How to structure 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?

In IELTS writing task 2, scoring 7, 8 or even 9 bands is not as difficult as it seems. The only thing you need is a clear understanding of different essay structures.

Before you begin to write, it’s important to analyse the question carefully and decide what type of essay structure you need to follow. If you don’t do this, your ideas will be disorganised and you may lose marks.

In this article, you’ll learn the most common essay question types asked in the exam and how to plan your response effectively. I’ve also added some sample answers analysed by experienced faculty to make your understanding of different essay structures easier.

Are you ready ?

Let’s dive in ….


How to structure a 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?

Understanding IELTS writing task 2

The Writing task 2 is similar for both Academic and General Training test takers. In this task, candidates will be asked to write a minimum of 250 words Essay.

IELTS writing task 2 mainly consists of:

➡️ a direct quotation based on a topic OR one or two statements given on a topic

➡️ a specific question that requires your response

➡️ the type of ideas you need to include in your response


Types of Essays in IELTS writing task 2

There are broadly FOUR different essay question types asked in the exam. Each form of question need a slightly different essay structure and so it becomes important for you to correctly identify the essay type.

Can you identify the difference in structures of different essays?

Let’s find out ..

Essay Type 1 – Opinion

The opinion-based questions usually presented in the exam as: [su_spacer]

🔘 Do you agree/disagree?

🔘 To what extent do you agree/disagree?

🔘 What is your opinion? [su_spacer]

Look at the recently asked question statement below: [su_spacer]

Some people argue that capital punishment is good for a nation.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?

Essay Type 2 – Discussion

The discussion-based questions usually presented in the exam as: [su_spacer]

🔘 Discuss both views and give your opinion?

🔘 Discuss both sides of the argument and then give your opinion?[su_spacer]

Look at the recently asked question statement below: [su_spacer]

Some people think that a sense of competition in children should be encouraged. Others believe that children must be taught to co-operate rather than compete.

Discuss both these views and give your own opinion?

Essay Type 3 – Causes/Problems & Solutions

They are also called ‘Two-part questions’ in IELTS writing task 2. These questions are usually presented in the exam as: [su_spacer]

🔘 What do you think are the reasons for this? what measures should be taken to solve this?

🔘 What are the causes for this? How we can solve this problem?

🔘 What do you think are the causes of these problems? what solutions can you suggest? [su_spacer]

Look at the recently asked question statement below: [su_spacer]

In some countries, the average weight of people is increasing and their overall health and fitness conditions are deteriorating.

What do you think care the causes for this problem? what measures can you suggest?

Essay Type 4 – Advantages & Disadvantages

The advantages/disadvantages based questions usually presented in the exam as: [su_spacer]

🔘 Discuss the advantages and disadvantages.

🔘 Do the advantages outweigh the disadvantages? [su_spacer]

Look at the recently asked question statement below: [su_spacer]

Consumer goods have become vital part of human lives.

Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of this?

Band 9 Essay Structure

The next big thing after learning about different types of essays is – How do you structure them?

Please be aware though, the perfect structure alone will not get you a band 9 magically. Your vocabulary and command over the English language still plays the role of a king in IELTS writing task 2.

But the good news is…Here we’ve outlined a simplified step-by-step method to logically present an essay and explain your ideas effectively.

Now, let’s have a look at what you need to do, step-by-step, in order to write a band 9 essay for the following essay types.

Opinion questions

Some people argue that capital punishment is good for a nation.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?
How to structure a 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?
Step-by-step structure
SAMPLE ANSWER:

Crime has become a migraine for the global society today. Hence, It is often argued that the death penalty for violent crimes benefits a country. From a personal standpoint, I completely agree with this notion and the remainder of this essay shall outline the rationale behind my position on this.

Firstly, the death punishment is an effective deterrent to serious crime. It instils fear among criminals and they tend to stay away from serious unlawful activities as a result of that. For example, people who are committing violent acts will think twice before attempting to do so. Consequently, crime rate would go down.

