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I’m going to make this very short and sweet. There are a few key things that all IELTS Failers do. So if you are sitting IELTS, make this a checklist of DON’TS for you.
- Don’t give enough details in their supporting sentences
For some it is okay to come up with some ideas for reasons, but the most important thing is can you back these ideas up with supporting sentences and examples. This can be the difference between pass or fail.
- Can’t structure an essay with an introduction, body and conclusion
How many people start off with an introduction sentence then somewhere along the line you realise that you never did any paragraphs and everything all ran in together. This is a critical point, and examiners look for clear definitions of beginning, middle and end.
- Do not take time to understand what the topic is about, so write about something they think they know about
You look at the topic and have a few key words that make sense to you and then go on to write about them when the topic may be about the complete opposite. Be careful to read the question carefully. It shouldn’t be beyond your level of understanding.
- Not spending a few minutes at the beginning to plan out what you want to say
Thinking you have no time is the biggest time waster when it comes to writing. Make sure you allow yourself at least 2-3 minutes to take notes of your ideas, structure your essay, then only when you feel you have it sorted, jump in with the paragraphs and sentences.
- Writing too much or too little
It’s easy to think that you have said what you want to say in your essay but when the expectation is 250 words and you have only written 15 lines, there is something wrong. The 250 words expectation is there because examiners believe it takes that much to explain what you mean.
- Not watching the clock
How many of you have just started launching into your essay and see the time running out with only 5 minutes to go. Pace yourself and don’t worry, you can get everything done within the time.