The Writing paper has two tasks which must both be completed. In Task 1, test takers write at least 150 words in about 20 minutes. In Task 2 test takers write at least 250 words in about 40 minutes. Test takers will be penalised if their answer is too short or does not relate to the topic. Answers should be written in full sentences (test takers must not use notes or bullet points).
Academic and General Training test takers are given different Writing tasks.
IELTS Academic (Writing)
- Task 1: test takers describe a graph, table, chart or diagram in their own words.
- Task 2: test takers discuss a point of view, argument or problem. Depending on the task, test takers may be required to present a solution to a problem, present and justify an opinion, compare and contrast evidence, opinions and implications, and evaluate and challenge ideas, evidence or an argument.
IELTS General Training (Writing)
- Task 1: test takers write a letter in response to a given everyday situation. For example, writing to an accommodation officer about problems with your accommodation, writing to a new employer about problems managing your time, writing to a local newspaper about a plan to develop a local airport.
- Task 2: test takers write an essay about a topic of general interest. For example, whether smoking should be banned in public places; whether children’s leisure activities should be educational; how environmental problems can be solved, etc.
How IELTS Writing is Scored
IELTS Writing (Task 1 & Task 2) is marked using the following criteria. Each of the criteria is allotted 25% of the overall 100% score.