IELTS Writing Tips: 10 Sentences to Avoid

Below are some common sentences and phrases to avoid in IELTS writing task 2. These sentences have been overused in IELTS essay writing or are considered to be learned expressions which are not accepted by the examiner.

IELTS writing task 2 is an academic essay but it is also a test of your English language. You can’t cheat by learning sentences and writing them in your essay. The examiner is trained to spot sentences which are not typical of your level of English.

Phrases to Avoid in your IELTS Essay


This essay will discuss both sides and give an opinion at the end.

This sentence is poor because it is used for the thesis statement but contains no main points. It is a memorised sentence of 15 words. It only repeats the instructions but adds no information to the essay. Try to avoid using such sentences and just present your answer clearly. Another similar sentence is “I shall put forth my arguments to support my views in the following paragraphs” which should also be avoided. Don’t forget that while these sentences might be fine for a usual academic essay, they are not appropriate for an English language test.


With the development of science and modern technology…

Many students use this expression to start their essay. It is only suitable to use if the essay is about science and technology. It is overused and confusing for the reader if the topic is not science or technology. You don’t need any expression to start your introduction, just paraphrase the essay question directly. Learn how to write an introduction for writing task 2.


In the modern era, … / Since the dawn of time ….

This is overused in introductions. Most essay questions are about current issues so you don’t need to put in a time frame unless it is about an issue in the past compared to the present. “Since the dawn of time…” is not a relevant statement for most IELTS issues and should be avoided. Some students also use “Nowadays” to start their essay. Again this is overused. Try to avoid these phrases and just paraphrase the information given by IELTS.


This is a highly controversial issue. 

Most essay questions in IELTS are not controversial. Controversial means that it is deeply debated and causes strong feeling, for example “the death penalty” which results in a person’s death is controversial but “watching sport on TV or playing it” is not controversial. 99% of all essay questions in IELTS will not be controversial so don’t use this phrase. Also be careful writing “highly debatable” as this is also overused.


The crux of the discussion is …

This is a sentence which is used too often. It would be better to write “The most important aspect…” or “One of the key issues is…” as they are more natural to use in writing.


For example, a recent study from the IMF showed that… / Research indicates that…

The examples you give in IELTS writing task 2 do not need to come from published sources or known research. They can just be an example of a situation: “For instance, the majority of working people do not …” Avoid learning opening phrases to common sentences.


It can broaden a person’s horizons. 

I have seen this written in so many essays and so have examiners. It would be better to write about “learning more”, “opening their mind to something” or “developing deeper understanding of something”. Don’t learn sentences, just write naturally.


There are good grounds to argue in favour of… / It cannot be denied that…

This is another example of a learned phrase to avoid. It would be better to write more naturally “One reason that X is important / crucial …”. Using more natural language avoids the examiner thinking you are memorising phrases. Also the phrase “it cannot be denied” is very much overused and mostly used incorrectly. “It cannot be denied” means it is 100% fact but most essay contain opinions which are not fact. Therefore, avoid this phrase.


In a nutshell, …

Many students use this idiom to start their conclusion. It is informal and not appriopriate to use in IELTS essay writing. To learn how you can start your conclusion, follow the link.


… the aforementioned arguments offer insights into vindications for the impression that…

This is a typical sentence that should be avoided in a conclusion. You only need to restate the main points clearly without using learned phrases.

To see some more phrases that should be avoided, see Chris Green’s IELTS website.

If you would like to add any sentences to the list above, please post them in the comments box below.

Other Useful Pages for IELTS Writing

Main IELTS Pages

Develop your IELTS skills with tips, lessons, free videos and more.


  1. Hey Liz, I wanted to know if using ‘while’ at the beginning of my task 2 introduction will be judged negatively? I am completely in control of using the structure that follows, but I was not sure if it is the right thing to do.

    • There are no rules about using one particular word in IELTS. Such rules can’t exist. It is about if it is the right word to use given the meaning and context.

  2. Hi liz,
    i just want to know when will your grammer book is ready?please advise me how can i develop my ideas?

    • My Grammar E-book will be ready either late April or early May. I’ll email a post to subscribers when it’ready with a discount for the first week. For Ideas for Topics, see my Ideas for Essay Topics E-book which you can find in my online store:

      • Adam Ren says

        Dear Liz, I have really benefited a lot from you by viewing your webpages.

