IELTS Essay: How to Analyse the Task

IELTS essayBefore you start planning your IELTS essay, you need to understand the task very well. Your first step is to identify how many parts it has. Usually you don’t need to count the first sentence, it only introduces the topic. The task itself will be hidden in questions that follow or in a sentence in imperative mood, e.g. “What are the reasons for this?”, “To what extent do you agree or disagree?” or “Discuss both views.”

It’s essential to understand the task correctly because you can lose points for going off-topic or for forgetting to cover some aspects of the task.

Let’s see how you need to count the number of parts.

Example 1

Although many dieticians claim that fast food is negative for health, more and more people are eating it. Why do people consume fast food? What can be done to solve this problem?

This task has two parts. You will need to write about 1) the reasons why more people are eating fast food and 2) possible solutions.

Example 2

More and more people are consuming fast food and taking less exercise. What are the reasons for this tendency and what can be done about it?

This task has four parts. You will need to write about 1) the reasons why people are eating unhealthy food; 2) the reasons why they are taking less exercise, 3) possible solutions for unhealthy nutrition problem and 4) possible solutions for the lack of exercise.

Example 3

Television has had a significant impact on people all over the world. To what extent has television positively or negatively affected people’s lives?

This task has just one part – your opinion whether the influence of television was positive or negative or both.

Example 4

In the past lectures were the best method to teach large numbers of students. Nowadays new technology is increasingly being used in teaching. What are the advantages and disadvantages of this new approach?

This task has two parts – advantages and disadvantages of using technologies for teaching.

Here is a quiz to check your understanding

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