Secondly, capital punishment will lead criminal spending less time in prison and this would reduce the cost of imprisonment for the government substantially. For instance, If the criminal is jailed for life; the government has to bear the expenses such as cost of food, the salaries of prison guards etc. which would otherwise be saved through death sentence. Moreover, with capital punishment, the dangerous criminal would never be able to reoffend. The executed criminal will no longer be alive and therefore he will never pose a threat to society ever again. This would make the society much better and safer place to live in. The places like Dubai, for example, have much lower crime rates due to their robust criminal justice system.

In conclusion, I would like to reiterate that sentencing criminals to death is beneficial for countries. The deterrence effect, saving government exchequer and keeping dangerous criminals out of society forever; provide necessary rationale to support this argument. The time has come for the governments to act upon implementing capital punishment.

[276 words]
EXAMINER COMMENTS:

✅ The essay starts with paraphrasing the original question statement.
✅ Appropriate use of synonyms show the range and level of vocabulary.
✅ A clear position is presented from the start, supported by relevant ideas.
✅ The paragraphs are properly structured with relevant examples.
✅ There is clear progression throughout the answer, with good use of cohesive devices.

Discussion questions

Some people think that a sense of competition in children should be encouraged. Others believe that children must be taught to co-operate rather than compete.

Discuss both these views and give your own opinion?
How to structure a 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?
Step-by-step structure
SAMPLE ANSWER:

Nowadays, the purpose of education has changed. While some people argue that we should emphasise the importance of competition when teaching our children, others, however, hold the view that focusing on co-operation rather than competition is more fruitful. From my personal standpoint, it is better for children to learn the quality of cooperation. The remainder of this essay shall outline both the viewpoints including rationale behind my position on this.

It is considered by some that encouraging competitiveness among children will yield better results. The most compelling reason for supporting competition is that it prepares the children for challenges in the real life. For example, when students grow up, they need to compete with other students for taking up jobs and careers. Moreover, competition encourages children to excel in everything they do. Everyone is challenged to do their best in order to win a competition. For instance, in olympics, every participant is motivated to perform his best in the pursuit of olympic medal.

As far as others are concerned, they believe a sense of cooperation in children will prove more beneficial. A society focused solely on winning and competing disregard other traits such as compassion and generosity. In ideal society, cooperation and teamwork are often required. Take companies for example, they will only achieve their overall goal if all employees work together.

In conclusion, while both views are commonly held in the present society. I believe that cooperation is more important quality than competition. Given this situation, it is recommended that schools should develop their framework to inculcate teamwork activities in the life of a children.

[266 words]
EXAMINER COMMENTS:

✅ Good paraphrasing of the original question statement.
✅ Both viewpoints are logically explained with relevant examples.
✅ A clear position is presented in the start, supported by relevant ideas.
✅ The ideas were beautifully linked together. The whole essay felt like a really organised, cohesive piece of writing.
✅ Wide range of appropriate grammatical structures used.

Causes/Problems & Solutions questions

In some countries, the average weight of people is increasing and their overall health and fitness conditions are deteriorating.

What do you think care the causes for this problem? what measures can you suggest?
How to structure a 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?
Step-by-step structure
SAMPLE ANSWER:

Around the globe, declining health and lack of fitness becoming extremely common in current lifestyle. The problem of obesity has become a worrying trend as a result. In the following paragraphs, I will outline the causes of obesity and the measures that could be taken to alleviate this problem.

There are two principal causes of rising average weight of people. Firstly, the technological advancements have resulted in a sedentary lifestyle. This leads to people becoming overweight and hence their health and fitness gets adversely affected. The use of smartphones and computers for example, pushed people into vicious cycle of entertainment. Consequently, people feel it is no longer necessary to move around. In addition, unhealthy processed food has replaced the homemade food from our lives. Such food results in number of health problems if consumed in large quantities. For instance, junk food and processed soft drinks are the major contributors to rising obesity according to the survey conducted by U of T, Canada.