        Can I ask you a question? Is it true that in WT2, we should not or at least avoid using first person pronouns “we” and “our”. I know “I ” is an exception because we need it for personal opinion if the question asks for that.

        • There is no such rule. It is a recommendation. However, for topics such as space exploration or the pollution of this planet, it might be suitable to use “we” or “our”, such as “our planet”. However, those pronouns are mostly not needed.

    • Please I need your advice
      You mentioned not to use nowadays to start the essay
      But if the Question had today how to paraphrase
      Is this correct grammatically
      Nowadays , many countries prioritize education of young people.

      • It is not necessary to paraphrase “today”. When you use the present simple, it is already “today”. Paraphrasing is not about word for word changes. It is about meaning in general.

  3. Thanks liz , I’m waiting for your Ebook. I want to learn more and improve my vocabulary too . Godbless you liz

  4. How do we know that “his/her” is not correct as in “Taking as an example a politician running for election and having a worthwhile platform for his/her country”? Should we say “their”, or just “his” or just “her”?

    (comment is re your reply to Shailesh, January 9, 2019)

    Thank you!

    • IT is not grammatically correct to use a forward slash in an IELTS essay in that way. At least, you should use clear linking words “his or her”. But it is better to use “their”.

    • Hello , thank you for your interesting content , I am a beginner and I have a lot of problems when using ” the” especially in a complex sentence for example : I went to the mall to shop the brand new Iphone and the salesperson helped me a lot with the choice of the memory capacity , the color and the Size .
      By doing a self evaluation , I found a lot of repitition of the word “the” , and it is not a sentence written with a good style , can you give me your advice to change my style in a way that prevent the repitition of the word “the”

      • In this case, the problem is not the repetition of “the”. The problem is that you didn’t need “the” at all. “..helped me a lot with the choice of memory capacity, colour and size”. So, the problem here is that you need to learn more about using “the”. You can google this or you can wait for my e-book about grammar which will be released in a few months. But in essence, “the” is used to refer to something specific – one particular colour (the colour = blue). If you are referring to colours in general, you do not use an article at all – you use “zero article”. Your other mistake is “I went to the small to buy a brand new iphone” – you are referring to one and not a specific one. At the time, you didn’t know which one you wanted to buy – it was not specific = “a”. I hope this helps. Make sure you get my Grammar E-book when it comes out 🙂

  5. Uttej Reddy says

    Hi Liz,
    Hope you are doing well!

    After paraphrasing the given topic, Can I use the below sentences?
    “I strongly concur with the above mentioned topic. The essay will discuss the rationale behind my agreement elucidating with illustrations.”

    Your response is highly appreciated. Thanks.


  6. Md. Razib Khan says

    Is it allowed to write “&” instead of “and”.

  7. War Dawnie says

    Why there’s very few lesson for GT Writting Task 2?

    • There are lots of lessons for GT writing task 2. ALL my writing task 2 lessons are got both GT and Academic task 2 – there’s no difference!! This is explained in the main writing task 2 section of this site.

  8. Hello Liz ! I hope you are doing good .

    You have said that we should avoid using phrases in our introductions using phrases like ” this essay will discuss ”
    what if the essay is an essay type that doesn’t ask for an when I cant use ” I ” , for example a discussion essay or advantages disadvantages essay .
    after paraphrasing the question I normally write this essay will discuss a and b

    if this is incorrect what is the correct way ?

  9. manjit singh sandhu says

    thank you so much, mam, for enlighting me on how to write properly in IELTS essay. I finally had found my mistakes during the previous exam I did and I got only 5.5 bands.

  10. Dear Liz, It’s still a little confusing to me about learned/memorised phrases. We’re not native speakers, and so we are unable to invent phrases ourselves. Sometimes, we must read sample essays and note down some of the phrases that we think are the best. Is that called memorizing?

    Another question is it is said that we are not advised to use NOWADAYS, MORE AND MORE, or WITH THE DEVELOPMENT OF sth. However, these words/phrases are usually used in the essay topics. Why is that?

