1. An overview of Writing Task 1 under the General Training module:
- Write a letter with a minimum length of 150 words in a desirable amount of time of 20 minutes.
- The contexts can be informal, semi-formal or formal.
2. A sample topic:
Your friend has to do a presentation next week. Write a letter to your friend to give him/her advice. In your letter,
- wish him/her good luck
- explain what he/she should do to improve the presentation
- explain what he/she should not do during the presentation
Write at least 150 words.
3. Important tips:
- Read the topic quickly to understand its context.
- Have a think about your ideas and story.
- Be aware of and comply with instructions: Time limit and word limit. These two limits are currently 150 words minimum and 20 minutes, respectively but they may unexpectedly change!
4. Generate ideas for your letter:
- There is no true or false idea. Be imaginative!
- Think of question-starting (WH) words such as What, Where, When, Who, Which, Whom and How. Each WH word will help you unfold a new idea.
- Imagine that you are writing an email like you do everyday.
5. Build an outline for your letter:
Spend less than 5 minutes in total to read the topic, instructions and build an outline!
• Introduction: Greetings and purpose of your letter.
• Body Contents: Answer 3 supporting questions raised in the topic. However, you do not have to strictly follow them.
• Conclusion: Call for future actions (if necessary) and good bye.
6. Useful vocabulary and grammar:
If you know their name: Dear Mr./ Ms./ Mrs. (in informal contexts, you may use their first name)
If you don’t know their name: Dear Sir/ Madam
If you email to an organization: Dear (name of the organization)
If you email to a specific department of an organization: Dear the … Department of …
Kind regards, / Best regards, / With regards,
- Other supporting structures for the conclusion:
Thank you and I look forward to hearing from you soon.
Thank you for reading this letter. Please let me know when I can call you to discuss the matter in detail.
- Linking words to connect sentences and paragraphs:
First (of all), Secondly, My third point is …
In addition to …, Furthermore, Moreover, Besides, Equally important …
- Avoid the use of direct commands and use the words Please, Kindly, Would like to, Would appreciate if often. Always maintain a friendly and polite manner.
- Don’t try to use very complicated language but diversify your vocabulary and grammar.
Please click here to see many sample IELTS Writing topics and answers.