However, there are various possible courses of action to cut the Gordian knot. In the first place, the government could launch a nationwide campaign to raise awareness about the benefits of a healthy body. For example, advertisements published by the Ministry of Health regarding the detrimental impacts of Tobacco has resulted in decline of Tobacco usage across India. On the top of that, schools can prohibit unhealthy food from being sold in the premises. As a result, students will cultivate the habit of eating a more balanced and nutritional diet.

In conclusion, I would like to reiterate that although problems related to health and fitness are increasing everyday, but this situation could be addressed effectively with golden handshake of government and school authorities. There are all good reasons to believe that with mass awareness campaigns and strict regulations, the health would improve dramatically.

[307 Words]
EXAMINER COMMENTS:

✅ The range of grammatical structures is wide and adequately presented.
✅ Ideas are arranged in a coherent manner and there is a clear overall progression of ideas.
✅ Ideas are logically organised and clear progression can be seen throughout the response.
✅ There is a wide range of vocabulary with good use of less commonly used terms.
✅ Rare errors in spelling and word formation.

Advantages & Disadvantages questions

Consumer goods have become vital part of human lives.

Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of this?
How to structure a 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?
Step-by-step structure
SAMPLE ANSWER:

Nowadays, consumer goods have gained significant importance in our lives. People these days seem to be more concerned with the kind of products they own. However, This has multitude of benefits to the society but the drawbacks are no less painful. In the following paragraphs, I shall discuss both sides of this emerging trend.

One of the primary advantages of consumerism is that it boosts the economy of a nation. The rising demand of physical goods will ultimately create new jobs in the society. For instance, the Apple manufacturing facilities in China employ thousands of low-skilled or semi-skilled workers who would otherwise struggle in poverty. In addition, consumer gadgets have made doing business much easier. The availability of smartphones and computers have started the revolutionary business models such as Amazon and Flipkart which are meant to connect consumers and business alike.

However, The advent of materialism has bought with it certain downsides though. The traditional values are generally being eroded as people strive to purchase more and more things. For example, according to a recent survey by the University of Toronto, people spend 65% less time with their elders than they did just five years ago after the invent of Facebook. Above all, this desire to have more and more products on the shelves has increased debt levels in society to dangerous levels. Repayments, bank interest rates and late payment penalties altogether put inevitable stress on an individual and negatively impact his health.

In conclusion, I would like to reiterate that however, consumerism gives birth to robust economies around the world; it is also challenging the core structure of society. The time has come to understand what we are trading off for the sake of excessive consumerism.

[285 Words]
EXAMINER COMMENTS:

✅ The response fulfils the task requirements.
✅ There is a mix of sentence forms, which seems to be good usage of grammar.
✅ There is also a variety of complex structures used in the essay with frequent error-free sentences.
✅ Ideas are arranged coherently and there is a clear overall progression.
✅ The range of vocabulary is advanced and non-repetitive.

Conclusion

The essays have always troubled candidates in IELTS writing task 2 but the step-by-step structure that you just have learnt will surely help you control your nerves on the exam day.

What I’d recommend is .. practice these essay structures until they become part of your internal thought process. In this way, you can quickly produce a well structured essay in 30-35 minutes maximum. The remaining time you can use to check you writing for mistakes or errors.

I hope you find this article “How to structure a 9 band essay in IELTS writing task 2 ?” useful. If you have any doubts, please write down in the comment section below or mail us at help@cictalks.com.

Wish you best of luck in your exam.

Happy learning !!

Rajit

Rajit Kaushal is the co-founder and an active blogger at 'CIC Talks'. He is best known for his rich expertise in IELTS & Canadian Immigration🇨🇦. You can reach out to him at Instagram & Twitter.

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