    • Learn words, learn grammar and then put your words and grammar into a sentence that you made. If you learned it from a website to try to boost your score, such as “in the era of the modern world” this is obviously something you memorised because you think it sounds good. It is also something that lots of other low level students will use to try to impress the examiner. So, ask yourself – am I using this phrase to boost my score – will other students use the same phrase to boost their score – did I learn it on purpose to boost my score? If the answer is “no” to all those, then you can safely express yourself. Why would you start your essay “Nowadays, more and more…” – of course lots of low level students will start their essay that way – so why would you choose to do the same? Why write something that doesn’t help your score. So, my point is – think before you write!!!

      • But i can see nowadays or more and more in the questions of writing task 2. Why is that? Does it mean that the examiners want to make candidates easily understand the question? Dont the examiners want students to repeat what they usually use in the topic questions?

        • Surely you have the ability to paraphrase: more and more = increasingly. If they use one, you use the other. Show the ability to paraphrase when appropriate and when possible.

  11. Hi,
    In the section where you discuss about 10 sentences not to use, in sentence No. 2 in the listing ,You wrote ” just paragraph it …” I assume you mean “Just paraphrase it…” , isn’t it ?

  12. Hi Liz, One of the common questions that come up expects one to give advantages and disadvantages of a Topic. How am I suppose to paraphase the word “Advantage and Disadvantage”without using memorized words? I initially thought Pros and Cons is suitable till i read it was Informal and that is what readily comes to mind. As a matter of fact I have a few Synonyms I can use depending on context; for example, Merit,demerit, benefit,drawback and so forth. However i am not sure if it will be categorized as memorized. Thank you and continue the wonderful work.

    • I think you are confusing memorised words and memorised phrases. A phrase or a sentences means you are memorising both grammar and a collection of words linked together. That should not be done in IELTS. Each sentence should be uniquely created by yourself. Learning individual words and connective devices is normal and accepted. Try to understand the difference between learning a language and memorising other people’s sentences.

  13. Dear Liz,

    While writing a letter to your manager for some request, for example asking for leave to do some course or something similar, is it fine to start with ” Hope you are doing good” OR “I trust this find you well.”

    Thanks for letting me know.

    • “Hope you are doing good” is 100% informal. If you write “I trust this finds you well” it is inappropriate for work.

  14. Samiksha pandey says

    Hi liz,

    Instead of in the modern era, could we use in this contemporary lifestyle?

    • This whole page is about avoiding memorising phrases. Don’t do it! You can learn linking words and vocabulary, but not memorise sentences. Only low level students do that because they are worried about the level of their English and are trying to find ways to push their score up – it doesn’t work. The example you have given is a perfect example of what to avoid in IELTS.

  15. Hi Liz,
    Thank you for your wonderful work!
    I have two questions.
    Q1. In my two attempts at the test, I got an 8 and then a 7 in the writing section, in that order. Both times, my essays were equally good (as I would like to believe!). I went through the scoring guide, but there is no objective difference in score 7 vs score 8, which makes me think that there is some subjectivity. If that is true, how exactly do I know where I am going wrong?
    Q2. My writing tends to be academic, owing to my heavy graduate school work. Is that something that is negatively perceived while grading?
    Thanks a lot!

    • 1. You are not a trained examiner. You have seen the public band descriptors. The examiner has more information. There is a distinct difference between band 7 and 8. Again, I need to stress, you are not trained to assess language or to assess IELTS skills. I can’t elaborate more in a short typed message. Did you get my Advanced Writing Task 2 lessons?
      2. If you are using learned academic phrases, it won’t help your score. Each sentence must be unique to yourself. This isn’t an academic essay – it an IELTS essay with very specific requirements you need to fulfil.

  16. Deepti Taiwade says

    Hi Liz,

    Twice, I had written the IELTS exam and got a 6.5 band. Was wondering where am I losing the marks? This time I had maintained the coherence, gave a good intro and conclusion, despite that I have scored so low. I had used a few lines like “in my opinion, the advantage of sending young ones to nursery should outweigh the disadvantage of keeping them at home. One should weigh the pros and cons before choosing.” “With the advent of urbanization, most of the working parents leave their kids at the nursery before primary schools. “Seeking your help!

