logics and argument. A relevant example is a lot better in clarifying your point of view rather than several pages of theoretical explanation .Nothing else can satisfy the clarification purpose better than examples. So, whenever you write a body paragraph, try to at least one relevant example, either real life or hypothetical of a part times job that you did how it helped you in your own life.


Some may argue regarding the number of body paragraph. In many cases, students are unable to write three body paragraphs because of fewer findings and in some cases, three paragraphs are seemed less in number. Our logic for three paragraphs is in order to comply with the time constraint and limits of the composition,

Three well written body paragraphs should go a lot further than poorly written thirty. Moreover, three body paragraphs can be deemed as quite standard in terms of IELTS. Then again students very in terms of understanding and thought generation; so, do not consider the three paragraph thing as any concrete guideline, rather it is just an instruction.


After the body comes the conclusion the main purpose, which is to sum up the whole piece of writing .Make sure that you include no new points in the conclusion, because ,as we mentioned in the previous sentence, When you are writing a conclusion ,You are just summing up whatever was written earlier . Now if you think that summing up the previous points is merely copying them and posting in the conclusion, you are horribly mistaken. You would sum up the earlier writing for sure, but this has done with good care. Bo not use the exact sentence that you use before rather rephrases them in an appropriate manner so that the structure and formation of the sentence appear different.

Often we make mistake while designing the conclusion. One of those happens because of our failure to maintain close collaboration writing .This is largely due to mistakenly introducing newer points that were not explained in the earlier phases, i.e.-body of the composition. So inculcation of new points or ideas is strictly prohibited in the conclusion. Moreover always make sure to include your justified viewpoints, if there is any in the conclusion. For example if you are against part time jobs and believe they do us more harm than good make sure to include this stance in the last paragraph .otherwise the writing will not be deemed as complete . A good conclusion serves several purposes. It indicates-

  • The end of your essay
  • Summarizes your final thoughts and assessments on the essay topic
  • Weighs up the points in the essay and strengthens the thesis statement.

The examinees first and foremost should identify of the point of argument /description /narration with respect to the nature of topic. We interchangeably refer to the point of argument/description /narration as the point. with focal point, we mean the center or main idea of the topic. Remember, the whole composition has to be driven along the focal point, and if you fail to isolate or identify the focal point, the whole writing would possibly go off –track. Often the examinees fail to identify and focus on this thing and consequently, Write a piece that revolves nowhere near around the required point. Take a look the following examples