IELTS Writing Academic Task 2

In IELTS Academic Writing Task 2, all candidates are required to formulate and develop a position in relation to a given prompt in the form of a question or statement. Ideas should be supported by evidence, and examples may be drawn from the candidates’ own experiences. Responses must be at least 250 words in length (300 words suggested maximum). Writing task 2 accounts for 2/3 of your total writing score.

Make sure that you must spend a maximum of 40 minutes on your essay writing.

IELTS Academic Writing Task 2 Band Scores and Marking

The IELTS examiner will mark you on:

  • Task Achievement (25%)
  • Coherence and Cohesion (25%)
  • Lexical Resource (25%)
  • Grammatical Range and Accuracy (25%)

The examiner will give you a band score for each individual criterion above and then your final score for writing task 1
is the average of the 4 in the IELTS Writing test

Academic Writing Task 2 Performance descriptors

1. Task AchievementTask Response:

  • How well you answer all parts of the task
  • You must focus on key points and support every point with evidence.
  • Meet the required words count (at least 250 words)

2. Coherence and Cohesion:

  • How well-organized your writing is, how well it flows from beginning to end
  • Paragraphing and correctly use of words like “however” and “in addition” are essential. Your ideas must be clear and
    there should be a logical progression from beginning to end.
  • You can create a well-organized response for your writing by using linking words or discourse markers as below:
    – Introduction: nowadays, in recent times, generally speaking
    – For example one example of this, for instance, such as
    – And: moreover, furthermore, in addition, additionally
    – Contrast: but, in contrast, despite, yet, however, on the other hand, nevertheless
    – Purpose: to, so as to, in order to, in order that, so that.
    – Reason: because, due to, since, as, owing to
    – Result: therefore, as a result, consequently, in consequence.


3. Lexical Resource (vocabulary)

  • How varied, accurate and appropriate your use of vocabulary is (don’t repeat the words, bring academic vocabularies
    in your writing by using adjectives and adverbs )
  • Your spelling must be correct (minimize errors in spelling and word formation). Demonstrating the ability to
    paraphrase and use high-level vocab correctly is important.

4. Grammatical Range and Accuracy

  • How varied, accurate and appropriate your use of grammar is
  • Using a wide range of sentence structures will help your writing more academically (using complex sentences with
    both dependent and independent clauses). Of course, you will not get a high score if you make basic grammar errors
    (e.g. Verb endings, plurals, etc.). Have a control of using punctuation (commas, periods), understand when and how
    to use it correctly.