    • “pros and cons” = informal and not appropriate for formal essay writing.
      “kids” = informal and not appropriate for formal writing.
      “with the advent of urbanisation” = learned phrase – avoid using them
      “young ones” = inappropriate paraphrase for the word “children”.
      You need to be more careful of your language to avoid errors which lower your score.
      I suggest you get my Advanced Writing Task 2 Lessons to learn the right techniques and format:

  17. Kulwant Kaur says

    Hello Ma’am,
    My question is- can we use two-three different TENSES in our essay. For example- Present Indefinite and Present Continous and Present Perfect tense, in one essay?
    Kindly reply
    Kind Regards

  18. Sukhbir singh says

    Hello Mam,
    I’m confussed that can i write ( Hammering the last nail ) in place of ( In conclussion )
    And can i also add this line in intoduction that ( I am in total assent with the given statement and i will shed some light on both views in the aegis following OR i am in consummate accrod with the statement and multifarous points are in the aegis following )
    Please help me and give me some line because my exam is near and i don’t want to waste my money like earlier .

    • This whole page explains that you can’t memorise sentences or phrases to boost your score. The examiner will know – it is a form of cheating. Each sentence MUST be uniquely created by yourself.

  19. Is it correct to use , “Apropos of this statement, I am in consummate accord to it. “?. Please suggest.

    Thank you in advance.

    • Do not memorise phrases or sentences. Each sentence must be unique to yourself. IELTS is testing your own language, not your ability to memorise phrases or sentences.

  20. My question is about starting the introduction with words like Nowadays….

    I have seen this in model essay written by British Council examiners in IELTS book 7.

    Is that correct to start the essay ( Task 2) with a general word.

  21. What happened if we use memorized sentence? I mean how will it effect our score?

  22. Mohammed Faki says

    Hi Liz ! thanks for your very helpful lessons . i am askinn about the use of Scientic vocabulary in Academic essays . Specifically , some words that’s difficult to be recognized by person who is out side the exact profession . Speaking about my self , i am a doctor . to what extent i can use medical terminologies ?

    • If you try to bend the topic in order to use medical terminology, you wouldn’t get a good score for vocabulary. It is very easy for the examiner to see when a student is trying to do this. All vocabulary should be relevant to the topic given – medical terminology or scientific language is not often needed. You need to show a broader range rather than depending on your own subject matter. For the topic of health, you could certainly mention high blood pressure or cholesterol or even certain types of diabetes – but that’s all. Going further than that will not help you.

  23. Hello Liz, my exam was a week ago and I’m hoping for a very good result. Thanks to your website and YouTube channel. I would like to know why the exam body needs to know the candidates first language. A lot of people in my exam centre chose English, I chose my native language. Is there any implication?

  24. Hey Liz,
    Firstly thank you for your online lessons. They have been very useful to me. You are doing a wonderful job!

    Also I had a query to ask,
    Can I use famous proverbs or quotes in my IELTS academic Essays??
    If yes then where would you recommend me to use them in the essay??

    Thank you…

  25. Parminder kaur says

    Hi liz,
    Can i use contractions in general writing task1 if it is informal?

  26. Agboola Taofeek Olayinka says

    Hello Liz.

    Please can i start my conclusion like this?

    In summary, arguably as listed/mentioned/spelt above …

    • Don’t learn expressions !!! You can learn a linking word “In conclusion” but not more. All words that follow must be unique to yourself and not copied from a book.

      • How does the examiner determine whether the expression was ‘learned from a book’ or ‘unique to the candidate’? I mean, it is quite likely that some phrases that seeped deep into a candidate’s mind naturally come up in his/her writing. Am I looking at it correctly?

        • The examiner will know because the sentence you use is band 9 and the rest of your essay is band 6.5. Some people also try to learn an expression but then make a mistake with it – that shows the examiner the candidate is not the level to use it. So, it’s very easy for the examiner to know. One tip for you, don’t use “his/her” in your writing.

  27. Hi Liz, I am bothered by my teacher’s claim that INVERSION is considered informal and should not be used in IELTS writing but only in speaking. Is it right?
    Example: Hardly had the president entered the room when his supporters screamed.

    • The speaking test is informal and the writing test is formal. The type of grammar you use will depend on what you are trying to say and the ideas you have. You will be marked on your selection of the right grammar forms in the right context. It is not so simple as “use X in writing and Y in speaking”.

      • Thank you for the response Liz.
        Is it okay then to use inversion in my writing task as long as my usage is in proper context?

        • If it is appropriate, then it’s fine. However, writing task 2 is formal. This means it is not descriptive so the changes of using it are not always there. Don’t try to use tenses because you want to boost your score. That is the biggest mistake students make. Having a normal range is fine. The key to a higher score is less mistakes – so never take chances and aim for accuracy.

