This is another guest article, this time from Mike Wattie of IELTSanswers. Mike has lots of experience in examining and his site has all sorts of useful advice for exam preparation and offers an essay correction service that I’m sure will be of interest to many candidates, it’s always sensible to have your writing checked before you get to the exam and there are few people better qualified to help you out than Mike. If Taiwan is the wrong time zone, then why not check one of the other tutors on the Teachers’ page.
In this article he makes a simple point about the need to plan your writing and then suggests some practical ways you can do this. I’d add that there is always time to plan the essay: the better you plan, the better and more quickly you write.
Planning your essays
On a few occasions I have been an invigilator (person to make sure no one is cheating!) in the writing exam. I was amazed to see that only about 10% just started writing their essays without writing any plan first. Afterwards, I asked some of my students who were attending why they didn’t write a plan. “oh we thought we didn’t have time to do it.”
The plan serves three purposes. First, it helps you think about the main points you will write, so it increases your score for Task Response. Second, it helps you structure your essay better, so it increases your score for Cohesion and Coherence. Finally, it saves you time. That’s right! By making a plan first, you won’t have to keep stopping to think what you will write next.
Each essay question is composed of two parts. The TOPIC, which is what the essay is about; and the TASK, which is what sort of essay you need to write. There are three main types of essays. The first asks you opinion, or do you agree or disagree. The second asks you to explain two sides of an argument and then give your own personal opinion on that topic. The third asks you two questions; for example, “discuss the problems and solutions.”
You should learn how to plan for all three types of essays. You can practice your planning by looking at past exam questions and thinking what would be your main points and how would you structure the essay. If you need someone to correct your essays and give feedback on how to improve checkout my service at: http://ieltsanswers.com/IELTS-Essay-Correction.html
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If you are and you are looking for more work, then why not consider advertising your services on my Teachers’ page. It s an entirely free service and there is a good chance you’ll find work from there. Likewise, if you have a website and you would like to reach a different audience, why not contact me to be a guest blogger here. I’ll backlink to you as generously as you like!!