          • Oh, Okay. Thank you so much for the tip. I truly appreciate it and will do my best to improve my writing.

            (Somehow, I felt relieved.)

            • Students spend too much time thinking of which tenses to use and what words to use. You can’t plan this. You need to review all topics for vocab and all grammar tenses and structures for flexibility. When you enter the exam, everything is fresh in your mind and you make choices depending on the topic and context. It’s better to review English and develop exam skills – rather than memorising sentences.

  28. Hello Liz.
    Could we use In a nutshell in Writing Task1

  29. Hi Liz,

    I have been going through your lectures and find it very helpful.

    I have a question about use of On one hand?
    Is the below sentence appropriate :

    On one hand, museums are source of entertainment to few; while for others, they are knowledge amplifiers.

    Please, advise. I am trying for 7+ bands in writing

    • There are so many mistakes in this sentence. Linking words are not your only problem – you make frequent grammar and vocabulary mistakes as well. If you continue to write in a style that is above your level of English, your score will be a lot lower than band 7.

      • Thanks Liz, I completely understand what you mean.
        In my earlier attempt I scored 7 in writing, where I wrote simple sentences but unfortunately I scored low in reading that time.
        Now, I am scoring 7+ in all other parameters but low on writing. I believe because I am trying to make it complex.
        Thank you for your guidance.

        • People think that sentences need to be complex and for this reason they create really long sentences which actually sho poor control of English. In IELTS, “a complex sentence” is any sentence that is not simple. So, just aim to add one clause to your sentence and that’s all. For example, “Most people prefer working from home because it is more flexible for them.” That is a pretty easy sentence to write and it’s complex (according to IELTS marking). Another example, “More people are buying cheap air flights which is one of the main causes of air pollution.” Again this is easy to create and is enough for band 7 or more.
          Also keep your ideas simple. You don’t get a higher score for complex ideas. You get a higher score for relevant ideas. So, choose your ideas carefully and plan how to explain them.
          I hope this helps 🙂

          • Thank you so much for your valuable feedback. I will surely follow the tips.

            Really glad you put so much efforts for each individual.

  30. Hi Liz…

    I was practicing task 2 essay and feel fine with it….until I saw this article. If I begin with :
    “Living in the era where advanced technology play significant role in the world, computers are expected to shift people’s role in various job field.”
    as the FIRST sentence (it still less than 50 words in total with thesis statement combined), is it still considered to be overused/expression as per you said in point number 2 and 3?


  31. Hi Liz,
    I’ve been learning a lot from your website and I really thank you for that. I have a few questions about Writing Part 2 though.

    1. Some IELTS websites advise test takers to write complex sentences to achieve higher band scores. In some others we are told to use simple sentences that are easy to be understood. Since I do need quite a high score (7+) for Writing, what would you suggest? I’d like to go with simple sentences but at the same time concerned I might end up with a low band score.

    2. For the question
    ” Improved medical care has proven to provide a lot of benefits, one of them is longer life expectancy. Do you think the advantages outweigh the disadvantages?”

    How do I know if I should write about the advantages of improved medical care OR longer life expectancy?

    Thank you in advance 🙂

    • The aim of writing is to avoid errors in grammar and vocabulary. All errors will lower your score. Yes, you need complex sentences to hit band 7 but you also need to reduce errors to hit band 7. So, if your English isn’t strong, don’t attempt complex sentences.

      • I see. I’ll make sure to do a lot more practise tests to understand that.

        Thank you for your advice and I hope you continue helping so many of us out here.

  32. Hello Liz
    “Apropos of this statement, I am in consummate discord/accord with it”
    Is it correct or suitable to use this sentence in essay?

  33. Hey Liz,

    We were taught about using ” this essay will discuss both sides and give an opinion on this matter”. I just found that its not good to use as a thesis statement. Can you pls give me an example of how to present this kind of thesis statement in my own original way. Thanks a lot for your help Liz.

  34. Dear Liz, I see that ‘controversial’ should be avoided in IELTS essay,can I write’…remains a issue that people have mixed feelings about’ . I’ll be so happy to receive your reply and it will help me a lot!

    • The word “controversial” is fine to use when the issue truly is controversial, such as abortion or the death penalty. However, the majority of IELTS writing task 2 and speaking topics are not controversial. This is about using vocabulary appropriately and avoiding learning phrases.

  35. hello Liz, i am preparing for the ielts test in september.i have a doubt regarding conclusion linking word can we use-“That being said”

  36. Hi Liz
    Can you tell me how many paragraphs should be there in WT2.

  37. Hi
    Dear Liz
    Thank you so much for sharing such a wonderful post, does this rule applies to the General writing as well? Thanks for your valuable advice.

  38. Hi Liz,
    my compliments for your site!
    I wold like to have your advice if words like “having in consideration… or bringing up children… ”
    to start an introduction can be effective?
    Thank you very much!

  39. hi liz,(from the dawn of civilization the issue matter of…….)i can start introduction use this sentence
    agree and disagree essay

  40. Does this mean that IELTS examiners are, to some extent, giving different marks on how often they see particular expressions/vocabularies rather than purely considering 4 criteria (Cohesion/Task Response/Grammar/Vocabulary)?

    To me, it is more straight forward and fair, that no matter how often they see a particular expression, this does not affect the score negatively as long as the essay satisfy above 4 aspects….
    but I am bit confused if this is the case that examiner marks in a manner that changes upon just how frequently he/she sees the expression on even other examinees’ essays….just my thought.

    Thank you for your helpful materials!

    • The reason for this problem is because people memorise particular phrases to use to increase their score. You are marked on your ability to adapt sentences and phrases to the particular task and issue, not memorise generalised phrases to get a higher score. One phrase suits all issues isn’t going to work in a language test. Another problem is that students think if they learn a particular phrase this will give them a chance for a higher score. The aim of this lesson and advice is not to rely on learned phrases to boost your score.

  41. Hi Liz,
    Can I still use the word ‘nowaday’ when paraphrasing the essay question, says ‘in recent years’?

    • The word is “nowadays” with an “s” and it is one of the most overused words to start an introduction, particularly for Vietnamese students. Try to avoid it.

  42. Hong Nghia says

    Good afternoon teacher ! Please teach me how to paraphrase the Question from Ietls topics , i try to learn from many websites but it doesnt work at all. When i got the new topic from my tutor , i can not write even 1 word. I have nothing in my mind.

    • Part of your IELTS preparation is developing ideas for topics. This is something you do for yourself. You can google ideas and visit debate websites as well as read model essays online to use their ideas (not their sentences, just the ideas). See this page about writing an introduction:

  43. Richa Bhardwaj says

    Hi liz,

    I am really confused about using contraction in writing test in ielts or not.Its clear from your videos that we got high band if we use contractions in speaking, but waht about writing ?
    For example, should we use I’m, I ‘d, can’t , don’t, i’ll or these are not expected while writing for ielts test.

    Best Regards

    • Contractions are informal so you can’t use them in writing. Unless you are doing GT test and you get an informal letter for task 1.

      • Loreto Kröyer says

        Hi Liz,

        Is it possible to use contractions in the Speaking test?


        • Yes, of course. IELTS speaking is informal and contracts are a great pronunciation features that will help your score.

  44. Rabia Fazal says

    Hi Liz, your website is great. I have my IELTS exam on 25th Feb(day after tomorrow). I feel like I am not well prepared, but I am still hoping for the best!
    I have been following your website for about a week now and it has really helped me a lot to understand the tricks and techniques for IELTS. However, I feel sometimesit is really diffcult to find an information. It would be great if the links were more organized and categorized. Hope you don’t mind. This is just a constructive criticisim.

  45. Hello Liz,
    I wanted to ask about the idioms. In 1 of your lessons, u say that idioms are not suitable to use in writing. why is that? what if i use an idiom (a common 1) to increase the word count. Will i be penalized for that?
    Thank You

    • Idioms are informal and not suitable for writing task 2. So, yes, it would lower your score to use inappropriate language. However, you can use some idiomatic language such as “key to …”

  46. Hello Liz! First of all, I’d like to thank you for everything you do! Your site is real treasure for everyone who prepares for IELTS. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!
    I wanted to ask you, in order to get high score on writing, what kind of sentences should i use in Writing Task 2. You said complex sentences, passive voice…and what else? Should i use conditionals? Thanks in advance. Look forward

  47. How can i improve my grammer?I m really really struggling with it. Pleaseguide me. I have checked my essay with some tutors. I am cosulting different website. But still problem

    • Problems with grammar relate to English, not to IELTS. You need to find an English language teacher who can help you improve your English.

  48. Hi Liza
    your teaching in this website is very useful.
    Thank you very much
    I am struggling to get 7 in Writing, so I thought and planed to use a prepared structure.
    my spellings are the worst.
    Can you please give your thoughts on that?

    thanks very much again


  49. Santosh Wasti says

    Hi Mam,
    My concern to you is while writing conclusion in Academic writing Task 2,is it useful to say,”From aforementioned cases and argument,we come to know that…..” in this way is it the right way to express?

  50. i have some problem about writing task 2 ,

  51. Lee Yipoeng says

    Dear Ms. Liz,

    Thanks for your great help in our study.

    I have a question : Is it possible if we use imperative sentence in IELTS Writing essay task 2?

    Thanks for your support.

  52. HI Liz I just wanna ask you if I want you to mark for me an essay is that possible or not?

  53. Manjot Gill says

    Should I be formal in WT2? Like should I not use “sort of” or anything like that?

  54. Just came back to thank you for helping me pass ielts. God bless you. Thank you so much

  55. Nigel Houghton says

    Earlier today I paid to view your video lesson on Writing Task 2. I have a receipt number from Pay Pal, but have received no email to inform me how to access the video. Help!

    PS what I have seen of your site looks excellent.

  56. I also agree that we should use natural and easy-to-understand language. But maybe some examiner thinks some big words in the essay can demonstrate the variety of vocabulary. Actually that’s a superficial habit.

  57. Thank you for your numerous guidance. Please, may I ask for other alternative phrases for academic writing task 1 in providing an overview. I only know “OVERALL”. Please are there others as overall seems to be used most often by candidates?

    • “Overall” is the best to us. This is not creative writing. It is a report and these are generally quite formulaic.

  58. Avi grewal says

    What should i write to start intro and body paragraphs except these 10 points

  59. Hi Miss Liz,

    I’m Nand,

    i do want to purchase an access for your video, but i don’t have a credit card. Is there a way for me to pay it bank to bank or at least in western union?

    thanks and regards

  60. HI LIZ .
    1-Can I write in the second paragraph (no one can deny that _something general but related to the essay topic- )??
    2-can I write : everything has to sides and the ….. is not an exemption
    3- can I write :initially, there is an urgent need to shed the spotlight on this topic which is ……

  61. hello,
    Do i need to put a title to my essay ?

  62. Dear Liz :
    I had essays correction before , the teacher insisted to add academic examples in my essays by writing ( a recent study or research ) because other types of examples will not get high score , now I am a bit confused what to do . Please advise me .

  63. Uttam Shrestha says

    Hello Mam,

    On the 2nd point of your lesson on ‘Phrases to Avoid in your IELTS Essay’, you have written ” just paragraph the essay question directly…”. Shouldn’t it have been ” just paraphrase the …” instead?

  64. Masha from Russia says

    Another question)) Is it possible to use conditionals in WT2? Is it rather a good or bad idea? I ofthen use it for making examples…

    • It is a good idea to use a range of tenses in IELTS writing task 2. Using conditionals is common. Go through my model essays and see the range of tenses I use. (Don’t worry about typos – I make plenty myself).

  65. You said that candidates should not use learnt phrases. What do you think about phrases and chunks like ‘One of the big disadvantages of smth, another advantage is’ Can we use them or not? And what do you mean by learnt phrases? Thank you in advance

  66. Mam
    Can we use some phrases in conclusion,like: after hashing out both side,in compendium,in the eleventh hour

  67. Shailendra says

    Dear Madam,

    It is very common to write a phrase “Looking forward to hearing from you” in IELTS GT writing task 1 (letter writing). Is it OK to use this sentence or if not, what would be the better way to rephrase the same ?


    • You use this for formal letters not for personal letters. Use it when you need a response, for example you are hoping to get a refund for something.

  68. Deeply thanks for your priceless lesson Pro. Liz. And can you give us another lessons of Writing Task 2(Body Paragraph and Conclusion).


  69. I have my test on 19september what should I do now for preparation

    • Start learning. Read all tips and information pages, watch the preparation video on my home page and then start doing the practice lessons.

  70. Md. Rashidul Hassan says

    Dear Madam,It’s really interesting to take up the tips and guidance from you which are significantly applicable for my appearing at i.e.l.t.s.examination with much more confidence as well as integration. It would be highly enjoyable for me if i could take class directly by you.However,i will get myself concentrated to your tips and advice so that i can become successful for achieving my targeted band score.Wish you sound health and all the best.Good night.Sincerely yours,Hassan.

  71. Thanks for your help.

  72. Regarding the first phrase to avoid, I need to know whether the following format is correct. I started my essay with a general statement and wrote that some people believe that ….and stated the first opinion and wrote that others feel that … and mentioned the second opinion and then for the thesis statement I wrote” in this essay I will discuss both opinions and give mine at the conclusion”. Is my thesis statement correct?

    • No, your thesis statement is a learned phrase. You should have written your opinion in the introduction as the thesis statement.

    • I would like to thank you for your valuable and quick reply. I appreciate your effort as I thought that you would not be able to reply due to the huge amount of comments you receive daily.
      Thanks again

  73. Sarita Manela says

    Dear Liz, thanks for providing such useful tips and tricks ………
    I only wanted to ask you.. in writing task two, are we obliged to write a refutation paragraph … if yes in which case …..
    thanks in advance ☺

    • If you are asked to give your opinion, the your whole essay focuses on only that – nothing more. If you are asked to discuss both sides, you must do that. Just follow the instructions.

  74. Hi Liz

    How does it affect your score when you do not mention any examples in task 2 in writing test?


  75. Hi Liz

    You are an angel – thank you so much for helping us to avoid hackneyed phrases!
    Will you please advice what will be alternative sentences/phrases can be use instead these mentioned above?


    • The idea is not to learn sentences so I won’t give alternatives to memorise. Each sentence should be unique to the essay question and topic.
      All the best

  76. Kinley Rinchen says

    Thanks for the clarifications

  77. Hi Liz I got 6,5 several times in writing my problem is that I need 7 to pass ,What is the magic recipe?
    many thanks for your useful website.

  78. Dear Liz, thank you for all your advices here in your page, it was very helpful for me to do my IELTS test last month and successfully I got the score I needed.

    Thank you so much

  79. Hello,will they give me some white paper to plan my essay and my report?

  80. Hi.Liz mam
    I am from India. Want to know which method is more better, using a paraphrase either in introduction or conclusion. or we should write in our own ideas and thoughts.

    • You paraphrase both the introduction and conclusion. But successful paraphrasing does not mean changing all words – just reformulate them.

  81. Nowadays in the world, it cannot be denied

    • Yes, avoid those phrases. I’ve added that to the list above.

      • Dear Liz, is the word “add” incorrect? you wrote “I’ve add” or it is mistype?
        Please comment. I just get confused with the grammar bcz i take your english for etalon. Thank you.

      • Ritu Chauhan says

        Hi liz.. so what we can use instead of nowadays.. in current era.. current epok or prsently.. in contemporary world any of these is correct… please let know if not what i can use instead of these??

        • You don’t need to use anything at all. Nearly all IELTS essay topics are current so you don’t need to mention it. Avoid trying to start your essay in a formulaic way.

  82. wow Liz thank you so much for this tips, it came in the exact moment cause I´m taking my test in the next few weeks.

    GodBless you

  83. Hi ms Liz,
    Some learned sen. ( since the dawn of time…., through out history )

    Thank you for your remider, because I thought I can write some examples and giving figures! This is especially about health and WHO related ..

    I hope to do well this time !
    Thank you

  84. You are a wonderful teacher . Thank you so much for sharing your amazing video,and useful comment.
    God bless you.

  85. Sharnjeet Singh says

    Nowadays, In toadays modernized era.
    To commence with, To start, Firtly.
    On the other hand, On the flip Side.
    To conclude, In Conclusion .

    • You should use “In conclusion” or “On the other hand”, these are 100% correct to use in an formal essay for IELTS. They are clear linking words, please see here for the full list: However, you should try to avoid the others, particularly “on the flip side” which is informal and inappropriate for essay writing.
      All the best

  86. Dear Liz, thank you so much for your guidance n ielts essay writing, that is really helpful for a beginner like me….I also need to know how to write an introduction in writing part 1…if you please give tutorial on that it will also beneficial for me….😊

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